Pseudomyrmex triplaridis

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Pseudomyrmex triplaridis
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Pseudomyrmecinae
Genus: Pseudomyrmex
Species: P. triplaridis
Binomial name
Pseudomyrmex triplaridis
(Forel, 1904)

Pseudomyrmex triplaridis casent0902886 p 1 high.jpg

Pseudomyrmex triplaridis casent0902886 d 1 high.jpg

Specimen Labels

Synonyms

Pseudomyrmex triplaridis is always associated with - nesting and foraging upon - plants of the genus Triplaris.

Identification

Ward (1999) - Workers and queens of P. triplaridis can be identified by the combination of relatively short legs (worker LHT/HL < 0.77, queen LHT 0.86–1.04, queen LHT/HL 0.70–0.74), moderately elongate head (worker CI 0.85–0.93, queen CI 0.83–0.89), recurved anteroventral petiolar process, densely punctulate head sculpture, and presence of standing pilosity on the posterior margin and upper sides of the head (in frontal view). The palp formula of 5,3 and the more exposed median lobes of the antennal sclerites (see above; queen PFC/ASD 0.62–0.71, queen FCI2 0.45–0.60) are also characteristic. P. triplaridis is intermediate in habitus between Pseudomyrmex viduus on the one hand and the larger, broad-headed Triplaris-inhabiting species on the other hand.

Distribution

Most records for P. triplaridis are from the Amazon basin, but peripheral populations are known from Guyana and southern Brazil.

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Neotropical Region: Brazil (type locality), Colombia, Costa Rica, French Guiana, Guatemala, Guyana, Mexico, Panama, Suriname, Trinidad and Tobago, Venezuela.

Distribution based on AntMaps

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Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb

Biology

Sanchez 2015. P. triplaridis nest in the hollow stem of Triplaris americana.

This species is apparently always associated with Triplaris, but little has been published on its biology. Ule (1906b) found that, in contrast to P. dendroicus, the workers of P. triplaridis did not clear vegetation at the base of their host tree (see also Wheeler, 1942:49). For other information about this species see brief remarks by Forel (1904c:685, 1906:231) and Wheeler (1942:184), but note that Wheeler’s (1942:185–186) comments about “P. triplaridis baileyi” and “P. triplaridis tigrina” refer to Pseudomyrmex viduus, not P. triplaridis. Collections of P. triplaridis have been made from Triplaris weigeltiana (Reichenbach) Kuntze (=T. surinamensis Chamisso) and Triplaris dugandii Brandbyge, in addition to plants identified no farther than genus. See under Pseudomyrmex ultrix for observations on incipient colonies. (Ward 1999)

Castes

Nomenclature

The following information is derived from Barry Bolton's New General Catalogue, a catalogue of the world's ants.

  • triplaridis. Pseudomyrma triplaridis Forel, 1904e: 684 (w.q.m.) BRAZIL. Combination in Pseudomyrmex: Kusnezov, 1953e: 214. Senior synonym of boxi Wheeler (and its junior synonym boxi Enzmann): Ward, 1989: 444. See also: Wheeler, W.M. 1942: 182; Kempf, 1961a: 400; Ward, 1999b: 503.
  • boxi. Pseudomyrma triplaridis subsp. boxi Wheeler, W.M. 1942: 184 (w.q.m.) GUYANA. Combination in Pseudomyrmex: Kempf, 1961a: 400. Senior synonym of boxi Enzmann: Brown, 1949a: 43. Junior synonym of triplaridis: Ward, 1989: 444.
  • boxi. Pseudomyrma triplaridis subsp. boxi Enzmann, E.V. 1944: 94 (w.) GUYANA. [Unresolved junior primary homonym of boxi Wheeler, above.] Junior synonym of boxi Wheeler: Brown, 1949a: 43.

Unless otherwise noted the text for the remainder of this section is reported from the publication that includes the original description.

Description

Worker

Ward (1999) - Measurements (n=19). HL 1.03–1.27, HW 0.89–1.14, MFC 0.080–0.116, LHT 0.72–0.95, CI 0.85–0.93, REL 0.35–0.43, REL2 0.42–0.48, FCI 0.08–0.12, SI 0.43–0.48, FLI 1.36–1.77, FI 0.39–0.43, PLI 0.80–0.92, PWI 0.84–0.97, PPWI 1.38–1.77.

Agreeing with the description of Pseudomyrmex triplarinus except as follows. Averaging smaller in size (compare HW, LHT). Palp formula 5,3. Frontal carinae less well separated, and the median lobe of antennal sclerite correspondingly more exposed (PFC/ASD 0.54–0.65, FCI2 0.45–0.61). Funicular segment 3 broader than long. Head narrower, regression of HL on HW lying above that of P. triplarinus. Metanotal groove tending to be less strongly impressed. Profemur broader (FI > 0.38). Legs relatively shorter, LHT/HL 0.70–0.75. Anteroventral petiolar process subtriangular or fin-shaped, recurved posteroventrally. Postpetiolar sternite with more conspicuous ventral protrusion. Sculpture on dorsum of head coarser, the punctures 0.010–0.020mm in diameter, subcontiguous on the anterior half of head and separated by about their diameters on upper half of head. Body pilosity common (MSC 43–70, HTC 6–13), somewhat better developed on the head than in P. triplarinus so that in frontal view the posterior margin and upper sides of the head always have some erect or subdecumbent hairs visible in outline (absent at least from the sides of the head in P. triplarinus). Pubescence on head more conspicuous, the hairs tending to be decumbent or subdecumbent, giving the worker a scruffier appearance. Less variation in body colour: more consistently concolorous mediumto dark-brown, the frontoclypeal complex and appendages typically lighter.

Type Material

Ward (1999) - Syntype workers, queens, male, Jurua Miry, Jurua, Amazonas, Brazil (Ule) (American Museum of Natural History, The Natural History Museum, Museo Civico di Storia Naturale, Genoa, Musee d'Histoire Naturelle Genève, Naturhistorisches Museum Wien, Vienna) [Examined].

Pseudomyrma triplaridis subsp. boxi Wheeler, 1942:184. Lectotype worker, Blairmont, Berbice, Guyana (H. E. Box) (Museum of Comparative Zoology) [Examined].

Pseudomyrma triplaridis subsp. boxi Enzmann, 1944:94. Syntype workers, Blairmont, Berbice, Guyana (H. E. Box) (MCZC) [Examined].

References

  • Forel, A. 1904f. In und mit Pflanzen lebende Ameisen aus dem Amazonas-Gebiet und aus Peru, gesammelt von Herrn E. Ule. Zool. Jahrb. Abt. Syst. Geogr. Biol. Tiere 20: 677-707 (page 684, worker, queen, male described)
  • Kempf, W. W. 1961a. Estudos sôbre Pseudomyrmex. III. (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Stud. Entomol. 4: 369-408 (page 400, see also)
  • Kusnezov, N. 1953f. La fauna mirmecológica de Bolivia. Folia Univ. Cochabamba 6: 211-229 (page 214, Combination in Pseudomyrmex)
  • Sanchez, A. 2015. Fidelity and Promiscuity in an Ant-Plant Mutualism: A Case Study of Triplaris and Pseudomyrmex. PLoS ONE. 10. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0143535
  • Ward, P. S. 1989a. Systematic studies on pseudomyrmecine ants: revision of the Pseudomyrmex oculatus and P. subtilissimus species groups, with taxonomic comments on other species. Quaest. Entomol. 25: 393-468 (page 444, Senior synonym of boxi Wheeler (and its junior synonym boxi Enzmann).)
  • Ward, P. S. 1999b. Systematics, biogeography and host plant associations of the Pseudomyrmex viduus group (Hymenoptera: Formicidae), Triplaris- and Tachigali-inhabiting ants. Zool. J. Linn. Soc. 126: 451-540 (page 503, see also)
  • Wheeler, W. M. 1942. Studies of Neotropical ant-plants and their ants. Bull. Mus. Comp. Zool. 90: 1-262 (page 182, see also)