Strumigenys belua

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Strumigenys belua
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Attini
Genus: Strumigenys
Species: S. belua
Binomial name
Strumigenys belua
Bolton, 2000

The type material was collected in subtropical rainforest. The specimen was apparently taken from a litter sample ("forest, log & leaf litter").

Identification

Bolton (2000) - A member of the smythiesii complex in the Strumigenys godeffroyi-group. Immediately identified among the members of the smythiesii-complex by its dorsally smooth and dorsolaterally laminate propodeum, longitudinally carinate mesonotum and small eyes. See also notes under Strumigenys friedae.

Keys including this Species

Distribution

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Australasian Region: Australia (type locality).

Distribution based on AntMaps

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Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb

Biology

Strumigenys were once thought to be rare. The development and increased use of litter sampling methods has led to the discovery of a tremendous diversity of species. Many species are specialized predators (e.g. see Strumigenys membranifera and Strumigenys louisianae). Collembola (springtails) and other tiny soil arthropods are typically favored prey. Species with long linear mandibles employ trap-jaws to sieze their stalked prey (see Dacetine trap-jaws). Larvae feed directly on insect prey brought to them by workers. Trophallaxis is rarely practiced. Most species live in the soil, leaf litter, decaying wood or opportunistically move into inhabitable cavities on or under the soil. Colonies are small, typically less than 100 individuals but in some species many hundreds. Moist warm habitats and micro-habitats are preferred. A few better known tramp and otherwise widely ranging species tolerate drier conditions. Foraging is often in the leaf litter and humus. Workers of many species rarely venture above ground or into exposed, open areas. Individuals are typically small, slow moving and cryptic in coloration. When disturbed individuals freeze and remain motionless. Males are not known for a large majority of species.

Castes

Nomenclature

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

  • belua. Strumigenys belua Bolton, 2000: 956, figs. 520, 543 (w.) AUSTRALIA.

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

Description

Worker

Holotype. TL 2.3, HL 0.57, HW 0.39, CI 68, ML 0.24, MI 42, SL 0.35, SI 90, PW 0.25, AL 0.62. With characters of smythiesii-complex. Apicoscrobal hair flagellate, long and straggly. Cephalic dorsum sharply reticulate-punctate, the ground pilosity dense and narrowly spatulate. A single pair of erect hairs present on cephalic dorsum, close to midline near occipital margin. Eye small, composed of 3-4 larger ommatidia and about 4 smaller ommatidia around the ventral periphery; maximum diameter of eye less than maximum width of scape. Scrobe broad between dorsal and ventral margins but quite shallow. Pronotal humeral hair long, flagellate. Pronotum without other erect hairs; a single pair present on mesonotum. Promesonotal dorsum reticulate-punctate but propodeal dorsum almost smooth, with only faint superficial traces of sculpture. Mesonotum with a median longitudinal carina, weakest anteriorly, most strongly developed close to propodeum. Propodeum with a vertical low cuticular lamella on each dorsolateral margin, that extends the length of the segment and terminates on the dorsal base of the propodeal tooth. Propodeal declivity with a broad lamella, its posterior (free) margin concave at level of spiracle but convex below this. Entire side of alitrunk, including side of pronotum, mostly smooth; any sculpture present is restricted to the extreme periphery of the sclerites. Dorsal surface of petiole in profile with a cuticular crest that extends from midlength of peduncle to anterodorsal angle of node. Dorsum of petiole node with faint superficial sculpture only, almost smooth; disc of postpetiole glassy smooth. Hairs on first gastral tergite long and fine, filiform to subflagellate or narrowly looped apically.

Type Material

Holotype worker, Australia: New South Wales, Wiangaree SF, Brindle Creek, 740 m., 29.ii.-3.iii.1980, subtrop. rainfor., berlese, forest, log & leaf litter, NT-11 (A. Newton & M. Thayer) (Australian National Insect Collection).

References

  • Bolton, B. 2000. The ant tribe Dacetini. Memoirs of the American Entomological Institute. 65:1-1028. (page 956, figs. 520, 543 worker described)