| Syllophopsis ferodens|
The species is comparatively rare, being known from four sites in Fianarantsoa and Toliara Provinces. All have been taken in sifted litter (leaf mold and rotten wood) in rainforest.
Heterick (2006) - The worker (queens and males are unknown) of this unobtrusive, but interesting species can easily be confused with a small, pale worker of Syllophopsis hildebrandti. However, it can readily be distinguished by its PF of 3,2 and the enlarged, down-curved basal tooth. In profile, the clypeal protuberance tends to form a blunter angle than is the case with S. hildebrandti, its configuration more closely resembling that found in Syllophopsis sechellensis.
Keys including this Species
Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists
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The following information is derived from Barry Bolton's New General Catalogue, a catalogue of the world's ants.
- ferodens. Monomorium ferodens Heterick, 2006: 133, figs. 1, 2, 3A, 4, 5A, 5B, 6 (w.) MADAGASCAR. Combination in Syllophopsis: Ward et al., 2014: 13. See also: Heterick, 2008: 719.
Unless otherwise noted the text for the remainder of this section is reported from the publication that includes the original description.
Holotype: HML 1.43 HL 0.51 HW 0.44 CeI 86 SL 0.40 SI 91 PW 0.31.
HML 1.21–1.57 HL 0.45–0.57 HW 0.37–0.47 CeI 80–87 SL 0.35–0.44 SI 87–97 PW 0.26–0.32 (n=20).
HEAD: Head rectangular; vertex planar or weakly concave; frons shining and smooth except for piliferous pits; frons a mixture of incurved, semi-erect setae and slightly shorter decumbent setae. Eye small, eye width less than 1× greatest width of antennal scape; eyes set above midpoint of head capsule; set posteriad of midline of head capsule; more-or-less circular to semi-circular. Antennal segments 12; club three-segmented. Clypeal carinae weakly to strongly defined; anteromedian clypeal margin straight; paraclypeal setae moderately long and fine, curved; posteromedian clypeal margin approximately level with antennal fossae. Anterior tentorial pits equidistant from antennal fossae and mandibular insertions. Frontal lobes sinuate, divergent posteriad. Psammophore absent. Palp formula 3,2. Mandibular teeth four; mandibles linear-triangular and smooth (except for piliferous pits); masticatory margin of mandibles strongly oblique; basal tooth distinctly larger than t3 (four teeth present).
MESOSOMA: Promesonotum shining and mainly smooth, vestigial striolae, if present, confined to anterior of lower mesopleuron, or, shining and smooth on dorsum, entire lower mesopleuron distinctly striolate; in profile broadly convex; promesonotal setae greater than twelve; standing promesonotal setae consisting of a mixture of incurved, semi-erect setae and slightly shorter decumbent setae; appressed promesonotal setulae few, mainly on sides of promesonotum. Metanotal groove strongly impressed, with distinct transverse costulae. Propodeum shining and smooth, metapleuron with multiple hair-like striolae; propodeal dorsum sloping posteriad, and depressed between raised propodeal angles; angulate, propodeal angle blunt; length ratio of propodeal dorsum to its declivity about 1:1; standing propodeal setae consisting of one prominent pair anteriad, with a few to many erect to decumbent setae on/around dorsal and declivitous faces of propodeum; appressed propodeal setulae very sparse or absent; propodeal spiracle nearer declivitous face of propodeum than metanotal groove; vestibule of propodeal spiracle distinct; propodeal lobes present as rounded flanges.
PETIOLE AND POSTPETIOLE: Petiolar spiracle laterodorsal and situated slightly anteriad of petiolar node. Petiolar node, in profile, subcuboidal, vertex rounded; appearance of node shining and smooth throughout; ratio of greatest node breadth (viewed from front) to greatest node width (viewed in profile) between 4:3 and1:1. Anteroventral petiolar process absent or vestigial; ventral petiolar lobe present. Height ratio of petiole to postpetiole between 3:2 and 4:3; height–length ratio of postpetiole between 3:2 and 4:3; postpetiole shining and smooth; postpetiolar sternite not, or, only slightly depressed at midpoint, anterior process prominent.
GASTER: Pilosity of first gastral tergite consisting of a mixture of incurved, semi-erect setae and slightly shorter decumbent setae.
GENERAL CHARACTERS: Color pale, depigmented yellow. Worker caste monomorphic.
HOLOTYPE: worker, 40 km S Ambalavao, Res. Andringitra, 22º13′S, 46º58′E 1275m 15.x.1993 B.L. Fisher #793(8)–13/sifted litter (leaf mold, rotten wood), montane rainforest (California Academy of Sciences). PARATYPES: Prov. Fianarantsoa (specimens with same collection data as holotype): 2 workers (Australian National Insect Collection) 12 workers (The Natural History Museum); 2 workers (CAS); 12 workers + 1 worker (Museum of Comparative Zoology).
Latin ‘ferox’ (‘fierce’) + ‘dens’
- Heterick, B.E. 2006. A revision of the Malagasy ants belonging to genus Monomorium Mayr, 1855. Proceedings of the California Academy of Sciences. 57:69-202. PDF
- Ward, P.S., Brady, S.G., Fisher, B.L. & Schultz, T.R. 2014. The evolution of myrmicine ants: phylogeny and biogeography of a hyperdiverse ant clade (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Systematic Entomology, DOI: 10.1111/syen.12090.