Aenictus doydeei

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Aenictus doydeei
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Dorylinae
Genus: Aenictus
Species: A. doydeei
Binomial name
Aenictus doydeei
Jaitrong & Yamane, 2011

Aenictus doydeei casent0903680 p 1 high.jpg

Aenictus doydeei casent0903680 d 1 high.jpg

Specimen Labels

The type series from Laos and three colonies from Thailand were collected from disturbed areas in the night. Thus A. doydeei is very probably nocturnal. Jaitrong et al. (2011) reported that this species preyed on Pheidole plagiaria.

Identification

A member of the javanus species group. This species is closely related to Aenictus javanus, Aenictus longinodus, and Aenictus nishimurai in terms of body size and coloration. A. doydeei, however, is easily distinguished from A. javanus and A. longinodus as follows: occipital margin of head in profile rounded), while angled in A. javanus; petiole almost as long as high, but clearly longer than high in A. javanus and A. longinodus. A. doydeei is most similar to A. nishimurai, but is clearly larger than A. nishimurai with a slight overlap, and has the lateral face of the pronotum that is smooth but reticulated (almost smooth in A. nishimurai). A. doydeei is sympatric with A. nishimurai in Vientiane province, Laos and in northeastern Thailand. (Jaitrong & Yamane 2012)

Keys including this Species

Distribution

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Oriental Region: Laos (type locality), Thailand, Vietnam.


Distribution based on AntMaps

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Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb

Biology

Little is known about the biology of Aenictus doydeei. The genus is comprised of species that live an army ant lifestyle. Aenictus typically prey on other ants, from other genera, or other insects such as wasps or termites. There are reports of Aenictus preying on other insects as well and even have been observed collecting honeydew from homopterans (Santschi, 1933; Gotwald, 1995) but this appears, at least from available evidence, to be uncommon. Foraging raids can occur day or night across the ground surface. Occasionally raids are arboreal. During a raid numerous workers attack a single nest or small area, with several workers coordinating their efforts to carry large prey items back to the nest or bivouac. Aenictus have a nomadic life style, alternating between a migratory phase in which nests are temporary bivouacs in sheltered places above the ground and a stationary phase where semi-permanent underground nests are formed. During the nomadic phase bivouacs move regularly, sometimes more than once a day when larvae require large amounts of food. Individual nests usually contain up to several thousand workers, although nest fragments containing only a few hundred workers are often encountered. Queens are highly specialised and look less like workers than in most ant species. They have greatly enlarged gasters (dichthadiform) and remain flightless throughout their life. New colonies are formed by the division of existing colonies (fission) rather than by individual queens starting colonies on their own.

Castes

Known only from the worker caste.

Nomenclature

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

  • doydeei. Aenictus doydeei Jaitrong & Yamane, in Jaitrong, et al. 2011: 319, figs. 7-9 (w.) LAOS. See also: Jaitrong & Yamane, 2012: 53.

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

Description

Worker

Jaitrong & Yamane (2012) - Holotype: TL 3.40 mm; HL 0.70 mm; HW 0.65 mm; SL 0.40 mm; ML 1.00 mm; PL 0.28 mm; CI 93; SI 62.

Paratype workers (n = 9): TL 2.90–3.40 mm; HL 0.53–0.70 mm; HW 0.48–0.65 mm; SL 0.28–0.40 mm; ML 0.75–1.00 mm; PL 0.23–0.28 mm; CI 91–95; SI 55–62.

Head in full-face view almost as long as broad, with sides convex and posterior margin almost straight or feebly concave; seen in profile occipital corner of head rounded. Antennal scape reaching midlength of head; antennal segment II longer and narrower than each of III–VI; terminal segment (X) about 2.5 times as long as broad. Anterior margin of clypeus bearing 9–10 denticles. Masticatory margin of mandible with 3 acute teeth including a large apical tooth; basal margin lacking denticles. Mesosoma seen from above broader anteriorly than posteriorly; promesonotum laterally edged, in profile weakly convex dorsally and sloping gradually to propodeal junction; in profile propodeum slightly lower than promesonotum and almost flat dorsally; suture between mesopleuron and metapleuron completely absent; propodeal junction angulate, right-angled; declivity of propodeum shallowly concave, encircled by a thin rim. Petiole almost as long as high, its dorsal outline slightly elevated posteriorly; subpetiolar process well developed, subrectangular, its ventral margin almost straight and longer than posterior margin; postpetiole seen in profile subrectangular and slightly larger than petiole.

Head entirely smooth and shiny. Dorsal surface of pronotum smooth and shiny, lateral face superficially reticulate and shiny; mesothorax, metapleuron and propodeum densely microreticulate. Petiole entirely microreticulate. Postpetiole microreticulate except for a small smooth and shiny area on dorsal surface.

Head and mesosoma dorsally with relatively sparse standing hairs mixed with sparse short hairs; longest pronotal hairs 0.18–0.20 mm long. Head, mesosoma, petiole and postpetiole reddish brown; gaster yellowish brown; propodeum darker than other parts.

Type Material

Jaitrong & Yamane (2012) - Holotype and 61 paratype workers from a plantation, 211 m, Sivilay Village, Naxaythong Dist., Vientiane, Laos, 18°16'10"N, 102°26'36"E, 10.VI.2010, W. Jaitrong leg., WJT10-LAO13 (Ant Museum, The Natural History Museum, KKIC, Museum of Comparative Zoology, SKY Collection, Natural History Museum of the National Science Museum, examined).

Etymology

The specific name is dedicated to Dr Puvadol Doydee of Kasetsart University, who kindly helped us during our field surveys in Laos.

References

  • Jaitrong, W. & Yamane, S. (2012) Review of the Southeast Asian species of the Aenictus javanus and Aenictus philippinensis species groups (Hymenoptera, Formicidae, Aenictinae). ZooKeys 193: 49–78, doi: 10.3897/zookeys.193.2768.
  • Jaitrong, W., Yamane, S. & Chanthalangsy, N. (2011) The ant genus Aenictus from Laos, with description of a new species (Hymenoptera: Formicidae: Aenictinae). Journal of Asia-Pacific Entomology 14, 317-322.