Dolichoderus debilis

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Dolichoderus debilis
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Dolichoderinae
Tribe: Dolichoderini
Genus: Dolichoderus
Species: D. debilis
Binomial name
Dolichoderus debilis
Emery, 1890

Dolichoderus debilis casent0106158 p 1 high.jpg

Dolichoderus debilis casent0106158 d 1 high.jpg

Specimen Labels

Synonyms

Identification

Color black; mesosomal dorsum with abundant delicate erect setae; scapes lacking erect setae; dorsal and posterior faces of propodeum meeting at rounded angle and not produced as a projecting flange; face and mesosomal dorsum sublucid; pronotum transverse, with spiniform humeri (Jack Longino).

Distribution

Latitudinal Distribution Pattern

Latitudinal Range: 15.32625° to -64.36°.

     
North
Temperate
North
Subtropical
Tropical South
Subtropical
South
Temperate

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

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

Distribution based on AntMaps

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Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb

Biology

MacKay (1993): This species is usually collected in wet forest. It is a timid ant which nests in twigs, branches, trunks and fence posts, often in a faculative association with Crematogaster carinata (Swain, 1977, 1980). Nests are found in termitaria of Nasutitermes ephratae, N. corniger, and N. columbicus (Wheeler, 1936; Swain, 1977). Workers are found at extrafloral nectaries of Catostemma (Bombacaceae) (Lattke, 1986). It tends coccids and membracids. A single female was collected in March (Costa Rica - LACM). It is occasionally collected in quarantine on banana debris.

Jack Longino: Dolichoderus debilis has been reported on numerous occasions nesting together with other species of ants. Forel (1898) observed Dolichoderus debilis and Crematogaster carinata (as C. limata parabiotica) inhabiting the same nest in Colombia, and coined the term parabiosis to describe the phenomenon of mutual nest sharing. Wheeler (1921) made similar observations. Davidson has multiple observations of parabiotic foraging between D. debilis and C. carinata in Peru (pers. comm.). Her studies indicate that, unlike many other species of Dolichoderus, D. debilis has no chemical defences and has lost them because of its parabiotic associations with other strongly defended ants.

At Carara Biological Reserve in Costa Rica, I observed a parabiotic association between D. debilis and C. carinata. Nests of both species were interdigitated in a cluster of dead branches. The nests of the two species were contiguous, with interconnections among chambers, but they were still largely segregated. In general the Crematogaster occupied smaller and more peripheral chambers, while the Dolichoderus occupied larger chambers in the center of the branches. In some peripheral chambers I found workers of both species together, but these chambers never contained brood. Any chamber with brood always contained only one species.

Associations with other Organisms

This species is a host for the ant Crematogaster carinata (a xenobiont).

Flight Period

X X X X X X X X X X X X
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec

Source: Kaspari et al., 2001.

Castes

Worker

Queen

Nomenclature

The following information is derived from Barry Bolton's Online Catalogue of the Ants of the World.

  • debilis. Dolichoderus debilis Emery, 1890a: 69 (w.) VENEZUELA. Wheeler, G.C. & Wheeler, J. 1951: 176 (l.). Combination in D. (Monacis): Emery, 1894c: 228; in Monacis: Kempf, 1959b: 247; in Hypoclinea: Lattke, 1987b: 264; in Dolichoderus: Shattuck, 1992c: 77. Senior synonym of parabiotica, sieversi: Kempf, 1959b: 247. See also: Mackay, 1993b: 47.
  • sieversi. Dolichoderus debilis var. sieversi Forel, 1901h: 65 (w.) VENEZUELA. Combination in D. (Monacis): Emery, 1913a: 9. Junior synonym of debilis: Kempf, 1959b: 247.
  • parabiotica. Dolichoderus debilis var. parabiotica Forel, 1912h: 33 (w.q.m.) COLOMBIA. Junior synonym of debilis: Kempf, 1959b: 247.

Description

References

References based on Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics

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  • CSIRO Collection
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