Leptothorax muscorum

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Leptothorax muscorum
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Crematogastrini
Genus: Leptothorax
Species: L. muscorum
Binomial name
Leptothorax muscorum
(Nylander, 1846)

MCZ-ENT 001 Leptothorax muscorum hal.jpg

MCZ-ENT 001 Leptothorax muscorum had.jpg

Specimen Label

Synonyms

This species shows a preference for drier and warmer habitats (it does not inhabit bogs). In the mountains, it lives in meadows. Nests are built under small stones, under bark, in rotten wood, sometimes in litter. (Radchenko 2004)


At a Glance • Polygynous  

 

Identification

Pale brown to brown with antennal clubs and head often slightly darker. Propodeal spines short but distinct. General appearance more slender than Leptothorax acervorum. Head striate, mesosoma rugose and gaster smooth. Appendage hairs few and adpressed. Clypeus in some Scandinavian series have a distinct median concavity as described for Leptothorax gredleri Mayr (Buschinger, 1966) but they are not otherwise different from the typical species. Length: 2.4-3.2 mm (Collingwood 1979).

Distribution

Appenines to Central Scandinavia and Pyrenees to Urals, not found in British Isles but common in continental Europe (Collingwood 1979).

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Palaearctic Region: Andorra, Armenia, Austria, Belarus, Belgium, Bulgaria, China, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland (type locality), France, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iberian Peninsula, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Mongolia, Montenegro, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Republic of Moldova, Romania, Russian Federation, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, Ukraine.

Distribution based on AntMaps

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Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb

Biology

In Scandinavia, this species is restricted to sheltered valleys in woodland areas where it nests in stony banks, tree stumps or under bark. Its habits are similar to those of L. acervorum with small colonies having one or occasionally two queens. Males and alate queens are found in July and August.

This species is a host for the slave-making species Harpagoxenus sublaevis.

Castes

Worker

Queen

Male

Nomenclature

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

  • muscorum. Myrmica muscorum Nylander, 1846b: 1054 (w.q.m.) FINLAND.
    • Combination in Leptothorax: Mayr, 1855: 439.
    • Combination in L. (Mychothorax): Ruzsky, 1904a: 288.
    • Subspecies of acervorum: Forel, 1874: 84 (in key); Emery & Forel, 1879: 458; Ruzsky, 1896: 72; Escherich, 1917: 328 (in key); Soudek, 1922: 50.
    • Status as species: Foerster, 1850a: 59; Mayr, 1855: 439 (redescription); Nylander, 1856b: 90; Smith, F. 1858b: 118; Mayr, 1861: 58 (in key); Roger, 1863b: 26; Mayr, 1863: 427; André, 1874: 189 (in key); André, 1883a: 294 (in key); Nasonov, 1889: 31; Dalla Torre, 1893: 125; Emery, 1895c: 318; Wheeler, W.M. 1901b: 519; Ruzsky, 1902d: 21; Ruzsky, 1903c: 207; Ruzsky, 1905b: 616; Wasmann, 1906: 119 (in key); Bondroit, 1910: 497; Karavaiev, 1912b: 582; Stitz, 1914: 62; Forel, 1915d: 26 (in key); Karavaiev, 1916: 503; Wheeler, W.M. 1917a: 511; Bondroit, 1918: 121; Bondroit, 1920a: 153; Müller, 1923b: 88 (in key); Emery, 1924d: 262; Menozzi, 1925d: 33; Lomnicki, 1928: 5; Karavaiev, 1931e: 212; Karavaiev, 1934: 145 (redescription); Novák & Sadil, 1941: 89 (in key); Novák, in Kratochvíl, Novák & Šnoflák, 1944: 112; Röszler, 1950: 225; Brown, 1955a: 47; Bernard, 1956a: 161; Buschinger, 1966b: 165; Francoeur & Béique, 1966: 142; Bernard, 1967: 200 (redescription); Pisarski, 1969a: 229; Pisarski, 1969b: 297; Dlussky & Pisarski, 1970: 86; Baroni Urbani, 1971c: 99; Pisarski, 1975: 23; Aktaç, 1977: 122; van Boven, 1977: 101; Kutter, 1977c: 130; Collingwood, 1978: 83 (in key); Arnol'di & Dlussky, 1978: 543 (in key); Wheeler, G.C. & Wheeler, J. 1978: 391; Collingwood, 1979: 72; Smith, D.R. 1979: 1397; Pisarski & Krzysztofiak, 1981: 157; Espadaler & Collingwood, 1982: 41; Allred, 1982: 484; Kupyanskaya, 1986b: 96; Wheeler, G.C. & Wheeler, J. 1986g: 53; Agosti & Collingwood, 1987b: 273 (in key); Nilsson & Douwes, 1987: 60; Loiselle, et al. 1990: 323; Kupyanskaya, 1990: 139; Atanassov & Dlussky, 1992: 132; Arakelian, 1994: 55; Radchenko, 1994b: 111 (in key); Radchenko, 1994d: 147 (in key); Douwes, 1995: 89; Bolton, 1995b: 241; Radchenko, 1995a: 25; Czechowski, et al. 2002: 42; Mackay & Mackay, 2002: 129; Radchenko, 2004: 130; Coovert, 2005: 79; Seifert, 2007: 225; Radchenko, 2007: 31; Zryanin & Zryanina, 2007: 231; Casevitz-Weulersse & Galkowski, 2009: 488; Lapeva-Gjonova, et al. 2010: 20; Boer, 2010: 50; Legakis, 2011: 16; Borowiec, L. & Salata, 2012: 510; Czechowski, et al. 2012: 132; Borowiec, L. 2014: 99; Radchenko, 2016: 210; Schar et al., 2018: 6.
    • Senior synonym of betulae: Radchenko, 1995a: 25; Radchenko, 2016: 210.
    • Senior synonym of fagi: Radchenko, 1995a: 25; Radchenko, 2016: 210.
    • Senior synonym of flavescens: Radchenko, 1995a: 25; Radchenko, 2016: 210.
    • Material of the unavailable name “uvicensis” referred here.
  • flavescens. Leptothorax muscorum var. flavescens Ruzsky, 1896: 72 (w.) RUSSIA. [First available use of Leptothorax acervorum subsp. muscorum var. flavescens Ruzsky, 1895: 26; unavailable name.] Subspecies of muscorum: Ruzsky, 1905b: 621. Junior synonym of muscorum: Radchenko, 1995a: 25.
  • betulae. Leptothorax muscorum var. betulae Ruzsky, 1916: 6 (w.) RUSSIA. Subspecies of muscorum: Ruzsky, 1936: 94. Junior synonym of muscorum: Radchenko, 1995a: 25.
  • fagi. Leptothorax (Mychothorax) muscorum var. fagi Ruzsky, 1905b: 619, fig. 151 (w.) CAUCASUS. Junior synonym of muscorum: Radchenko, 1995a: 25.

Description

Karyotype

  • n = 17, 2n = 34 (Canada; Germany; USA) (Buschinger et al., 1980; Fischer, 1987; Loiselle et al., 1990) (possible variation due B chromosomes).
  • n = 18, 2n = 36 (Canada; Germany; USA) (Fischer, 1987; Loiselle et al., 1990) (possible variation due B chromosomes).
  • n = 22, 2n = 44 (Canada; Germany; USA) (Fischer, 1987) (possible variation due B chromosomes).

References

  • André, E. 1883a. Les fourmis. [part]. Pp. 281-344 in: André, Edm. 1881-1886. Species des Hyménoptères d'Europe et d'Algérie. Tome Deuxième. Beaune: Edmond André, 919 + 48 pp. (page 294, Status as species)
  • Atanassov, N.; Dlussky, G. M. 1992. Fauna of Bulgaria. Hymenoptera, Formicidae. Fauna Bûlg. 22: 1-310 (page 132, see also)
  • Baroni Urbani, C. 1971c. Catalogo delle specie di Formicidae d'Italia (Studi sulla mirmecofauna d'Italia X). Mem. Soc. Entomol. Ital. 50: 5-287 (page 99, see also)
  • Brown, W. L., Jr. 1955a. The ant Leptothorax muscorum (Nylander) in North America. Entomol. News 66: 43-50 PDF (page 47, Senior synonym of canadensis, kincaidi, septentrionalis and yankee (and its junior synonyms obscurus and sordidus))
  • Buschinger, A. 1966c. Leptothorax (Mychothorax) muscorum Nylander und Leptothorax (M.) gredleri Mayr zwei gute Arten. Insectes Soc. 13: 165-172 (page 165, see also)
  • Collingwood, C. A. 1979. The Formicidae (Hymenoptera) of Fennoscandia and Denmark. Fauna Entomol. Scand. 8: 1-174 (page 72, see also)
  • Forel, A. 1874. Les fourmis de la Suisse. Systématique, notices anatomiques et physiologiques, architecture, distribution géographique, nouvelles expériences et observations de moeurs. Neue Denkschr. Allg. Schweiz. Ges. Gesammten Naturwiss. 26: 1-452 (page 84, Race of acervorum)
  • Forel, A. 1915d. Fauna insectorum helvetiae. Hymenoptera. Formicidae. Die Ameisen der Schweiz. Mitt. Schweiz. Entomol. Ges. 12(B Beilage: 1-77 (page 26, Combination in L. (Mychothorax))
  • Higgins, R. J. and B. S. Lindgren. 2015. Seral changes in ant (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) assemblages in the sub-boreal forests of British Columbia. Insect Conservation and Diversity. 8:337-347. doi:10.1111/icad.12112
  • Kupyanskaya, A. N. 1990a. Ants of the Far Eastern USSR. Vladivostok: Akademiya Nauk SSSR, 258 pp. (page 139, see also)
  • Kutter, H. 1977c. Hymenoptera, Formicidae. Insecta Helv. Fauna 6: 1-298 (page 130, see also)
  • Loiselle, R.; Francouer, A.; Fischer, K.; Buschinger, A. 1990. Variations and taxonomic significance of the chromosome numbers in the Nearctic species of the genus Leptothorax (s.s.) (Formicidae: Hymenoptera). Caryologia 43: 321-334 (page 323, see also)
  • Mayr, G. 1855. Formicina austriaca. Beschreibung der bisher im österreichischen Kaiserstaate aufgefundenen Ameisen, nebst Hinzufügung jener in Deutschland, in der Schweiz und in Italien vorkommenden Arten. Verh. Zool.-Bot. Ver. Wien 5: 273-478 (page 439, Combination in Leptothorax)
  • Mackay, W. P. and E. Mackay. 2002. The ants of New Mexico (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Edwin Mellen Press, Lewiston, NY.
  • Nylander, W. 1846b. Additamentum adnotationum in monographiam formicarum borealium Europae. Acta Soc. Sci. Fenn. 2 2: 1041-1062 (page 1054, worker, queen, male described)
  • Radchenko, A. 2004. A review of the ant genera Leptothorax Mayr and Temnothorax Mayr (Hymenoptera, Formicidae) of the Eastern Palaearctic. Acta Zoologica Academiae Scientiarum Hungaricae 50(2): 109-137 (page 130, fig. 40 see also)
  • Radchenko, A. G. 1995a [1994]. A review of the ant genus Leptothorax (Hymenoptera, Formicidae) of the central and eastern Palearctic. Communication 1. Subdivision into groups. Groups acervorum and bulgaricus. Vestn. Zool. 1994 6: 22-28 (page 25, Senior synonym of betulae, fagi and flavescens)
  • Ruzsky, M. 1905b. The ants of Russia. (Formicariae Imperii Rossici). Systematics, geography and data on the biology of Russian ants. Part I. Tr. Obshch. Estestvoispyt. Imp. Kazan. Univ. 38(4-6 6: 1-800 (page 616, Status as species)
  • Schar, S., Talavera, G., Espadaler, X., Rana, J.D., Andersen, A.A., Cover, S.P., Vila, R. 2018. Do Holarctic ant species exist? Trans-Beringian dispersal and homoplasy in the Formicidae. Journal of Biogeography 2018:1–12 (doi:10.1111/jbi.13380).
  • Smith, D. R. 1979. Superfamily Formicoidea. Pp. 1323-1467 in: Krombein, K. V., Hurd, P. D., Smith, D. R., Burks, B. D. (eds.) Catalog of Hymenoptera in America north of Mexico. Volume 2. Apocrita (Aculeata). Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Press, pp. i-xvi, 1199-2209. (page 1397, see also)
  • Wheeler, G. C. and J. Wheeler. 1986. The ants of Nevada. Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, Los Angeles.