|Alliance:||Pachycondyla genus group|
Schmidt & Shattuck, 2014
|Ponera constricta, now Mayaponera constricta|
(Species Checklist, Species by Country)
Mayaponera is widespread in Central and South America. It is found in wide range of natural and farming habitats. Ergatoids may occur alongside alate queens (Schmidt and Shattuck 2014)
|At a Glance||• Ergatoid queen|
Schmidt and Shattuck (2014) - Mayaponera workers lack any obvious autapomorphies and superficially have a very generalized appearance. They are most likely to be confused with some Neoponera and Mesoponera, but Mayaponera differs from Neoponera in its round propodeal spiracles, deeply impressed metanotal groove (at most only slightly impressed in Neoponera), and strongly narrowed propodeum with a dorsal longitudinal groove. It can be separated from the handful of Neoponera species in which the propodeal spiracle is round (some members of the N. emiliae group) by the presence of narrow and fang-like metasternal processes (the processes are triangular-shaped in Neoponera). Mayaponera differs from Mesoponera in having a complex metapleural gland orifice and prominent arolia.
|See images of species within this genus|
Keys including this Genus
Mayaponera constricta is widespread in the Neotropics from Central America to Bolivia and southern Brazil (Mackay & Mackay, 2010).
Distribution and Richness based on AntMaps
Number of species within biogeographic regions, along with the total number of species for each region.
|Afrotropical Region||Australasian Region||Indo-Australian Region||Malagasy Region||Nearctic Region||Neotropical Region||Oriental Region||Palaearctic Region|
Schmidt and Shattuck (2014) - Very little is known about the habits of Mayaponera. Mackay & Mackay (2010) reviewed Mayaponera constricta as part of their study of New World Pachycondyla while Longino (2013) and Baena (1993) summarized their observations on the species in Costa Rica and Colombia, respectively. The genus is common in a range of habitats from mature rainforests to cocoa plantations and other farm habitats, where it is frequently collected in leaf litter samples (Longino, 2013) and pitfall traps (Mackay & Mackay, 2010). Nests usually occur in rotting wood but can also be found directly in soil (often under stones), and workers forage predominantly at night on and among leaf litter (Baena, 1993; Longino, 2013; Mackay & Mackay, 2010). M. constricta apparently uses tandem running to recruit nestmates to food sources (S. Levings, pers. comm. cited in Hölldobler & Wilson, 1990). Both alate and ergatoid queens occur (Longino, 2013), and reported colony sizes are small (up to 29 workers; Baena, 1993) though nothing else is known about their reproductive or social behavior. Orivel & Déjean (2001) measured the toxicity of M. constricta venom. Given that it holds a critical phylogenetic position in the midst of several taxa with highly derived characteristics, additional observations on the ecological and behavioral traits of Mayaponera would be of great assistance in reconstructing character evolution in the Pachycondyla group.
Baena (1993) reported a specimen of Mayaponera conicula (listed as P. pergandei) collected in a rotten log, and the type series of Mayaponera cernua was found in a log, suggesting that logs may be the normal nesting site for these species. Most flights of Mayaponera arhuaca occur in the middle of the summer (Kaspari et al., 2001).
Association with Other Organisms
All Associate Records for Genus
|Taxon||Relationship||Associate Type||Associate Taxon||Associate Relationship||Locality||Source||Notes|
|Mayaponera constricta||host||collembolan||Cyphoderus similis||myrmecophile||Brazil||Castaño-Meneses et al., 2014|
|Mayaponera constricta||host||collembolan||Sphaeridia serrata||myrmecophile||Brazil||Castaño-Meneses et al., 2014|
Life History Traits
- Queen type: winged or dealate; ergatoid (Longino, 2013)
- Mean colony size: 5-29 (Greer et al., 2021)
- Compound colony type: not parasitic (Greer et al., 2021)
- Nest site: hypogaeic (Greer et al., 2021)
- Diet class: predator (Greer et al., 2021)
- Foraging stratum: subterranean/leaf litter (Greer et al., 2021)
- Foraging behaviour: cooperative (Greer et al., 2021)
Both winged and ergatoid queens are known. Ergatoids lack a deeply impressed metanotal groove and have a bulkier mesosoma than workers (Longino, 2013).
- Explore: Show all Worker Morphology data or Search these data. See also a list of all data tables or learn how data is managed.
• Eyes: 11-100 ommatidia • Pronotal Spines: absent • Mesonotal Spines: absent • Propodeal Spines: absent • Petiolar Spines: absent • Caste: none or weak • Sting: present • Metaplural Gland: present • Cocoon: present
All Karyotype Records for Genus
- Explore: Show all Karyotype data or Search these data. See also a list of all data tables or learn how data is managed.
|Mayaponera arhuaca||12||12M||Brazil||Mariano et al., 2007||as ''Pachycondyla arhuaca''|
|Mayaponera arhuaca||18||36||36A||French Guiana||Mariano et al., 2012; Mariano et al., 2015||as ''Pachycondyla arhuaca''|
|Mayaponera constricta||15||30||30A||Brazil||Mariano et al., 2007; Mariano et al., 2015||as ''Pachycondyla constricta''|
See Phylogeny of Ponerinae for details.
The following information is derived from Barry Bolton's Online Catalogue of the Ants of the World.
- MAYAPONERA [Ponerinae: Ponerini]
- Mayaponera Schmidt & Shattuck, 2014: 143. Type-species: Ponera constricta, by original designation.
Unless otherwise noted the text for the remainder of this section is reported from the publication that includes the original description.
Medium-sized (TL 6–7.5 mm) slender ants with the standard characters of Ponerini. Mandibles triangular, with about a dozen teeth on the masticatory margin. Clypeus with a broadly convex anterior margin and a subtle median emargination. Frontal lobes of moderate size. Eyes of moderate size, placed anterior of head midline. Metanotal groove deeply impressed. Propodeal dorsum strongly narrowed and with a longitudinal groove. Propodeal spiracles round. Metapleural gland orifice complex, with a posterior U-shaped cuticular lip and a shallow lateral groove. Metatibial spur formula (1s, 1p). Arolia prominent. Petiole a thick scale. Gaster with only a weak girdling constriction between pre- and postsclerites of A4. Stridulitrum present on pretergite of A4. Head and body finely punctate, with scattered pilosity and dense pubescence. Color dark brownish gray. See also Mackay & Mackay (2010).
Both alate and ergatoid queens are known for Mayaponera constricta. Ergatoids lack a deeply impressed metanotal groove and have a bulkier mesosoma than workers (Longino, 2013). See also Mackay & Mackay (2010).
See description in Forel (1908) and Mackay & Mackay (2010).
Described by Wheeler & Wheeler (1952, 1976).
Mayaponera is named in memory of the first author’s daughter Maya and for the Maya peoples of southern Mexico and northern Central America, included in the range of the genus. The suffix -ponera is derived from the subfamily name Ponerinae.
- Boudinot, B.E. 2019. Hormigas de Colombia. Cap. 15. Clave para las subfamilias y generos basada en machos. Pp. 487-499 in: Fernández, F., Guerrero, R.J., Delsinne, T. (eds.) 2019d. Hormigas de Colombia. Bogotá: Universidad Nacional de Colombia, 1198 pp.
- Cantone S. 2018. Winged Ants, The queen. Dichotomous key to genera of winged female ants in the World. The Wings of Ants: morphological and systematic relationships (self-published).
- Esteves, F.A., Fisher, B.L. 2021. Corrieopone nouragues gen. nov., sp. nov., a new Ponerinae from French Guiana (Hymenoptera, Formicidae). ZooKeys 1074, 83–173 (doi:10.3897/zookeys.1074.75551).
- Fernandez, F., Guerrero, R.J., Sánchez-Restrepo, A.F. 2021. Sistemática y diversidad de las hormigas neotropicales. Revista Colombiana de Entomología 47, 1–20 (doi:10.25100/socolen.v47i1.11082).
- Longino, J.T. (2013) Ants of Costa Rica. Available from: http://academic.evergreen.edu/projects/ants/AntsofCostaRica.html
(accessed 10 November 2013)
- Mackay, W. P., and E. E. Mackay 2010. The Systematics and Biology of the New World Ants of the Genus Pachycondyla (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Edwin Mellon Press, Lewiston.
- Mayr, G. 1884. [Untitled. Descriptions of eight new species.]. Pp. 31-38 in: Radoszkowsky, O. Fourmis de Cayenne Française. Tr. Rus. Entomol. Obshch. 18:30-39. (page 31, worker described)
- Schmidt, C.A. & Shattuck, S.O. 2014. The higher classification of the ant subfamily Ponerinae (Hymenoptera: Formicidae), with a review of ponerine ecology and behavior. Zootaxa 3817, 1–242 (doi:10.11646/zootaxa.3817.1.1).