Mesostruma browni

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Mesostruma browni
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Attini
Genus: Mesostruma
Species: M. browni
Binomial name
Mesostruma browni
Taylor, 1962

Mesostruma browni casent0010814 profile 1.jpg

Mesostruma browni casent0010814 dorsal 1.jpg

Specimen labels

Ants in the genus Mesostruma are uncommon and form small colonies in soil, usually under or between rocks. They are predacious, foraging primarily on the ground in leaf litter but also occasionally on low vegetation. Roughly half the species have only been collected once. The remainder of the species are not well known either, at least in terms of the number of collections and what is known regarding their biology.

Identification

Mesostruma browni is similar to Mesostruma bella and is broadly sympatric with it. It differences as follows.

  • The posterior margin of the head is shallowly concave and the lateral corners are broadly rounded while in M. bella this region is more deeply concave and its lateral corners are more sharply angular.
  • The sculpturing on the metapleural gland bulb consists of large fovae and irregular rugae while in M. browni the sculpturing on the bulb consists of small, closely spaced punctures, sometimes with up to several weak rugae.
  • The upper margins of the propodeal lamellae, in lateral view, are sinuate (convex basally, concave near the angle) and the posterior margin have a distinct concavity just below the dorsal angles. In M. bella they are convex and the posterior margins have a very weak concavity just below the dorsal angles.
  • Mesostruma browni averages smaller (HW 0.62 mm to 0.75 mm) than M. browni (HW 0.72 mm to 0.84 mm).

Keys including this Species

Distribution

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Australasian Region: Australia (type locality).

Distribution based on AntMaps

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Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb

Biology

Castes

Worker

Queen

Nomenclature

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

  • browni. Mesostruma browni Taylor, 1962: 1, figs. 1-5 (w.q.m.) AUSTRALIA. Wheeler, G.C. & Wheeler, J. 1973c: 212 (l.). See also: Shattuck, in Bolton, 2000: 49.

Type Material

  • Holotype, worker, 2mi. E Berry, New South Wales, Australia, 28.xii.1959, Lowery,B.B., ANIC32-010246, Australian National Insect Collection.
  • Paratype, 2 workers, 2mi. E Berry, New South Wales, Australia, 28.xii.1959, Lowery,B.B., The Natural History Museum.
  • Paratype, 3 workers, 1 male, 2mi. E Berry, New South Wales, Australia, 28.xii.1959, Lowery,B.B., Museum of Comparative Zoology.
  • Paratype, 1 queen, Burns Bay, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, B. B. Lowery, Museum of Comparative Zoology.
  • Paratype, 3 workers, Riverview, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, Museum of Comparative Zoology.
  • Paratype, 6 workers, 2mi. E Berry, New South Wales, Australia, 28.xii.1959, Lowery,B.B., Queensland Museum.
  • Paratype, 2 workers, Riverview, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, Queensland Museum.
  • Paratype, worker(s), Barrington Tops, Australia, T. E. Woodward.
  • Paratype, worker(s), Pymble, Australia, 18.iii.1956, C. Mercovich.

Description

Worker

Shattuck (2000) - TL 3.1 - 3.9, HL 0.69 - 0.83, HW 0.62 - 0.74, CI 89 - 91, ML 0.32 - 0.38, MI 42 - 49, SL 0.42 - 0.45, SI 61 - 66, PW 0.45 - 0.50, AL 0.74 - 0.92. Head relatively broad (CI > 88), its posterior margin relatively shallowly concave; eyes relatively small (maximum eye diameter/head length <= 0.20). Pronotum relatively wide (about 0.66-0.69 times mesosomal length), in dorsal view its anterolateral corners rounded. Dorsum of mesosoma with scattered, shallow foveolate punctures which are spaced more than their width apart, the area between the punctures smooth and lacking sculpturing. Propodeal lamellae with the dorsal margins sinuate (convex basally, concave near angle), the posterior margins weakly concave, the angles between these margins acute, less than 90 degrees. Sculpturing on the metaplerual gland bulb consisting of large fovae and irregular rugae. Postpetiole expanded laterally and wing-like. First gastral segment immediately posterior of the postpetiole essentially smooth, sometimes with very slight irregularities. Body relatively small (maximum head width < 0.73mm), colour dark honey yellow.

References

  • Bolton, B. 2000. The ant tribe Dacetini. Mem. Am. Entomol. Inst. 65: 1-1028 (page 49, see also)
  • Shattuck, S. O. 2000. Genus Colobostruma. Genus Mesostruma. Genus Epopostruma. Pp. 31-67 in: Bolton, B. The ant tribe Dacetini. Mem. Am. Entomol. Inst. 65: 1-1028 (page 63, worker, queen described)
  • Taylor, R. W. 1962a. New Australian dacetine ants of the genera Mesostruma Brown and Codiomyrmex Wheeler (Hymenoptera-Formicidae). Breviora 152: 1-10 (page 1, fgis. 1-5 worker, queen, male described)
  • Wheeler, G. C.; Wheeler, J. 1973c. The ant larvae of the tribes Basicerotini and Dacetini: second supplement (Hymenoptera: Formicidae: Myrmicinae). Pan-Pac. Entomol. 49: 207-214 (page 212, larva described)