Nylanderia fuscaspecula

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Nylanderia fuscaspecula
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Formicinae
Tribe: Lasiini
Genus: Nylanderia
Species: N. fuscaspecula
Binomial name
Nylanderia fuscaspecula
LaPolla & Kallal, 2019

Nylanderia fuscaspecula F31.jpg

Nylanderia fuscaspecula F32.jpg

The type specimens were found under stones in a coffee plantation. Non-type collection labels show N. fuscaspecula is a forest species. Habitat label data includes "leaf-litter", "forest leaf litter", and when specified, pine and evergreen forest. Another collections states it is from "moss and soil under a tree" without noting the habitat.


LaPolla and Kallal (2019) - Very dark brown with smooth and shining cuticle contrasting with yellow meso/metacoxae, trochanters and leg joints; pubescence sparse to absent across body.

Compare with: Nylanderia bibadia, Nylanderia caerula, Nylanderia metacista, Nylanderia pini.

Workers of this species are generally shiny and largely free of pubescence, but there are several species that can be confused with N. fuscaspecula. Nylanderia fuscaspecula can be separated from N. pini by possessing a shorter head length (pini range: 0.64–0.73) and scape length (pini range: 0.82–0.86). Additionally, the posterior margin of the first gastral tergite in N. pini possesses abundant pubescence and a distinct fringe of pubescence is typically present along the dorsal face of the propodeum. Nylanderia fuscaspecula can be separated from N. metacista because the first gastral tergite of N. metacista is covered entirely in a dense pubescence.

N. caspecula can also be confused with N. caerula. As does N. caerula, N. fuscaspecula can display blue iridescence on its mesosoma under light microscope examination, but the iridescence is not as intense as in most N. caerula. Additionally, Nylanderia fuscaspecula has no pubescence on the gastral tergites, unlike N. caerula which possesses dense pubescence on gastral tergites I & II.

Keys including this Species


Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Neotropical Region: Dominican Republic (type locality).

Distribution based on AntMaps


Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb

Countries Occupied

Number of countries occupied by this species based on AntWiki Regional Taxon Lists. In general, fewer countries occupied indicates a narrower range, while more countries indicates a more widespread species.

Estimated Abundance

Relative abundance based on number of AntMaps records per species (this species within the purple bar). Fewer records (to the left) indicates a less abundant/encountered species while more records (to the right) indicates more abundant/encountered species.




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

  • fuscaspecula. Nylanderia fuscaspecula LaPolla & Kallal, 2019: 418, figs. 31-33 (w.q.) DOMINICAN REPUBLIC.

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



(n=8): TL: 1.90–2.30; HW: 0.50–0.54; HL: 0.58–0.61; EL: 0.14–0.15; SL: 0.68– 0.73; WL: 0.70–0.78; GL: 0.56–1.0. SMC: 18–24 PMC: 2–4; MMC: 2. indices: CI: 84–88; REL: 23–26; SI: 135– 142; SI2: 19–21.

Head: sides of head in full face view nearly parallel; posterolateral corners rounded; posterior margin rounded; anterior clypeal margin emarginate; ocelli absent; eyes well-developed. Mesosoma: in lateral view, pronotum subangular; anterior margin of mesonotum raised slightly above posterior pronotal margin; metanotal area without short flat area before spiracle; dorsal face of propodeum slightly convex; dorsal face of propodeum and mesonotum approximately the same height in lateral view. Color and pilosity: body very dark brown to black; mandible and antenna lighter brown; apical segments of funiculus yellow; scape with brownish yellow end and dark brown middle portion; trochanters, tarsi, and leg articulations yellowish-brown; femora and tibiae lighter on ends with dark brown middle portions giving legs mottled appearance; pubescence sparse to absent on head (if present than densest under eyes and along posterolateral corners), mesosoma and gaster; some specimens with fringe of pubescence on propodeal dorsal face.


(n=2): TL: 3.20–3.30; HW: 0.78–0.80; HL: 0.75–0.77; EL: 0.23; SL: 0.80–0.85; WL: 1.30–1.40; GL: 1.70–1.90. SMC: 18 PMC: 3–5; MMC: 7–8; MtMC: 2–3. indices: CI: 101–106; REL: 30–31; SI: 106–111.

Generally, as in worker with modifications expected for caste and with the following noted difference: slightly lighter brown than seen in workers.

Type Material

Holotype worker, DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Salto de Jimenoa, 19° 06.094’N, 70° 35.877’W, elev. 620 m, under stones on coffee plantation, 08.viii.2009, S.A. Schneider (USNMENT00754801) (National Museum of Natural History). 3 paratype workers and 2 paratype queens with same locality data as holotype (specimens are from the same nest as holotype) (NMNH & Museum of Comparative Zoology).


Species epithet is a combination of speculum (L. = mirror) and fuscus (L. = dark), named for the reflective properties of the cuticle.


References based on Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics

  • LaPolla J. S., and R. J. Kallal. 2019. Nylanderia of the World Part III: Nylanderia in the West Indies. Zootaxa 4658: 401-451.