Salata & Fisher, 2020
The species was collected between 15-210 m in elevation, in rainforest, tropical dry forest, and open secondary vegetation. Nests were located in rotten sticks on ground, under moss, and in soil.
Salata and Fisher (2020) - A member of the Pheidole makaensis species group. Major: Head in full-face view elongated; sides of the head with moderately dense, long, erect pilosity; occipital lobes with thick, sparse, short, irregular, and arcuate rugae, interspaces superficially rugulae; inner hypostomal teeth distinct, high, closely spaced, triangular, with rounded apex; outer hypostomal teeth thinner than inner hypostomal teeth and approximately the same height, triangular, but thin. Minor:. Head foveolate, genae with smooth notch; scape, when laid back, surpassing the posterior head margin by one-fifth of its length; promesonotum low, convex, short, with posterior declivity smoothly declining towards propodeum; mesosoma foveolate; propodeal spines short, triangular.
Pheidole avaratra is most similar to Pheidole fitarata. Major workers. It differs from P. fitarata in presence of longitudinal, very thick, and never interrupted rugae on frons and antennal scrobes, presence of rugae connecting frons and occipital lobes, never entirely smooth genae, and bigger and never directed inward inner hypostomal teeth. Minor workers. Pheidole avaratra differs from P. fitarata in shorter and higher promesonotum and katepisternum entirely foveolate.
Keys including this Species
Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists
Distribution based on AntMaps
Distribution based on AntWeb specimens
Check data from AntWeb
|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.|
Images from AntWeb
|Worker. Specimen code casent0923184. Photographer Michele Esposito, uploaded by California Academy of Sciences.||Owned by CAS, San Francisco, CA, USA.|
Images from AntWeb
|Worker (major/soldier). Specimen code casent0107719. Photographer Michele Esposito, uploaded by California Academy of Sciences.||Owned by CAS, San Francisco, CA, USA.|
The following information is derived from Barry Bolton's Online Catalogue of the Ants of the World.
- avaratra. Pheidole avaratra Salata & Fisher, 2020: 131, figs. 48A–F, 84F, 86F (w.) MADAGASCAR.
Unless otherwise noted the text for the remainder of this section is reported from the publication that includes the original description.
Major (N = 10): HL: 0.92-1.2 (1.0); HW: 0.71-1.02 (0.8); SL: 0.368-0.502 (0.4); EL: 0.11-0.16 (0.14); WL: 0.71-0.91 (0.99); PSL: 0.12-0.18 (0.13); MTL: 0.41-0.54 (0.44); PNW: 0.4-0.56 (0.45); PTW: 0.1-0.15 (0.12); PPW: 0.25-0.38 (0.3); CI: 78.0-87.9 (82.9); SI: 46.5-51.5 (49.2); PSLI: 11.8-15.2 (13.3); PPI: 35.0-46.2 (38.9); PNI: 51.2-58.9 (55.5); MTI: 52.2 -57.3 (53.8). Head. In full-face view longitudinal, longer than wide, anterior of eyes straight, posterior of eyes slightly convex, occipital margin of lobes straight, inclining toward centre. In lateral view sub-oval; ventral and dorsal faces convex; dorsal face not depressed posteriorly; inner hypostomal teeth visible. Sides of the head with moderately dense, long, erect pilosity; whole head with dense, moderately long, suberect to erect pilosity. Antennal scrobes indistinct and not delimited by carinulae; scrobe surface shiny, with thick, moderately sparse, longitudinal rugae; interspaces superficially rugo-foveolae. Occipital lobes shiny, with thick, sparse, short, irregular, and arcuate rugae, interspaces superficially rugulose; frons with moderately sparse, thick, longitudinal rugae, interspaces smooth and indistinctly rugo-foveolate on the posterior part; genae shiny, with dense and fine rugulae, and smooth notch behind eyes; malar area with thick, sparse, longitudinal rugae, interspaces superficially rugulae. Centre of clypeus shiny and smooth, lateral sides with longitudinal rugae; median notch present, narrow, and moderately deep; median longitudinal carina absent; lateral longitudinal carinae present. Scape, when laid back, not reaching the midlength of head; pilosity suberect to erect. Inner hypostomal teeth distinct, high, closely spaced, triangular, with rounded apex; outer hypostomal teeth thinner than inner hypostomal teeth and approximately the same height, triangular, but thin. Mesosoma. In lateral view, promesonotum relatively low and arched, dorsal mesonotum slightly concave, posterior mesonotum steep, with tubercle-like projections; promesonotal groove absent; metanotal groove absent; propodeal spines small to moderately long, triangular, with sharp apex and relatively wide base; humeral area laterally weakly produced. Surface foveolate, dorsal surface of promesonotum with fading sculpture and sometimes with additional transverse, thin rugulae. Pilosity moderately sparse, very long, and erect. Petiole. Shiny; peduncle moderately long, finely foveolate, with indistinct horizontal lobes on its basal part; node with fading sculpture, relatively high, triangular, with rounded apex, in rear view node slightly convex; pilosity moderately sparse and erect. Postpetiole. Shiny and finely shagreened, dorsum with fading sculpture; in dorsal view sides with very short, acute, and triangular projections; pilosity moderately long, sparse, and erect. Petiole. Shiny and shagreened; pilosity dense, moderately long, and erect. Colour. Brown to dark brown; lateral sides of mesosoma, malar area, and lower frons yellowish brown; legs yellow to yellowish brown.
Unless otherwise noted above, the following characters occur in this species, and the majority of Pheidole majors of Madagascar described by Salata and Fisher 2020a. Antennal sockets shallow; frontal lobes absent; head in full-face view with distinct median concavity; antenna 12-segmented, with 3-segmented club; masticatory margin of mandible with large, stout apical and preapical teeth, followed by a long diastema and then a short and crenulate tooth just before the rounded basal angle; outer surface of mandible mostly smooth and shining, sometimes with weak and sparse foveolae; antennal scrobes present; promesonotum strongly convex, well above the level of propodeum; postpetiole short with slightly convex dorsum; ventral process absent.
Minor (N = 5): HL: 0.43-0.48 (0.46); HW: 0.39-0.44 (0.42); SL: 0.38-0.47 (0.44); EL: 0.09-0.11 (0.1); WL: 0.5-0.58 (0.55); PSL: 0.08-0.1 (0.93); MTL: 0.29-0.37 (0.35); PNW: 0.27-0.31 (0.29); PTW: 0.05-0.08 (0.07); PPW: 0.1-0.11 (0.11); CI: 87.6-94.8 (90.4); SI: 96.4-110.8 (105.5); PSLI: 17.3-22.0 (20.0); PPI: 46.4-70.3 (61.9); PNI: 67.4-72.8 (69.9); MTI: 74.6-87.6 (83.7). Head. Occipital margin straight or indistinctly concave; occipital carina absent. Pilosity moderately dense, short, suberect. Head shiny, foveolate; genae with smooth notch. Clypeus smooth or finely foveolate; median longitudinal carina absent; two lateral longitudinal carinae absent. Scape, when laid back, surpassing the posterior head margin by one-fifth of its length; pilosity suberect to erect. Mesosoma. In lateral view, promesonotum low, convex, short, with posterior declivity smoothly declining towards propodeum; promesonotal groove absent; metanotal groove indistinct; propodeal spines short, triangular, with acute apex. Sculpture foveolate. Pilosity sparse, long, and erect. Petiole. Peduncle moderately short and thin with ventral face slightly convex; with few short, erect setae. Postpetiole. Short, low, and convex; with few short, erect setae. Petiole. With moderately sparse, erect pilosity. Colour. Yellow.
Unless otherwise noted above, the following characters occur in this species, and the majority of Pheidole minors of Madagascar described by Salata and Fisher 2020a. Antennal sockets shallow; frontal lobes absent; head in full-face view oval, posterior and anterior of eyes convex; antenna 12-segmented, with 3-segmented club; humeral area not developed; clypeus smooth and shiny; its anterior margin regularly convex; promesonotum well above the level of propodeum; petiole smooth; petiole with node moderately low, triangular and small postpetiole smooth; gaster smooth and shiny.
Holotype. Madagascar. 1 major worker; Antsiranana; Forêt Ambato, 26.6 km 33° Ambanja; -13.4645, 48.55167; alt. 150 m; 10 Dec 2004; Fisher et al. leg.; BLF11593, CASENT0107719 (California Academy of Sciences). Paratype. Madagascar. 1w.; same data as for holotype; CASENT0923184 (CASC).
Malagasy for north, in reference to the distribution of the species.
- Casadei-Ferreira, A., Fischer, G., Economo, E.P. 2020. Evidence for a thoracic crop in the workers of some Neotropical Pheidole species (Formicidae: Myrmicinae). Arthropod Structure, Development 59, 100977 (doi:10.1016/J.ASD.2020.100977).
- Salata, S. and B.L. Fisher. 2020a. Pheidole Westwood, 1839 (Hymenoptera, Formicidae) of Madagascar – an introduction and a taxonomic revision of eleven species groups. ZooKeys. 905:1–235. doi:10.3897/zookeys.905.39592