Pheidole senilis

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Pheidole senilis
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Attini
Genus: Pheidole
Species: P. senilis
Binomial name
Pheidole senilis
Santschi, 1929

Pheidole senilis casent0913336 p 1 high.jpg

Pheidole senilis casent0913336 d 1 high.jpg

Specimen Labels

The Agua Funda colony was collected in rotten wood. (Wilson 2003)


See the description in the nomenclature section.

Keys including this Species


Minas Gerais and São Paulo states, Brazil. (Wilson 2003)

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Neotropical Region: Brazil (type locality).

Distribution based on AntMaps


Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb




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

  • senilis. Pheidole hetschkoi var. senilis Santschi, 1929d: 289 (w.) BRAZIL. Raised to species: Wilson, 2003: 752.

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


From Wilson (2003): DIAGNOSIS Similar to Pheidole aper, Pheidole bambusarum, Pheidole brevicona, Pheidole dyctiota, Pheidole laeviventris, Pheidole lutzi, Pheidole risii, Pheidole rugatula, Pheidole sigillata, Pheidole trachyderma and Pheidole traini, differing as follows.

Major: very large; in full-face view, occiput covered by faint oblique carinulae that originate on midline and turn outward; most of vertex and sides of head rugoreticulate, frontal lobes carinulate; in full-face view, semicircular carinulae of antennal fossa are sharply demarcated from the carinulae that cross over anteriorly to the lateral wings of the clypeus; pronotal dorsum loosely rugoreticulate, with sides and lower half of the mesopleuron smooth; postpetiole 2X broader than petiole, and spinose.

Minor: posterior dorsum and sides of head “tiger-striped” with semicircular carinulae; humeri rugoreticulate; occiput narrow, with nuchal collar.

MEASUREMENTS (mm) Major (Agua Funda, São Paulo): HW 2.20, HL 2.34, SL 1.00, EL 0.24, PW 1.04. Lectotype minor: HW 0.80, HL 0.84, SL 0.94, EL 0.16, PW 0.56.

COLOR Major and minor: body medium reddish brown, appendages reddish yellow.

Pheidole senilis Wilson 2003.jpg

Figure. Upper: major (Agua Funda, near São Funda, São Paulo, col. W. L. Brown; associated with minor compared with lectotype minor). Lower: minor (Agua Funda, São Paulo; compared with lectotype minor). Scale bars = 1 mm.

Lectotype Specimen Labels

Type Material

Passa Quatro, Minas Gerais, Brazil; no majors were in type series. Naturhistorisches Museum, Basel - as reported in Wilson (2003)


L senilis, old, aged, probably alluding to the wrinkly head surface. (Wilson 2003)


  • Santschi, F. 1929d. Nouvelles fourmis de la République Argentine et du Brésil. An. Soc. Cient. Argent. 107: 273-316 (page 289, worker described)
  • Wilson, E. O. 2003. Pheidole in the New World: A dominant, hyperdiverse ant genus. Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA. (page 752, fig. major, minor described, Raised to species: new status)

References based on Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics

  • Fleck M. D., E. Bisognin Cantarelli, and F. Granzotto. 2015. Register of new species of ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) in Rio Grande do Sul state. Ciencia Florestal, Santa Maria 25(2): 491-499.
  • Kempf, W.W. 1972. Catalago abreviado das formigas da regiao Neotropical (Hym. Formicidae) Studia Entomologica 15(1-4).