Pheidole spininodis

Every Ant Tells a Story - And Scientists Explain Their Stories Here
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Pheidole spininodis
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Attini
Genus: Pheidole
Species: P. spininodis
Binomial name
Pheidole spininodis
Mayr, 1887

Pheidole spininodis casent0178059 dorsal 1.jpg

Specimen labels


In the central Argentina province of San Luis, Bruch (1916) found “var. pencosensis” in dry scrub, nesting in soil of varying grain and hardness, and once beneath dried cow dung. The nest entrances were circular and surrounded by semicircular banks of excavated earth, and galleries and chambers descended to about 30 cm. (Wilson 2003)


See the description in the nomenclature section.

Keys including this Species


From Wilson (2003): Widespread in northern and central Argentina (Bruch 1916; Kempf 1972b), and also recorded from Rio Grande Do Sul (synonymous P. spielbergi).

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Neotropical Region: Argentina (type locality), Brazil, Paraguay.

Distribution based on AntMaps


Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb




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

  • spininodis. Pheidole spininodis Mayr, 1887: 591 (s.), 605 (w.) ARGENTINA. Goni, Zolessi & Imai, 1983: 365 (k.). Senior synonym of hohenlohei: Emery, 1906c: 146 (in text); of bruta, lucifuga, pencosensis, solaris, spielbergi: Wilson, 2003: 756.
  • hohenlohei. Pheidole hohenlohei Emery, 1888c: 354 (s.w.) BRAZIL. Junior synonym of spininodis: Emery, 1906c: 146 (in text).
  • spielbergi. Pheidole spielbergi Emery, 1888c: 354 (s.w.) BRAZIL. Junior synonym of spininodis: Wilson, 2003: 756.
  • pencosensis. Pheidole spininodis var. pencosensis Forel, 1914d: 271 (s.w.q.m.) ARGENTINA. Junior synonym of spininodis: Wilson, 2003: 756.
  • lucifuga. Pheidole spininodis var. lucifuga Santschi, 1923d: 56 (s.w.q.) ARGENTINA. Junior synonym of spininodis: Wilson, 2003: 756.
  • solaris. Pheidole spininodis var. solaris Santschi, 1929d: 287 (s.w.q.m.) BRAZIL. Junior synonym of spininodis: Wilson, 2003: 756.
  • bruta. Pheidole (Pheidole) spininodis var. bruta Santschi, 1934c: 30 (s.) ARGENTINA. Junior synonym of spininodis: Wilson, 2003: 756.

Type Material

ARGENTINA: Jandil, Buenos Aires. Naturhistorisches Museum Wien, Vienna - as reported in Wilson (2003) 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 in various traits to Pheidole exarata, Pheidole excubitor, Pheidole germaini, Pheidole gibba, Pheidole rogeri, Pheidole stulta, Pheidole tristis, Pheidole tristops and Pheidole zoster, distinguished as follows.

Major: large; reddish yellow; postpetiolar node extremely drawn out, wide but short, and spinose; carinulae extend posteriorly to just beyond eye level, and entire rest of body smooth and shiny; head subrectangular; occipital cleft deep, its nadir acute-angular; antennal scapes very short.

Minor: occiput broad, lacking nuchal collar; carinulae reach posteriorly just beyond eye level, and entire remainder of body smooth and shiny; dorsal promesonotal profile semicircular. P. spielbergi of southern Brazil may prove to be a distinct species: the syntype major is smaller than the spininodis lectotype, and the minor larger; the major scape is longer; and the major hind femora are thicker.

MEASUREMENTS (mm) Lectotype major: HW 2.32, HL 2.46, SL 0.92, EL 0.26, PW 1.00. Paralectotype minor: HW 0.74, HL 0.76, SL 0.74, EL 0.12, PW 0.46.

COLOR Major: head, mesosoma, and appendages medium reddish yellow; waist and gaster plain medium brown.

Minor: body plain medium brown, appendages light brown.

Pheidole spininodis Wilson 2003.jpg

Figure. Upper: lectotype, major. Lower: paralectotype, minor. Scale bars = 1 mm.


  • 2n = 20, karyotype = 20M (Uruguay) (Goni et al., 1983).


L spininodis, thorny knot, referring to the spinose postpetiole of the major. (Wilson 2003)


  • Bruch, C. 1916. Contribución al estudio de las hormigas de la provincia de San Luis. Rev. Mus. La Plata 23: 291–357.
  • Emery, C. 1906c [1905]. Studi sulle formiche della fauna neotropica. XXVI. Bull. Soc. Entomol. Ital. 37: 107-194 (page 146, senior synonym of hohenlohei)
  • Goñi, B.; Zolessi, L. C. de; Imai, H. T. 1984 [1983]. Karyotypes of thirteen ant species from Uruguay (Hymenoptera, Formicidae). Caryologia 36: 363-371 (page 365, karyotype described)
  • Mayr, G. 1887. Südamerikanische Formiciden. Verh. K-K. Zool.-Bot. Ges. Wien 37: 511-632 (page 591, 605, soldier described, worker described)
  • Wilson, E. O. 2003. Pheidole in the New World: A dominant, hyperdiverse ant genus. Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA. (page 756, fig. major, minor described, Senior synonym of spielbergi, pencosensis, lucifuga, bruta, solaris)