Pheidole vallifica

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Pheidole vallifica
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Attini
Genus: Pheidole
Species: P. vallifica
Binomial name
Pheidole vallifica
Forel, 1901

Pheidole vallifica casent0178065 profile 1.jpg

Pheidole vallifica casent0178065 dorsal 1.jpg

Specimen labels

In 1896, Auguste Forel (1901) found colonies of this "singuliere espece, une des plus curieuses du genre," at San Antonio, Colombia, in humid, sandy soil at the edge of a small stream. The small nests, which had few minors and only one or two majors, had small entrances abutted by semicircular piles of excavated soil. I found vallifica common in a banana plantation at Palmar Sur, at the base of Costa Rica's Osa Peninsula, where colonies nested in open soil. (Wilson 2003)


See the description in the nomenclature section.

Keys including this Species


Honduras, Costa Rica, Colombia, Brazil (Mato Grosso), and Paraguay (Amambay). (Wilson 2003)

Latitudinal Distribution Pattern

Latitudinal Range: -9.466667° to -40.7°.

Tropical South

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Neotropical Region: Argentina, Brazil, Colombia (type locality), Costa Rica, Honduras, Paraguay.

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.


Association with Other Organisms

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This species is a host for the eucharitid wasp Orasema costaricensis (a parasite) (Wheeler & Wheeler, 1937; Kempf, 1972; Baker et al., 2019).




MCZ-ENT00032136 Pheidole vallifica hef.jpgMCZ-ENT00032136 Pheidole vallifica hal.jpgMCZ-ENT00032136 Pheidole vallifica had.jpgMCZ-ENT00032136 Pheidole vallifica lbs.jpgPheidole vallifica casent0178066 head 1.jpgPheidole vallifica casent0178066 profile 1.jpgPheidole vallifica casent0178066 dorsal 1.jpgPheidole vallifica casent0178066 label 1.jpg


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

  • vallifica. Pheidole vallifica Forel, 1901e: 357 (s.w.) COLOMBIA. Combination in P. (Elasmopheidole): Forel, 1913k: 43. See also: Wilson, 2003: 774.

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 An unusual member of the tristis group, of uncertain affinity.

Major: frontal lobes in full-face view square, turned obliquely outward; from the side the lobes project as an acute angle, as does the clypeus beneath them; carinulae limited to head at eye level and anterior to it, and body is otherwise almost completely smooth and shiny; propodeal spines reduced to oblique angles; postpetiole conulate.

Minor: basal face of propodeum and dorsal surface of head from eyes forward carinulate, and rest of body almost completely smooth and shiny; propodeal spines reduced to right angles.

MEASUREMENTS (mm) Syntype major: HW 1.12, HL l.22, SL 0.60, EL 0.18, PW 0.60. Syntype minor: HW 0.60, HL 0.66, SL 0.58, EL 0.12, PW 0.42.

COLOR Major (Palmar Sur, Costa Rica): light reddish brown, appendages yellowish brown. Minor: plain light brown, appendages brownish yellow.

Pheidole vallifica Wilson 2003.jpg

Figure. Upper: major (Palmar Sur, Puntarenas, Costa Rica), compared with syntype in Forel Collection. Lower: syntype, minor. Scale bars = 1 mm.

Syntype Specimen Labels

Type Material

San Antonio, Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta, Colombia, over 1000 m. Musee d'Histoire Naturelle Genève - as reported in Wilson (2003)


L vallifica, of a valley, allusion uncertain. (Wilson 2003)


References based on Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics

  • Fernández, F. and S. Sendoya. 2004. Lista de las hormigas neotropicales. Biota Colombiana Volume 5, Number 1.
  • Kempf W. W. 1972. A study of some Neotropical ants of genus Pheidole Westwood. I. (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Studia Entomologica 15: 449-464.
  • Wild, A. L. "A catalogue of the ants of Paraguay (Hymenoptera: Formicidae)." Zootaxa 1622 (2007): 1-55.