Rogeria foreli

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Rogeria foreli
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Solenopsidini
Genus: Rogeria
Species: R. foreli
Binomial name
Rogeria foreli
Emery, 1894

Rogeria foreli casent0006150 profile 1.jpg

Rogeria foreli casent0006150 dorsal 1.jpg

Specimen labels

Synonyms

Specimens come from 0m to 610m in Panama, 0m to 240m in Colombia and Venezuela. Taken from berlesate of leaf mold and rotten wood, under stones in an oak-juniper woodland at 1783-1814m in Arizona and from canopy fogging samples in Costa Rica (Longino).

Identification

Kugler (1994) - foreli species group. Basal mandibular teeth abruptly smaller than apical teeth. Clypeal apron convex, often with a faint median angle. Eyes usually 10 or more facets.

Rogeria foreli is closely related to Rogeria bruchi, which at present is known only from Argentina and Paraguay, much farther south than known foreli specimens.

Keys including this Species

Distribution

Records range from southwestern United States, Central America, northern South America and numerous Caribbean Islands.

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Nearctic Region: United States.
Neotropical Region: Argentina, Barbados, Colombia, Costa Rica, Grenada, Guadeloupe, Guatemala, Panama, Puerto Rico, Trinidad and Tobago, United States Virgin Islands, Venezuela.


Distribution based on AntMaps

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Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb

Biology

Mackay and Mackay (2002) - In the northernmost part of its range, Rogeria foreli is found in rocky areas within the Chihuahuan Desert, extending into juniper woodland at 1800m.

DaRocha et al. (2015) studied the diversity of ants found in bromeliads of a single large tree of Erythrina, a common cocoa shade tree, at an agricultural research center in Ilhéus, Brazil. Forty-seven species of ants were found in 36 of 52 the bromeliads examined. Bromeliads with suspended soil and those that were larger had higher ant diversity. Rogeria foreli was found in a single bromeliad and was associated with the suspended soil and litter of the plant.

The following is modified from Kugler (1994): Little is known about these cryptic ants. Collection records typically range from sea level to 1000m, but five species extend higher and two (Rogeria unguispina and Rogeria merenbergiana) can be found at 2000m. Rogeria are generally collected in moist forests (primary or secondary forests, coffee or cacao plantations), but at higher elevations can be found in pastures (Rogeria leptonana, Rogeria merenbergiana). Several species (Rogeria creightoni, Rogeria cuneola, Rogeria foreli) have been found in moist and dry climates. Rogeria foreli is the most unusual, with some members dwelling at over 1800m in the temperate mountains of southern Arizona.

Most species have only been collected as strays or by Berlese or Winkler sampling, from leaf litter and rotten wood, but occasionally among epiphytes and moss (Rogeria belti, creightoni, Rogeria exsulans). Nests of several species (belti, Rogeria blanda, merenbergiana) have been found under the loose bark of rotten logs. Nests of blanda and Rogeria tonduzi have been taken from the trunks of cacao trees. A nest of Rogeria leptonana was found at 1750m under a rock in a pasture.

Nests are rarely found. Males are known for only four species (belti, blanda, leptonana and Rogeria stigmatica) and queens associated through nest series for only nine species.

Castes

Queens have been collected from Costa Rica and Venezuela but have not been described. Males have not been collected.

Worker

Nomenclature

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

  • foreli. Rogeria foreli Emery, 1894c: 191 (w.) ANTILLES. [Previously referred to as Tetramorium foreli Emery by Forel, 1893g: 383. Nomen nudum.] Kugler, C. 1994: 71 (q.). Senior synonym of gaigei, huachucana: Kugler, C. 1994: 71.
  • gaigei. Rogeria foreli r. gaigei Forel, 1914c: 617 (w.) COLOMBIA. Junior synonym of foreli: Kugler, C. 1994: 71.
  • huachucana. Rogeria huachucana Snelling, R.R. 1973a: 4, fig. 1 (w.) U.S.A. Junior synonym of foreli: Kugler, C. 1994: 71.

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

Kugler (1994) - Side by side comparison of the types of foreli and gaigei revealed that the only difference between them is size; but the gaigei type is well within the size variation of foreli specimens. Although the types of huachucana come from Arizona, far from other known foreli specimens, and were collected in an unusual habitat, they differ from the foreli holotype only in having: 1) 7-8 facets in the eyes (vs. 12), and 2) a weak metanotal groove (vs. none). Since eye size and metanotal groove development vary continuously and not concordantly in foreli specimens from Central and South America, and since equally small eyes and even more distinct metanotal grooves are present in those specimens, I am unable to distinguish the huachucana specimens as a distinct species at this time.

Kugler 1994 fig 79-82

While working in Northern Colombia for two years I regularly collected two kinds of foreli, which I could distinguish at a glance by the shapes of their postpetiolar sterna. Specimens from Barro Colorado Island, Panama, and Trinidad also have the same two types of sterna. In Colombia and Panama, both morphs have been taken from the same locality, but it is not known whether the two morphs come from different colonies or not. I considered calling the specimens with a more prominent, shelf-like postpetiolar sternum new species, but the difference is sometimes subtle and individuals difficult to assign. Without corroboration from another character, I decided against erecting a new species at this time.

Description

Worker

Kugler (1994) - TL 1.9-2.9, HL 0.50-0.71, HW 0.43-0.62, SL 0.32-0.51, EL 0.06-0.10 (7-20 facets), PW 0.30-0.45, WL 0.50-0.80, SpL 0.07-0.15, PetL 0.20-0.32, PpetL 0.12-0.19mm, CI 0.83-0.89, SI 0.74-0.85, OI 0.12-0.17, PSI 0.14-0.20. N=25

Mandibles with 4-7 teeth and 0-3 dentides. Generally teeth 1-4 decrease in size gradually, then teeth 5-7 (if present) abruptly smaller and possibly interspersed with one or more den tides. Sometimes basal tooth is distinctly larger than penultimate tooth. Body of dypeus often projecting slightly over the anterior dypeal margin. Posterior outline of head flat to weakly convex. Eyes small, oval. Nuchal grooves inconspicuous in lateral view. Pronotal shoulders well rounded. Metanotal groove generally absent, but may be weakly to distinctly visible. Anterior border of propodeum not marked by a ridge. Metapleural lobes small, broadly rounded. Petiolar node shape varies between extremes shown in Figs. 79 and 81; smaller nodes are as long as wide, larger nodes are longer than wide. Postpetiolar node peaks in posterior half; subrectangular in dorsal view. Anterior lip of postpetiolar sternum small, or prominent.

Mandibles, median clypeus, legs, posterior face of propodeum, gaster, and sometimes sides of petiolar pedunde smooth, except for minute piligerous punctures. Rest of body densely microareolate or microcolliculate, often appearing granular at low magnification. Microareolate sculpture on head is more distinct near antennal insertions and more effaced caudad, sometimes nearly smooth on sides of head. Microareolate pattern distinct on meso- and metapleura and generally on dorsal face of propodeum; indistinct on promesonotum and petiole and vestigial on postpetiole. Microsculpture overlain by very fine longitudinal rugulae on lateral dypeus, cheeks, frontal lobes, middorsum and sometimes laterodorsa; posterior head with very fine transverse or diverging rugulae.

Color yellow with a slightly brownish gaster to chestnut-brown with brownish-yellow or light brown appendages.

Queen

Kugler (1994) - TL 2.4-3.1, HL 0.54-0.69, HW 0.48-0.59, SL 0.36-0.49, EL 0.10-0.16, PW 0.38-0.51, WL 0.64-0.87, SpL 0.12-0.17, PetL 0.24-0.32, PpetL 0.13-0.20mm, CI 0.86-0.93, SI 0.72-0.83, PSI 0.17-0.20. N=8

Differing from the workers in the normal queen attributes and in the following. One specimen with 3 teeth and 5 den tides; the others with the same variation as in the workers. Posterior outline of head with weak median concavity in some. Parapsidal furrows are barely discernable. Mesoscutum in all specimens longitudinally rugulose; mesoscutellum vaguely rugose to areolaterugose.

Type Material

Kugler (1994): Holotype worker, VIRGIN ISLANDS: St. Thomas (Eggers) Musee d'Histoire Naturelle Genève [Holotype examined].

Rogeria foreli gaigei. Holotype worker, COLOMBIA (Gaige) MHNG [Holotype examined].

Rogeria huachucana Holotype and paratype worker, USA: Arizona, Cochise County (Snelling) Los Angeles County Museum of Natural History [Holotype and 1 paratype examined].

References

  • DaRocha, W. D., S. P. Ribeiro, F. S. Neves, G. W. Fernandes, M. Leponce, and J. H. C. Delabie. 2015. How does bromeliad distribution structure the arboreal ant assemblage (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) on a single tree in a Brazilian Atlantic forest agroecosystem? Myrmecological News. 21:83-92.
  • Emery, C. 1894d. Studi sulle formiche della fauna neotropica. VI-XVI. Bull. Soc. Entomol. Ital. 26: 137-241 (page 191, worker described)
  • Forel, A. 1893j. Formicides de l'Antille St. Vincent, récoltées par Mons. H. H. Smith. Trans. Entomol. Soc. Lond. 1893: 333-418 (page 383, Previously referred to as Tetramorium foreli Emery by Forel; nomen nudum)
  • Kugler, C. 1994. A revision of the ant genus Rogeria with description of the sting apparatus (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). J. Hym. Res. 3:17-89. (page 71, queen described, Senior synonym of gaigei and huachucana)
  • Mackay, W. P. and E. Mackay. 2002. The ants of New Mexico (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Edwin Mellen Press, Lewiston, NY.