Strumigenys precava

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Strumigenys precava
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Attini
Genus: Strumigenys
Species: S. precava
Binomial name
Strumigenys precava
Brown, 1954

Strumigenys precava casent0900441 p 1 high.jpg

Strumigenys precava casent0900441 d 1 high.jpg

Specimen Labels

Brown (1962) - I found this species rather common on Barro Colorado Island [Panama] ..., nesting in red- or chocolate-rotten logs. One nest found was very large, containing several hundred - perhaps a thousand or more - workers. Workers were seen carrying a mycetophilid larva and a termite nymph into this nest as it was being opened, and a captive colony fed on a wide variety of small arthropods, including entomobryoid collembolans.


Bolton (2000) - A member of the Strumigenys precava-group. The numerous long flagellate gastral hairs of precava are duplicated within the group only in Strumigenys formicosa. Their differences are noted under this latter species. The presence of flagellate gastral hairs coupled with possession of a conspicuous conical tubercle from which the long flagellate humeral hair arises, quickly separates this species from both Strumigenys princeps and Strumigenys thomae. The mandibles of precava are slightly longer (MI 55-60) than in princeps and thomae (MI 41-50 together).

Longino (Ants of Costa Rica) - Apical fork of mandible with one intercalary tooth, but tooth nearly invisible; mandible with one preapical tooth just proximal to apical fork; sides of head in front of eyes deeply and broadly excavated; gaster smooth and shiny, with long flagelliform setae. Brown (1954) describes the species as having "intercalary tooth represented by an inconspicuous but acute spur, fused most of its length with the dorsal face of the ventral apical tooth." In the one Costa Rican specimen I have examined, the intercalary tooth is in the position described, but is so reduced that it is barely visible as a slight step, not an acute spur.

Keys including this Species


Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Neotropical Region: Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Guyana (type locality), Panama, Peru, Peru, Venezuela.

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.

  • precava. Strumigenys precava Brown, 1954c: 196 (w.q.) GUYANA. [Strumigenys precava Weber, 1952b: 2; unavailable name, attributed to Brown.] See also: Bolton, 2000: 547.

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



Brown 1962.

Bolton (2000) - TL 3.1-3.8, HL 0.86-1.02, HW 0.64-0.76, CI 74-79, ML 0.50-0.56, MI 55-60, SL 0.58-0.68, SI 83-94, PW 0.34-0.42 (excluding humeral tubercles), AL 0.80-1.00 (10 measured). Size of intercalary tooth of apical fork varying from distinct to absent; see note under introduction to group. Leading edge of scape with 2-3 narrowly spatulate hairs that are curved toward the base of the scape. Long flagellate hairs present as follows: in apicoscrobal position; at pronotal humerus, where it arises from a stoutly conical large tubercle; a pair on mesonotum; several on waist segments; numerous on first gastral tergite. Cephalic dorsum reticulate-punctate, usually with overlying rugulae especially on dorsal surfaces of occipital lobes. Spongiform lobes of petiole and postpetiole all well developed; base of first gastral sternite with a thick spongiform collar. Disc of postpetiole smooth to superficially punctulate, usually with fine longitudinal costulae but these may be faint or even absent in some individuals. Basigastral costulae sharply developed, longer than the postpetiole disc; gaster otherwise smooth and shining.

Type Material

Bolton (2000) - Holotype and paratype workers, GUIANA: Kamakusa, 7.xi.1922, no. 64 (H. O. Lang); paratype workers, GUIANA: between R. Cuyuni and R. Mazaruni, no. 358 (N. A. Weber); Mazaruni Forest Settlement (N. A. Weber); PANAMA: Canal Zone, Barro Colorado Island, 1938, no. 739 (N. A. Weber); Barro Colorado I., iv.-v.1942 (J. Zetek); Barro Colorado I. (W. M. Wheeler); Barro Colorado I. (L. Hare); Rio Chinillo (J. Zetek); Rio Quejeta, Cooper's Place (I. Molino); BOLIVIA: Cachuela Esperanza, Rio Beni (W. M. Mann) (Museum of Comparative Zoology, Museu de Zoologia da Universidade de Sao Paulo, National Museum of Natural History, California Academy of Sciences, The Natural History Museum) [examined].