Pheidole zirafy,

Salata, Sebastian & Fisher, Brian L., 2020, The ant genus Pheidole Westwood, 1839 (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) in Madagascar-taxonomic revision of the bessonii species-group, Zootaxa 4843 (1), pp. 1-64: 59-63

publication ID

https://doi.org/10.11646/zootaxa.4843.1.1

publication LSID

lsid:zoobank.org:pub:57044928-1950-4525-850E-E381A52599A1

DOI

http://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.4488413

persistent identifier

http://treatment.plazi.org/id/03938025-FFB4-A928-A7D8-B21DFB54FD30

treatment provided by

Plazi

scientific name

Pheidole zirafy
status

sp. nov.

Pheidole zirafy  sp. nov.

Figs 26View FIGURE 26 A–F, 27R, 28R

HOLOTYPE: 1s., Madagascar, Antsiranana, Sava Region: Parc National de Marojejy, Manantenina River , 28.0 km 24.8° NE Andapa, -14.43461 49.76074, 780 m, 13-Feb-2018, rainforest, ex rotten log, B. L. Fisher et al. leg. BLF41182View Materials, CASENT0923249 ( CASC)GoogleMaps  . PARATYPES: 3w., 1m.: the same data as holotype, CASENT0807266, CASENT0807267, CASENT0807268 ( CASC, MHNG, PBZT)GoogleMaps  .

Other material. Madagascar. Antsiranana: 4w., Parc National de Marojejy, Manantenina River , 28.0 km 38° NE Andapa, 8.2 km 333° NNW Manantenina, -14.43667 49.775, 450 m, B. L. Fisher et al. leg. ( CASC)GoogleMaps  ; 6w., SAVA Region, District of Sambava, Marojejy National Park , 5 km W of Manantenina village, 1st Camp site (Mantella), -14.43817 49.774, 487 m, M. Rin’Ha leg. ( CASC)GoogleMaps  ; 1w., Sava Region: Parc National de Marojejy, near Manantenina River , -14.43677 49.77541, 475 m, B. L. Fisher et al. leg. ( CASC)GoogleMaps  .

Geographic range. Madagascar, Antsiranana, Sava Region.

Diagnosis. Major workers. Head in full-face view sub-rectangular, widening posteriorly, with lateral margins relatively straight and very deep posteromedian concavity; side of head with moderately sparse, short, appressed to decumbent pilosity; anteromedial part of frons with moderately thick and dense costulae; interspaces between costulae smooth; posteromedial frons with thinner rugocostulae that arch posterolaterally; interspaces between rugocostulae rugulate; frons laterally with denser and thicker rugae; interspaces between rugae with dense and thin rugulae; occipital lobes with thin rugocostulae that weaken posteriorly and arch posterolaterally, interspaces between rugocostulae mostly smooth; scape, when laid back, exceeding the midlength of head by three-fifths of its length; inner hypostomal tooth distinct, low, wide, closely spaced and bulge-like; outer hypostomal tooth lobe-like and higher than inner tooth, with top directed posteriorly; inner and outer hypostomal tooth closely spaced and not connected by concavity; promesonotum short, angular and low; posterior mesonotum smoothly declining towards propodeum; mesonotal process distinct and tubercle-like; mesosoma with dense and thin rugopuncta; pronotum with additional thin, moderately dense, and transverse rugae; anepisternum, katepisternum, and lateral sides of propodeum with rugae that are more vertical; gaster shagreened; body brownish black. Minor workers. Occiput elongated, terminated by distinct nuchal collar; head sculpture mostly smooth with few rugae on gena and transverse rugae on neck; scape, when laid back, exceeding the posterior head margin by half of its length; promesonotum very low, long, and slightly arched; promesonotal groove present; metanotal groove indistinct; propodeal spines long and thin; promesonotal and propodeal dorsum mostly smooth with sparse and transverse rugae, and lateral sides of propodeum, anepisternum, and katepisternum with dense and thin rugoreticulae; body dark brown.

Description. Major workers. Measurements (n=1): HL: 2.44; HW: 2.21; SL: 1.8; EL: 0.246; WL: 2.19; PSL: 0.57; MTL: 2.22; PNW: 0.8; PTW: 0.28; PPW: 0.69; CI: 110.5; SI: 81.4; PSLI: 23.4; PPI: 40.6; PNI: 36.0; MTI: 100.7.

Head. In full-face view sub-rectangular, side relatively straight, posteromedian concavity very deep ( Fig. 26BView FIGURE 26). In lateral view sub-oval, not depressed posteriorly, ventral and dorsal margin convex; inner hypostomal tooth visible. Side of head with moderately sparse, short, appressed to decumbent pilosity; head dorsum with relatively dense, long, decumbent to erect pilosity. Anteromedial part of frons with moderately thick and dense costulae; interspaces between costulae smooth; posteromedial frons with rugocostulae that are thinner and arch posterolaterally; interspaces between rugocostulae rugulate; frons laterally with dense and thick rugae; interspaces between rugae rugulate. Occipital lobes with thin rugocostulae that weaken posteriorly and arch posterolaterally; interspaces between rugocostulae mostly smooth. Gena with dense and thick costulae; interspaces between costulae distinctly rugulate. Sides posterolateral from eyes with dense and thin rugae; interspaces between rugae distinctly rugulate. Center of clypeus shiny and indistinctly rugulate, lateral sides with weakly developed rugulae; median notch present, moderately wide and shallow; median longitudinal carina present; lateral longitudinal carinae present. Scape, when laid back, exceeding midlength of head by three-fifths its length; pilosity subdecumbent to erect ( Fig. 26B, DView FIGURE 26). Inner hypostomal tooth distinct, low, wide, closely spaced and bulge-like; outer hypostomal tooth lobe-like, higher than inner tooth, top directed posteriorly; inner and outer hypostomal tooth closely spaced and not connected by concavity ( Fig. 27RView FIGURE 27). Mesosoma. In lateral view, promesonotum short, angular and low; posterior mesonotum smoothly declining towards propodeum; mesonotal process distinct and tubercle-like; promesonotal groove absent; metanotal groove present; propodeal spines long, narrow and with acute top; humeral tubercle weakly produced ( Fig. 26DView FIGURE 26). Surface shiny and with dense and thin rugopuncta; pronotum with additional thin, moderately dense, and transverse rugae; anepisternum, katepisternum, and lateral sides of propodeum with rugae that are more vertical. Pilosity moderately dense, short, and erect ( Fig. 26D, FView FIGURE 26). Petiole. Shagreened ( Fig. 26D, FView FIGURE 26). Postpetiole. Shagreened; dorsum with slightly sparser sculpture ( Fig. 26D, FView FIGURE 26). Gaster. Dull and shagreened; pilosity moderately sparse, long, and erect ( Fig. 26D, FView FIGURE 26). Color. Brownish black, antennae and legs dark brown, mandibles reddish brown ( Fig. 26D, FView FIGURE 26).

Description. Minor workers. Measurements (n=10): HL: 1.17–1.44 (1.29); HW: 0.6–0.75 (0.66); SL: 1.83– 2.13 (1.95); EL: 0.14–0.22 (0.18); WL: 1.53–1.91 (1.69); PSL: 0.34–0.45 (0.38); MTL: 1.85–2.37 (2.03); PNW: 0.45–0.58 (0.52); PTW: 0.11–0.16 (0.13); PPW: 0.19–0.24 (0.22); CI: 188.4–200.0 (193.8); SI: 282.2–302.6 (293.2); PSLI: 26.7–31.3 (29.2); PPI: 49.6–70.6 (58.1); PNI: 74.5–79.5 (77.5); MTI: 290.9–314.9 (305.2).

Head. In full-face view oval, posterior region elongated into long and narrow neck terminated by distinct nuchal collar ( Fig. 26AView FIGURE 26). Pilosity relatively sparse, moderately long, and subdecumbent to erect. Sculpture shiny and mostly smooth with few rugae on gena and transverse rugae on neck; antennal sockets with few weakly developed rugulae that curve posterolaterally; interspaces between rugulae smooth. Clypeus with median longitudinal carina absent; two lateral longitudinal carinae absent. Scape, when laid back, exceeding the posterior head margin, neck not included, by half of its length; pilosity dense and subdecumbent to erect ( Fig. 26A, CView FIGURE 26). Mesosoma. In lateral view, promesonotum very low, long, and slightly arched; promesonotal groove present; metanotal groove in distinct; propodeal spines long, thin, and triangular ( Fig. 26CView FIGURE 26). Promesonotal and propodeal dorsum mostly smooth with sparse and transverse rugae; lateral sides of propodeum, anepisternum, and katepisternum, with dense and thin rugoreticulae. Pilosity very sparse, short, and erect ( Fig. 26C, EView FIGURE 26). Petiole. Peduncle with ventral face straight ( Fig. 26C, EView FIGURE 26). Gaster. With sparse and erect pilosity ( Fig. 26C, EView FIGURE 26). Color. Dark brown, legs and antennae brighter ( Fig. 26C, EView FIGURE 26).

Biology. The species was collected between 450–780 m elevation, in low elevation rainforest and rainforest. Nests were located in rotten logs, and workers were collected from sifted litter and on the ground.

Comments. Majors of P. zirafy  are most similar to parapatric P. flavodepressa  and differ in blackish brown body, presence of moderately sparse, short, and appressed to decumbent pilosity on side of head, occipital lobes with thin rugae that weaken posteriorly and arch posterolaterally, and mostly smooth interspaces between rugae. In contrast, P. flavodepressa  has orange body coloration, side of head with moderately dense, long, subdecumbent to suberect pilosity, and occipital lobes with thick and dense rugae and distinctly rugulate interspaces between rugae. Minors of P. zirafy  are most similar to sympatric P. grallatrix  and differ in presence of dense and thin rugoreticulae on lateral sides of propodeum, anepisternum, and katepisternum. Minors of P. grallatrix  have entirely smooth mesosoma.

Etymology. Malagasy for giraffe, in reference to the very long neck of minor workers.

MHNG

Museum d'Histoire Naturelle

PBZT

Parc Botanique et Zoologique de Tsimbazaza

Kingdom

Animalia

Phylum

Arthropoda

Class

Insecta

Order

Hymenoptera

Family

Formicidae

Genus

Pheidole