Technomyrmex briani Sharaf, 2009

Sharaf, Mostafa R., Dhafer, Hathal M. Al & Aldawood, Abdulrahman S., 2018, Review of the ant genus Technomyrmex Mayr, 1872 in the Arabian Peninsula (Hymenoptera, Formicidae), ZooKeys 780, pp. 35-59: 35

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Technomyrmex briani Sharaf, 2009


Technomyrmex briani Sharaf, 2009  Figure 4A, B, C

Technomyrmex briani  Sharaf, 2009: 213, figs 1-3 (w.), Holotype worker, KSA: Wadi Abha, 18.216389°N, 42.505278°E, 2261 m, 18.iii. 2004, (M. R. Sharaf), 2 paratype workers, same data as the holotype, CASENT0906400, ( KSMA), CASENT0911583, ( NHMB), (examined), Afrotropic.


Worker. Measurements: TL: 2.62-3.0; HL: 0.62-0.72; HW: 0.60-0.67; SL: 0.60-0.72; PW: 0.42-0.47; WL: 0.80-0.92; Indices: CI: 89-100; SI: 92-112; OI: 22-29; EPI: 73-117; DTI: 106-128 (n = 10, from Sharaf 2009).

Head. Head distinctly longer than broad with straight posterior margin and clearly curved sides; anterior clypeal margin transverse or very feebly concave medially; posterior margin of head transverse or slightly concave; eyes with 10 ommatidia in the longest row (OI: 22-29) with outer margins just fail to break the outlines of the sides in full-face view; scapes surpass posterior margin of head by approximately ¼ its length. Mesosoma. Promesonotal suture distinct; mesonotum in profile evenly rounded descending abruptly to a well-developed metanotal groove; propodeal dorsum short approximately ¼ × length of propodeal declivity. Pilosity. Number of setal pairs; frontal carina with two pairs: in profile one pair above the torulus and another pair at the level of the anterior portion of the eye; pronotum with one or two pairs; mesonotum bare or with one or two pairs; sides of propodeal declivity bare or in some individuals with one to three pairs; first, second, and third gastral tergites mostly bare; entire body covered with appressed pale pubescence. Sculpture. Body finely superficially granulate, general appearance relatively dull. Colour. Bicolored species, head and gaster dark brown, mesosoma yellow-brown clearly lighter than head and gaster; clypeus, mandibles, legs and antennae dirty yellow.

Worker similar to T. setosus  but it can be separated by the following characters: eyes located relatively posteriorly on head sides; mesosoma and gastral tergites 1-3 mostly bare, rarely promesonotum with one pair of setae.

Queen. Measurements: TL: 3.67; HL: 0.80; HW: 0.75; SL: 0.75; PW: 0.62; WL: 1.12; Indices: CI: 94; SI: 100; OI: 29; EPI: 78; DTI: 121. (n = 1).

Head. In full-face view with feebly convex sides and nearly straight posterior margin; anterior clypeal margin weak but distinct medially concave; eyes of medium size, with approximately 12 ommatidia in longest row (OI: 29), located on midlength of head, with outer margin of eye touching head sides; scapes when laid back from their insertions surpass the posterior margin of head approximately by the length of first funicular segment. Mesosoma. In profile propodeal dorsum and declivity forming a continuous curve; propodeal spiracle located at midlength of declivity. Pilosity. Anterior clypeal margin with a single pair of setae; frontal carina with two pairs of black based setae: in profile the first above torulus, the second at about level of anterior margin of eyes, another three setal pairs, behind posterior margin of eyes, in front of small ocelli and on the posterior margin of head. Number of setal pairs on mesosoma: promesonotum and metanotum each with one pair; lateral margins of propodeal declivity with three pairs; first and second gastral tergites each with three pairs on sides, third and fourth tergites each with three pairs scattered on sides. Sculpture. Head and mesosoma finely and densely punctate, general appearance dull except gaster feebly shining. Colour. Head brown, gaster bark brown, mesosoma yellow-brown, lighter than head, legs and antennae yellow.

Material examined.

KSA, Al Bahah Province: Elqamh Park, Belgurashi, 19.913056°N, 41.905°E, 1931 m, 17.v.2010, (M. R. Sharaf) (1 w, CASENT0919798, CASC); Shohba Forest, 20.234167°N, 41.623611°E, 2324 m, 14.v.2011, (M. R. Sharaf) (1 w, CASENT0919799, CASC); Shohba Forest, 20.234167°N, 41.623611°E, 2324 m, 14.v.2011, (M. R. Sharaf) (33 w,) ; Saudi Arabia, Al Baha, Wadi Elzaraeb, 20.216944°N, 41.436944°E, 2123 m, 15.v.2010, (M. R. Sharaf) (5 w); Shada Al A’la, 19.838817°N, 41.310067°E, 1563 m, 15.xi.2015, (Al Dhafer et al.), PT, (6 w); Shada Al A’la, 19.8627°N, 41.301483°E, 1225 m, 23.viii.2014, (Al Dhafer et al.), PT, (3 w), all in KSMA.

Biological notes.

Technomyrmex briani  nests under rocks often next to Acacia  and Juniper trees in southwestern mountains of the KSA. Workers were descending small shrubs and other native plants.

Geographic range.

Technomyrmex briani  is known only from the KSA and is considered endemic to the southwestern mountains of the Arabian Peninsula.