Hypoponera comis Bolton & Fisher, Bolton, B. & Fisher, B. L., 2011

Bolton, B. & Fisher, B. L., 2011, Taxonomy of Afrotropical and West Palaearctic ants of the ponerine genus Hypoponera Santschi (Hymenoptera: Formicidae)., Zootaxa 2843, pp. 1-118: 37-38

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Hypoponera comis Bolton & Fisher

sp. n.

Hypoponera comis Bolton & Fisher  HNS  sp. n.

(Figs 22 – 24)

WORKER (holotype in parentheses). Measurements: HL 0.61 – 0.65 (0.64), HW 0.48 – 0.50 (0.50), HS 0.545 – 0.570 (0.570), SL 0.44 – 0.47 (0.46), PrW 0.38 – 0.40 (0.40), WL 0.80 – 0.88 (0.86), HFL 0.42 – 0.46 (0.46), PeNL 0.16 – 0.17 (0.16), PeH 0.39 – 0.41 (0.40), PeNW 0.29 – 0.32 (0.32), PeS 0.280 – 0.270 (0.297) (8 measured). Indices: CI 75 – 79 (78), SI 92 – 96 (92), PeNI 75 – 82 (80), LPeI 39 – 44 (40), DPeI 185 – 200 (200).

Small eyes present but sometimes difficult to see against the black colour of the side of the head; usually of 1 – 2 ommatidia but up to 4 may be present. In full-face view apex of scape, when laid straight back from its insertion, just fails to reach the midpoint of the posterior margin; SL/HL 0.70 – 0.75. Cephalic dorsum finely but distinctly reticulate-punctate. Pronotal dorsum almost smooth, with spaced, minute, superficial punctures, obviously much less strongly and densely sculptured than cephalic dorsum. Latroventral surfaces of head with spaced minute punctures . Metanotal groove absent to vestigially present on dorsum of mesosoma. Mesonotal-mesopleural suture absent to vestigially marked on side of mesosoma. Propodeum distinctly marginate between declivity and side. Posterior surface of petiole node without short cuticular ridges that radiate upward from the peduncle. Node of petiole in profile tall and slender, the anterior and posterior faces distinctly convergent dorsally so that the node is much broader just above the tubercle than at its apex, the dorsum narrowly convex. Subpetiolar process with an obtuse ventral angle. Petiole node in dorsal view short from front to back and very broad. Maximum width of first gastral tergite in dorsal view distinctly greater than the width of the second gastral tergite at its midlength. Base of cinctus of second gastral tergite glossy and polished, without trace of cross-ribs. Midline length of second gastral posttergite, from posterior margin of cinctus to apex, is about equal to or slightly less than the width of the segment at its midlength. Disc of second gastral tergite with sharply incised, small punctures that are separated by areas of glossy cuticle; the diameters of the punctures are distinctly less than the distances separating them. First and second gastral tergites dorsally pubescent and with a number of short, standing setae that conspicuously project above the level of the pubescence in profile. Full adult colour of head and mesosoma blackish brown to black, the petiole and gaster usually slightly lighter than the head.

Holotype worker, Ta nz a n i a : Iringa Region, Ndundulu Forest Reserve, 1567 m., 23-26.x.2007, CEPF-TZ-8.2-F21, 7.78912S, 36.48539E, AFRC-TZ-03, primary forest, leaf litter, Winkler (P. Hawkes, M. Bhoke, U. Richard) (SAMC).

Paratypes. 11 workers and 1 dealate queen, with same data as holotype (SAMC, CASC, AFRC, BBRC).

Closely related to importuna  HNS  and with a similar, relatively very broad petiole in dorsal view. In addition to the differences in colour and petiole shape and size noted in the key, importuna  HNS  is larger than comis  HNS  , with HW 0.52 – 0.58, HS 0.590 – 0.650, SL 0.48 – 0.52, PrW 0.42 – 0.46. See also the notes under occidentalis  HNS  .