Cyphomyrmex longiscapus

Kempf, W. W., 1966, A revision of the Neotropical fungus-growing ants of the genus Cyphomyrmex Mayr. Part II. Group of rimosus (Spinola) (Hym. Formicidae)., Studia Entomologica (N. S.) 8, pp. 161-200: 161-165

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Cyphomyrmex longiscapus


Group of Cyphomyrmex rimosus

The rimosus-group has previously (Kempf, 1962: 30; 1964: 4) been defined by the ensemble of the following characters in the worker (and female) caste: Mandibles with 5 teeth only; two or no midpronotal tubercles present; preocular carina either curving mesad above eyes (most species of the group) or fading out above eyes, yet with the postero-lateral border of the antennal scrobe more or less defined as in the strigatus-group ( longiscapus   HNS   , wheeleri   HNS   , costatus   HNS   and presumably also flavidus   HNS   ). Following is a list of the presently recognized forms, including the not yet analyzed infraspecific forms of rimosus   HNS   and several new synonyms (W = worker; F = female; M = male):

bicornis Forel   HNS   , 1895, W, eastern Brazil

championi Forel   HNS   , 1899, Al, Panama (= salvini Forel   HNS   ?)

costatus Mann   HNS   , 1922, W, F, M, Honduras, Panama, Colombia

= colombianus Weber   HNS   , 1940 - NOV. SYN.

dentatus Forel   HNS   , 1901, W, F, Mexico - NOV. STAT.

flavidus Pergande   HNS   , 1895, W, Mexico

foxi Em. Andre   HNS   , 1892, W, F, Jamaica

hamulatus Weber   HNS   , 1938, W, Bolivia, Panama - NOV. STAT.

kirbyi Mayr   HNS   , 1887, W, F, Colombia, Ecuador

laevigatus Weber   HNS   , 1938, W, Bolivia, Dutch Guiana

longiscapus Weber   HNS   , 1940, W, F, Colombia, Panama

peltatus Kempf   HNS   , n. sp., W, F - southern Brazil

rimosus   HNS   (Spinola, 1851), W, Brazil: Para

= difformis   HNS   (Fr. Smith, 1858)

r. var. arnoldi Aguayo   HNS   , 1932, W, Jamaica (=: foxi Em. Andre   HNS   ?)

r. var. major Forel   HNS   , 1912, W, Guatemala, Brazil: S. Paulo

r. atratus Forel   HNS   , 1912, W, F, M, Colombia

r. breviscapus Weber   HNS   , 1940, W, Panama

r. cochunae Kusnezov   HNS   , 1949, W, Argentina: Tucuman

r. flavescens Weber   HNS   , 1948, W, Haiti

r. fuscus Emery   HNS   , 1894, W, F, M, Cisandean South America

= fusculus Emery   HNS   , 1922

= curiapensis Weber   HNS   , 1938

r. minutus Mayr   HNS   , 1862, W, F, M, from U.S.A. to n. S. America

= deformis Roger   HNS   , 1863

= steinheili Forel   HNS   , 1884

= var. comalensis Wheeler   HNS   , 1907

r. trinitatis Weber   HNS   , 1938, W, F, Trinidad, Guianas, Panama

r. venezuelensis Weber   HNS   , 1938, W, Venezuela

salvini Forel   HNS   , 1899, W, F, M, Panama, Costa Rica

= acutus Weber   HNS   , 1940 - NOV. SYN.

transversus Emery   HNS   , 1894, W, F, M, Brazil, Argentina - NOV. STAT.

- olindanus Forel   HNS   , 1901

= pencosensis Forel   HNS   , 1914 - NOV. SYN.

vorticis Weber   HNS   , 1940, W, Bolivia, Brazil: Rondonia

wheeleri Forel   HNS   , 1900, W, F, M, U.S.A.: Tex., Cal.; Mexico

The rimosus-group is much more widely distributed than the strigatus-group, ranging from southern U.S.A. both over the Antilles and Central America south to central Argentina. Yet only rimosus   HNS   with its puzzling "races" and morphs occupies the entire range of the territory (except for northeastern Brazil!), whereas the remaining species are seemingly rather restricted in their distribution. The group reaches its highest degree of diversity and endemism in northern South America and in Central America.

Most of the collected material, over 90% of the total, belongs to the ubiquitous rimosus   HNS   s. L, whose striking variability is still not understood and had to be left out for a future study. Yet a slight improvement is introduced here by raising dentatus   HNS   , hamulatus   HNS   and transversus   HNS   to full specific rank.

In short, the presently proposed arrangement, while exhausting the best of my possibilites and efforts, is not to be considered as final. Only more copious material and a better knowledge of the variability, distribution and biology of all forms will permit to raise our knowledge of the Cyphomyrmex   HNS   ants to a satisfactory level.

Bionomics. - With the exception of a few well studied species, such as rimosus minutus Mayr   HNS   (Weber, 1955) and costatus Mann   HNS   (Weber, 1957a), very little, if any, information is available for most forms. One fact, however, regarding the fungi cultivated by these ants, has become firmly established in the meantime. Whereas some species ( costatus   HNS   and wheeleri   HNS   ) grow a basidiomycete fungus of the family Agaricaceae, which under the care of the ants forms bromatia of loosely clustered hyphal swellings or gongylidia (fungus garden of the flocculent type), other species ( rimosus   HNS   , dentatus   HNS   , transversus   HNS   ) cultivate bromatia consisting of polygonal solid masses of cells of a yeastlike fungus, which Wheeler (1907: 772) named Tyridiomyces formicarum, but so far has not been truly identified.

It is interesting to note that in the aforesaid species the difference in type of fungus and bromatia coincides with a morphological difference, shown by the development and direction of the preocular carina and the postero-lateral limit of the antennal scrobe; in costatus   HNS   and wheeleri   HNS   the preocular carina fades out above the eye, but the postero-lateral limit of the scrobe behind the eye is somehow indicated, whereas in rimosus   HNS   and allies the preocular carina curves strongly mesad above the eye, and there is no proper postero-lateral limit to the scrobe. Only future research will show whether or not this relationship is constant and may be generalized.

Key to the species for workers

( C. flavidus   HNS   is not included; C. championi   HNS   is known only in the male caste).

1. Antennal scrobe reticulate and quite shining; preocular carina not curving mesad above eye, postero-lateral limit of antennal scrobe marked at least by difference of sculpture (Figs. 2, 19)........ 2

- Antennal scrobe densely but indistinctly granulate and opaque; preocular carina curving mesad above eye, the postero-laferaj border of scrobe being formed by another carina (if present), which arises from the occipital corner and extends foreward to the inferior or posterior border of eye, never joining the preocular carina (Figs. 3, 6, 11)..................................................... 4

2. Antennal scape in repose surpassing the occipital lobe (Fig. 2); pronotal tubercles absent (Fig. 18); cheeks immarginate below .... 1. longiscapus Weber   HNS  

- Antennal scape not surpassing occipital corners when in repose; lateral pronotal tubercles developed; cheeks marginate below.... 3

3. Disc of tergum I of gaster with a pair of strong longitudinal carinae (Fig. 19); midpronotal tubercles absent; postero-dorsal margin of petiole not drawn out nor bidentate (Fig. 38) .... 4. costatus Mann   HNS  

- Disc of tergum I of gaster lacking a pair of longitudinal carinae; midpronotal tubercles present (Fig. 25); postero-dorsal margin of petiole drawn out as a foliaceous bidentate lamina (Fig. 37) .... 2. wheeleri Forel   HNS  

4. Antennal scapes not surpassing the strikingly auriculate occipital lobes (Figs. 4, 5); pronotum completely unarmed (Figs. 23, 26), its sides marginate only ....................................... 5

- Antennal scapes usually surpassing the scarcely or gently drawn out occipital lobes; pronotum with the lateral tubercles always present.. 6

5. Anterior mesonotal tubercles conical, posterior ones low and tumuliform(Fig. 23); petiolar node much less than thrice as broad as long (Fig. 33)................................. 5. bicornis Forel   HNS  

- Thorax completely unarmed, its dorsum in profile evenly rounded (Fig. 26); petiolar node strikingly transverse, thrice as broad as long (Fig. 32) .............................. 6. laevigatus Weber   HNS  

6. Paired midpronotal tubercles absent ........................... 7

- Paired midpronotal tubercles' present ........................... 9

7. Hind femora not dilated nor ventrally carinate at basal third (Fig. 42); funicular segments II-VIII longer than broad .... 7. kirbyi Mayr   HNS  

- Hind femora dilated and ventrally carinate at basal third (Figs. 46| 50); funicular segments II-VIII about as long as broad ........ 8

8. Epinotum unarmed, rounded in both directions (Fig. 20); antennal scapes well projecting beyond occipital corners (Fig. 13) ...... 8. peltatus   HNS   n. sp.

- - Epinotum dentate; basal face laterally marginate to carinate (Fig. 21); antennal scapes scarcely projecting beyond tip of occipital corners (Fig. 8) ............................. 9. dentatus Forel   HNS  

9. Maximum expansion of frontal carinae less than interocular width (Fig. 6); thorax finely but distinctly rugose; lateral. pronotal and anterior mesonotal projections long and spine-like (Fig. 14) .... 10. foxi Forel   HNS  

- Maximum expansion of frontal carinae exceeding interocular width; thorax lacking distinct rugulae; lateral pronotal and anterior mesonotal projections short, tubercular or at best conical ...... 10

10. Apex of occipital lobes drawn out into a spine (Figs. 1, 3); anterior mesonotal tubercles high and conical (Figs. 15, 16) ...... 11

'- Apex of occipital lobes not drawn out into a spine; anterior mesonotal tubercle low and usually tumuliform ................ 12

11. Body without appressed scale-like hairs; basal face of epinotum sharply carinate in its entire length; posterior mesonotal tubercles low, not tooth-like (Fig. 15) ................ 11. vorticis Weber   HNS  

- Body hairs scale-like; basal face of epinotum bluntly carinate on anterior half; posterior mesonotal projections conical (Fig. 16) ...... 12. salvini Forel   HNS  

12. Petiole strikingly transverse, thrice as broad as long (Fig. 30); postpetiole discally deeply and broadly impressed; body hairs thickly squamous .................................. 14. transversus Emery   HNS  

- Petiole narrower, not thrice as broad as long (Fig. 39); postpetiole with a shallower middorsal impression; body hairs finer ...... 13

13. Hairs on head and gaster recurved or hook-like, not appressed nor strictly scale-like; thoracic tubercles sharply pointed (Fig. 22).. 15. hamulatus Weber   HNS  

- Hairs on head and gaster appressed and scale-like; thoracic tubercles low and tumuliform, never pointed .......... 16. rimosus (Spinola)   HNS