Cyphomyrmex foxi Andre

Snelling, R. R. & Longino, J. T., 1992, Revisionary notes on the fungus-growing ants of the genus Cyphomyrmex, rimosus-group (Hymenoptera: Formicidae: Attini)., Insects of Panama and Mesoamerica: selected studies., Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp. 479-494: 487

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Cyphomyrmex foxi Andre


Cyphomyrmex foxi Andre   HNS  

(Fig. 30.33)

Cyphomyrmex foxi Andre   HNS   , 1892:55-6; [[worker]] Wheeler, 1917:461- 2; 9. Weber, 1940: 408-09, 412; [[worker]]. Kempf, 1966: 164, 186-8;[[worker]].

This species is known only from Jamaica and is one of the more distinctive species of Cyphomyrmex   HNS   , being one of the few known species in the rimosus   HNS   group in which the breadth of the frontal lobes is less than the distance between the inner margins of the eyes. In this respect it is approached by C. podargus   HNS   , described below, but in that species the width of the frontal lobes equals or slightly exceeds the interocular distance. The two differ, moreover, in that the dorso-lateral lobes of the post-petiole are elevated and somewhat spine-like in profile in C. foxi   HNS   (Fig. 30.33), while they are low, rounded, and inconspicuous in C. podargus   HNS   (Fig. 30.16).

There are four cotypes of C. foxi   HNS   in the Paris Museum and they are in agreement with the interpretations of Wheeler (1917) and subsequent authors. One ofthe four cotypes has been marked as the Lectotype; the three remaining cotypes are paralectotypes and all are in the MNHN, Paris. Apparently the only known specimens other than the types are the series of workers collected by C.T. Brues at Newton, 3000 ft. elev., Jamaica, January, 1912. Specimens from this collection are in a number of institutional collections.

Weber (1940) suggested that C. rimosus var. arnoldi Aguayo   HNS   , 19 32, is a synonym of C. foxi   HNS   ; we do not agree with Weber's classification. Presumably, Aguayo treated his form as a variety of C. rimosus   HNS   (actually C. minutus   HNS   ) because it closely resembled that species, with which he surely was quite familiar, inasmuch as it is the common Cyphomyrmex   HNS   species found throughout the Caribbean. On the other hand, C. foxi   HNS   , known only from Jamaica, is a much larger and more coarsely sculptured ant and does not at all superficially resemble C. minutus   HNS   . Since Aguayo did not mention any of the numerous differences that exist between C. foxi   HNS   and C. minutus   HNS   in his description, but mentioned only superficial differences between var. arnoldi   HNS   and C. 'rimosus', we think it much more likely that var. arnoldi   HNS   is, in fact, a synonym of C. minutus   HNS   .