Solenopsis JTL-005 Longino ms.

Formicidae, Hymenoptera, Insecta, Arthropoda, Animalia

worker face view

worker lateral view

worker face view

worker lateral view

Additional images: Queen, face view (small, large); lateral view (small, large); mandible (large).


Costa Rica: throughout at mid to lower elevations; wet to dry forest.


Small size; brown or yellow; clypeal carinae moderately diverging, projecting as well-developed anterior teeth; eyes with 1-3 ommatidia; mandible with basal (fourth) tooth reduced relative to third; postpetiole with anteroventral process; abundant erect flexuous pilosity; smooth and shiny.

Queen: relatively small eyes, not strongly kidney shaped; small subquadrate head; mandible with basal tooth small and set back from third tooth; facial punctures relatively small and sparse; ocelli small.

Similar species: JTL-001, JTL-027.

Natural History

At La Selva Biological Station this is an abundant species in the leaf litter on the forest floor. Nests can be found in small sticks and other dead wood in the leaf litter, and these nest collections show that the species is strongly polygynous. Workers and dealate queens are present in most Winkler samples.

At Santa Rosa National Park a queen-right nest was found beneath a stone in the Bosque Humedo.

All collections I have seen have been from sea level to 600m elevation.


There is unexplained color variability in this species. At La Selva, all nest collections have contained uniformly brown workers, and most workers from Winkler samples are brown. However, there are occasional collections of clear yellow workers that have the same overall morphology. Although there is variability among the brown workers from dark to lighter brown, the yellow workers seem to have a distinct color quality not bridged by intermediates. Material from Winkler samples from the southern Pacific lowlands shows a similar division into two color classes. The workers in the Santa Rosa nest collection are uniformly yellow.

I cannot always tell workers of this species from JTL-027. At La Selva there is a tendancy for the propodeum to be larger and more convex compared to JTL-027, but material from the southern Pacific lowlands has mesosoma shape more like JTL-027. However, queens from the Pacific lowlands match JTL-005.

JTL-001 is an upland version of this species.

Page author:

John T. Longino, The Evergreen State College, Olympia WA 98505

Date of this version: 17 October 2005.
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