Cephalotes porrasi (Wheeler 1942)

Formicidae, Hymenoptera, Insecta, Arthropoda, Animalia

worker face view

worker dorsal view

major face view

major lateral view

Major dorsal view (reduced, original).


Mexico, Belize, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Colombia, Ecuador. Costa Rica: lowland rainforest on the Atlantic slope and the Osa Peninsula.


Minor worker: eyes situated behind the scrobe, which terminates in front of the eye; in face view, lateral border of head with a deep, rounded excision that lodges the eye; hind basitarsus relatively long and thin, maximum width/maximum length 0.314-0.340; propodeal lamella usually narrow, in the form of two or three subtriangular teeth.

Major worker: eyes situated behind the scrobe, which terminates in front of the eye; head with complete and strongly developed cephalic disk; cephalic disk continuous anteriorly, frontal carinae meet anteriorly at a linear incision, mandibles completely hidden beneath frontal carinae; color uniformly red brown; cephalic disk distinctly elongate; surface of cephalic disk mat, granular, with deep circular foveae bearing erect, pompon-like setae.

Similar species: pallens.

Natural History

This species prefers rainforest habitats. I most often encounter it as workers in recent treefalls or on low vegetation. I have seen two nests, both in dead stems:

Nest in 11mm diameter dead stick in Acacia ruddiae tree.

Nest in a hollow twig, 26cm long, 4mm outside dia., 2mm inside dia. The top had been broken off. Soldiers were on top, nearest the entrance, and a group of three blocked the mouth of the nest and slowly moved backwards as I broke open the nest. Nest contents were 93 minors (including callows), 10 majors, 26 pupae, 10 large larvae, and small brood.

Type Data

Cryptocerus pallens var. porrasi Wheeler 1942:210. Syntype worker, soldier, male, queen: Panama, Canal Zone, Quebrada de Oro (Wheeler) [MCZC].

Partial Synonymy

Paracryptocerus pallens Klug: Kempf 1958 (porrasi made a junior synonym of pallens).

Cephalotes porrasi Wheeler: Andrade and Baroni Urbani 1999 (removed from synonymy, elevated to species).


See notes under pallens.

Literature Cited

Andrade, M. L. de, and C. Baroni Urbani. 1999. Diversity and adaptation in the ant genus Cephalotes, past and present (Hymenoptera, Formicidae). Stuttgarter Beitrage zur Naturkunde Serie B (Geologie und Palaontologie) 271:1-889.

Wheeler, W. M. 1942. Studies of Neotropical ant-plants and their ants. Bull. Mus. Comp. Zool. 90:1-262.

Page author:

John T. Longino, The Evergreen State College, Olympia WA 98505 USA.longinoj@evergreen.edu

Date of this version: 27 June 2000
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