Formicidae, Hymenoptera, Insecta, Arthropoda, Animalia
Amazonian Brazil to Mexico. Costa Rica: can be expected in lowland sites throughout the country; known from Turrialba, La Selva Biological Station, Osa Peninsula, Carara Biological Reserve, Santa Rosa National Park.
Eyes composed of 1 facet (occasionally a smaller second facet present); in full face view eyes small enough to not break lateral outline of head; puncta on face small, face sublucid; petiolar node weakly tapering to a broadly rounded summit; color light red brown at least on mesosoma, often infuscated on gaster and sometimes also head. Measurement data.
This species occurs in both leaf litter on the forest floor, and beneath epiphytes in the forest canopy. Collections from La Selva, Turrialba, Santa Rosa, and Carara have been from Winkler or Berlese samples of forest floor litter. Four collections from Sirena and 2 from La Selva have been from beneath canopy epiphyte mats. It has also been collected in Project ALAS canopy fogging samples at La Selva. It is not common in forest floor Winkler samples from wet forest sites, so I suspect it is a species tolerant of dry conditions, favoring an arboreal existence in wet forest sites, and becoming more ground-based in seasonally dry sites.
Bill Brown identified the Corcovado material (JTL31Mar82/0940, JTL11Jul82/1000, JTL28Apr81/1100) as Hypoponera "limatula" in the early 1980's. This must have been a manuscript name; I cannot find it in Kempf (1972) or Bolton (1995). This suggests it is probably a new species, not matching any of the published species known to Brown.
Addendum: I visited the MCZ in June 1999 and found Brown's unit tray of "limatula." In addition to my Costa Rican specimens, there was material from Panama (Barro Colorado Island), Colombia (Tayrona), Mexico (Vera Cruz, Oaxaca, Jalisco), Trinidad, and Brazil (near Manaus). These all looked similar to me, and matched my concept of this species. Where there were biological data, specimens were from leaf litter on the forest floor.
John T. Longino, The Evergreen State College, Olympia WA 98505 USA.firstname.lastname@example.org
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