Odontomachus biolleyi Forel 1908

Formicidae, Hymenoptera, Insecta, Arthropoda, Animalia


West coast of Costa Rica (known only from type locality).


Face to near margin of vertex striate; first gastral tergite smooth and shining; head, trunk and petiole concolorous light red or dull yellow; legs yellowish, gaster light brown to blackish; posterior face of petiole convex in both directions; compound eye distinctly longer than maximum width of mandible (without teeth); sides of head, especially the part posterior to extraocular furrow, finely, densely and distinctly reticulate-punctulate and dull; measurements (from Brown 1976, n=1): HL 2.38, HW (measured across temporal prominence) 1.72, ML 1.29, eye L 0.50, CI 72, MI 54, SI 140.

Natural History

Known only from the types from the Pacific coast of Costa Rica, in mangroves. This is an enigmatic species. Brown (1976) examined the type(s), measured a worker, and placed the species in the key, but did not discuss it further.

Type Data

Odontomachus biolleyi Forel 1908:35. Syntype worker: "embouchure du Jesus Maria, cote pacifique de Costa Rica, dans du bois pourri" [mouth of the Jesus Maria, just south of Punta Caldera].

At INBio, there is a pin with 2 workers and an alate queen of biolleyi. They are old specimens, from the original Alfaro collection that was at the National Museum. The locality on the label is Jesus Maria, and these specimens are almost certainly part of the original syntype series. I briefly examined these specimens in January, 1999. They are definitely distinctive, with relatively large eyes. The petiole is dome-shaped, but with no dorsal spine, so that the apex is rather abrupt, different from bauri, ruginodis, and brunneus. The petiole is shiny. The pronotal dorsum has transverse striae posteriorly, like brunneus. The gaster has dilute pubescence, like ruginodis.

Literature Cited

Brown, W. L., Jr. 1976. Contributions toward a reclassification of the Formicidae. Part VI. Ponerinae, tribe Ponerini, subtribe Odontomachiti. Section A. Introduction, subtribal characters. Genus Odontomachus. Studia Entomol. 19:67-171.

Forel, A. 1908. Fourmis de Costa-Rica recoltees par M. Paul Biolley. Bull. Soc. Vaud. Sci. Nat. 44:35-72.

Page author:

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

Date of this version: 17 March 1999
Previous versions of this page: 7 January 1999
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