Dacetini, Formicidae, Hymenoptera, Insecta, Arthropoda, Animalia
Line drawing of worker face, from Brown (1959): (original).
Full Range: Costa Rica south to Amazonian Brazil and Peru.
Costa Rican Range: Atlantic and southern Pacific lowlands.
Mandibles in full-face view linear, elongate and narrow; ventral surface of petiole without spongiform tissue; leading edge of scape with freely projecting hairs; inner margin of mandible with a clearly defined submedian tooth near the midlength; labral lobes long, trigger hairs at apices of lobes short; preapical denticles gradually decreasing in size; mandibles relatively short (MI 33-45); propodeal suture moderately impressed; total head length less than 0.90mm; eyes relatively small, with 14 or fewer ommatidia, with 2-4 in longest row; scapes relatively short (SI 48-61); head in full-face view relatively narrow, CI 66-71; in profile head strongly dorsoventrally flattened, the maximum depth of the head capsule 0.35-0.41 X head length; color light yellow-brown; pair of mesonotal setae short and inconspicuous, tilted rearward. Also see Bolton (2000:196).
Members of the genus are all predaceous, with a static pressure mode of attack (Bolton 1999).
Brown (1959) characterized the genus Neostruma (now part of Pyramica, see Bolton 1999) as forming
small colonies, chiefly in the leaf litter of rain forest or tropical evergreen forest, and nests occupy cavities in rotting twigs, pieces of bark or similar forest-floor vegetable debris... The food... consists primarily of small entomobryomorph Collembola and possibly some other minute terrestrial arthropods as well. Hunting behavior is like that of Smithistruma [also now part of Pyramica] rather than like the Strumigenys so far studied.
This species inhabits lowland rainforests. I have encountered it mainly as workers from Winkler samples of forest floor leaf litter. At La Selva Biological Station, an alate queen was collected in a canopy fogging sample.
Neostruma zeteki Brown 1959:10, figs. 1, 5. Holotype worker, paratype workers and queen: Panama, Barro Colorado Island, ii-iii.1943 (J. Zetek) [USNM].
Later moved to Pyramica. See Bolton (2000) for complete synonymy.
Bolton, B. 1999. Ant genera of the tribe Dacetonini (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). J. Nat. Hist. 33:1639-1689.
Bolton, B. 2000. The ant tribe Dacetini, with a revision of the Strumigenys species of the Malagasy Region by Brian L. Fisher, and a revision of the Austral epopostrumiform genera by Steven O. Shattuck. Memoirs of the American Entomological Institute 65:1-1028.
Brown, W. L., Jr. 1959. A revision of the Dacetine ant genus Neostruma. Breviora 107:1-13.
John T. Longino, The Evergreen State College, Olympia WA 98505 USA.firstname.lastname@example.org
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