Formicidae, Hymenoptera, Insecta, Arthropoda, Animalia
Line drawing of stannardi holotype, from Brown and Kempf (1960).
Costa Rica (mid-elevation Atlantic slope wet forest).
Gastral dorsum evenly covered with conspicuous spatulate setae; labrum with a small median notch, lateral lobes shallowly bilobed.
The genus Rhopalothrix is a member of the monophyletic tribe Basicerotini (Bolton 1998). I assume that Rhopalothrix share the predaceous habits of other members of the tribe. The few basicerotines whose habits are known prey on small, soft-bodied arthropods (Wilson 1956, Brown and Kempf 1960, Wilson and Brown 1985).
I know this species from one Winkler sample from wet forest at C.A.T.I.E. near Turrialba.
JTL-001 differs from the Mexican stannardi in (1) anterior margin of labrum more erose, with a distinct short median notch, and lateral lobes bidentate; (2) teeth on inner margin of mandibles more strongly developed; and (3) spatulate setae cover most of gaster instead of just posterior half.
Rhopalothrix stannardi Brown and Kempf 1960:236. Holotype worker: Mexico, Chiapas, Ocosingo Valley, Finca el Real (C. and M. Goodnight and L. J. Stannard) [MCZC]. "... taken by Berlese or other sifting apparatus."
Bolton, B. 1998. Monophyly of the dacetonine tribe-group and its component tribes (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Bulletin of the Natural History Museum London (Entomology) 67:65-78.
Brown, W. L., Jr., Kempf, W. W. 1960. A world revision of the ant tribe Basicerotini. Stud. Entomol. (n.s.) 3:161-250.
Wilson, E. O. 1956. Feeding behavior in the ant Rhopalothrix biroi Szabo. Psyche (Camb.) 63:21-23.
Wilson, E. O., Brown, W. L., Jr. 1985 ("1984"). Behavior of the cryptobiotic predaceous ant Eurhopalothrix heliscata, n. sp. (Hymenoptera: Formicidae: Basicerotini). Insectes Soc. 31:408-428.
John T. Longino, The Evergreen State College, Olympia WA 98505 USA.email@example.com
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