Eldermyrmex oblongiceps

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Eldermyrmex oblongiceps
Temporal range: Bartonian, Middle to Late Eocene Baltic amber, Baltic Sea region
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Dolichoderinae
Genus: Eldermyrmex
Species: E. oblongiceps
Binomial name
Eldermyrmex oblongiceps
(Wheeler, W.M., 1915)

Dlussky (1997) postulated that this species likely did not belong in Iridomyrmex and that it “... most probably should be placed into another genus ...” However, he did not erect a new genus for it as he only had Wheeler’s (1915) drawing available and did not feel this was sufficient to establish a new genus. It is clear that this species does not belong to Iridomyrmex, and is, in fact, so distinct that assignment to a separate, and new, genus seems straightforward. This genus, Eldermyrmex, was established by Shattuck (in Heterick & Shattuck, 2011).

Identification

Key to the species of the genus Eldermyrmex

Key based on Dubovikoff et al. (2019).

  • Head long (CI 158), with subparallel sides and straight occipital margin. Basal surface of propodeum is more long than declivous (Pl. 1, figs. 1, 2). Petiole with small conical node inclined forward => Eldermyrmex oblongiceps
  • Head shorter (CI 120), with convex sides and deeply concave occipital margin. Basal surface of propodeum distinctly shorter than declivous. Petiole with high vertical conical node (Pl. 1, figs. 5, 6) => Eldermyrmex exsectus

Distribution

This taxon was described from Baltic amber (Bartonian, Middle to Late Eocene).

Biology

Castes

Nomenclature

The following information is derived from Barry Bolton's New General Catalogue, a catalogue of the world's ants.

  • oblongiceps. †Iridomyrmex oblongiceps Wheeler, W.M. 1915h: 93, fig. 45 (w.) BALTIC AMBER (Eocene). Provisionally retained in Iridomyrmex: Shattuck, 1992a: 16. Combination in †Ctenobethylus: Dlussky & Rasnitsyn, 2009: 1036; in †Eldermyrmex: Shattuck, in Heterick & Shattuck, 2011: 170.

Description

References