Hypoponera rigida

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Hypoponera rigida
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Ponerinae
Tribe: Ponerini
Genus: Hypoponera
Species: H. rigida
Binomial name
Hypoponera rigida
Bolton & Fisher, 2011

Known only from two specimens, nothing is known about Hypoponera rigida beyond the details about the collecting locality: primary forest, pitfall trap.

Identification

Bolton and Fisher (2011) - Known from only a single worker, Hypoponera rigida seems closely related to Hypoponera meridia and Hypoponera abeillei, but is distinctly darker in colour than these. In these three species the anterior face of the petiole node in profile is vertical. In meridia and abeillei the posterior face is also vertical so that the anterior and posterior faces are parallel and the node is columnar. However, in rigida the anterior face is vertical but the posterior face converges very slightly upon it from the level of the anterior tubercle to the dorsal angle. In Hypoponera orba, Hypoponera camerunensis and their relatives, either both faces of the node in profile are inclined and converge dorsally, or it is the posterior face that approaches verticality and is converged upon by the obviously sloped anterior face.

A member of the abeillei group.

Keys including this Species

Distribution

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Afrotropical Region: Uganda (type locality).


Distribution based on AntMaps

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Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb

Biology

Hypoponera inhabit and nest in leaf litter, the surface layer of soil, downed rotten wood, and soil around plant roots. Nests are typically found by turning objects on the ground, like downed wood and rocks, or through the ripping away of bark found on rotting downed wood or at the base of dead trees. Litter samples in tropical areas, especially in moist forested sites, often contain individuals of this genus. All Hypoponera are thought to be predators of small arthropods but published details about their diet are sparse. A lack of information about other aspects of their biology is also typical for most species.

The genus is most diverse in the tropics. Species found in higher latitudes tend to be more widespread, common and abundant than their tropical and subtropical congeners.

Castes

Males have not been collected.

Nomenclature

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

  • rigida. Hypoponera rigida Bolton & Fisher, 2011: 98 (w.) UGANDA.

Unless otherwise noted the text for the remainder of this section is reported from the publication that includes the original description.

Description

Worker

Holotype. Measurements: HL 0.46, HW 0.34, HS 0.400, SL 0.28, PrW 0.26, WL 0.56, HFL 0.26, PeNL 0.13, PeH 0.24, PeNW 0.17, PeS 0.180. Indices: CI 74, SI 82, PeNI 65, LPeI 54, DPeI 131.

Eyes absent. In full-face view apex of scape, when laid straight back from its insertion, conspicuously fails to reach the midpoint of the posterior margin by a distance that is ca 0.25 × SL; SL/HL 0.61. Reticulate-punctulate sculpture of cephalic dorsum fine and superficial, but distinct; pronotal dorsum with minute scattered punctulae, mostly smooth. Lateroventral surfaces of head with widely separated minute punctulae. With mesosoma in dorsal view the metanotal groove absent. Propodeal declivity separated from sides by weak margins. Mesopleuron unsculptured. Petiole in profile quite low, with the node relatively long in proportion to its height, the anterior and posterior faces almost parallel, the anterior face vertical and the posterior face only very weakly inclined towards it; dorsal surface extremely feebly convex. In profile the anterodorsal and posterodorsal angles of the petiole node are about equally rounded. Subpetiolar process with a low, obtuse, ventral angle. Posterior surface of petiole node without a transverse groove or impression above the peduncle and lacking cuticular ridges that radiate upwards from the posterior petiolar peduncle. In dorsal view the petiole node about one-third broader than long. Maximum width of first gastral tergite in dorsal view about equal to the width of the second tergite at its midlength (ca 0.30). First gastral tergite in dorsal view slightly broader than long, narrower across the anterior margin (ca 0.20) than across the posterior margin (ca 0.30) and with the sides distinctly divergent posteriorly. Base of cinctus of second gastral tergite with distinct cross-ribs. Sides of second gastral segment parallel for most of their length in dorsal view; narrowing extremely feebly only at the cinctus anteriorly and the apex posteriorly. Posttergite of second gastral segment, from posterior margin of cinctus to apex, very slightly broader than long. Disc of second gastral tergite shallowly reticulate-punctate. Full adult colour brown.

Type Material

Holotype worker, Uganda: nr Queen Elizabeth N.P., 2.x.2006, UG06-SKY-144, bush (S. Yamane) (Kagoshima University, Faculty of Science). Apical funicular segments of right antenna missing from holotype.

Paratype. 1 alate queen with same data as holotype (KUIC).

References

  • Bolton, B. & Fisher, B.L. 2011. Taxonomy of Afrotropical and West Palaearctic ants of the ponerine genus Hypoponera Santschi. Zootaxa 2843: 1-118. PDF