Pheidole gauthieri

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Pheidole gauthieri
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Attini
Genus: Pheidole
Species: P. gauthieri
Binomial name
Pheidole gauthieri
Forel, 1901

Pheidole gauthieri casent0908281 p 1 high.jpg

Pheidole gauthieri casent0908281 d 1 high.jpg

Specimen Labels


From Wilson (2003): In Costa Rica Longino (1997) found gauthieri in mature wet forest, nesting in dead wood in the low arboreal zone and foraging in the leaf litter and at extrafloral nectaries. A winged queen was present in a nest on Barro Colorado Island, Panama, 27 June (W. M. Wheeler).


See the description in the nomenclature section.

Keys including this Species


I have seen material from Guatemala (Tikal), Costa Rica (Osa Peninsula), Panama (localities in the Canal Zone), and Colombia. J. T. Longino (1997) reports it from both the Atlantic and Pacific lowlands of Costa Rica. (Wilson 2003)

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Neotropical Region: Colombia (type locality), Costa Rica, French Guiana, Guatemala, Guyana, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama.

Distribution based on AntMaps


Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb






The following information is derived from Barry Bolton's Online Catalogue of the Ants of the World.

  • gauthieri. Pheidole ursus r. gauthieri Forel, 1901e: 367 (w.) COLOMBIA. Raised to species: Forel, 1912f: 233. Senior synonym of oxymora: Wilson, 2003: 693.
  • oxymora. Pheidole gauthieri var. oxymora Forel, 1912f: 233 (s.w.) PANAMA. Junior synonym of gauthieri: Wilson, 2003: 693.

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


From Wilson (2003): DIAGNOSIS Similar to Pheidole antillana, Pheidole coveri, Pheidole fullerae, Pheidole hetschkoi, Pheidole heyeri and Pheidole napoensis in various traits but easily distinguished as follows.

Major: propodeal spines as long as basal face of propodeum; occiput smooth and shiny; smaller patch of rugoreticulum present laterad to each antennal fossa; loose rugoreticulum present on anterior half of pronotal dorsum but absent on posterior half; postpetiole spinose.

Minor: occiput, sides of head, and entire dorsum of mesosoma rugoreticulate, and almost all of remainder of head and mesosoma variously rugulose or carinulate; propodeal spines as long as basal face of propodeum; occiput narrowed but lacking a nuchal collar.

MEASUREMENTS (mm) Major (Panama): HW 2.04, HL 2.12, SL 0.86, EL 0.20, PW 0.94. Lectotype minor: HW 0.80, HL 0.81, SL 0.86, EL 0.16, PW 0.54.

COLOR Major: concolorous light reddish brown.

Minor: head and meso soma light reddish yellow; waist, gaster, and appendages clear dark yellow.

Pheidole gauthieri Wilson 2003.jpg

Figure. Upper: syntype, major of synonymous gauthieri var. oxymora (Panama). Lower: lectotype, minor (road from Dibulla to San Antonio, Guajira, Colombia). Scale bars = 1 mm.

Lectotype Specimen Labels

Type Material

Panama. Musee d'Histoire Naturelle Genève - as reported in Wilson (2003)


Named after A. and C. Gauthier of Colombia, who assisted Forel in his itinerary. (Wilson 2003)


  • Forel, A. 1901j. Variétés myrmécologiques. Ann. Soc. Entomol. Belg. 45: 334-382 (page 367, worker described)
  • Forel, A. 1912g. Formicides néotropiques. Part III. 3me sous-famille Myrmicinae (suite). Genres Cremastogaster et Pheidole. Mém. Soc. Entomol. Belg. 19: 211-237 (page 233, raised to species)
  • Wilson, E. O. 2003. Pheidole in the New World: A dominant, hyperdiverse ant genus. Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA. (page 693, fig. major, minor described, Senior synonym of oxymora)

References based on Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics

  • Dattilo W. et al. 2019. MEXICO ANTS: incidence and abundance along the Nearctic-Neotropical interface. Ecology
  • Fernández, F. and S. Sendoya. 2004. Lista de las hormigas neotropicales. Biota Colombiana Volume 5, Number 1.
  • Franco W., N. Ladino, J. H. C. Delabie, A. Dejean, J. Orivel, M. Fichaux, S. Groc, M. Leponce, and R. M. Feitosa. 2019. First checklist of the ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) of French Guiana. Zootaxa 4674(5): 509-543.
  • Kempf, W.W. 1972. Catalago abreviado das formigas da regiao Neotropical (Hym. Formicidae) Studia Entomologica 15(1-4).
  • Longino J. T. L., and M. G. Branstetter. 2018. The truncated bell: an enigmatic but pervasive elevational diversity pattern in Middle American ants. Ecography 41: 1-12.
  • Longino J. et al. ADMAC project. Accessed on March 24th 2017 at
  • Pires de Prado L., R. M. Feitosa, S. Pinzon Triana, J. A. Munoz Gutierrez, G. X. Rousseau, R. Alves Silva, G. M. Siqueira, C. L. Caldas dos Santos, F. Veras Silva, T. Sanches Ranzani da Silva, A. Casadei-Ferreira, R. Rosa da Silva, and J. Andrade-Silva. 2019. An overview of the ant fauna (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) of the state of Maranhao, Brazil. Pap. Avulsos Zool. 59: e20195938.
  • Santos, J.C., J.H.C Delabie and G.W. Fernandes. 2008. Uma avaliação após 15 anos do efeito do fogo sobre a comunidade de formiga em uma área de floresta amazônica. Revista Brasileira de Entomologia 52(1): 82-87.
  • Wheeler W. M. 1942. Studies of Neotropical ant-plants and their ants. Bulletin of the Museum of Comparative Zoology 90: 1-262.