P. orbica may be a native species on St. Vincent and is likely local in distribution; Stefan Cover and I did not encounter it during a week’s collecting on the neighboring island of Grenada. H. H. Smith (in Forel 1893j) found it rare on St. Vincent, in well-developed forest, nesting in pieces of rotting wood on the ground, under stones in the soil, or, in one case, beneath sod on a stone. Each colony contained several hundred individuals. (Wilson 2003)
- 1 Identification
- 2 Distribution
- 3 Biology
- 4 Castes
- 5 Nomenclature
- 6 References
See the description in the nomenclature section.
Keys including this Species
From Wilson (2003): Known from St. Vincent, West Indies, and from Arroyo, Puerto Rico, col. J. A. Torres.
Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists
Distribution based on AntMaps
Distribution based on AntWeb specimens
Check data from AntWeb
The following information is derived from Barry Bolton's New General Catalogue, a catalogue of the world's ants.
- orbica. Pheidole orbica Forel, 1893g: 415 (s.w.q.m.) ANTILLES. See also: Wilson, 2003: 480.
Unless otherwise noted the text for the remainder of this section is reported from the publication that includes the original description.
DIAGNOSIS A member of the “flavens complex” within the larger flavens group, consisting of Pheidole asperithorax, Pheidole breviscapa (=Pheidole perpusilla), Pheidole exigua, Pheidole flavens, Pheidole nuculiceps, Pheidole orbica and Pheidole sculptior, as well as the less similar Pheidole nitidicollis and species placed close to it (see under nitidicollis), differing by the following combination of traits.
Major: occiput and entire body behind the head smooth and shiny; shallow antennal scrobes present, their surfaces partly carinulate and foveate and subopaque; a small patch of rugoreticulum present just laterad to the circular carinulae of the antennal fossae; longitudinal carinulae originating on the frontal lobes reach almost to the occiput, and those just mesad to the eye reach to halfway between the eye and occipital corner; promesonotum in side view forms a near-perfect semicircle; apex of petiolar node in side view acute.
Minor: except for sparse circular carinulae around the antennal fossae, head and body entirely smooth and shiny.
MEASUREMENTS (mm) Lectotype major: HW 0.82, HL 0.88, SL 0.42, EL 0.10, PW 0.38. Paralectotype minor: HW 0.40, HL 0.40, SL 0.36, EL 0.06, PW 0.24.
COLOR Major: body variably brownish yellow to light reddish brown.
Minor: body yellowish brown, appendages clear yellow.
Figure. Upper: lectotype, major. Lower: paralectotype, minor. Scale bars = 1 mm.
ST. VINCENT, WEST INDIES, col. H. H. Smith. Musee d'Histoire Naturelle Genève - as reported in Wilson (2003)
L orbica, circular, possibly referring to the semicircular profile of the promesonotum. (Wilson 2003)
- Forel, A. 1893j. Formicides de l'Antille St. Vincent, récoltées par Mons. H. H. Smith. Trans. Entomol. Soc. Lond. 1893: 333-418 (page 415, soldier, worker, queen, male described)
- Wilson, E. O. 2003. Pheidole in the New World: A dominant, hyperdiverse ant genus. Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA. (page 480, fig. major, minor described)