Strumigenys wheeleriana

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Strumigenys wheeleriana
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Attini
Genus: Strumigenys
Species: S. wheeleriana
Binomial name
Strumigenys wheeleriana
Baroni Urbani, 2007

Pyramica wheeleri casent0178625 profile 1.jpg

Pyramica wheeleri casent0178625 dorsal 1.jpg

Specimen labels


Longino (Ants of Costa Rica) - This species inhabits the forest floor of lowland rainforest. It is known from few collections. The type specimens were collected on Barro Colorado Island in Panama, and two collections have been made at the La Selva Biological Station in Costa Rica. One of the La Selva collections was a worker in a Winkler sample of sifted litter from the forest floor, and the other was a presumed nest series (dealate queen and several workers) from a Berlese extraction of a litter/soil core. Brandao (1991) reports the species from Venezuela.


Bolton (2000) – A member of the Strumigenys appretiata-group. S. wheeleri; is closest related to Strumigenys glenognatha, Strumigenys halosis and Strumigenys raptans. These four combine the presence of a distinct ventral postpetiolar spongiform lobe with basigastral costulae that are much shorter than the dorsal length of the postpetiole disc, unsculptured first gastral tergite and presence of a humeral hair. Of the four wheeleri alone has the lateral petiolar lobes reduced to minute oblique cuticular denticles that look like tiny thorns and are limited to the extreme posterolateral angles of the node in dorsal view. In the other three species the lobes are small, triangular or bluntly rounded and are either laminate and translucent or weakly spongiform.

The holotype (USNM) figured by Smith (l944b) appears to lack, or have an extremely reduced, ventral postpetiolar lobe. In the paratype (MCZ) and all other material examined the lobe is well defined and conspicuous. I suspect that the figured specimen has been damaged but the suspicion remains that some members of this species may have reduced postpetiolar ventral lobes. More collections from the type-locality should easily solve this problem.

Longino (Ants of Costa Rica) - Mandible short and curving downward in profile; lateral head capsule with the antennal scrobe mostly or entirely smooth and shining; propodeal spines present(former Glamyromyrmex); leading edge of scape lacking erect hairs; disc of postpetiole in dorsal view not U-shaped or V-shaped, without a deeply concave anterior face; spongiform tissue present on ventral surface of postpetiole; color dark brown to black; face and vertex completely lacking erect setae; head in side view convex above and below, not flattened.


Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Neotropical Region: Colombia, Costa Rica, Honduras, Panama (type locality), Venezuela.

Distribution based on AntMaps


Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb


Strumigenys were once thought to be rare. The development and increased use of litter sampling methods has led to the discovery of a tremendous diversity of species. Many species are specialized predators (e.g. see Strumigenys membranifera and Strumigenys louisianae). Collembola (springtails) and other tiny soil arthropods are typically favored prey. Species with long linear mandibles employ trap-jaws to sieze their stalked prey (see Dacetine trap-jaws). Larvae feed directly on insect prey brought to them by workers. Trophallaxis is rarely practiced. Most species live in the soil, leaf litter, decaying wood or opportunistically move into inhabitable cavities on or under the soil. Colonies are small, typically less than 100 individuals but in some species many hundreds. Moist warm habitats and micro-habitats are preferred. A few better known tramp and otherwise widely ranging species tolerate drier conditions. Foraging is often in the leaf litter and humus. Workers of many species rarely venture above ground or into exposed, open areas. Individuals are typically small, slow moving and cryptic in coloration. When disturbed individuals freeze and remain motionless. Males are not known for a large majority of species.



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

  • wheeleri. Glamyromyrmex wheeleri Smith, M.R. 1944f: 254, figs. 1, 2 (w.) PANAMA. [Junior secondary homonym of Epitritus wheeleri Donisthorpe, above.] Replacement name: wheeleriana Baroni Urbani, in Baroni Urbani & De Andrade, 2007: 130. Combination in Pyramica: Bolton, 1999: 1672. See also: Brown, 1950a: 32; Bolton, 2000: 164.
  • wheeleriana. Strumigenys wheeleriana Baroni Urbani, in Baroni Urbani & De Andrade, 2007: 130. Replacement name for Glamyromyrmex wheeleri Smith, M.R. [Junior secondary homonym of Epitritus wheeleri Donisthorpe, 1916a: 121.]

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



Bolton (2000) - TL 1.8-2.2, HL 0.54-0.58, HW 0.49-0.56, CI 92-97, ML 0.08-0.11, MI 18-19, SL 0.18-0.24, SI 37-43, PW 0.25-0.37, AL 0.50-0.58 (8 measured).

Pronotal humeral hair fine, flagellate. Mesonotum with a single pair of short erect simple hairs. Dorsal surfaces of petiole, postpetiole and gaster with scattered short erect simple hairs. Pronotum mostly smooth , with superficial vestiges of reticulate sculpture. Mesonotum, propodeal dorsum and declivity not reticulate-punctate. Dorsum of petiole node with vestigial sculpture, disc of postpetiole glassy smooth. Propodeal spines elongate and apically narrowly acute. Petiole node in profile with dorsal length of node greater than the height of the anterior face of the node; in dorsal view node longer than broad, the lateral lobes reduced to minute oblique denticles at the extreme posterolateral corners. Ventral margin of petiole in profile, below the highest point of the node, with a small triangular tooth that is surmounted by a thin lam ell ate crest. Ventral spongiform lobe of postpetiole conspicuous, with a rounded convex ventral margin. In dorsal view anterior and posterior margins of postpetiole disc subequal in width, the sides scarcely or not convergent posteriorly. Lateral lobe of postpetiole small and subtriangular, arising from only about the posterior half of the side; maximum width of one lobe less than half the width of the disc. Basigastral costulae minute, very much shorter than the maximum length of the postpetiole disc; first gastral tergite otherwise glassy smooth.

Type Material

Holotype worker and paratype worker, PANAMA: Canal Zone, Barro Colorado I., xii.1943, i.1944 no. 5114 (J. Zetek) (National Museum of Natural History, Museum of Comparative Zoology) [examined].


  • Baroni Urbani, C. & De Andrade, M.L. 2007. The ant tribe Dacetini: limits and constituent genera, with descriptions of new species. Annali del Museo Civico di Storia Naturale “G. Doria”. 99:1-191.
  • Bolton, B. 1999. Ant genera of the tribe Dacetonini (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Journal of Natural History. 33:1639-1689. (page 1672, Combination in Pyramica)
  • Bolton, B. 2000. The ant tribe Dacetini. Memoirs of the American Entomological Institute. 65:1-1028. (page 164, redescription of worker)
  • Brown, W. L., Jr. 1950c. Revision of the ant tribe Dacetini: II. Glamyromyrmex Wheeler and closely related small genera. Trans. Am. Entomol. Soc. 76: 27-36 (page 32, see also)
  • Smith, M. R. 1944f. A second species of Glamyromyrmex Wheeler (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Proc. Entomol. Soc. Wash. 46: 254-256 (page 254, figs. 1, 2 worker described)

References based on Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics

  • Bolton, B. 2000. The Ant Tribe Dacetini. Memoirs of the American Entomological Institute 65
  • Brandao, C.R.F. 1991. Adendos ao catalogo abreviado das formigas da regiao neotropical (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Rev. Bras. Entomol. 35: 319-412.
  • Brown W. L., Jr. 1950. Revision of the ant tribe Dacetini: II. Glamyromyrmex Wheeler and closely related small genera. Trans. Am. Entomol. Soc. 76: 27-36.
  • Fernández, F. and S. Sendoya. 2004. Lista de las hormigas neotropicales. Biota Colombiana Volume 5, Number 1.
  • Guerrero R. J., and C. E. Sarmiento. 2010. Distribución altitudinal de hormigas (Hymenoptera, Formicidae) en la vertiente noroccidental de la Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta (Colombia). Acta Zoologica mexicana (n.s.) 26(2): 279-302.
  • Lattke J. E., and M. A Riera-Valera. 2012. Diversidad de hormigas (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) en la hojarasca y suelo de selvas nubladas de la Cordillera de la Costa, Venezuela. Métodos en Ecología y Sistemática 7(1): 20-34.
  • Longino J. T. 2013. Ants of Nicargua. Consulted on 18 Jan 2013.
  • 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. T., and R. K. Colwell. 2011. Density compensation, species composition, and richness of ants on a neotropical elevational gradient. Ecosphere 2(3): 16pp.
  • Silva T. S. R., and R. M. Feitosa. 2019. Using controlled vocabularies in anatomical terminology: A case study with Strumigenys (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Arthropod Structure and Development 52: 1-26.