pheidole

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Tag archives for pheidole

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New Species: Pheidole bigote

Doesn’t “bigote” mean “moustache” in Spanish? Why, yes.  It does. Pheidole bigote Longino 2009 Chiapas, Mexico The inimitable Jack Longino published a taxonomic paper today on the Central American Pheidole, including descriptions of some 23 new species.  Among these is the marvelously moustached P. bigote.  The function of the fantastic facial hair remains unknown. source:…

Predator vs Harvester

A recent study by Gabriela Pirk in Insectes Sociaux provides me with an excuse to share this photo: Pirk et al examined the diet of both Pheidole species in the Monte desert of Northern Argentina.  Why would someone spend time doing this?   Ants are important dispersers of seeds, and these Pheidole are two of the…

Pheidole Friday: P. rosae

photo details: Canon MP-E 65mm 1-5x macro lens on a Canon EOS 20D ISO 100, 1/250 sec, f/13, flash diffused through tracing paper

New Study: Older Ants are Better Workers

A study out in pre-print by Muscedere, Willey, and Traniello in the journal Animal Behaviour finds little support for a long-held idea that worker ants change specializations to perform different types of work as they age.  By creating colonies out of different age classes in the ant Pheidole dentata, the researchers showed that older workers…

A mysterious tramp: Pheidole moerens

Pheidole moerens is a small, barely noticeable insect that travels about with human commerce, arriving without announcement and slipping quietly into the leaf litter and potted plants about town.   As introduced ants go, P. moerens is timid and innocuous- it’s certainly no fire ant.  The species is now present in the southeastern United States, a…

New Species: Pheidole rugithorax

Pheidole rugithorax Eguchi 2008 – Vietnam In today’s Zootaxa, Katsuyuki Eguchi has a taxonomic revision of the northern Vietnamese Pheidole, recognizing six new ant species for a genus that is already the world’s most diverse.  The revision also contains several nomeclatural changes and a key to the thirty or so species occurring in the region.…

New Pheidole photos up at myrmecos.net

Go see! Incidentally, you might want to surf back here to Myrmecos Blog on Monday afternoon.  There’s been a very, very exciting discovery…

Pheidole tepicana

A century ago, William Morton Wheeler inked this iconic illustration of the striking polymorphism displayed among members of an ant colony. You may have seen it; Andrew Bourke and Nigel Franks used it as the cover for their 1995 text Social Evolution in Ants. I always assumed Wheeler’s figure depicted some exotic tropical marauder ant,…

New Species: Pheidole pegasus

Pheidole pegasus Sarnat 2008 Fiji Eli Sarnat, the reigning expert on the Ants of Fiji, has just published a lovely taxonomic revision of a group of Pheidole that occur on the islands. Pheidole are found in warmer regions worldwide, but Fiji has seen a remarkable radiation of species that share a bizarre set of spines…