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Holotype: [malE], HL 1.40, HW 1.20, EL 0.50, SL 2.18, AL 2.63, CI 86, SI 181, El 41.7, FI 35.4, LI 100.8, TAI 114-3.
Diagnosis of male
(1) Black head and alitrunk.
(2) Alitrunk length 2-63 mm.
(3) Subgenital plate distally trilobed with the median process triangular and not digitiform.
(4) In ventral view, median process with hair-carrying pits to the tip.
(5) In lateral view, apicolateral appendix of sagitta not overreaching outline of apical, serrated plate.
(6) Apicolateral appendix of sagitta short and terminally rounded; in ventral view only slightly raised above the plane of the apical, serrated plate.
(7) Long hind tibiae (TAI 114.3).
Paratype: [males] HL 1.30-1.43, HW 1.05-1.19, EL 0.44-0.50, SL 1.98-2.23, AL 2.48-2.73, CI 80.8-86.6, SI 175.5-195.6, El 41 1-43.0, FI 91.4-103.2, LI 101.7-105.5, TAI 108.3-116.0 (re = 8).
There is a slight variation in size, but the extremes of the range of absolute measurements are always far below those of the other males of the bicolorHNS species group. Compared with all the other males of the bicolorHNS group, hannaeHNS has the longest hind tibiae (TAI> 108). Head and alitrunk always black in colour.
Diagnosis of female
(1) Small size, alitrunk <3-2 mm.
(2) Scape much longer than head length (SI> 120).
(3) Long hind tibiae (TAI> 90).
(4) Head and alitrunk bright red.
(5) First funicular segment of intermediate length (28 <FI<35).
(6) Low rounded petiole in lateral view.
Paratypes: [queens] HL 1.75-1.88, HW 1.65-1.73, EL 0.48-0.50, SL 2.00-2.18, AL 2.95-3.13, CI 90.4-94.3, SI 121.2-129.9, Fl 29.0-31.1, El 28.4-29.0, LI 101.8-107.1, TAI 93.5-100.8 (n = 5).
Deposition of type material
Holotype: [male], Tunisia, El Guettar, 34.33°N, 8.92°E, 300 m; in Oasis, at the edge of irrigated fields under Eucalyptus trees, D. Agosti, 08.06.1992, sample F92039, in nest with Cataglyphis bicolorHNS (MHNG).
Paratypes: 5 [queens], (alates) and 14 males, same as holotype. 7 males, Tunisia, El Guettar, 34.33°N, 8.92°E, 300 m; in Oasis, at the edge of an irrigated lucerne field, D. Agosti, 08.06.1992, sample F92309, in nest with Cataglyphis bicolorHNS (BMNH, CDA, CRW, MCZ, MHNG).
C. hannaeHNS can be separated from all the other known species in the bicolorHNS group by the above mentioned diagnostic characters, especially by the body size, the long antennal scape and hind tibiae, the low rounded petiole, and the male genitalia. C. abyssinicusHNS, the only species with small females, has a much shorter scape (SI<113), and shorter hind tibiae (TAI<85); no males of this species are known. The long black hairs on the occiput of the head as seen in bicolorHNS are not present in hannaeHNS, and thus exclude the possibility of hannaeHNS being a microgyne of bicolorHNS.
Although> 1500 different samples of species of the bicolorHNS complex are in our collections, and most of them from Tunisia, no further hannaeHNS specimens have been collected before. The host of hannaeHNS is distributed along the southern foothills of the Atlas mountains in the transitional zone from the Mediterranean to the Desert region, not reaching the Atlantic in the West and not extending into Libya (Agosti et ai, in preparation). Thus, hannaeHNS might be more common, certainly if one considers that the southern extension of the Mediterranean vegetation during the Pleistocene reached as far south as the Saharan mountains Tassili and Hoggar (Quezel, 1965). But social parasitic ants tend to have a clumped distribution (Buschinger, 1985) and the restricted collecting area might truly reflect its distribution. Finally, these males and females were collected as alates, during a survey where> 200 nests were at least partially dug up.
The habitat was at the edge of an irrigated Medicago sativa field and on a sandy place in the shade of some tall Eucalyptus trees on the side of a track within the oasis. In this desert region, the occurrence of species of the bicolorHNS group is restricted to oases.