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Species: Meranoplus deserticola   Schödl, 2007 

Classification:
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Taxonomic History (provided by Barry Bolton, 2018)

Meranoplus deserticola Schödl, 2007: 392, figs. 22, 23, 63, 81 (w.) AUSTRALIA. Australasia. AntCat AntWiki

Distribution:

  Geographic regions (According to curated Geolocale/Taxon lists):
    Oceania: Australia
  Biogeographic regions (According to curated Bioregion/Taxon lists):
    Australasia

Taxonomic Treatment (provided by Plazi)

Treatment Citation: Schoedl,, 2007, Revision of Australian Meranoplus: the Meranoplus diversus group., Advances in ant systematics (Hymenoptera: Formicidae): Homage to E. O. Wilson - 50 years of contributions. (Memoirs of the American Entomological Institute 80), pp. 370-424

Meranoplus deserticola SchoedlHNS sp. n.

(Figs. 22, 23, 63, 81)

HOLOTYPE WORKER. TL 6.85, HL 1.50, HW 1.73, FC 1.36, CS 1.61, SL 0.93, SI 1 54, SI 2 57, PML 1.25, PW 1.48, PMD 1.60, PMI 2 108, ML 1.68, PTLL 0.44, PTLH 0.65, PTDW 0.55, PPLL 0.41, PPLH 0.73, PPI 57, PPDW 0.55, PT / PP 100.

Mandible with four teeth. Clypeus carinulate, in full face view bluntly bidentate, scarcely surpassing anterolateral frontal projections. Frontal carinae rather broadly and distinctly sinuately narrowed towards clypeus (FI 127). Head wider than long (CI 115), posterior preoccipital margin very shallowly concave only. Antennal scrobe surpassing middle of lateral sides of head, glossy with additional distinct transverse carinulae at rear, merging weakly defined into posterior section of head. Genae and ventrolateral sides of head carinate, preoccipital corners reticulate. Eyes relatively larger (EL 0.32, REL 0.21, with 19 ommatidia in the longest row), situated at about middle of lateral sides of head, dorsal ocular margin very close to ventral scrobal margin. Frons rather evenly longitudinally carinate, head only posteriorly reticulate. Promesonotal shield vaulted, with somewhat angulate profile, moderately wider than long (PMI 118), lateral sides narrowly translucently margined.

Pronotum anteriorly reticulate, remainder of shield longitudinally rugose, with few cross meshes. Propodeal declivity partly overhung by posterior mesonotal margin. Propodeal spines moderate long (PSL 0.50) situated above middle of length of declivity, straight, acute and moderately diverging when seen from above.

Petiole in lateral view triangular (PTI 67), with anterior face straight, meeting broadly convex posterior face in a crest. Postpetiole elongately nodiform with a rather large antero-basal tooth.

Gaster entirely microreticulate, with occasional glossy spots inbetween. Surface covered with evenly distributed pilosity consisting of short decumbent and long, more or less erect outstanding stiff hairs.

WORKERS (n = 7). TL 6.10 - 6.90, HL 1.43 - 1.55, HW 1.65 - 1.80, FC 1.30 - 1.41, FI 125 - 129, CI 113 - 118, CS 1.54 - 1.68, SL 0.90 - 0.98, SI 1 53 - 55, SI 2 56 - 59, PML 1.20 - 1.30, PW 1.40 - 1.55, PMI 110 - 124, PMD 1.55 - 1.75, PMI 2 108 - 113, ML 1.55 - 1.68, PSL 0.45 - 0.50, PTLL 0.43 - 0.48, PTLH 0.60 - 0.68, PTI 67 - 73, PTDW 0.53 - 0.61, PPLL 0.40 - 0.48, PPLH 0.68 - 0.75], PPI 57 - 63, PPDW 0.51 - 0.61, PT / PP 95 - 107, EL 0.29 - 0.34, REL 0.20 - 0.22, with 17 - 19 ommatidia in the longest row.

ETYMOLOGY

The name refers to the preferred habitat.

TYPE MATERIAL

Holotype worker, Northern Territory: ' 25.18 S 130.44 E NT. Valley of Winds The Olgas GoogleMaps, 18 Nov. 1977 J. E. Feehan \ associated collector T. A. Weir \ ANIC ANTS VIAL 42.37 ' (ANIC). Paratypes. 7 workers, same data as holotype; 7 workers, same data as holotype but ' ANIC ANTS VIAL 44.232 ' (ANIC, NHMW) GoogleMaps.

ADDITIONAL MATERIAL EXAMINED

South Australia: 38 km ESE Amata , 21. - 24. x. 1998 (coll. unknown); Musgrave Ra. , 2.5 km SW Womikata Bore HmL., 18. - 21. x. 1994 (coll. unknown); 7 mi W of Mt Davis, Tomkinson Ra., 19. x. 1960 (McInnes & Dowse). Western Australia: 28 km ESE Warburton , 15. xi. 1977 (J. E. Feehan); 1 mi S Agnew , 12. x. 1960 (McInnes & Dowse) (40 workers, 1 gyne in ANIC, NHMW, SAMA).

DISCUSSION

Variability in this species becomes apparent in the rugosity of the shield. Occasionally the dorsal ocular margin may be confluent with the ventral scrobal margin. Specimens from South Australia are somewhat more shiny. Closest related to crassispinaHNS but different by the features given below under that taxon. Occuring in arid central Australia.

Specimen Habitat Summary

Type specimens: paratype of Meranoplus deserticola: casent0919719



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