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ix. l 930 i. 1931 (G. D. H. Carpenter) (BMNH) [examined]. Syn. n.
Note. The number of specimens in the original syntypic series of picardiHNS was not stated by Forel. At the time of this study only two specimens, mounted on a single pin, were found bearing the label ' typus'. Of these the top specimen is a worker and fits the original description perfectly; it is here designated as lectotype of picardiHNS. The lower specimen, now remounted on a separate pin, is a female and is not mentioned in the original description.
Worker. TL 11.6 - 12.6, HL 2.52 - 2.80, HW 2.44 - 2.68, CI 93 - 97, SL 2.30 - 2.52, SI 90 - 98, PW 1.60 - 1.80, AL 3.40 - 3.68 (20 measured).
Very large species. Anterior clypeal margin with a conspicuous median semicircular impression which is flanked by a small tooth on each side. Maximum diameter of eye 0.46 - 0.51, about 0.19 - 0.20 x HW. With the head in full-face view the occipital margin varying from approximately transverse to feebly indented medially. Promesonotum in profile evenly and broadly convex, sloping posteriorly to the propodeal dorsum which, in this species, is not as strongly depressed below the level of the promesonotum as is usual elsewhere in the genus. Propodeal dorsum rounding broadly and evenly into the declivity. Metapleural lobes rounded, visible in profile, not concealed by the bulge of the metapleural glands. Petiole node in dorsal view as broad as or broader than long. Postpetiole slightly longer than broad in dorsal view, discounting the anterior articulatory portion. Base of first gastral tergite narrow, in dorsal view no broader than the postpetiole, but the sides evenly diverging from their junction with the postpetiole, without a roughly parallel-sided neck. Dorsum of head finely, densely and more or less evenly longitudinally costulate, the costulae rarely approximately straight, much more commonly diverging behind towards the occipital corners. Infrequently a few transverse costulae may be present occipitally. Individual costulae commonly irregular, tending to be narrowly sinuate or wavy, especially away from the midline of the dorsum. Ground-sculpture a fine dense punctulation. Dorsal alitrunk and propodeal declivity transversely rugose except for the space between the mesothoracic spiracles and part of the pronotal dorsum, where sculpture is longitudinal to oblique. Sides of alitrunk rugose, the sculpture less regular on the pleurae than on the sides of the pronotum. Petiole with transverse rugae ventrally, below the node, and also with a few dorsally on the peduncle in front of the node.
On the node itself sculpture is usually restricted to a superficial patterning with vestigial rugulae, but occasionally one or two stronger transverse rugulae may be present dorsally, or vertically on the sides, or both. Postpetiole unsculptured except for superficial patterning. All dorsal surfaces of body with scattered strong dark hairs which are reddish brown to blackish; those on the first gastral tergite very sparse and much shorter than those on the alitrunk. Colour very dark red to black, the head usually slightly lighter in shade than the alitrunk and the gaster generally darker.
A very conspicuous species, the largest known in the genus, picardiHNS appears to be quite widely distributed in southern Africa. By its size alone it is unlikely to be confused with any other species.
The female (queen) of picardiHNS was first described by Donisthorpe as a worker, under the name of carpenteriHNS. The holotype matches the female in the same series as the picardiHNS lectotype and the synonymy is thus absolute. The female of picardiHNS fits the description given above and its dimensions fall within the ranges given. The only differences from the worker lie in those characters discussed under the generic diagnosis, namely the broader straighter margins to the frontal lobes, broader antennal scapes and sharp transverse sculpture on the posterior portion of the dorsum of the head.
Zimbabwe: Umgusa Riv., Sawmills (G. Arnold); Insiza Riv. (no name). Botswana: Sevrelela (L. Schultze); Okavango Delta, Smiti (A. Russell-Smith); Kalabura (ex coll. Donisthorpe); Tsabong (G. Arnold); Nkate (Vernay-Lang expd.); Matopo Pan (G. U. Son); Shaleshonto (G. U. Son). South West Africa: Kalahari Desert (no name).
Collected most commonly using these methods: 1 times Hand.
Elevations: collected at 1100 m