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Species: Pheidole multispina   Wilson, 2003 

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Taxonomic History (provided by Barry Bolton, 2019)

Pheidole multispina Wilson, 2003A: 466, figs. (s.w.) PANAMA. Neotropic. AntCat AntWiki HOL


  Geographic regions (According to curated Geolocale/Taxon lists):
    Americas: Costa Rica, Panama
  Biogeographic regions (According to curated Bioregion/Taxon lists):

Distribution Notes:

Costa Rica, Panama. Costa Rica: southwestern lowlands.


Natural History:

This species occurs in wet forest. It is common in Winkler samples and comes to baits. In one observation, workers showed a weak recruiting response to a freshly killed tabanid placed 50cm from their nest entrance. A subsequent fly placed near the nest entrance also elicited a small response. No major workers came out. The nest was in a flattened cavity beneath loose bark on top of a rotten log. There were major workers in the nest.


Although Wilson (2003) describes the major of this species having the posterior half of the face smooth, the image of the holotype shows that the face is foveolate throughout.


Wilson, E. O. 2003. Pheidole in the New World: A Dominant, Hyperdiverse Ant Genus. Harvard University Press, Cambridge, Mass

Taxonomic Treatment (provided by Plazi)

Treatment Citation: Wilson, E. O., 2003, Pheidole in the New World. A dominant, hyperdiverse ant genus., Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press

Pheidole multispinaHNS new species

Types Mus. Comp. Zool. Harvard.

Etymology L multispinaHNS, many spines.

Diagnosis A very distinctive little species similar to the species listed in the heading above, but easily recognized as follows. Major: in side view, promesonotal convexity raised as a right angle that drops off through a long, steep face to the metanotum; in dorsal-oblique view the pronotum, mesonotum, and propodeum each bear conspicuous paired angles or spines; the pronotal angles from above extend far beyond the rest of the pronotum below, and the propodeal spines are large and equilaterally triangular; head quadrate in full-face view, with posterior half smooth and anterior half partly carinulate; posterior half of dorsal head profile weakly concave; all of mesosoma and dorsal surface of head foveolate. Minor: mesosoma configured as described for major; occiput very broad and flat. Measurements (mm) Holotype major: HW 0.70, HL 0.72, SL 0.34, EL 0.12, PW 0.40. Paratype minor: HW 0.40, HL 0.40, SL 0.32, EL 0.06, PW 0.24.

color Major: head and mandibles light brown; mesosoma and other appendages medium brown; gaster dark, almost blackish brown.

Minor: the Panamanian types are dark brown; specimens from Costa Rica vary from reddish yellow to reddish brown.

Range Occurs in tropical forests in Panama and, according to Longino (1997), the southwestern lowlands of Costa Rica.

Biology In Costa Rica, Longino (1997) found a colony nesting in a flat cavity beneath loose bark on top of a rotten log; and in Panama, Alfred E. Emerson found it in small cavities inside a rotten log.

Figure Upper: holotype, major. Lower: paratype, minor. PANAMA: Barro Colorado Island. Scale bars = 1 mm.

Specimen Habitat Summary

Found most commonly in these habitats: 45 times found in mature rainforest, edge of forest near pasture and agricultural land, steep rocky terrain, 42 times found in tropical rainforest, 33 times found in rainforest, 15 times found in mature wet forest, 5 times found in wet forest, 1 times found in montane wet forest, in matrix of pasture and forest, probabl old 2nd growth, 4 times found in mature rainforest, near pasture edge, small stream through forest, 3 times found in montane wet forest, along ridge leading to stream, oak trees present, probably mature or old 2nd growth with relict trees, near pasture, 1 times found in moist forest, 3 times found in montane wet forest, ...

Found most commonly in these microhabitats: 137 times ex sifted leaf litter, 18 times at bait, 3 times Wet forest. Ex sifted leaf litter., 1 times nest in dead wood, 3 times ex pan trap, 1 times wet forest, 1 times on clay bank, edge of stream, 1 times leaf litter.

Collected most commonly using these methods: 124 times miniWinkler, 10 times Winkler, 15 times baiting, 5 times search, 6 times maxiWinkler, 3 times pan trap, 1 times bait, 1 times Berlese.

Elevations: collected from 5 - 1200 meters, 288 meters average

Type specimens: paratype Pheidole multispina: jtlc000016467

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