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Species: Pachycondyla stigma

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USA (Florida) to northern Argentina, widespread in Caribbean, oceanic islands throughout the tropics, New Guinea, Indonesia. Costa Rica: common in wet lowland habitats, including mangroves, usually in open or disturbed areas.


Natural History:

Pachycondyla stigma is well-known as a tramp species found throughout the world in the tropics. It is very widespread, and is able to colonize remote oceanic islands. It is extremely generalized with respect to nesting sites and habitats. I have collected it in mangrove swamps, banana plantations, and mature rainforest. It usually nests in dead wood or under loose bark. Nests may occur at ground level, in the low arboreal zone, or in the canopy. Colonies are small and inconspicuous.

This nest observation is from Corcovado National Park: In canopy of tall Licania (Chrysobalanaceae) tree. Nesting in rotten wood protruding from a knothole. The material was humus-like, covered with moss. The nest was in the form of small, inter-connected chambers, each about the size and shape of half a peanut shell, containing 5-10 larvae of varying sizes, some with 3-4 pupae.


Fabricius, J. C. 1804. Systema Piezatorum secundum ordines, genera, species, adjectis synonymis, locis, observationibus, descriptionibus. Brunswick: C. Reichard, xiv + 15-439 + 30pp. Ants - p. 395-428.

Roger, J. 1863. Die neu aufgefuehrten Gattungen und Arten meines Formiciden-Verzeichnisses nebst Erganzung einiger frueher gegebenen Beschreibungen. Berl. Entomol. Z. 7:131-214.

Taxonomic Treatment (provided by Plazi)

Wild, A. L., 2007:
Boquerón , Caaguazú , Canindeyú , Central, Concepción , San Pedro (ALWC, INBP, LACM, MZSP). Literature records: Boquerón , Canindeyú , Central, Concepción , San Pedro (Wild 2003).
Literature records: “Paraguay” (s. loc.) (Kempf 1972).
Pachycondyla stigma var. attrita is a Caribbean form unlikely to be conspecific with southern South American species.

Specimen Habitat Summary

Found most commonly in these habitats: 2 times found in epiphytic root mat, 2 times found in floor litter, 1 times found in stage II log u. bark, 1 times found in floor leaf litter, 1 times found in stage IV log mold, 0 times found in Tropical hardwood forest, 1 times found in humus u. dead oak tree bark, 1 times found in u. bark, 1 times found in large bromeliad-root fibers, cups & axils, 1 times found in u. bark in cacao plantation, ...

Collected most commonly using these methods or in the following microhabitats: 21 times Berlese, 4 times Berlese, leaf litter, 1 times under corticals, 1 times debris on dirt road, 1 times flight intercept trap, 1 times from termite nest T-2320, 0 times nest T-6071, 1 times under bark of fermenting log, 1 times Berlese, fibrous center of decayed palm log, 1 times Berlese, rotted logs, 88 lb, 81 liters, 1 times Berlese, streambed litter, ...

Elevations: collected from 30 - 1219 meters, 410 meters average

Type specimens:

(-1 examples)

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