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Genus: Atta   Fabricius, 1804 


Classification:

Taxonomic History (provided by Barry Bolton, 2018)

17 species

Atta Fabricius, 1804 PDF: 421. Type-species: Formica cephalotes, by subsequent designation of Wheeler, 1911g PDF: 159. AntCat AntWiki HOL

Taxonomic history

Atta in Poneridae, Attidae: Smith, 1858a PDF: 161.
Atta in Myrmicinae: Mayr, 1855 PDF: 459 [Myrmicidae]; Smith, 1857a PDF: 77 [Myrmicidae]; Mayr, 1861 PDF: 65 [Myrmicidae]; Mayr, 1865 PDF: 18 [Myrmicidae]; Smith, 1871b PDF: 333 [Myrmicidae]; Cresson, 1887 PDF: 259 [Myrmicidae]; Dalla Torre, 1893 PDF: 150.
Atta in Myrmicinae, Attini: Emery, 1877b PDF: 81 [Myrmicidae, Attidae]; Forel, 1893b PDF: 163; Emery, 1895l PDF: 770; Forel, 1899B: 30; Wheeler, 1910a: 141; Emery, 1914e: 42; Forel, 1917 PDF: 247; Wheeler, 1922: 669; Emery, 1924f: 352; all subsequent authors.
[Myrmegis (nomen nudum) referable to Atta: Brown, 1973b PDF: 182 (see under Myrmegis).].
Genus Atta references
Mayr, 1855 PDF: 459 (diagnosis); Smith, 1858a PDF: 161, 180 (Atta, Oecodoma diagnoses); Mayr, 1861 PDF: 66 (Europe species key); Roger, 1863b: 35 (catalogue); Mayr, 1863a PDF: 395, 437 (catalogue); Mayr, 1865 PDF: 18 (diagnosis); Cresson, 1887 PDF: 259 (U.S.A. catalogue); Dalla Torre, 1893 PDF: 150 (catalogue); Gallardo, 1916e PDF: 340 (Argentina species key); Emery, 1924f: 352 (diagnosis, catalogue); Gonçalves, 1942 PDF: 334 (all species key); Gonçalves, 1947a: 186 (south & central Brazil species key); Chapman & Capco, 1951 PDF: 82 (Asia checklist, anachronisms); Borgmeier, 1959b PDF: 335 (subgenera key); Borgmeier, 1959b PDF: 337 (diagnosis, all species revision, key); Kempf, 1972b PDF: 26 (Neotropical catalogue); Smith, 1979: 1413 (North America catalogue); MacKay & MacKay, 1988: 25 (Colombia species key); Cherrett & Cherrett, 1989: 1 (bibliography); Brandão, 1991 PDF: 328 (catalogue); Bolton, 1994: 105 (synoptic classification); Bolton, 1995a PDF: 1048 (census); Bolton, 1995b: 75 (catalogue); Cantone, 2017 PDF: 189 (brief male diagnosis)

Taxon Page Images:



A large Atta sexdens worker cuts through a leaf while a smaller worker guards against the overzealous photographer. Captive colony at the University of Texas.
Image © Alex Wild.

Distribution:

   Genus is native to: Nearctic, Neotropical bioregions (based on species list records).

Nearctic Region: Arizona, Coahuila de Zaragoza, Hidalgo, Illinois, Louisiana, North America, Puebla, Sonora, Texas, United States
Neotropical Region: Alajuela, Amambay, Americas, Aragua, Argentina, Atlántida, Bahia, Barbados, Belize, Bolivia, Boquerón, Brazil, Caribbean, Casanare, Central, Central America, Chaco, Chiapas, Coclé, Colombia, Colón, Comayagua, Cordillera, Costa Caribe Norte, Costa Caribe Sur, Costa Rica, Cuba, Cundinamarca, Demerara-Mahaica, Ecuador, El Salvador, Espírito Santo, Francisco Morazán, French Guiana, Gracias a Dios, Guanacaste, Guantánamo, Guatemala, Guerrero, Guyana, Heredia, Honduras, Islas de la Bahía, Izabal, Jalisco, Jinotega, La Habana, La Libertad, Limón, Madre de Dios, Madriz, Magdalena, Matagalpa, Mato Grosso, Mato Grosso do Sul, Meta, Mexico, Michoacán de Ocampo, Minas Gerais, Morelos, Napo, Nayarit, Nicaragua, Nueva Segovia, Oaxaca, Olancho, Orellana, Panama, Panamá, Paraguay, Pará, Pernambuco, Peru, Petén, Pinar del Río, Presidente Hayes, Puntarenas, Río San Juan, Salta, San José, San Salvador, Santa Cruz, Santa Fe, Santiago de Cuba, South America, Suchitepéquez, Suriname, São Paulo, Tamaulipas, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunapuna-Piarco, Uruguay, Venezuela, Veracruz

Identification:

Borgmeier 1959_Revision der gattung Atta_Translated key to males
Interpreted by B.E. Boudinot (University of Utah/University of California, Davis) 7 May 2013

Key to males:

1. Telomere articulated with basimere as if on a hinge. Penisvalvar ventral keel serrated … 2
- Telomere fused with basimere. Penisvalvar ventral keel without teeth … 6
2. Apicodorsal lobes[?] of penisvalva dentate. Penisvalva with a dorsal longitudinal keel and apicodorsal lobate hook; basimere produced dorsomedially … (Atta s.str.; Central and South America) 3
- Apicodorsal lobes[?; direct translation = fascia or strips] of penisvalva edentate. Penisvalva without dorsal longitudinal keel or apicodorsal lobate hook; basimeres dorsomedially fused … (Archeatta Gonçalves; Central and North America, Caribbean) 4
3. Basimere longer than wide in dorsal view (Fig. 10). Penisvalvar apicodorsal lobate hooks long … Atta cephalotes Linn.
- Basimere length subequal to width in dorsal view (Fig. 11). Penisvalvar apicodorsal lobate hooks shorter … Atta colombica Guerin
4. Dorsomedial margins of the penisvalvar notch straight, not bulged (Figure 16) … Atta mexicana Fr Smith
- Dorsomedian margins of the penisvalvar notch concave (Fig. 13) … 5
5. Lateral face of truncated volsellar apex with an anterior- (or basally-) directed carina (Figure 29) … Atta texana Buckley
- Lateral face of truncated volsellar apex without an anterior- (or basally-) directed carina (Figure 27) … Atta insularis Guerin
6. Penisvalva with lateral margins folded dorsomedially; apex narrow, convex … (Neoatta Gonçalves) 7
- Penisvalva without dorsomedially-folded lateral margins; apex broad, convex, and with an apicolateral digitiform process … (Palaeatta Borgm.) 12
7. Penisvalva, in dorsal view separated [unfused?], with vertical sides… Atta sexdens Linn.
- Penisvalva in dorsal view more-or-less spoon-shaped, sides sloping, dorsal margins turned inward … 8
8. Longitudinal furrow of penisvalva only apically covered by folded lateral margins (Fig. 18) … 9
- Longitudinal furrow of penisvalva covered over most of its length by folded lateral margins (Fig. 22) … 10
9. The folded margins the penisvalva short and narrow. Abdominal sternum IX bulging distally … Atta robusta Borgm.
- The folded margins of the penisvalva wider and longer. Abdominal sternum IX truncate distally … Atta laevigata F. Sm
10. Penisvalvae wide in dorsal view, with the base strongly diverging; folded sides of the penisvalvar furrow entire (Fig. 21) … Atta vollenweideri Forel
- Penisvalvae narrower and longer, the base less divergent; folded sides of the penisvalvar furrow emarginate medially … 11
11. Folded penisvalvar margins short and narrow; emargination shallow (Fig. 20) … Atta opaciceps Borgm.
- Folded penisvalvar margins long; emargination strong, pointed (Figure 22) … Atta capiguara Gonçalves
12. Telomere, seen from above, very wide (subapical half as wide as long), apex diagonally truncate (Fig. 15) … Atta goiana Gonçalves
- Telomere narrow, apically pointed ... 13
13 Telomere as long as the volsella; dorsal apicolateral digitate processes of penisvalva short (Fig. 24) … Atta bisphaerica Forel
- Telomere much shorter than the volsella; apicodorsal lateral digitate processes of penisvalva wider and longer (Fig. 26) … Atta saltensis Forel

References:

Borgmeier, T. 1959b. Revision der Gattung Atta Fabricius (Hymenoptera, Formicidae). Studia Entomologica (n.s.)2:321-390.

Taxonomic Treatment (provided by Plazi)

Scientific Name Status Publication Pages ModsID GoogleMaps
Atta   Emery, C., 1913, Études sur les Myrmicinae., Annales de la Societe Entomologique de Belgique 57, pp. 250-262: 255-261, (download) 255-261 3860
Atta   Jerdon, T. C., 1851, A catalogue of the species of ants found in southern India., Madras Journal of Literature and Science 17, pp. 103-127: 105, (download) 105 4764
Atta   Jerdon, T. C., 1851, A catalogue of the species of ants found in southern India., Madras Journal of Literature and Science 17, pp. 103-127: 104, (download) 104 4764
Atta   Borgmeier, T., 1939, Nova contribuição para o conhecimento das formigas neotropicais (Hym. Formicidae)., Revista de Entomologia, São Paulo 10, pp. 403-428: 422-423, (download) 422-423 6484
Atta   Smith, F., 1858, Catalogue of the hymenopterous insects in the collection of the British Museum. Part VI. Formicidae., London: British Museum: 161, (download) 161 8127


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