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Current View: Neotropical: Costa Rica
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Species: Atta colombica   Guérin-Méneville, 1844 

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See Also:

Atta colombica tonsipes

Taxonomic History (provided by Barry Bolton, 2015)

Atta colombica Guérin-Méneville, 1844a PDF: 422 (w.) COLOMBIA. Neotropic. AntCat AntWiki

Taxonomic history

Forel, 1913m PDF: 239 (m.); Borgmeier, 1959b PDF: 348 (q.); Wheeler, 1949 PDF: 681 (l.).
Subspecies of Atta lebasii: Emery, 1890c: 55.
of Atta cephalotes: Emery, 1913bb: 258.
Revived status as species: Forel, 1913m PDF: 239; Emery, 1924f: 353.
Senior synonym of Atta lebasii: Dalla Torre, 1893 PDF}: 152; of Atta erecta, Atta tonsipes: Borgmeier, 1959b PDF: 346.


Guatemala to Colombia.


Natural History:

Atta colombica can be locally abundant in Costa Rica but does not have the ubiquity of A. cephalotes. It is common in the southern Pacific lowlands and I have also found it to be common around Volcan Arenal. I have not found it in other parts of Costa Rica where I have collected. Around Sirena in Corcovado National Park both A. colombica and A. cephalotes were abundant when I worked there in the early 1980's.

Atta colombica has conspicuous refuse dumps on the surface, where spent fungus substrate is deposited. These are often large conical mounds off to the side of the main soil mounds. Lines of workers can be seen carrying grayish white pellets from the nest and dropping them from a single high point, such that a regular conical mound forms below. This is in contrast to the behavior of A. cephalotes, which has subterranean refuse dumps.


The spelling of the name as "columbica" in Bolton's catalog is an error (Bolton, pers. com.).

Specimen Habitat Summary

Found most commonly in these habitats: 1 times found in road edge in wet forest, 1 times found in farm

Collected most commonly using these methods or in the following microhabitats: 4 times search, 0 times roadside, 1 times hand collecting, 0 times in bush, 0 times forest floor trail

Elevations: collected from 10 - 950 meters, 211 meters average

Type specimens: syntype of Atta cephalotes erecta: casent0912490; syntype of Atta columbica tonsipes: casent0912491

(-1 examples)

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