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Species: Odontomachus chelifer   (Latreille, 1802) 

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See Also:

Odontomachus chelifer emacerata, Odontomachus chelifer leptocephalus

Taxonomic History (provided by Barry Bolton, 2015)

Formica chelifera Latreille, 1802a: 188, pl. 8, fig. 51 (w.) SOUTH AMERICA (No Locality Given). Neotropic. AntCat AntWiki

Taxonomic history

Combination in Odontomachus: Latreille, 1809 PDF: 128.
Senior synonym of Odontomachus emacerata: Brown, 1976a}: 103; of Odontomachus leptocephalus: Emery, 1911e PDF: 114; of Odontomachus theresiae: Forel, 1899B: 19; Brown, 1976a}: 103.


Southern Mexico to Northern Argentina (Brown 1976). Costa Rica: wet to moist forest of both slopes to mid-elevations; more abundant at mid-elevations than in the lowlands.


Natural History:

This strikingly large species I have only seen as foragers in wet forest, on the forest floor, and often nocturnal. I have never seen a nest.


Brown, W. L., Jr. 1976. Contributions toward a reclassification of the Formicidae. Part VI. Ponerinae, tribe Ponerini, subtribe Odontomachiti. Section A. Introduction, subtribal characters. Genus Odontomachus. Studia Entomol. 19:67-171.

Latreille, P. A. 1802. Histoire Naturelle de Fourmis, et recueil de memoires et d'observations sur les abeilles, les araignees, les faucheurs, et autres insectes. 445 pp. Paris.

Taxonomic Treatment (provided by Plazi)

Wild, A. L., 2007:
Amambay, Caaguazú , Canindeyú , Central, Concepción , Cordillera, Itapúa , Misiones, Paraguari, “Paraguay” (s. loc.) (ALWC, INBP, LACM, MCSN, MHNG, MZSP). Literature records: Cordillera (Forel 1909).

Forel, A., 1905:
- Caracas.

Specimen Habitat Summary

Found most commonly in these habitats: 19 times found in wet forest, 16 times found in montane wet forest, 7 times found in tropical rainforest, 6 times found in rainforest, 4 times found in lowland rainforest, 4 times found in tropical wet forest, 3 times found in La Selva, 2 times found in tropical moist forest, 2 times found in Primary wet forest, 2 times found in rainforest edge, ...

Collected most commonly using these methods or in the following microhabitats: 18 times Malaise, 18 times Pan Trap, 9 times Search, 6 times flight intercept trap, 5 times Baiting, 4 times blacklight, 5 times MaxiWinkler, 3 times winkler, 1 times Search & Berles, 1 times Unknown, 1 times miniWinkler, ...

Elevations: collected from 30 - 1500 meters, 479 meters average

Type specimens: syntype of Odontomachus chelifer emacerata: casent0915242; syntype of Odontomachus chelifer leptocephalus: casent0904002; syntype of Odontomachus haematodes theresiae: casent0907426

(-1 examples)

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