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Species: Acropyga keira   LaPolla, 2004 

Download Data

Taxonomic History (provided by Barry Bolton, 2021)

Acropyga keira LaPolla, 2004a PDF: 53, figs. 22, 41, 47, 48, 50 (w.m.) COSTA RICA. Neotropic. AntCat AntWiki HOL
// Distribution


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

Distribution Notes:

This species is known only from its type locality in Costa Rica (La Selva Biological Station in the Atlantic lowlands).


Natural History:

The type series of this species is from La Selva Biological Station. Longino collected from a nest in the Arboretum, a small park-like clearing surrounded by mature rainforest. Galleries were discovered in clay soil about 10cm deep. There were workers and abundant adult males. The galleries were penetrated by fine plant roots on which were clustered many small, white, globose Coccoidea.


In Central America, several species of Acropyga have mandibles that are narrow and strap-shaped, with only 3 teeth on the relatively short masticatory margin. Queens may occasionally have 4 teeth, but the mandible is still narrow and strap-shaped. LaPolla (2004) distinguished these species mainly on male genitalia. Workers are not easily distinguished.

At La Selva Biological Station in Costa Rica, A. exsanguis and A. keira co-occur. The workers of A. exsanguis are scruffier, with somewhat more abundant dorsal pilosity. The males are more distinct, with males of A. keira having larger apices of the penis valves. A few worker collections from higher elevations above La Selva and in Monteverde are larger than the typical La Selva A. exsanguis and are tentatively identified as A. goeldii. LaPolla also described A. palaga, with workers indistinguishable from A. goeldii, based on a collection from Estrella Valley in the Atlantic lowlands and a collection from Alajuela.

North of Costa Rica, a few collections have associated males, and these more or less match La Selva A. exsanguis. Longino uses A. exsanguis as the default identification for A. exsanguis-like material from Nicaragua to Mexico, but it is likely that multiple cryptic species occur.

Specimen Habitat Summary

Found most commonly in these habitats: 4 times found in mature wet forest, 1 times found in lowland rainforest, 1 times found in Puesto12,318g,10m, 1 times found in Puesto5,12g,10m, 1 times found in CES (700.350 GIS), 1 times found in Puesto 12,212g.,10m., 1 times found in Trampa4,316G,10m..

Found most commonly in these microhabitats: 4 times ex sifted leaf litter, 1 times galleries in clay soil, 1 times Hojarasca.

Collected most commonly using these methods: 4 times Berlese, 4 times miniWinkler, 1 times Search & Berles.

Elevations: collected from 50 - 160 meters, 65 meters average

Collect Date Range: collected between 1992-07-01 and 2007-02-02

Type specimens: holotype Acropyga keira: inbiocri001238062

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