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Species: Ectatomma ruidum   (Roger, 1860) 

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Taxonomic History (provided by Barry Bolton, 2023)

Ponera (Ectatomma) ruida Roger, 1860 PDF: 306 (w.q.) COLOMBIA. Neotropic. Primary type information: Type-material: 1 syntype worker, 3 syntype queens. Type-locality: Colombia (by restriction of Kugler & Brown, 1982: 2). Type-depository: MNHU. Type notes: Roger originally recorded three countries, without any further data: Brazil, Colombia, and French Guiana (Cayenne). AntCat AntWiki HOL

Taxonomic history

Combination in Ectatomma: Mayr, 1862 PDF: 732; Roger, 1863b PDF: 17.
Combination in Ectatomma (Ectatomma): Mayr, 1887 PDF: 539.
Status as species: Mayr, 1862 PDF: 732; Roger, 1862c PDF: 292; Roger, 1863b PDF: 17; Mayr, 1863a PDF: 459; Emery, 1890c PDF: 40; Dalla Torre, 1893 PDF: 26; Emery, 1894l PDF: 47; Forel, 1895b PDF: 112; Pergande, 1896 PDF: 871; Forel, 1899b PDF: 6; Forel, 1899j: 273; Forel, 1907h PDF: 1; Forel, 1908c PDF: 38; Emery, 1911e PDF: 43; Forel, 1912d PDF: 30; Forel, 1914e PDF: 9; Mann, 1916 PDF: 405; Wheeler, 1916f PDF: 323; Wheeler, 1922e PDF: 3; Mann, 1922 PDF: 6; Borgmeier, 1923: 58; Santschi, 1931d PDF: 265; Wheeler, 1933a: 62; Borgmeier, 1934 PDF: 95; Weber, 1946a PDF: 7; Weber, 1948b PDF: 79; Brown, 1958g PDF: 209; Kempf, 1961b PDF: 491; Kempf, 1972b PDF: 105; Kugler & Brown, 1982: 2; Fernández, 1992: 554 (in key); Bolton, 1995b: 187; Arias-Penna, 2008b PDF: 64; Branstetter & Sáenz, 2012 PDF: 254; Feitosa, 2015c PDF: 97; Feitosa & Prada-Achiardi, 2019 PDF: 666; Camacho et al., 2022 10.1093/isd/ixab026 PDF: 10.
// Distribution


  Geographic regions (According to curated Geolocale/Taxon lists):
    Americas: Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, El Salvador, French Guiana, Galapagos Islands, Guadeloupe, Guatemala, Guyana, Honduras, Martinique, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Peru, Suriname, Trinidad and Tobago, Venezuela
  Biogeographic regions (According to curated Bioregion/Taxon lists):
  Native to (according to species list records):
    Neotropical bioregion

Distribution Notes:

Mexico south to northern South America, extending to southwestern Ecuador to the west and the guianas to the east, but barely entering the Amazon basin in northern Brazil (Kugler and Brown 1982). Costa Rica: widespread in lowlands; absent from Osa Peninsula (its absence from the Osa is peculiar, given its ubiquity elsewhere).


Natural History:

Ectatomma ruidum is one of the most common ants in Costa Rica. It occurs in both wet forest and dry forest habitats. Nests are below ground and may reach high densities in open areas (Weber 1946, Lachaud 1990). The nest entrance is an unadorned and inconspicuous hole in the ground, the hole little larger in diameter than a worker. Workers forage on the ground surface and on low vegetation. They are predators, generalized scavengers, and avid collectors of extrafloral nectar. Colonies may be polygynous: Weber observed a colony in Colombia with 13 dealate queens and at least 24 workers. Weber also observed in a lab colony that a worker developed a swollen gaster and began laying eggs after the queen died. It is not clear whether the eggs were viable.

Workers recruit nestmates to food sources (Lachaud 1985, Pratt 1989), and they use a trail pheromone produced from the Dufour's gland (Bestmann et al. 1995). They do not exhibit a strong trail following response to the trail pheromone unless first incited by returning scout ants (Pratt 1989, Bestmann et al. 1995). Workers may engage in cleptobiosis, detecting the foraging trails of other ant species and stealing food from returning foragers (Perfecto and Vandermeer 1993).


Bestmann, H. J., E. Janssen, F. Kern, B. Liepold, and B. Hoelldobler. 1995. All-trans Geranylgeranyl acetate and geranylgeraniol, recruitment pheromone components in the dufour gland of the ponerine ant Ectatomma ruidum. Naturwissenschaften 82:334-336.

Breed, M. D., P. Abel, T. J. Bleuze, and S. E. Denton. 1990. Thievery, home ranges and nestmate recognition in Ectatomma ruidum. Oecologia 84:117-121.

Jaffe, K., and M. Marquez. 1987. On agonistic behavior among workers of the ponerine ant Ectatomma ruidum (Hymenoptera Formicidae). Insectes Soc. 34:87-95.

Kugler, C., W. L. Brown, Jr. 1982. Revisionary and other studies on the ant genus Ectatomma, including the descriptions of two new species. Search: Agriculture (Cornell), No. 24, 8 pp.

Lachaud, J. P. 1985. Recruitment by selective activation: an archaic type of mass recruitment in a ponerine ant (Ectatomma ruidum). Sociobiology 11:133-142.

Lachaud, J. P. 1990. Foraging activity and diet in some neotropical ponerine ants I. Ectatomma ruidum Roger (Hymenoptera Formicidae). Folia Entomol. Mexicana (78):241-256.

Perfecto, I., and J. H. Vandermeer. 1993. Cleptobiosis in the ant Ectatomma ruidum in Nicaragua. Insectes Sociaux 40:295-299.

Pratt, S. C. 1989. Recruitment and other communication behavior in the ponerine ant Ectatomma ruidum. Ethology 81:313-331.

Roger, J. 1861(1860). Die Ponera-artigen Ameisen I. Berl. Entomol. Z. 4:278-312.

Weber, N. A. 1946. Two common ponerine ants of possible economic significance, Ectatomma tuberculatum (Olivier) and E. ruidum Roger. Proc. Entomol. Soc. Wash. 48:1-16.

Taxonomic Treatment (provided by Plazi)

Scientific Name Status Publication Pages ModsID GoogleMaps
Ectatomma ruidum   Mayr, G., 1862, Myrmecologische Studien., Verhandlungen der Zoologisch-Botanischen Gesellschaft in Wien 12, pp. 649-776: 732, (download) 732 4445
Ectatomma ruidum   Forel, A., 1908, Fourmis de Costa-Rica, récoltées par M. Paul Biolley., Bulletin de la Societe Vaudoise des Sciences Naturelles 44, pp. 35-72: 38, (download) 38 4014

Specimen Habitat Summary

Found most commonly in these habitats: 61 times found in rainforest, 56 times found in tropical rainforest, some big trees, 54 times found in tropical rainforest, old second growth, 27 times found in lowland rainforest, 28 times found in montane wet forest, 9 times found in STR, 4 times found in LOC, 7 times found in wet forest, 11 times found in disturbed tropical dry forest, 12 times found in tropical rainforest, some big trees, primary forest, ...

Found most commonly in these microhabitats: 132 times at bait, 57 times Malaise trap, 13 times Hojarasca, 18 times ex sifted leaf litter, 19 times Sobre Vegetacion, 9 times foragers at cookie bait, 7 times STR, 1 times La Selva, 7 times beating veg., 7 times sifted litter, 3 times bajo de M/28, ...

Collected most commonly using these methods: 132 times Baiting, 75 times Malaise, 27 times Winkler, 30 times search, 23 times flight intercept trap, 21 times sweeping, 12 times hand collecting, 10 times Beating, 10 times Mini Winkler, 7 times MiniWinkler, 4 times MaxiWinkler, ...

Elevations: collected from 5 - 2660 meters, 174 meters average

Collect Date Range: collected between 1938-06-29 00:00:00.0 and 2016-07-16 00:00:00.0

Type specimens: syntype of Ectatomma scabrosa: casent0900513; syntype of Ectatomma aztecum: casent0903841; type of Ponera ruida: focol0875, focol0876, focol0877, focol0878

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