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Species: Pheidole microgyna   Wheeler, 1928 

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Taxonomic History (provided by Barry Bolton, 2020)

Pheidole microgyna Wheeler, 1928b PDF: 186 (w.q.m.) GUYANA. Neotropic. AntCat AntWiki HOL

Taxonomic history

See also: Wilson, 1984b PDF: 323; Wilson, 2003A: 456.


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

Taxonomic Treatment (provided by Plazi)

Treatment Citation: Wilson, E. O., 2003, Pheidole in the New World. A dominant, hyperdiverse ant genus., Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press

Pheidole microgyna WheelerHNS

Pheidole microgyna WheelerHNS 1928b: 186. Further definition of status in Wilson 1984b: 323.

types Mus. Comp. Zool. Harvard.

etymology Gr microgynaHNS, small female.

diagnosis A member of the flavensHNS group similar to minutulaHNS but the queen much smaller, close in size to the worker caste of minutulaHNS. Body form as illustrated above.

measurements (mm) Lectotype queen: HW 0.46, HL 0.48, SL 0.40, EL 0.20, PW 0.36. color Concolorous light reddish brown, appendages yellowish brown.

range Known only from the type locality.

biology P. microgynaHNS appears to be a social parasite of Pheidole minutulaHNS. The latter species is abundant in the Amazonian and Guianan rainforests of South America, where it nests in the swollen leaf bases of the melastome understory shrub Maieta guianensis. In an earlier analysis (Wilson 1984b), I pointed out that microg)>na may have its own workers, which are anatomically somewhat different from those of minutulaHNS, or workers identifiable as minutulaHNS. This circumstance suggests that microgynaHNS is a temporary social parasite of minutulaHNS or some related free-living species. The small size of the microgynaHNS queens also suggests such a life cycle. However, the status of this unusual form will not be solved until additional collections are made, preferably with field observations, allowing the taxonomy of the minutulaHNS complex to be more fully clarified.

Figure Lectotype, queen. GUYANA: Kartabo.

Outline of frontal view of head of minutulaHNS worker shown to left of that of the queen. Scale bar = 1 mm.

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