Current View: All Antweb
Change View
Cite this page

Citing AntWeb


To cite this page, please use the following:

· For print:      Citation: AntWeb. Version 8.8. California Academy of Science, online at Accessed .

· For web:

Species: Cryptopone gilva   (Roger, 1863) 

Download Data

Current Valid Name:

Taxonomic History (provided by Barry Bolton, 2022)

Ponera gilva Roger, 1863a PDF: 170 (w.) U.S.A. Nearctic. Primary type information: Type-material: syntype workers (number not stated). Type-locality: North America (no further data). Type-depository: MNHU. AntCat AntWiki HOL

Taxonomic history

Combination in Trachymesopus: Kempf, 1960f PDF: 424.
Combination in Pachycondyla: MacKay & MacKay, 2010 PDF: 352.
Status as species: Roger, 1863b PDF: 16; Mayr, 1863a PDF: 448; Mayr, 1886d PDF: 438; Cresson, 1887 PDF: 258; Dalla Torre, 1893 PDF: 39; Emery, 1895d PDF: 266; Emery, 1896g PDF: 54 (in key); Wheeler, 1910a PDF: 561; Emery, 1911e PDF: 86; Smith, 1928b PDF: 244; Creighton & Tulloch, 1930 PDF: 74; Dennis, 1938 PDF: 277; Smith, 1944d PDF: 14; Creighton, 1950a PDF: 46; Smith, 1951c PDF: 786; Smith, 1958c PDF: 111; Carter, 1962a PDF: 6 (in list); Smith, 1967a PDF: 348; Smith, 1979: 1341; Deyrup et al., 1989 PDF: 93; Bolton, 1995b: 166; Deyrup, 2003 PDF: 44; MacGown & Forster, 2005 PDF: 67; Longino, 2006b PDF: 135; MacKay & MacKay, 2010 PDF: 352 (redescription); Deyrup, 2017: 20; Fernandes & Delabie, 2019 10.13102/sociobiology.v66i3.4354 PDF: 411 (in key); Branstetter & Longino, 2022 10.1093/isd/ixab031 PDF: 15.
// Distribution


  Geographic regions (According to curated Geolocale/Taxon lists):
    Americas: Costa Rica, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, United States
  Biogeographic regions (According to curated Bioregion/Taxon lists):
    Nearctic, Neotropical

Distribution Notes:

Southeastern United States, southern Mexico to Costa Rica. Costa Rica: cloud forests of Cordillera de Tilaran, Cordillera Volcanica Central, Cordillera de Talamanca.


Longino notes: In Costa Rica, Cryptopone gilva is restricted to cloud forest habitats. For example, it is common in the ridge crest cloud forest in the Monteverde area (1400-1600m), rare around "El Aleman" at the head of the Penas Blancas Valley (900m), and absent at Casa Eladio further down the valley (800m). In Monteverde it is common under loose bark of dead wood and under epiphyte mats in the low arboreal zone: ground level to a few meters high. I often encounter lone founding queens. I find colonies in logs at a certain stage of decay, when the bark comes off in intact sheets, and there is a thin layer of decayed humus between the bark and the still hard wood. Workers are found thinly scattered in anastomosing tunnels in the humus layer. As a bark sheet is peeled away one to five workers may be revealed, which quickly disappear into holes in the wood and under adjacent bark. I have never been able to collect more than a few dozen workers from a colony, and I have never found an obvious colony center or distinct galleries with aggregations of workers and brood. Occasional larvae and pupae occur in the tunnels. The nesting behavior is very similar to that of Typhlomyrmex rogenhoferi, a species more common at lower elevations.

Specimens are occasionally taken in samples of sifted leaf litter (Winkler samples).


Longino notes, 9 Nov 2013: DNA barcoding data show all in one cluster, but a split separating two clusters. One cluster contains specimens from two sites: Guisayote in Honduras and Biotopo El Quetzal in Guatemala. The other cluster contains specimens that range from Mexico to Costa Rica.


Brown, W. L., Jr. 1963. Characters and synonymies amoung the genera of ants. Part III. Some members of the tribe Ponerini (Ponerinae, Formicidae). Breviora 190:1-10.

Forel, A. 1899. Formicidae. Biol. Cent.-Am. Hym. 3:1-160.

Kempf, W. W. 1972. Catalogo abreviado das formigas da Regiao Neotropical. Studia Entomol. 15:3-344.

Menozzi, C. 1931. Qualche nuova Formica di Costa Rica (Hym.). Stettiner Entomologische Zeitung 92:188-202.

Roger, J. 1863. Die neu aufgefuehrten Gattungen und Arten meines Formiciden-Verzeichnisses nebst Erganzung einiger frueher gegebenen Beschreibungen. Berl. Entomol. Z. 7:131-214.

Specimen Habitat Summary

Found most commonly in these habitats: 8 times found in montane wet forest, 15 times found in soil in hollow at base of Magnolia grandifolia, 11 times found in deciduous forest, 6 times found in deciduous forest, soil and leaf litter, 5 times found in in hollow tree in mixed forest, 5 times found in floodplain forest, 4 times found in on ground in mixed forest, 4 times found in foraging on hand rail beside large Oak, 3 times found in recently burned mature pine forest, 1 times found in swampy riparian woodland, ...

Found most commonly in these microhabitats: 11 times litter, 6 times soil and leaf litter, 6 times soil, 4 times rotten wood, 4 times ex rotten log, 1 times under moss mat, 1 times under loose bark of fallen log, 2 times nest in rotten wood, 1 times under bark, 2 times ex Berlese, 1 times under bark of stump, ...

Collected most commonly using these methods: 23 times Berlese funnel, 8 times hand collecting, 12 times general collecting, 3 times Berlese, 1 times malaise trap, 1 times search, 1 times Berlese|131 lbs., 111 L, 1 times direct collection, 1 times hand collected.

Elevations: collected from 20 - 1950 meters, 1027 meters average

Collect Date Range: collected between 1929-06-20 00:00:00.0 and 2016-06-06 00:00:00.0

Type specimens: Lectotype of Euponera obsoleta: casent0915270; type of Euponera obsoleta: focol0354-1, focol0354-2; type of Ponera gilva: focol0978, focol0979

See something amiss? Send us an email.