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Species: Myrmelachista zeledoni   Emery, 1896 

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Taxonomic History (provided by Barry Bolton, 2023)

Myrmelachista zeledoni Emery, 1896g PDF: 102 (w.) COLOMBIA. Neotropic. Primary type information: Primary type material: syntype workers (number not stated). Primary type locality: Colombia (“Nuova Granata”): Honda (Thieme) (by restriction of Kempf, 1972b PDF: 150). Primary type depository: MSNG. Type notes: Other original syntype locality: Costa Rica: San José (A. Alfaro). AntCat AntWiki HOL

Taxonomic history

// Distribution


  Geographic regions (According to curated Geolocale/Taxon lists):
    Americas: Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Peru, Venezuela
  Biogeographic regions (According to curated Bioregion/Taxon lists):

Distribution Notes:

Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Colombia, Venezuela, Peru. In Costa Rica it occurs throughout the country above 500m elevation.


Natural History:

This is a montane species that occurs at mid-elevation, from 600-1500m. It is most abundant in seasonally dry to moist forest habitat and less common in cloud forest and very wet forest. It also seems more abundant in disturbed habitats than in mature forest. In Costa Rica it does well in synanthropic habitats, being common in the Central Valley and in scrubby forest on the Pacific slope in and below Monteverde.

Nests are usually in dead stems of trees, often in relatively hard wood, and usually high in the tree or otherwise highly insolated areas. Nests occasionally occur in live stems; I have collected nests from live stems of Cecropia angustifolia, Hampea appendiculata, and an unidentified lauraceous tree. It usually appears that they opportunistically use preexisting cavities rather than excavating their own. Colonies are often large and polydomous, occurring in many dead branches of multiple adjacent trees. Incipient colonies are monogynous in small dead or live stems.

Workers are diurnal foragers and may be found scattered on foliage and branch surfaces. In the field they look remarkably similar to Crematogaster and may even elevate the gaster when disturbed.


Emery, C. (1896). Studi sulle formiche della fauna neotropica. XVII-XXV. Bullettino della Societˆ Entomologica Italiana 28, 33Ð107.

Longino, J. T. (2006). A Taxonomic review of the genus Myrmelachista (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) in Costa Rica. Zootaxa 1141:1-54.

Wheeler, W. M. (1934). Neotropical ants collected by Dr. Elisabeth Skwarra and others. Bulletin of the Museum of Comparative Zoology 77, 157Ð240.

Taxonomic Treatment (provided by Plazi)

Scientific Name Status Publication Pages ModsID GoogleMaps
Myrmelachista zeledoni n. sp.  Emery, C., 1896, Studi sulle formiche della fauna Neotropica., Bollettino della Societa Entomologica Italiana 28, pp. 33-107: 70-71, (download) 70-71 3798
Myrmelachista zeledoni   Longino, J. T., 2006, A taxonomic review of the genus Myrmelachista (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) in Costa Rica., Zootaxa 1141, pp. 1-54: 46-48, (download) 46-48 21030 GoogleMaps

Specimen Habitat Summary

Found most commonly in these habitats: 17 times found in cloud forest, 8 times found in moist forest, 3 times found in wet forest, 5 times found in rainforest edge, 9 times found in primary cloud forest, 1 times found in pasture/cloudforest edge, 2 times found in degraded forest, 7 times found in cloud forest edge, 6 times found in montane wet forest, 4 times found in moist forest edge, ...

Found most commonly in these microhabitats: 18 times beating vegetation, 14 times on low vegetation, 9 times beating veg., 9 times ex canopy tree, 4 times Malaise trap, 1 times ex dead composit stem. Polygynous., 2 times in live stems Ocotea, 2 times nest in dead stick, 6 times ex relict tree in pasture, 1 times Single-queen colony in dead stick, 5 times at bait, ...

Collected most commonly using these methods: 30 times Beating, 14 times Search, 11 times Malaise, 15 times fogging, 5 times Baiting, 2 times Winkler, 1 times beating vegetation (3 hour period), 2 times yellow pan trap, 2 times MiniWinkler, 1 times beating vegetation (1 hour), 1 times beating vegetation (2 hours), ...

Elevations: collected from 570 - 2230 meters, 1280 meters average

Collect Date Range: collected between 1877-08-23 00:00:00.0 and 2023-01-21 00:00:00.0

Type specimens: syntype of Myrmelachista zeledoni: casent0905167; syntype of Myrmelachista zeledoni thiemei: casent0905168; syntypes zeledoni: jtl056013

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