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Species: Temnothorax subditivus   (Wheeler, 1903) 

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Taxonomic History (provided by Barry Bolton, 2023)

Macromischa subditiva Wheeler, 1903c PDF: 99, fig. 5 (w.) U.S.A. (Texas). Nearctic. Primary type information: Primary type material: lectotype worker (by designation of Prebus, 2021b 10.7717/peerj.11514 PDF: 430). Primary type locality: lectotype U.S.A.: Texas, Travis County: Austin, 15.v.1903, on bark of Salix nigra (W.M. Wheeler), Type No. A.M.N.H., M.C.Z. Type 2-1 16371. Primary type depository: MCZC. Primary type specimen: MCZENT00016371 (lectotype; middle specimen on pin). (Source: Prebus, 2021b 10.7717/peerj.11514 PDF: 430.) Secondary type information: Secondary type material: 6 paralectotype workers. Secondary type localities: 2 paralectotype workers with same data as lectotype (on same pin as lectotype); 3 paralectotype workers with same data as lectotype; 1 paralectotype worker [no locality data], [no collection date], Type No. A.M.N.H., Type 16371 (W.M. Wheeler). Secondary type depository: MCZC. Secondary type specimens: MCZENT00016371 (top and bottom specimens on same pin as lectotype), MCZENT00578574, MCZENT00578573. (Source: Prebus, 2021b 10.7717/peerj.11514 PDF: 430.) Type notes: The lectotype series does not correspond to either of the original syntype series, either by locality or by date. Wheeler described Temnothorax subditivus from two Texas series, one from Walnut Creek, near Austin, 12.v.1901 (W.M. Wheeler), the other from New Braunfels, (W.M. Wheeler); he noted that it was, “A rare species described from a few specimens”; material is probably in MCZC. Baroni Urbani, 1978b PDF: 515, records 5 workers from “N. Braunfeld” (in CUIC, MSNG, USNM), but the date on these is 25.x.1902, which does not correspond with Wheeler’s record of AntCat AntWiki HOL

Taxonomic history

Lectotype designation: Prebus, 2021b 10.7717/peerj.11514 PDF: 430.
[Misspelled as subdetiva by Mann, 1920b PDF: 409 (in key).]
Combination in Temnothorax: Bolton, 2003 PDF: 272.
Status as species: Wheeler, 1908a PDF: 141 (in key); Wheeler, 1910a PDF: 567; Mann, 1920b PDF: 409 (in key); Emery, 1924f PDF: 247; Wheeler, 1931b PDF: 15; Wheeler, 1937b PDF: 465; Smith, 1939e PDF: 503 (redescription); Creighton, 1950a PDF: 252; Smith, 1951c PDF: 816; Creighton, 1966a PDF: 282; Smith, 1979: 1390; Baroni Urbani, 1978b PDF: 512 (redescription); Brandão, 1991 PDF: 353; Bolton, 1995b: 245; Bolton, 2003 PDF: 272; Branstetter & Sáenz, 2012 PDF: 262; Fernández & Serna, 2019 PDF: 826; Prebus, 2021b 10.7717/peerj.11514 PDF: 56 (in key), 428 (diagnosis, redescription).
// Distribution


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

Distribution Notes:

USA (Texas) to Colombia. Costa Rica: northwestern lowlands.


Natural History:

Temnothorax subditivus occurs in seasonally dry habitats. It inhabits scrubby vegetation and roadsides, nesting in small dead twigs or other dead plant cavities. Colonies are monogynous.

I have collected this species four times in Costa Rica, as follows:

Santa Rosa National Park, ridge between Playa Naranjo and Nancite: xeric scrub on rocky ridge; nest in dead branch; branch was dry and brittle.

Road from PanAmerican Highway to Monteverde, La Pita to Guacimal (below 500m elevation): three different collections from scrubby roadside vegetation, sweep samples and strays from tree trunks.

I also have collected the species in the Santa Marta region of Colombia. I found a small, monogynous colony under loose bark on a 2-3cm dia dead branch. The area of the nest was no more than 1x2cm. Crematogaster carinata were nesting throughout the same dead branch.


Within Costa Rica there is variation in the strength of sculpture on the face and mesosoma. At the two extremes of variation the face may have a broad medial and posterior shiny portion, or it may be almost entirely punctatorugose.

Specimen Habitat Summary

Found most commonly in these habitats: 6 times found in tropical dry forest, 1 times found in mesic woodland, 1 times found in along river bank, 3 times found in oak maple woodland, 3 times found in roadside vegetation, 3 times found in live oak woodland, 2 times found in tropical dry scrub, 1 times found in dry thorn scrub, 2 times found in roadside edge, 1 times found in Pastures and scrubby second growth vegetation, ...

Found most commonly in these microhabitats: 11 times ex sifted leaf litter, 4 times at bait, 1 times in dead stems Arundo donax, 1 times nest in dead stick, 1 times Xeric scrub on rocky ridge. Nest in dead branch <.5m high. Branch was dry and br, 1 times hollow twig, 2 times ex Oneidium splendidum, 2 times ex dead twig of undet tree, 2 times dead branch, 1 times nest under bark flap on dead branch, 1 times nest in dead branch, ...

Collected most commonly using these methods: 9 times Winkler, 6 times hand collecting, 2 times maxiWinkler, 4 times baiting, 1 times Colony Collection, 1 times bait, 1 times Berlese funnel, 1 times sweep, 2 times direct collection, 1 times hand collected, 1 times search, ...

Elevations: collected from 5 - 3180 meters, 323 meters average

Collect Date Range: collected between 1903-05-15 00:00:00.0 and 2017-05-11 00:00:00.0

Type specimens: lectotype of Macromischa flavitaris (top) paralectotype of Macromischa flavitaris (bottom): mczent00016368; lectotype of Macromischa subditiva (middle) paralectotypes of Macromischa subditiva (top and bottom): mczent00016371; paralectotypes of Macromischa flavitarsis: lacment323232, mczent00534455, mczent00534456, usnment00529208, usnment00921847, usnment00921848; paralectotypes of Macromischa subditiva: mczent00578573, mczent00578574; syntype of Temnothorax subditivus: casent0913003

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