Pheidole bufo? Minor workers went from bait to nest entrance. Nest entrance was perfectly circular hole, 2mm dia., in 2x3cm structure appressed to side of large root on trail. I could not tell if structure was some plant or fungal growth, or something constructed by the ants. The surface was smooth, brown. The inner material was brown, solid but spongy. I preserved fragments of the material, including a fragment with the circular nest entrance, in a separate large vial. A tunnel extended from entrance down into pure sand soil beneath. While workers recruited to bait, a major worker blocked entrance. The anterior head of one major fully filled the entrance. The major frequently backed up to allow minor workers in and out. Eventually, a few majors came out to bait. Entire nest excavated. A single chamber was about 7cm deep, no more than 3cm wide. Not all minor workers were collected. The single colony queen, all or nearly all of the majors, and much of the brood collected. There was a seed cache. Total count when I got back was 92 minor workers, 24 major workers, 1 dealate queen, brood. The queen is smaller than the major workers and lacks the transverse indentation on the face. The walls of the nest were a black material about 1mm thick, contrasting sharply with light-colored coarse sand substrate.
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Antweb is funded from private donations and from grants from the National Science Foundation, DEB-0344731, EF-0431330 and DEB-0842395. Sun Mar 29 23:49:06 PDT 2020.