The venom apparatus and other morphological characters of the ant Martialis heureka (Hymenoptera, Formicidae, Martialinae)

Authors

  • Carlos Roberto Ferrreira Brandão Universidade de São Paulo; Museu de Zoologia
  • Jorge Luis Machado Diniz Universidade Federal de Goiás; Museu de Zoologia; Laboratório de Hymenoptera Frei Kempf
  • Rodrigo Machado Feitosa Universidade de São Paulo; Museu de Zoologia

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.1590/S0031-10492010002600001

Keywords:

Ant phylogeny, Formicidae, Martialis, Ultrastructure, Venom Apparatus

Abstract

We describe and illustrate the venom apparatus and other morphological characters of the recently described Martialis heureka ant worker, a supposedly specialized subterranean predator which could be the sole surviving representative of a highly divergent lineage that arose near the dawn of ant diversification. M. heureka was described as the single species of a genus in the subfamily, Martialinae Rabeling and Verhaagh, known from a single worker. However because the authors had available a unique specimen, dissections and scanning electron microscopy from coated specimens were not possible. We base our study on two worker individuals collected in Manaus, AM, Brazil in 1998 and maintained in 70% alcohol since then; the ants were partially destroyed because of desiccation during transport to São Paulo and subsequent efforts to rescue them from the vial. We were able to recover two left mandibles, two pronota, one dismembered fore coxa, one meso-metapropodeal complex with the median and hind coxae and trochanters still attached, one postpetiole, two gastric tergites, the pygidium and the almost complete venom apparatus (lacking the gonostylus and anal plate). We illustrate and describe the pieces, and compare M. heureka worker morphology with other basal ant subfamilies, concluding it does merit subfamilial status.

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Published

2010-01-01

How to Cite

Brandão, C. R. F., Diniz, J. L. M., & Feitosa, R. M. (2010). The venom apparatus and other morphological characters of the ant Martialis heureka (Hymenoptera, Formicidae, Martialinae) . Papéis Avulsos De Zoologia, 50(26), 413-423. https://doi.org/10.1590/S0031-10492010002600001

Issue

Section

naodefinida

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