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Cerapachyinae HNS

I have recently proposed to regard Forel's tribe " Cerapachys HNS " as constituting an independent subfamily, the larvae of these ants being so different from those of the true Ponerinae and much more like the larvae of the Dorylinae.1 The limits of this new subfamily agree with those of Emery's section Prodorylinae, and Emery was probably right in contending that the Cerapachyinae HNS are intermediate between the Dorylinae and Ponerinae.

The worker caste has a ponerine habitus, but is often long and slender. The postpetiole is separated from the third abdominal segment by a well-marked constriction, and as broad as the third segment. In the Indoaustralian Eusphinctus even the gastric segments are marked off from one another. A powerful sting is present.

The characters of the female in the various genera are peculiarly diverse. In some cases ( Phyracaces HNS ), this caste is winged and not unlike the females of certain Ponerinae; in others (Parasyscia, Eusphinctus), the female is wingless and ergatomorphic; and, in still others (Acanthostichus, Nothosphinctus), the female is so much like the corresponding caste in the Dorylinae that it might be regarded as a dichthadiigyne. The male, on the other hand, though lacking the cerci, has a decidedly ponerine habitus. The male genitalia are completely retractile; the subgenital lamina deeply and broadly furcate.

Wheeler, Wm. M,. 1920. 'The subfamilies of Formicidae, and other taxonomie notes. Psyche, XXVII. pp. 46-55.

The larvae are extremely like those of the Dorylinae; they are elongate and almost cylindrical, uniformly covered with short hairs, and without piliferous tubercles. The mandibles are small, narrow, pointed, and rather feebly chitinized, and I have failed to find a trophorhinium, or triturating organ in the mouth. Apparently the young are fed only on soft food. Moreover, the foraging habits at least of certain Australian Cerapachyinae (Phyracaces) resemble those of the Dorylinae.1

Dr. W. M. Mann has recently sent me specimens of his Cerapachys majusculus HNS from Fiji, with several worker pupae which are enclosed in well-developed, brown cocoons. The Cerapachyniae seem, therefore, to agree with the Ponerinae in this character.

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Plazi

Source: Plazi.org

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