The Ants of Africa
Genus Crematogaster
Crematogaster (Sphaerocrema) striatula Emery

Crematogaster (Sphaerocrema) striatula Emery

return to key {link to the Hymenoptera Name Server} Type location Ivory Coast (Cremastogaster striatulus n. sp., Emery, 1892c: liii, worker; Emery, 1899e: 482, queen) collected at Assinie, by Ch. Alluaud - see below
subspecies
benitensis (Cremastogaster striatula Em. var. benitensis nov., Santschi, 1910c: 374, worker) from Equatorial [Spanish] Guinea, collected at River Benito, by de Brazza (location wrongly given as Congo by Bolton, 1995) - no images on Antweb (January 2015)
obstinata (Cremastogaster striatula Em. v. obstinata n. var., Santschi, 1911g: 207, worker) from Congo, collected at Gomba, by A. Weiss - see http://www.antweb.org/specimenImages.do?code=casent0912818
horatii (Crematogaster (Sphaerocrema) striatula Em. v. horatii n. v., Santschi, 1937a: 55, worker) from Kenya, T H E Jackson - may be separate species
omega (Crematogaster (Sphaerocrema) striatula Em. stirps obstinata Sants. var. omega n. var., Santschi, 1926b: 224; Crem. (Sphaer.) striatula Em. v. omega Santschi, 1935a: 259, worker) from Zaïre, Mogende, Dr Schouteden - see http://www.antweb.org/specimenImages.do?code=casent0912819
(see Bolton, 1995) .


Emery's (1892c) description is at {original description}. Emery's (1899e) description of the queen is at {original description}. Santschi's (1910c) description of benitensis is at {original description}. Santschi's (1911g) description of obstinata is at {original description}. Santschi's (1926b) description of omega is at {original description}. Santschi's (1937a) description of horatii is at {original description}.


Wheeler (1922) had numerous other records including Sierra Leone, Ghana (Aburi, F. Silvestri), Cameroun (Douala, von Rothkirch). It was also found inhabiting the hollow twigs of Barteria fistulosa (Bequaert, 1922, p438-9).

Nests in dead wood on trees. Found throughout West Africa (Strickland, 1951a). Donisthorpe (1945a, b) wrote of it as a tropical West African species, with the typical form known from Sierra Leone, etc., and varieties in the French Congo, Ivory Coast, etc. He recorded findings all with Coccidae as follows - H.E. Box had collected specimens from Ivory Coast, at Cibengouron (or Abengourou?) (18.v.1944); with Pseudococccus species on swollen shoot infected cocoa; with a Pseudococcus on a liana vine at Bansa, Ghana (2.v.1944) and from a sapling in primary forest at Bunsu (1.i.1945) and, also from cocoa at Bawdua, near Kade (by K.O. Darko, 2.xii.1944), and Nkawkaw (J.Paine, 23.xi.1944); at Lekleki, Dafo, and Bame Pass, Togo (2-4.xi.1944) on coffee and cocoa.

In Ghana it is regarded as a common dominant. Leston (1973) regarded it as the most frequent dominant, especially in heavily shaded farms with abundant dead wood, and important as a tender of coccids, and also on dense secondary forest. Evans (1973), who had worked closely with Leston, described its role as a vector of Phytophthora pod rot of cocoa, and added that it was a common cocoa ant dominating substantial areas under suitable conditions. At CRIG it was the commonest of the subgenus, found in 778 of 3,766 arboreal samples (Strickland, 1948, 1951a), and occurring on numerous forest trees, plus kola and mango. Room (1971) used as it one of his selected species for the 30 dominated trees, and found it on 5 other trees. He does, however, note that it was far easier to find in the Tafo area than elsewhere. Room also reported its occurrence on cocoa mistletoe - being fourth most abundant insect, with 3,442 workers, from 32 of 630 samples of the mistletoe/cocoa junction (ranked 25th) (Room, 1972a, b, 1975). Majer found it in 36.8% of his 144 pkd samples at Kade, with 3500-5000 workers per sample (1975, 1976a, b, c). At CRIG in 1979-76, however, Bigger (1981a, 1993b) found it only as an immigrant forager on the ground of his study block of Amazon cocoa (this had been the block, the Amelonado cocoa, used for much of Strickland's work). Bigger (1981a) tabulated a number of surveys in Ghana and the occurrence was quite variable at CRIG, from 2.4-41%. It was described as widespread by Belshaw & Bolton (1994b), who found it, as a 'tourist', in leaf litter samples at thirteen locations in the semi-deciduous forest zone.

In contrast it appears to be quite rare on cocoa in Nigeria, where it has been found nesting in old dry cherelles. Also found on native shrubs and trees, plus on 17-20% of both coffee and kola, and on oil palm (Taylor, 1977). However, earlier from CRIN, found on >10% of cocoa in pkd collections from two cocoa blocks, W13/2 and W18/1 (Booker 1968).

From Ivory Coast, there is a description of larval stages by Delage-Darchen (1978).


{Crematogaster striatula} Nigeria specimens (Taylor, 1979: 33). WORKER. TL variable 3.05-3.42 mm; largest HL 0.86, HW 0.87, SL 0.70, PW 0.50
Colour very dark, red-brown to black, tarsi and antennal funiculi yellow; shiny. Head finely striate. Alitrunk striated on dorsum and laterally, faint on lateral pronotum. Lateral mesonotum spiculate. Pilosity sparse, erect hairs moderately abundant. Profile of pro- and mesonotum flat, mesonotum with a slight carina, propodeum on a lower level. Propodeal spines long, acute and slightly down curved. Dorsal surface of petiole smooth and flat, subpetiolar spine acute triangular.


{Crematogaster striatula} The photomontage of the holotype worker is collated from http://www.antweb.org/specimen.do?name=casent0904482.


Oxford University Museum specimens


{Crematogaster striatula}The photomontage is of workers from Cameroun, south-western tropical coastal forest area between Edéa and Campo, Kouedjina; collctors McKey Wolbachia project (Cameroon 119). 


{Crematogaster striatula}The photomontage is of further workers from Cameroun, Banyong Mbo; collector Hauke Koch.


{Crematogaster striatula}The photomontage is of a worker from Congo, Réserve de Lésio-Louna; collector Eric Zassi (t1-17).


{Crematogaster striatula queen}The photomontage is of a queen from the Central African Republic, Dzanga-Sangha NP; collector Philippe Annoyer (CAR GS).


{Crematogaster fauconneti}The photomontage is of a worker from Liberia, Yekepa Camp 4; collector E Poiriet (Yekepa Camp 4 SLAM 1).


{Crematogaster striatula queen}The photomontage is of a queen from Liberia, Yekepa Camp 4; collector E Poiriet (SLAM C 1).

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© 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2015 - Brian Taylor CBiol FSB FRES
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