The Ants of Africa
Genus Pheidole
Pheidole caffra Emery

Pheidole caffra Emery

return to key {link to the Hymenoptera Name Server} Type location South Africa (Pheidole caffra n. sp., Emery, 1895h: 33, major; Santschi, 1939b: 239, minor) - see major below
subspecies
amoena (Pheidole caffra Em. v. amoena n. var., Forel, 1911d: 365, major) from Eritrea
montivaga (Pheidole caffra Em. v. montivaga n. var., Santschi, 1939b: 240, illustrated, all forms) from Zimbabwe - see below
all forms described (see Bolton, 1995) .


{Pheidole caffra}Emery's (1895h) description is at {original description}. Arnold (1920a: 478) gave a translation, this is at {original description} Forel's (1911d) description of amoena is at {original description}. Santschi's (1939b) description of montivaga is at {original description}. Santschi (1939b) gave an illustrated comparison of the type with montivaga and abyssinica, this is at {original description}.

The last indicates that abyssinica is not a subspecies of caffra.

It is quite clear from the original Emery description that true caffra does not have strongly marked sculpturation on the occiput and the frontal carinae reach the posterior quarter of the head; the colour also is given as ferruginous dull with the gaster piceous and shiny. It is my view that the common fault of Forel in defining subspecies or varieties rather than species led to confusion. Therefore, I have raised the quite distinctive Pheidole bayeri Forel and at least Pheidole senilifrons Wheeler to species (the latter with thysvillensis as a probable junior synonym). The availability of cotype photographs of abyssinica show that also to be a separate species Pheidole abyssinica Forel


{Pheidole caffra major}The photomontage of the type major worker is collated from http://www.antweb.org/specimen.do?name=casent0904210.


{Pheidole caffra major}The photomontage of the montivaga type major worker is collated from http://www.antweb.org/specimen.do?name=casent0913284.


{Pheidole caffra major}The photomontage of the montivaga type minor worker is collated from http://www.antweb.org/specimen.do?name=casent0913285.


Note the major worker of amoeana shown at http://www.antweb.org/specimen.do?name=casent0907815 appears similar to the major of Pheidole senilifrons.

Note the minor worker shown at http://www.antweb.org/specimen.do?name=casent0904211 is not caffra.  It appears very similar to the minor of Pheidole bequaerti.


Oxford University Museum specimens

Pheidole caffra
B Taylor det.

Gabon
A Fotso Kuate
Sample 34
13.ix.2008
Asengma
03°54'30" N
11°25'58" E
.

6
{album}
Pheidole caffra
B Taylor det.
Central African Republic
P Annoyer
LS
15.xi.2010
Dzanga-Sangha
2°27'11.6"N
16°04'58.7"E
343 m; jour, à vue derrière le village, Molongo, strate arbustive (Casside land)

2
{album}
Pheidole caffra
B Taylor det.
Central African Republic
P Annoyer
MI
19.xi.2010
Dzanga-Sangha
2°28'45.9"N
16°13'15.0"E
396 m; nuit, à vue, au camp de transit 2 (près lac 1)
1
{album}

{Pheidole caffra major}The photomontage is of a major from Gabon; Assengma; aphid survey; collector. A Fotso Kuate (fk unmounted 34).


{Pheidole caffra minor}The photomontage is of a minor from Gabon; Assengma; aphid survey (fk unmounted 34), as above.


{Pheidole caffra major}The photomontage is of a minor from Central African Republic; Dzanga-Sangha NP; collector P. Annoyer (CAR MI).


{Pheidole caffra minor}The photomontage is of a minor from Central African Republic; Dzanga-Sangha NP; collector P. Annoyer (CAR LS).

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© 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2014 - Brian Taylor CBiol FSB FRES
11, Grazingfield, Wilford, Nottingham, NG11 7FN, U.K.

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