Lepisiota canescens (Emery)
Type location Somalia
(Acantholepis capensis Mayr, var. canescens n. var.,
Emery, 1897e: 601,
worker) Coromma, Lago Abaja; also Sciotel, Beccari - see below
subspecies latior (Acantholepis
canescens Emery v. latior
n. v., Santschi, 1935a: 268, worker) from Zaïre, N'gazi, Elskens - see http://www.antweb.org/specimenImages.do?code=casent0912372
name anodon (Acantholepis
(Acantholepis) capensis Mayr st. canescens Em. v. anodon n. var., Santschi, 1933b:
107, worker) from Kenya - no images on Antweb (October 2014) .
Emery's (1897e) description is at . Smaller, TL 2.0-2.5, and petiole with
blunter teeth than capensis. Santschi's (1933b) description of anodon
is at .
Listed from locations across sub-Saharan Africa by
Wheeler (1922); these included Senegal (Dakar, F. Silvestri), Guinea
(Kindia, F. Silvestri), Ghana (Aburi, F.
Silvestri) and Nigeria (Lagos, F. Silvestri).
Wheeler described it (as a subspecies of capensis)
as a form with long, white pilosity and abundant pubescence
"distributed throughout the Ethiopian Region". In Zaïre, Mr. Lang found
the nest in dirt in the axils of cut leaves of oil palms. There seem to
be strong similarities with my Lepisiota
Collingwood (1985), who described a number of genus
members from Saudi Arabia, commented that is small, black and shining;
separable (from Arabian species) by having the antennal scape only
slightly longer than the HW, overreaching the occiput by a third or
less of its length; head and gaster smooth and brilliant; whole dorsum
thickly clothed with pale hairs; adding it has widely spaced broad
propodeal teeth and a moderately indented petiole - differing from capensis
by its smaller size, finer pilosity and absence of propodeal sculpture.
Bernard (1952) described it as one of the most common
species of all Africa, found close to water, even in desert oases; in Guinea
[by assumption] it did not seem to occur in primary forest, but was
abundant in savanna, rarer on the mountain crests between 1300 and 1600
Santschi (1935a) described latior thus - more
robust than the common type; head same shape, but distinctly bigger, as
with the larger examples of the type, that is straighter before the
rear, the occipital margin convex, some straight, angles slightly
rounded and sides arcuate. Eyes near to a third bigger than their
distance to these angles which are more backturned and less convex.
Frontal margin of head as distinct and similar length; Clypeus with a
single more distinct carina and the summit sharper. Antennae more
slender but funiculus segments similar. Alitrunk wider, sides of
propodeum slightly more divergent and summit strongly
reticulo-punctate. Petiole scale (?) matt but without teeth or
denticles. Head always slightly reddish. Pilosity a little longer but
rest similar. Under his notes on Leisiota tenuipilis, Santschi
implied that canescens has
longish and regualrly spaced fine white pilosity on the legs.
Forel (1911f) reported canescens (as a variety
of capensis) from Zaïre, Congo da Lemba by Mayné.
The photomontage of a worker listed in the type
description is collated
photomontage is of a specimen from Congo, Réserve de
Lésio-Louna, S 03°21'23.1" E 015°29'51.2"; 6-9.ii.2008; n sp 65;
pitfall trap 13, t 3; Village Mah; collected by Eric Zassi.
photomontage is of a specimen from Benin; Collection
details - Forêt de Gbèvozoumè, 06°55’32.8 N 02°29’13 E; lisière fourmis
(forest edge/ border ants); 28.ii.2007; S Tchibozo.
photomontage is of a specimen collected in Sudan, Ar
Roseris, 11°50'60"N 34°22'60"E; by Awatif Omer, 2009.
The photomontage is of a worker from Sudan,
collected by J Mathews, by pyrethrum fogging of Acacia senegal,
semi-natural forest, Abu Gmein, Blue Nile, 11°21' N 34°27' E,
28.vi.2001, JM 211.