Answer to the Monday Mystery

This week’s challenge was a difficult one. To answer it required 1) the ability to sight-ID nine ant species; 2) the geographic knowledge of where in the world each lives; and 3) a sense of how a particular collecting method, leaf litter sifting, biases the species composition. We were screening the line-up for litter-dwelling ants found in Africa.

Marek was the first to select the two plausible ants, for which I award 9 points (one point off for an incorrect first guess): Paraparatrechina (G) and Prionopelta (D).

Paraparatrechina sp. (Kibale Forest, Uganda)
Prionopelta humicola (Kibale Forest, Uganda)

The full line-up:

A. Azteca, Americas, tree-dwelling

B. Thaumatomyrmex, Americas, litter-dwelling

C. Tetraponera, Africa, tree-dwelling

D. PrionopeltaAfrica, litter-dwelling

E. Podomyrma, Australia, tree-dwelling

F. Wasmannia, Americaslitter-dwelling

G. ParaparatrechinaAfricalitter-dwelling

H. Polyrhachis, Africa, tree-dwelling

I. Oxyepoecus, Americas, litter-dwelling

1 thought on “Answer to the Monday Mystery”

  1. ah, but….in some forests in Africa you can (unfortunately) find Wasmannia (e.g. Gabon….), and although Polyrhachis is arboreal, I have found it in winkler samples before…. Nice quiz though 🙂

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