188 ENTOMOLOGICAL NEWS THE GENUS ODONTOMACHUS IN THE SOUTHEASTERN UNITED STATES (HYMENOPTERA: FORMICIDAE) 1 Mark Deyrup^, James Trager^, Norman Carlin^ ABSTRACT: The ants Odontomachus brunneus, O. clams, and O. ruginodis are reported from Florida. O. clarus was not previously known from the eastern U.S., and probably represents a relic population confined to former islands in southern Florida. O. ruginodis is removed from synonymy with O. brunneus. O. brunneus is sympatric with O. clarus and O. ruginodis. The species can be distinguished by morphological differences in workers and males. Large flights of O. clarus occur from July to November during several nights around the full moon. Species of the genus Odontomachus are among the most distinctive of southeastern ants. They are large ants, about 8 mm long, with porrect mandibles and converging dorsal furrows on the head (Fig. 1 ). The workers are able to convulsively snap their mandibles, thus dismembering arthropods. If the mandibles strike a solid object they may fling the ant into the air. Southeastern Odontomachus are probably exclusively predatory. The workers can both bite and sting, but are shy and unaggressive toward humans, even when the nest is disturbed. The purpose of this paper is to confirm the presence of three species of Odontomachus in the southeastern United States and to provide a few details on the ecology of one of these. Creighton ( 1 950), in his manual on ants, included a single southeastern species, O. haematodus insularis Gue'rin, from Florida, southern Georgia, and Cuba, and stated that it also was distributed by commerce through many parts of the tropics. Brown ( 1 976) revised Odontomachus and stated that the southeastern species, called insularis, haematodus insularis, ruginodis, and haematodus ruginodus by various workers, was a northern population of a widespread Neotropical species. He called this species brunneus (Patton), placed ruginodis Wheeler in synonymy with brunneus, and separated it from haematodus (L.) and insularis, both distinct Neotropical species. According to Brown (1976) insularis is confined to 1 Received November 29, 1984. Accepted June 3, 1985. 2 Archbold Biological Station, P.O. Box 2057, Lake Placid, FL 33852. 3 Archer Road Entomology Lab., University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611. ^Museum of Comparative Zoology, Harvard Univ., Cambridge, MA 02138 ENT. NEWS 96(5): 188-195, November & December 1985



The Genus Odontomachus In The Southeastern United states (Hymenoptera, Formicidae)

M Deyrup, J Trager and N Carlin
Entomological News 96: 188-195 (1985)

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