Sunday, 14 October 2007

It begins... Plus Tetraponera claveaui

I've decided to start a blog. I'm not entirely sure why.

I've decided that this is going to be mostly about ants, as these are what I spend most of my spare time studying. Mostly this is taxonomy, but I hope as things progress it will move into other subject areas as well. There will probably be the occasional general ecology posting as well, as that's what I do for a living.

To start the ball rolling: I appear to have rediscovered Tetraponera claveaui. This species was first collected in Senegal around 1913. It was described by Santschi and appears not to have been found since. I collected about 7 workers from an Acacia pod in The Gambia.

Brian Taylor has produced a photomontage from my images for his online guide to the ants of Africa, but my attempt is shown here.

I also collected T. ambigua in The Gambia, which is a much more widespread species in Africa. It seems to be incredibly variable, but some of my specimens appeared to have three ocelli, which is not included in the variability described by Ward (2006).

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