Diversity and distribution of ground-dwelling and arboreal ants in a Panamanian rainforest

Study of the diversity and distribution of ground-dwelling and arboreal ants in a Panamanian rainforest in relation with the distribution of other arthropod groups.

IBISCA social-insect team
: Alain Dejean & Jerôme Orivel (Université Paul Sabatier, Toulouse, Evolution & Diversité Biologique), Bruno Corbara (Université Blaise-pascal, LAPSCO, Clermont-Ferrand), Yves Roisin (Université Libre de Bruxelles), Maurice Leponce. 
Taxonomist: J.H.C. Delabie (CEPLAC); Sorting & morphotyping of arboreal ants: Ricardo Ildefonso Campos, Flávia Esteves & Marcos Sienuk (Sérvio Ribeiro's lab, Departamento de Biologia Geral/ICB, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais)

The ground-dwelling ant collection was based on Winkler extracts which is the most efficient method for this group. Arboreal ants were collected by fogging (Andreas Floren & Jürgen Schmidl), by collecting branches and epiphytes from the canopy and by visual search on the Crane, Bubble, SolvinBretzel, ... and by hand collection of ants on branches clipped by climbers (Thierry Aubert, Noui Baiben, Stéphane Bechet, ...). Additional specimens were collected by other sampling protocols run simultaneously, such as pitfalls, Berlese, light traps, flight interception traps ... ran simultaneoulsy by other sampling programs.

Direct access to arboreal ant colonies was made possible thanks to the presence on site of the Solvin-Bretzel canopy raft, of the canopy bubble, of the Ikos and  of Fort Sherman canopy crane. Professional climbers  were also of great help to collect material.


We collected in various sites of San Lorenzo forest
to compare the diversity of arboreal and
ground-dwelling ants

canopy bubble (_3517KB -upside down!-)

Crane in San Lorenzo forest (_7685KB)


Many ants are collected with the fogging technique


Army-ants (Eciton burchelli)
Leaf-litter ants were collected from 1m² quadrats   Ants were extracted from the leaf-litter with a Winkler apparatus   Leaf-cutting ants (Atta)


Web pages hosted by the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences and maintained by Maurice Leponce and Yves Basset. Last update 30/01/2008.