Data from: X-ray microtomography for ant taxonomy: an exploration and case study with two new Terataner (Hymenoptera, Formicidae, Myrmicinae) species from Madagascar
Hita Garcia, Francisco et al. (2017), Data from: X-ray microtomography for ant taxonomy: an exploration and case study with two new Terataner (Hymenoptera, Formicidae, Myrmicinae) species from Madagascar, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.sk6s0
We explore the potential of x-ray micro computed tomography (μCT) for the field of ant taxonomy by using it to enhance the descriptions of two remarkable new species of the ant genus Terataner: T. balrog sp. n. and T. nymeria sp. n.. We provide an illustrated worker-based species identification key for all species found on Madagascar, as well as detailed taxonomic descriptions, which include diagnoses, discussions, measurements, natural history data, high-quality montage images and distribution maps for both new species. In addition to conventional morphological examination, we have used virtual reconstructions based on volumetric μCT scanning data for the species descriptions. We also include 3D PDFs, still images of virtual reconstructions, and 3D rotation videos for both holotype workers and one paratype queen. The complete μCT datasets have been made available online (Dryad, https://datadryad.org) and represent the first cybertypes in ants (and insects). We discuss the potential of μCT scanning and critically assess the usefulness of cybertypes for ant taxonomy.
National Science Foundation, Award: DEB-0072713, DEB-0344731, DEB-0842395