Aphaenogaster

Shattuck, S. O., 2008, Australian ants of the genus Aphaenogaster (Hymenoptera: Formicidae)., Zootaxa 1677, pp. 25-45: 27-28

publication ID

21723

persistent identifier

http://treatment.plazi.org/id/673562BC-ADC9-6134-92A9-471A9EACC2FD

treatment provided by

Christiana

scientific name

Aphaenogaster
status

 

Aphaenogaster  HNS  Mayr

Diagnosis. Antennae 12 segmented (including the scape) with a 4 segmented club (Fig. 9). In side view the propodeum depressed below the level of the pronotum and anterior region of the mesonotum, these two regions being connected by the steeply sloping posterior section of the mesonotum (Fig. 2). Monomorphic.

Aphaenogaster  HNS  is most likely to be confused with Pheidole  HNS  or possibly Pheidologeton  HNS  . Workers of Aphaenogaster  HNS  can be separated from those of Pheidole  HNS  by the 4 segmented rather than 3 segmented club and the larger body size (over 3.4mm long), and from Pheidologeton  HNS  by the 12 segmented antennae (11 segmented in Pheidologeton  HNS  ). Additionally, both Pheidole  HNS  and Pheidologeton  HNS  have polymorphic workers while Aphaenogaster  HNS  is monomorphic.

The Australian species of Aphaenogaster  HNS  show differences which are little more than "variation on a theme." This is in contrast to the nearby Papua New Guinea fauna where morphological variation is considerable(Smith 1961). This difference suggests that the Australian fauna is composed of closely related species while that of PNG consists of several more distantly related lineages.

List of Australian species

barbara  HNS  sp. n. (Queensland)

barbigula Wheeler  HNS  (New South Wales, Queensland, South Australia, Victoria)

kimberleyensis  HNS  sp. n. (northern Northern Territory, northern Western Australia)

longiceps (Smith)  HNS  (ACT, New South Wales, southern Queensland, south-east South Australia, Victoria)

flava Emery  HNS  (new synonymy)

ruginota Forel  HNS 

mediterrae  HNS  sp. n. (western South Australia, southern Western Australia)

poultoni Crawley  HNS  (south-western Western Australia)

pythia Forel  HNS  (Queensland, PNG)

reichelae  HNS  sp. n. (northern Northern Territory)

Key to species of Australian Aphaenogaster  HNS  based on workers

1. Majority of hairs on venter of head located laterally and forming a distinct psammophore, only scattered hairs on central portion (Fig. 4) ................................................................................................................... 2

- Hairs on venter of head randomly distributed and not forming a distinct psammophore (Fig. 2)..............4

2 Eye relatively large (EI greater than 21, Fig. 19); scape relatively long (SI greater than 106, Fig. 20)........ ...................................................................................................................................................... mediterrae  HNS 

- Eye relatively small (EI less than 21, Fig. 19); scape relatively short (SI less than 106, Fig. 20)..............3

3. Petiolar node (in dorsal view) wider than long; mandibular sculpture composed of irregularly sized striations(Fig. 6) (occurring in Western Australia)................................................................................. poultoni  HNS 

- Petiolar node (in dorsal view) approximately square; mandibular sculpture composed of regularly sized striations (Fig. 5) (occurring in South Australia and eastward)...................................................... barbigula  HNS 

4. Posterior margin of head nearly flat in full face view, extending laterally of the occipital collar before passing through a distinct posterolateral corner into the lateral margin of the head (Fig. 15).................... 5

- Posterior margin of head broadly arched in full face view, the arch beginning at the occipital collar and with at most a weak angle separating the posterior and lateral margins of the head (often posterior and lateral margins forming a continuous surface) (Fig. 9) ................................................................................... 6

5. Scape relatively short (SI less than 125, Fig. 23) (occurring in e. Queensland and ne. New South Wales) ............................................................................................................................................................. pythia  HNS 

- Scape relatively long (SI greater than 135, Fig. 23) (occurring in Northern Territory) .................. reichelae  HNS 

6. Shorter erect hairs on mesosomal dorsum (especially those on mesonotum) with blunt tips; dorsal surfaces of propodeum and propodeal spines connected through a gentle concavity (so that the base of each spine is at approximately the same level as the dorsal surface of the propodeum) (Fig. 10).................. longiceps  HNS 

- Erect hairs on mesosomal dorsum tapering to sharp points; dorsal surfaces of propodeum and propodeal spines connected through a gentle concavity followed by a gentle convexity (so that the base of each spine is raised slightly above the dorsal surface of the propodeum) (Fig. 8)........................................................7

7. Head relatively narrow (Fig. 21), scape relatively long (Fig. 22) (occurring in n. Northern Territory and n. Western Australia).................................................................................................................. kimberleyensis  HNS 

- Head relatively broad (Fig. 21), scape relatively short (Fig. 22) (occurring in Queensland)........... barbara  HNS