Leptogenys suarensis

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Leptogenys suarensis
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Ponerinae
Tribe: Ponerini
Genus: Leptogenys
Species: L. suarensis
Binomial name
Leptogenys suarensis
Emery, 1895

Leptogenys suarensis casent0102014 p 1 high.jpg

Leptogenys suarensis casent0102014 d 1 high.jpg

Specimen Labels

Leptogenys suarensis occurs generally in the dry forests and littoral habitats in the north of Madagascar. It is also known from the humid forest of Binara near Daraina.


A member of the imerinensis complex of the incisa species group. Rakotonirina and Fisher (2014) - Worker. Three to four peg-like setae present near anterior margin of median lobe of clypeus; median longitudinal clypeal carina sharp; translucent lamella of clypeus usually broadly rounded; antennal scape relatively short (SI: 101–108), less than apical fourth portion extending beyond posterior margin of head; in dorsal view, mesosoma apparently of four visible segments, with an additional suture present between metanotal groove and propodeum; mandible generally smooth and shiny between sparse piligerous punctures.

Leptogenys suarensis and Leptogenys gracilis are morphologically similar to each other, but see L. gracilis identification. Leptogenys suarensis is one of the smallest species within the incisa group and presents a variety of morphological traits.

Keys including this Species


Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Malagasy Region: Madagascar (type locality).

Distribution based on AntMaps


Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb


The Leptogenys genus page has more details about the general biology of ants in this genus. The following synopsis provided by Rakotonirina and Fisher (2014) offers an overview of the Malagasy Leptogenys: Recent surveys of arthropods in the Malagasy region uncovered a wealth of new species and showed that Leptogenys is one of the dominant ponerine ants widely distributed across all types of forest habitats. Workers are usually found foraging on the forest floor or in the leaf litter and only rarely on vegetation. They nest terrestrially under the soil, rocks, logs, or rootmat ground layers and in rotten logs, branches, in rotting bamboo, and rotten tree stumps. Most of the Malagasy species are endemic to Madagascar. In all Malagasy species, winged queens are absent, which limits their ability to disperse across the complex topography and various ecological barriers in the region. In the absence of alate queens, reproduction of Leptogenys in the region may be by fission, which enhances population viscosity and may result in important morphological variation across a species' geographic range. Though queens do not fly, males of Leptogenys are alate and are one of the most frequently collected ant genera in Malaise traps throughout Madagascar. Leptogenys exhibits a wide range of phenotypic diversity segregated both among spatially isolated habitats and along continuous environmental gradients.



The following information is derived from Barry Bolton's New General Catalogue, a catalogue of the world's ants.

  • suarensis. Leptogenys incisa subsp. suarensis Emery, 1895f: 338 (w.) MADAGASCAR. Junior synonym of incisa: Bolton, 1975a: 298. Revived from synonymy: Rakotonirina & Fisher, 2014: 99. Raised to species: Rakotonirina & Fisher, 2014: 99.

Unless otherwise noted the text for the remainder of this section is reported from the publication that includes the original description.



Rakotonirina and Fisher (2014) - (9 specimens). HW: 1.09–1.47, HL: 1.27–1.62, CI: 86–95, SL: 1.16–1.57, SI: 101–108, PW: 0.86–1.14, WL: 2.20–2.77, PNH: 0.68–0.81, PNL: 0.73–0.89, PNW: 0.65–0.82, DNI: 86–97, LNI: 90–99.

Head subrectangular, slightly longer than broad; sides feebly convex and gradually diverging towards base of mandible; posterior cephalic margin more or less straight. Eye large and protruding from head surface, maximum diameter twice as great as maximum width of scape; in full-face view, portion of eye extending beyond outline of lateral cephalic border. Antennal scape relatively short, less than one fourth its length surpassing posterior margin of head. Clypeus broadly angular, usually with short, rounded, anteromedian lobe fringed by broadly rounded translucent lamella; three to four peg-like setae projecting anteriorly from above lamella near median margin of lobe; median longitudinal carina sharp. Mandible long and slender; blades broadly concave; basal groove vestigial and preapical tooth or denticle mostly absent. Hypostomal teeth not visible with cephalic full-face view. With mesosoma in dorsal view, metanotal groove curved with an additional suture present between groove and propodeum; groove with transverse striation; in side view, propodeum generally short and high. With petiole in profile, node either as broad as high or broader than high, and inclined anteriorly; with shorter anterior face and anteriorly sloping posterior face rounding to generally convex dorsal margin. Constriction between third and fourth abdominal segments weak. Mandible mostly smooth and shining between sparse punctures. Body sculpture densely and finely reticulate-punctate to densely and finely reticulate-rugose; propodeal declivity with transverse rugulae. Third and anterior half of fourth abdominal tergites with dense, shallow punctures which become shallower at posterior half of fourth abdominal tergite. Standing, yellowish, long and slender hairs present and pubescence quite abundant. Black species with bluish reflection or opalescence in some specimens.

Type Material

Rakotonirina and Fisher (2014) - Lectotype worker, present designation, Madagascar, Diego Suarez, 1893 (Alluaud) (Museo Civico di Storia Naturale, Genoa), AntWeb CASENT0102014. Paralectotype worker, with same data as lectotype but specimen coded as CASENT0280591 (MSNG) [examined].