Aenictus acerbus

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Aenictus acerbus
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Dorylinae
Genus: Aenictus
Species: A. acerbus
Binomial name
Aenictus acerbus
Shattuck, 2008

Aenictus acerbus side view Aenictus acerbus top view Specimen labels

This rare species is known from a limited number of collections in the Kimberley region of Western Australia, northern Northern Territory and on Cape York Peninsula, Queensland. All specimens were collection from pitfall traps or pan traps.


A member of the ceylonicus group. Head capsule entirely smooth and essentially uniformly coloured; scape relatively short (scape index < 91); sculpturing on pronotum extending posteriorly onto the main pronotal body; body larger (head width > 0.62mm). This species is morphologically similar to A. turneri but can be separated from it by its larger size and more extensive sculpturing on the pronotum.

Head length-Head width measurements Scape length-Head width measurements

Keys including this Species


Latitudinal Distribution Pattern

Latitudinal Range: -12.71667° to -14.41666698°.

Tropical South

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Australasian Region: Australia (type locality).

Distribution based on AntMaps


Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb

Countries Occupied

Number of countries occupied by this species based on AntWiki Regional Taxon Lists. In general, fewer countries occupied indicates a narrower range, while more countries indicates a more widespread species.

Estimated Abundance

Relative abundance based on number of AntMaps records per species (this species within the purple bar). Fewer records (to the left) indicates a less abundant/encountered species while more records (to the right) indicates more abundant/encountered species.


Known only from the worker caste.


The following information is derived from Barry Bolton's Online Catalogue of the Ants of the World.

  • acerbus. Aenictus acerbus Shattuck, 2008c: 4, figs. 1-3, 7, 8, 24 (w.) AUSTRALIA (Queensland, Northern Territory, Western Australia).
    • Type-material: holotype worker, 2 paratype workers.
    • Type-locality: holotype Australia: Queensland, 9 km. ENE Mt Tozer, 12°43’S, 143°17’E, 5-10.vii.1986, ex pan traps (J.C. Cardale); paratypes with same data.
    • Type-depository: ANIC.
    • Distribution: Australia.

Type Material


Mandible narrow and subtriangular, with a large apical tooth and a smaller subapical tooth followed by 4–6 small teeth and a larger basal tooth; anterior clypeal border varying from weakly convex to weakly concave, located at or slightly posterior to anterior margin of frontal lobes in full face view; parafrontal ridges absent; subpetiolar process a large rectangular to elongate-rectangular projection; head entirely smooth, pronotum with weak, closely spaced punctures dorsally and anteriorly, smooth posterolaterally, remainder of mesosoma finely punctate with weak longitudinal rugae on lateral surfaces; body yellowred to light red-brown.

Measurements. Worker (n = 13) - CI 88–97; HL 0.66–0.73; MTL 0.59–0.67; HW 0.62–0.66; ML 1.07–1.17; SI 81–91; SL 0.53–0.58.


References based on Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics

  • CSIRO Collection
  • Shattuck, S. O. 2008. Review of the ant genus Aenictus (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) in Australia with notes on A. ceylonicus (Mayr). Zootaxa 1926:1-19.