Anochetus grandidieri

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Anochetus grandidieri
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Ponerinae
Tribe: Ponerini
Genus: Anochetus
Species: A. grandidieri
Binomial name
Anochetus grandidieri
Forel, 1891

Anochetus grandidieri casent0005965 profile 1.jpg

Anochetus grandidieri casent0005965 dorsal 1.jpg

Specimen labels


A common and widespread Anochetus within Madagascar.


Fisher and Smith (2008) - The species is most similar to Anochetus madagascarensis but can be easily distinguished by its small eyes and scape that does not surpass the occipital lobe. A. madagascarensis has large eyes (0.24–0.26 mm), and scapes that surpass occipital lobes.

Keys including this Species


Latitudinal Distribution Pattern

Latitudinal Range: -12.48332977° to -18.0264°.

Tropical South

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Afrotropical Region: Uganda.
Malagasy Region: Madagascar (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.



Fisher and Smith (2008) - Widespread throughout Madagascar in forest and shrubland habitats below 1,550 m elevation (Fig 4b). It has been collected in gallery, dry, littoral, lowland, and montane forest, in desert spiny bush thicket in the southwest, and Uapaca woodland in the central plateau. As in many soil dwelling ants, A. grandidieri has reduced eyes (EL/HW 0.11–0.13) and short scapes. A. grandidieri is the only Anochetus in Madagascar with these soil nesting modifications. The subterranean habitat of this species may allow it to survive in a wide range of habitats in Madagascar from desert to woodland to montane forest. Out of 453 collecting events, A. grandidieri was most often recorded in sifted litter (97 collection records), rotten logs (96), and Malaise traps (155).






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

  • grandidieri. Anochetus grandidieri Forel, 1891b: 108, pl. 3, fig. 9 (w.) MADAGASCAR.
    • Type-material: lectotype worker (by designation of Fisher & Smith, 2008: 8).
    • Type-locality: Madagascar: forest of east coast (M. Humblot).
    • Type-depository: MHNG.
    • Fisher & Smith, 2008: 10 (q.m.).
    • Status as species: Dalla Torre, 1893: 48; Emery, 1911d: 109; Wheeler, W.M. 1922a: 791, 1013; Brown, 1978c: 557, 606; Bolton, 1995b: 64; Fisher & Smith, 2008: 8 (redescription).
    • Senior synonym of madecassus: Brown, 1978c: 557; Bolton, 1995b: 64; Fisher & Smith, 2008: 8.
    • Distribution: Madagascar.
  • madecassus. Anochetus madecassus Santschi, 1928d: 54 (q.) MADAGASCAR.
    • Type-material: lectotype queen (by designation of Fisher & Smith, 2008: 8).
    • Type-locality: Madagascar: Nossi-Bé (Descarpentries).
    • Type-depository: NHMB.
    • Junior synonym of grandidieri: Brown, 1978c: 557; Bolton, 1995b: 65; Fisher & Smith, 2008: 8.

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



Fisher and Smith (2008) - Measurements: maximum and minimum based on all specimens, n = 20. HL 0.79–1.19, HW 0.71–1.06, CI 85–95, EL 0.08–0.13, ML 0.33–0.57, MI 41–54, SL 0.57–0.88, SI 78–86, WL 0.87–1.35, FL 0.57–0.90, PW 0.44–0.62.

Inner blade of mandible without teeth and denticles; apical end of inner blade without a notched semicircular concavity. Eyes small (0.05–0.11 mm), projecting dorsolaterally. In full face view, antennal scape usually not reaching, and not surpassing posterior margin of occipital lobe. Dorsal surface of head with numerous short setae.


Fisher and Smith (2008) - Measurements: maximum and minimum based on n = 5. HL 0.88–1.15, HW 0.81–1.07, CI 92–96, EL 0.17–0.23, ML 0.39–0.56, MI 44–49, SL 0.62–0.87, SI 77–81, WL 1.08–1.46. FL 0.68–0.96, PW 0.60–0.78.

Very similar to workers, only slightly larger than respective size class (Figs 3e–h). Ergatoid queens not recorded.


Fisher and Smith (2008) - Measurements: maximum and minimum based on n = 5 from Madagascar: HL 0.58–0.73, HW 0.78–0.94, CI 129–135, EL 0.37–0.46, SL 0.10–0.15, SI 13–16, WL 1.17–1.52, FL 0.78–1.08

Type Material

Fisher and Smith (2008):

Anochetus grandidieri. Lectotype: worker, Madagascar, Forest of the east coast (M. Humblot) (Musee d'Histoire Naturelle Genève), present designation [examined], AntWeb CASENT0101819.

Anochetus madecassus Santschi, 1928: 54. Lectotype: dealate queen, Madagascar, Nossi-Bé (Descarpentries) (Naturhistorisches Museum, Basel) Lectotype by present designation [examined] AntWeb CASENT0101098.


References based on Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics

  • Brown Jr., W.L. 1978. Contributions toward a reclassification of the Formicidae. Part VI. Ponerinae, Tribe Ponerini, Subtribe Odontomachiti, Section B. Genus Anochetus and Bibliography. Studia Entomologia 20(1-4): 549-XXX
  • Brown W.L. Jr. 1978. Contributions toward a reclassification of the Formicidae. Part VI. Ponerinae, tribe Ponerini, subtribe Odontomachiti. Section B. Genus Anochetus and bibliography. Studia Ent. 20(1-4): 549-638.
  • CSIRO Collection
  • Emery C. 1911. Hymenoptera. Fam. Formicidae. Subfam. Ponerinae. Genera Insectorum 118: 1-125.
  • Fisher B. L. 1996. Ant diversity patterns along an elevational gradient in the Réserve Naturelle Intégrale d'Andringitra, Madagascar. Fieldiana Zoology (n.s.)85: 93-108
  • Fisher B. L. 1997. Biogeography and ecology of the ant fauna of Madagascar (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Journal of Natural History 31: 269-302.
  • Fisher B. L. 1998. Ant diversity patterns along an elevational gradient in the Réserve Spéciale d'Anjanaharibe-Sud and on the western Masoala Peninsula, Madagascar. Fieldiana Zoology (n.s.)90: 39-67.
  • Fisher B. L. 1999. Ant diversity patterns along an elevational gradient in the Réserve Naturelle Intégrale d'Andohahela, Madagascar. Fieldiana Zoology (n.s.)94: 129-147
  • Fisher B. L. 2003. Formicidae, ants. Pp. 811-819 in: Goodman, S. M.; Benstead, J. P. (eds.) 2003. The natural history of Madagascar. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, xxi + 1709 pp.
  • Fisher B. L., and M. A. Smith. 2008. A revision of Malagasy species of Anochetus Mayr and Odontomachus Latreille (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). PLoS ONE 3(5): e1787. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0001787
  • Fisher, B. 2002. Ant diversity patterns along an elevational gradient in the Reserve Speciale de Manongarivo, Madagascar. in Gautier, L. and S.M. Goodman, editors, Inventaire Florestique et Faunistique de la Reserve Speciale de Manongarivo (NW Madagascar)
  • Goodman S., Y. Anbdou, Y. Andriamiarantsoa, B. L. Fisher, O. Griffiths, B. Keitt, J. J. Rafanomezantsoa, E. Rajoelison, J. C. Rakotonirina, L. Ranaivoarisoa et al. 2017. Results of a biological inventory of the Nosy Ankao island group, Parc National de Loky-Manambato, northeastern Madagascar. Malagasy Nature, Association Vahatra, 2017, 11, <>
  • Rakotonirina J. C. 2010. Survey of leaf litter ant species and assessment of invasive ants in the mining sites at Ambatovy, Madagascar. In Biodiversity, exploration, and conservation of the natural habitats associated with the Ambatovy project, eds. S. M. Goodman & V. Mass. Malagasy Nature, 3: 77-91.
  • Ravelomanana A., and B. L. Fisher. 2013. Diversity of ants in burned and unburned grassland , and dry deciduous forest in the Beanka Reserve, Melaky Region, western Madagascar. Malagasy Nature 7: 171-183.
  • Santschi F. 1928. Descriptions de nouvelles fourmis éthiopiennes (quatrième note). Revue de Zoologie et de Botanique Africaines. 16: 54-69.