Cardiocondyla israelica

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Cardiocondyla israelica
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Crematogastrini
Genus: Cardiocondyla
Species group: ulianini
Species: C. israelica
Binomial name
Cardiocondyla israelica
Seifert, 2003

Very little is known about this Middle Eastern species. Three samples from Egypt, provided by M.R. Sharaf, were collected from “a wild area with Tamarix bushes and Phragmites within a cultivated, insecticide polluted surrounding.” Nothing more is known.


Seifert (2003) - A member of the Cardiocondyla bulgarica group. Cardiocondyla israelica is in overall morphometry similar to Cardiocondyla ulianini and Cardiocondyla gallilaeica but can be separated in both workers and gynes by its much deeper, well-demarcated, and densely-packed vertex foveolae, the stronger longitudinal sculpture on head, and the longer tergite pubescence. Further diagnostic characters separating the gyne from Cardiocondyla bulgarica, Cardiocondyla persiana, and Cardiocondyla sahlbergi are the very low petiole ratios with PEW/CS 0.406, PEH/CS 0.406, PEW/PPW 0.568, and PEH/PPH 1.099.

Seifert (2023) - Cardiocondyla israelica can be separated from Cardiocondyla ulianini, Cardiocondyla gallilaeica, Cardiocondyla caspiense and Cardiocondyla littoralis by its deeper, well-demarcated and densely-packed vertex foveolae and the stronger longitudinal sculpture on head and is placed apart from these species by exploratory data analyses of NUMOBAT characters.

Keys including this Species


So far only known from five localities in Egypt and Israel in a small area from 31°E to 36°E and 28° N to 31° N. The altitudinal range extends between 346 m below sea level and 378 m above sea level (Seifert, 2023).

Latitudinal Distribution Pattern

Latitudinal Range: 30.93333333° to 28.333333°.

Tropical South

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Palaearctic Region: Egypt, Israel (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.




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

  • israelica. Cardiocondyla israelica Seifert, 2003a: 231, fig. 12 (w.q.) EGYPT, ISRAEL.
    • Type-material: holotype worker, 7 paratype workers, 1 paratype queen.
    • Type-locality: holotype Egypt: Tor (Sinai), 25.ii.1935 (W. Wittmer); paratypes: 1 worker with same data, 1 worker Israel: Neot Hakikar, 21.iii.1980 (J. Kugler), 1 queen Israel: Ein Agrabim, 22.iii.1980 (J. Kugler), 5 workers Egypt: Ebn Salam Mansora, 30.56°N, 31.31°E, 7.xi.2002, nos 23, 27, 28 (M.R. Sharaf).
    • Type-depositories: MCZC (holotype); MCZC, SMNG (paratypes).
    • Status as species: Vonshak, et al. 2009: 41; Borowiec, L. 2014: 47.
    • Distribution: Egypt, Israel.

Type Material

The holotype and paratype workers from Tor (Sinai), leg. W. Wittmer 1935.02.25 were formerly labelled as syntypes of Cardiocondyla elegans var. torretassoi Finzi, 1936. However, after lectotype fixation for Cardiocondyla torretassoi (=Cardiocondyla nigra) in the syntype series from Wadi Hoff, which definitely belongs to a separate species, this sample is available to serve as types of C. israelica. (Seifert, 2023)



Occiput slightly excavated. Vertex foveolae relatively deep and well-demarcated, bicoronate, densely-packed, interspaces much smaller than foveolar diameter. Median area of vertex longitudinally carinulate-rugulose. Median area of clypeus smooth, its lateral portions weakly longitudinally carinulate. Dorsal area of promesonotum varying from almost smooth to longitudinally carinulate-rugulose. Lateral area of mesosoma and propodeum with well-developed micro reticulum, metapleuron longitudinally carinulate-rugulose. Dorsal area of postpetiole and median area of petiolar node smooth, lateral area of petiole microreticulate. Spines rather thin and erected, spine axis in lateral view deviating 45° from longitudinal mesosomal axis; spine bases much approached, SPBA/CS 0.221. Metanotal groove deep but with shallow anterior and posterior slopes. Petiole very narrow, PEW/CS 0.285, its node as wide as long. Anteroventral petiolar dent reduced, in the Tor specimens entirely lacking, in the Neot Hakikar specimen reduced to shallow obtusely-angled (130°) protrusion. Postpetiolar sternite with weak anteromedian bulge. Anterior profile of petiole node relative to dorsal profile of peduncle steeper than in C. sahlbergi and Cardiocondyla elegans. Pubescence on gaster tergites relatively long and dense. Rather concolorous medium brown with yellowish tinge.


Rather large, CS 637. Head short, CL/CW 1.120. Postocular index relatively large, PoOC/CL 0.430. Sculpture stronger than in related species. Vertex sculpture in overall impression approaching the condition in Cardiocondyla koshewnikovi: deep, irregular, mostly bicoronate foveolae, whose lateral demarcations are supported by longitudinal rugosity. Frontal lobes, periphery of frontal triangle, and narrow median stripe of vertex longitudinally carinulate. Lateral area of pro not urn, anepi sternit, meso- and metapleuron with well-expressed longitudinal carinulae. Mesonotum longitudinally carinulate-rugulose; the interspaces with scattered foveolae. Propodeal spines rather thin and with low-level origin (base centre at 57 % of metapleural-scutellomesonotal height span). Petiolar and postpetiolar nodes entirely smooth. Petiole narrow, PEW/CS 0.406. Postpetiole with rather strong anteroventral process; in dorsal view, with slightly concave anterior margin. Petiole node 1.5x as wide as long. Whole body concolourous medium to dark brown.


References based on Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics

  • Borowiec L. 2014. Catalogue of ants of Europe, the Mediterranean Basin and adjacent regions (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Genus (Wroclaw) 25(1-2): 1-340.
  • Seifert B. 2003. The ant genus Cardiocondyla (Insecta: Hymenoptera: Formicidae) - a taxonomic revision of the C. elegans, C. bulgarica, C. batesii, C. nuda, C. shuckardi, C. stambuloffii, C. wroughtonii, C. emeryi, and C. minutior species groups. Annalen des Naturhistorischen Museums in Wien. B, Botanik, Zoologie 104: 203-338.
  • Seifert, B.. "The ant genus Cardiocondyla (Insecta: Hymenoptera: Formicidae) - a taxonomic revision of the C. elegans, C. bulgarica. C. batesii, C. nuda, C. shuckardi, C. stambuloffii, C. wroughtonii, C. emeryi, and C. minutior species groups." Ann. Naturhist. Mus. Wien 104B (2003): 203-338.
  • Vonshak M., and A. Ionescu-Hirsch. 2009. A checklist of the ants of Israel (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Israel Journal of Entomology 39: 33-55.