Hypoponera hebes

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Hypoponera hebes
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Ponerinae
Tribe: Ponerini
Genus: Hypoponera
Species: H. hebes
Binomial name
Hypoponera hebes
Bolton & Fisher, 2011

Hypoponera hebes P casent0226553.jpg

Hypoponera hebes D casent0226553.jpg

Specimen Label

Known only from the type material and an additional 2 series collected from the same area of Rwanda as the types.


Bolton and Fisher (2011) - The sculpture exhibited by this species is among the most strongly developed of the Hypoponera of the Afrotropical region. Among those species with cuticular ridges on the posterior surface of the petiole node, Hypoponera hebes is approached only by Hypoponera faex in terms of density and intensity of sculpturation, but the latter is larger (HL 0.88, HW 0.72), has well-developed eyes, and lacks the long, strongly differentiated, standing setae on the first gastral tergite that are so conspicuous in hebes. See also Hypoponera jeanneli.

A member of the abeillei group.

Keys including this Species


Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Afrotropical Region: Rwanda (type locality).

Distribution based on AntMaps


Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb


Hypoponera inhabit and nest in leaf litter, the surface layer of soil, downed rotten wood, and soil around plant roots. Nests are typically found by turning objects on the ground, like downed wood and rocks, or through the ripping away of bark found on rotting downed wood or at the base of dead trees. Litter samples in tropical areas, especially in moist forested sites, often contain individuals of this genus. All Hypoponera are thought to be predators of small arthropods but published details about their diet are sparse. A lack of information about other aspects of their biology is also typical for most species.

The genus is most diverse in the tropics. Species found in higher latitudes tend to be more widespread, common and abundant than their tropical and subtropical congeners.



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

  • hebes. Hypoponera hebes Bolton & Fisher, 2011: 56, figs. 49-51 (w.q.) RWANDA.

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



Measurements: HL 0.76–0.81 (0.78), HW 0.64–0.67 (0.64), HS 0.700–0.735 (0.710), SL 0.54–0.57 (0.56), PrW 0.48–0.53 (0.50), WL 1.04–1.16 (1.08), HFL 0.58–0.62 (0.58), PeNL 0.26–0.28 (0.27), PeH 0.52–0.54 (0.53), PeNW 0.40–0.43 (0.41), PeS 0.393–0.417 (0.403) (10 measured). Indices: CI 80–84 (82), SI 83–88 (88), PeNI 80–84 (84), LPeI 50–54 (51), DPeI 150–159 (150).

Eyes absent. In full-face view apex of scape, when laid straight back from its insertion, just fails to reach the midpoint of the posterior margin; SL/HL 0.67–0.72. Cephalic dorsum coarsely and very densely reticulate-punctate. Lateroventral surfaces of head completely covered with very coarse and conspicuous reticulate-punctate to punctate-rugulose sculpture, without discrete punctures separated by areas of smooth, shining cuticle. Side of pronotum, and pronotal dorsum except for midline, coarsely reticulate-punctate, very nearly as coarsely and densely sculptured as the head. Mesonotum conspicuously punctate dorsally; the propodeal dorsum with finer but more disorganised punctate sculpture that extends to the margin of the declivity. Metanotal groove absent on dorsum of mesosoma but a slight change of slope may be present between mesonotum and propodeum. In profile the anterior margination of the mesopleuron is distinctly angled behind base of anterior coxa, and the sclerite has superficial sculpture present on at least part of its surface. Propodeum narrowly and quite sharply marginate between declivity and sides. Posterior face of petiole node with a series of short cuticular ridges that arise from the base of the peduncle. Maximum width of first gastral tergite in dorsal view is greater than the width of the second tergite at its mid-length. Base of cinctus of second gastral tergite with short but distinct cross-ribs in dorsal view. Posttergite of second gastral segment, from posterior margin of cinctus to apex, about as broad as long. Disc of second gastral tergite with sharply incised scattered punctures that are separated by areas of smooth cuticle; distance between punctures distinctly greater than diameters of the punctures. Standing setae on dorsum of first gastral tergite numerous, long and erect, very clearly differentiated from the underlying pubescence; similar long setae present and numerous on second gastral tergite.

Holotype Specimen Labels

Type Material

Holotype worker (top specimen of three on pin), Rwanda: Rangiro, 1800 m., 6.viii.1973 (P. Werner) (Musee d'Histoire Naturelle Genève).

Paratypes. 22 workers and 1 dealate queen with same data as holotype (MHNG, The Natural History Museum, California Academy of Sciences).


  • Bolton, B. & Fisher, B.L. 2011. Taxonomy of Afrotropical and West Palaearctic ants of the ponerine genus Hypoponera Santschi. Zootaxa 2843: 1-118. PDF