Mayriella transfuga

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Mayriella transfuga
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Crematogastrini
Genus: Mayriella
Species: M. transfuga
Binomial name
Mayriella transfuga
Baroni Urbani, 1977

Mayriella transfuga casent0172447 profile 1.jpg

Mayriella transfuga casent0172447 dorsal 1.jpg

Specimen labels

M. transfuga was described by Baroni Urbani (1977) from material collected in Bhutan and Nepal. It is now known to occur much more widely, being found from Nepal and India east to Hong Kong and the Philippines and south to Borneo and Java, Indonesia. The majority of records are from primary and secondary rainforests where workers have been found foraging in leaf litter or nesting in soil.


This taxon can be separated from other species in the genus by the presence of well developed sculpturing in the posterior section of the scrobe, the large, closely spaced pits on the mesosomal dorsum, the parallel lateral surfaces of the postpetiole, the strongly angular petiolar node and the relatively long propodeal spines (length greater than 1.5 times the width of their bases). It is most similar to Mayriella granulata but can be separated based on the longer and narrower propodeal spines. (Shattuck and Barnett 2007)


Latitudinal Distribution Pattern

Latitudinal Range: 32.628611° to -5.066666667°.

Tropical South

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Indo-Australian Region: Borneo, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore.
Oriental Region: Bhutan, India, Laos, Nepal (type locality), Thailand.
Palaearctic Region: China.

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.


Species of Mayriella show strong preference for moist, forested areas. Most specimens have been collected from rainforest or wet sclerophyll woodlands with relatively few collections from dry sclerophyll or scrub habitats (and these are restricted to Australia). Nests are normally found in soil under stones or with a small mound of loose dirt at the entrance. They have also been found nesting in rotten logs and occasionally arboreally. The number of workers in nests averages between 50 and 100 and about one-half of the nest series containing queens contain more than one, suggesting that species are polygynous. Foraging workers are most commonly collected from litter samples. Nests appear to be locally abundant although patchily distributed on a larger scale. For example, in the Brindabella Ranges near Canberra, ACT, Mayriella ebbei is infrequently encountered and is known from only a few localities. However, near Baroomba Rocks (located on the eastern slope of the Brindabella Ranges) M. ebbei occurs commonly under rocks in an area covering several hundred square meters. This population appears limited to this small area as nests could not be found in areas with similar geography and vegetation located several kilometers away. However, observations are limited and additional data will be required to determine if these habits are widespread and/or occur in other species. Additionally, while Taylor (1961) made similar observations for Mayriella abstinens, these were based on the introduced population found in New Zealand and should be confirmed for naturally occurring populations of the genus. (Shattuck and Barnett 2007)



. Owned by Museum of Comparative Zoology.


Images from AntWeb

Mayriella transfuga casent0172446 head 1.jpgMayriella transfuga casent0172446 profile 1.jpgMayriella transfuga casent0172446 dorsal 1.jpgMayriella transfuga casent0172446 label 1.jpg
Queen (alate/dealate). Specimen code casent0172446. Photographer April Nobile, uploaded by California Academy of Sciences. Owned by ANIC, Canberra, Australia.


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

  • transfuga. Mayriella transfuga Baroni Urbani, 1977a: 411, figs. 1, 2 (w.) NEPAL, BHUTAN.
    • Type-material: holotype worker, 8 paratype workers.
    • Type-locality: holotype Nepal: Terai Dist., 6 km. NW Narainghat, 250 m., (C. Baroni Urbani); paratypes with same data.
    • Type-depositories: NHMB (holotype); BMNH, NHMB (paratypes).
    • Status as species: Bolton, 1995b: 249; Zhou, 2001b: 97; Shattuck & Barnett, 2007: 449 (redescription); Pfeiffer, et al. 2011: 47; Guénard & Dunn, 2012: 44; Bharti, Guénard, et al. 2016: 38; Jaitrong, Guénard, et al. 2016: 36.
    • Distribution: Bhutan, China, India, Indonesia (Kalimantan), Laos, Malaysia (Peninsula, Sabah, Sarawak), Nepal, Philippines (Luzon), Singapore, Thailand.

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



Shattuck and Barnett (2007) - Sculpturing in posterior section of antennal scrobe well developed and distinct; sculpturing on dorsal surface of mesosoma consisting of large, closely spaced pits; propodeal spines relatively long and thin; dorsal surface of petiole in lateral profile uniformly convex, without distinct dorsal and posterior faces and forming a sharp angle with the anterior face; in dorsal view, postpetiole with the anterior and posterior regions approximately the same width (the region connecting them either flat or weakly convex); postpetiole and gaster lacking erect hairs dorsally.

Measurements. Worker (n = 10) - CI 0.95-1.01; HL 0.40-0.46; HTL 0.20-0.23; HW 0.39- 0.45; ML 0.41-0.47; PW 0.28-0.35; SI 0.49-0.61; SL 0.22-0.25.


References based on Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics

  • Bharti H., Y. P. Sharma, M. Bharti, and M. Pfeiffer. 2013. Ant species richness, endemicity and functional groups, along an elevational gradient in the Himalayas. Asian Myrmecology 5: 79-101.
  • CSIRO Collection
  • Guénard B., and R. R. Dunn. 2012. A checklist of the ants of China. Zootaxa 3558: 1-77.
  • Huang Jian-hua, Zhou Shan-yi. 2007. A checklist of family Formicidae of China - Myrmicinae (Part II) (Insecta: Hymenoptera). Journal of Guangxi Normal University : Natural Science Edition 25(1): 91-99.
  • Jaitrong W., B. Guenard, E. P. Economo, N. Buddhakala, and S. Yamane. 2016. A checklist of known ant species of Laos (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Asian Myrmecology 8: 1-32. DOI: 10.20362/am.008019
  • Li Z.h. 2006. List of Chinese Insects. Volume 4. Sun Yat-sen University Press
  • Pfeiffer M.; Mezger, D.; Hosoishi, S.; Bakhtiar, E. Y.; Kohout, R. J. 2011. The Formicidae of Borneo (Insecta: Hymenoptera): a preliminary species list. Asian Myrmecology 4:9-58
  • Shattuck S. O., N. J. Barnett. 2007. Revision of the ant genus Mayriella. Memoirs of the American Entomological Institute 80: 437-458.
  • Taylor R. W. 1991. Nomenclature and distribution of some Australasian ants of the Myrmicinae (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Memoirs of the Queensland Museum 30: 599-614.
  • Tian M., L. Deharveng, A. Bedos, Y. Li, Z. Xue, B. Feng, and G. Wei. 2011, Advances of cave biodiversity survey: a result based mainly on invertebrates. Proceedings of the 17th National Congress of Speleology, Yinshuidong, Hubei, 1-3 Nov 20111, p 149-163.
  • Woodcock P., D. P. Edwards, R. J. Newton, C. Vun Khen, S. H. Bottrell, and K. C. Hamer. 2013. Impacts of Intensive Logging on the Trophic Organisation of Ant Communities in a Biodiversity Hotspot. PLoS ONE 8(4): e60756. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0060756
  • Woodcock P., D. P. Edwards, T. M. Fayle, R. J. Newton, C. Vun Khen, S. H. Bottrell, and K. C. Hamer. 2011. The conservation value of South East Asia's highly degraded forests: evidence from leaf-litter ants. Phil. Trans. R. Soc. B. 366: 3256-3264.