Mesostruma spinosa

Every Ant Tells a Story - And Scientists Explain Their Stories Here
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Mesostruma spinosa
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Attini
Genus: Mesostruma
Species: M. spinosa
Binomial name
Mesostruma spinosa
Shattuck, 2007

This species, together with Mesostruma inornata and Mesostruma loweryi, have only been collected once. Only one species, Mesostruma eccentrica, is at all common in Western Australia, having been collected over 10 times. It is likely that additional species remain to be discovered in this part of Australia. The single known specimen of M. spinosa was collected from a pitfall trap. Ants in the genus Mesostruma are uncommon and form small colonies in soil, usually under or between rocks. They are predacious, foraging primarily on the ground in leaf litter but also occasionally on low vegetation. Roughly half the species have only been collected once. The remainder of the species are not well known either, at least in terms of the number of collections and what is known regarding their biology.


Mesostruma spinosa can be separated from all other known species in this genus by the presence of distinct, elongate propodeal spines, the lack of broad propodeal lamellae and the narrower head (CI = 81, CI is greater than 88 in the other known species). There is little chance it will be confused with any other species.

Keys including this Species


Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Australasian Region: Australia (type locality).

Distribution based on AntMaps


Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb




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

  • spinosa. Mesostruma spinosa Shattuck, 2007: 51, figs. 9-12 (w.) AUSTRALIA.

Type Material



Holotype. TL 2.9, HL 0.69, HW 0.56, CI 81, MandL 0.21, MandI 30, SL 0.41, SI 73, PW 0.40, ML 0.77. In dorsal view the anterolateral corners of pronotum rounded. Dorsum of mesosoma with scattered, shallow foveolate punctures spaced more than their width apart, the area between punctures smooth and lacking sculpturing. Propodeum armed with elongate spines, propodeal lamellae reduced to thin bands and essentially absent. Sculpturing on metapleural gland bulb consisting of indistinct rugae and punctures. Lateral surfaces of postpetiole rounded. First gastral segment immediately posterior of postpetiole smooth. Body colour yellow-red with light infuscation on dorsum of head above eyes, clypeus and first gastral tergite.