Messor wasmanni

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Messor wasmanni
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Stenammini
Genus: Messor
Species group: instabilis
Species complex: wasmanni
Species: M. wasmanni
Binomial name
Messor wasmanni
Krausse, 1910

Messor wasmanni casent0106293 p 1 high.jpg

Messor wasmanni casent0106293 d 1 high.jpg

Specimen Labels

A grain harvesting species (Collingwood and Agosti 1996). This taxon belongs to a group of species widespread in the Middle East and Central Asia, where several to many still unreviewed forms occur. Its westernmost known range reaches Sardinia and Corsica. It is common in central and southern Italy, and in the Balkans (Rigato & Toni, 2011). In Greece it prefers open habitats of low and mid altitude. In Achaia, it was observed in a rural site of an urban area, along roadside with mediterranean bushes, in luminous young mixed forest, and pastures (Borowiec & Salata, 2021).


Collingwood and Agosti (1996) - HW 2.5-2.9; EL/HW 0.16-0.19. This species differs from Messor semirufus and related species by the shape of the pronotum which is mildly flattened dorsally and expanded laterally into a protuberant boss at each side. This is a constant and characteristic feature and most easily seen in slanted profile.

Keys including this Species


One of the commonest Greek ants, recorded from all provinces (Borowiec et al., 2022).

Latitudinal Distribution Pattern

Latitudinal Range: 45.916667° to 33.269861°.

Tropical South

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Palaearctic Region: Bulgaria, Croatia, Greece, Iran, Israel, Italy (type locality), Lebanon, Malta, Montenegro, Oman, North Macedonia, Romania, Slovenia, Syria, Türkiye.

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.


Association with Other Organisms

Explore-icon.png Explore: Show all Associate data or Search these data. See also a list of all data tables or learn how data is managed.


This species is a host for the fungus Rickia lenoirii (a pathogen).



Images from AntWeb

Messor wasmanni casent0179604 h 1 high.jpgMessor wasmanni casent0179604 p 1 high.jpgMessor wasmanni casent0179604 d 1 high.jpgMessor wasmanni casent0179604 l 1 high.jpg
Worker. Specimen code casent0179604. Photographer Erin Prado, uploaded by California Academy of Sciences. Owned by CAS, San Francisco, CA, USA.
Messor wasmanni casent0179605 h 1 high.jpgMessor wasmanni casent0179605 p 1 high.jpgMessor wasmanni casent0179605 d 1 high.jpgMessor wasmanni casent0179605 l 1 high.jpg
Worker. Specimen code casent0179605. Photographer Erin Prado, uploaded by California Academy of Sciences. Owned by CAS, San Francisco, CA, USA.
Messor wasmanni casent0179892 h 1 high.jpgMessor wasmanni casent0179892 p 1 high.jpgMessor wasmanni casent0179892 d 1 high.jpgMessor wasmanni casent0179892 l 1 high.jpg
Worker. Specimen code casent0179892. Photographer Erin Prado, uploaded by California Academy of Sciences. Owned by CAS, San Francisco, CA, USA.
Messor wasmanni casent0179893 h 1 high.jpgMessor wasmanni casent0179893 p 1 high.jpgMessor wasmanni casent0179893 d 1 high.jpgMessor wasmanni casent0179893 l 1 high.jpg
Worker. Specimen code casent0179893. Photographer Erin Prado, uploaded by California Academy of Sciences. Owned by CAS, San Francisco, CA, USA.
Messor wasmanni casent0281211 h 1 high.jpgMessor wasmanni casent0281211 d 1 high.jpgMessor wasmanni casent0281211 p 1 high.jpgMessor wasmanni casent0281211 l 1 high.jpg
Worker (major/soldier). Specimen code casent0281211. Photographer Estella Ortega, uploaded by California Academy of Sciences. Owned by CAS, San Francisco, CA, USA.


Images from AntWeb

Messor wasmanni casent0281210 h 1 high.jpgMessor wasmanni casent0281210 p 1 high.jpgMessor wasmanni casent0281210 p 2 high.jpgMessor wasmanni casent0281210 d 1 high.jpgMessor wasmanni casent0281210 l 1 high.jpg
Queen (alate/dealate). Specimen code casent0281210. Photographer Estella Ortega, uploaded by California Academy of Sciences. Owned by CAS, San Francisco, CA, USA.


Images from AntWeb

Messor wasmanni casent0281209 h 1 high.jpgMessor wasmanni casent0281209 p 1 high.jpgMessor wasmanni casent0281209 p 2 high.jpgMessor wasmanni casent0281209 p 3 high.jpgMessor wasmanni casent0281209 d 1 high.jpgMessor wasmanni casent0281209 l 1 high.jpg
Male (alate). Specimen code casent0281209. Photographer Cerise Chen, uploaded by California Academy of Sciences. Owned by CAS, San Francisco, CA, USA.


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

  • wasmanni. Messor barbarus subsp. wasmanni Krausse, 1910: 524 (in text) (w.) ITALY (Sardinia).
    • Type-material: syntype workers (number not stated).
    • Type-localities: Italy: Sardinia, Cagliari, Orisanto, Asuni, 1909 (A.H. Krausse-Heldrungen).
    • [Note: locality data from Krausse, 1911: 15.]
    • Type-depository: unknown.
    • [Also described as new by Krausse, 1911: 15.]
    • Finzi, 1929: 83 (q.); Finzi, 1933: 163 (m.).
    • As unavailable (infrasubspecific) name: Krausse, 1912b: 164; Emery, 1915a: 249; Emery, 1916b: 142; Santschi, 1917e: 90; Emery, 1921f: 71; Menozzi, 1921: 26; Emery, 1922c: 94.
    • Subspecies of barbarus: Emery, 1912f: 97.
    • Subspecies of semirufus: Santschi, 1927c: 230; Finzi, 1928c: 788; Finzi, 1929: 82; Finzi, 1930d: 312; Finzi, 1933: 163; Zimmermann, 1935: 17.
    • Subspecies of meridionalis: Bondroit, 1920b: 305; Baroni Urbani, 1964b: 30 (footnote); Baroni Urbani, 1969a: 331; Baroni Urbani, 1968b: 434; Baroni Urbani, 1971c: 59.
    • Junior synonym of semirufus: Bernard, 1967: 147; Baroni Urbani, 1974: 227.
    • Junior synonym of meridionalis: Collingwood, 1978: 68; Poldi, et al. 1995: 3.
    • Status as species: Casevitz-Weulersse, 1990b: 156 (in key); Collingwood, 1993b: 194; Bolton, 1995b: 258; Collingwood & Agosti, 1996: 322; Bračko, 2006: 137; Petrov, 2006: 92 (in key); Bračko, 2007: 17; Casevitz-Weulersse & Galkowski, 2009: 489; Karaman, M.G. 2011b: 40; Legakis, 2011: 11; Borowiec, L. & Salata, 2012: 516; Kiran & Karaman, 2012: 21; Borowiec, L. & Salata, 2013: 385 (in text); Borowiec, L. 2014: 114; Bračko, et al. 2014: 14; Lebas, et al. 2016: 300; Borowiec, L. & Salata, 2018: 6; Salata & Borowiec, 2018c: 46; Salata & Borowiec, 2019a: 66.
    • Distribution: Croatia, France (Corsica), Greece, Italy (Sardinia), Macedonia, Oman, Slovenia, Tunisia, Turkey.

A very common grain-harvesting ant found on all of the Greek islands, on the southern Balkan mainland, in South Italy and the Mediterranean islands of Corsica, Sardinia and Sicily but not in Malta or the Balearics. It has also been taken locally in Tunisia but its occurrence so far south as Oman is a surprise. However, Tohme (1968) and Tohme & Tohme (1981) recorded it as the synonym Messor concolor from Lebanon and Syria respectively. (Collingwood and Agosti 1996)


Type Material

Collingwood and Agosti (1996) - Specimens labelled M. concolor cotype in both the Oxford Hope Museum and the NHMB are confirmed as M. wasmanni, M concolor being a junior synonym.


References based on Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics

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