Metapone emersoni

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Metapone emersoni
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Crematogastrini
Genus: Metapone
Species: M. emersoni
Binomial name
Metapone emersoni
Gregg, 1958

Metapone emersoni casent0003116 profile 1.jpg

Metapone emersoni casent0003116 dorsal 1.jpg

Specimen labels

Most often found in wet forest habitats, specimens have been collected from rotten logs and, for one nest, in a dead branch above the ground.


Lateral margins of raised median portion of clypeus markedly convergent anteriorly from the level of the antennal insertions. Petiolar dorsum from above approximately twice as wide as long. Postpetiolar sternite in profile view appearing as a long, slender process (Madagascar).

Keys including this Species


Latitudinal Distribution Pattern

Latitudinal Range: -18.79166667° to -24.77638889°.

Tropical South

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Malagasy Region: Madagascar (type locality).

Distribution based on AntMaps


Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb


Alpert (2007) - Gregg based his description on two workers found within a series of termites collected 12 miles from Perinet, Madagascar on June 28, 1935 by Harold Kirby. Kirby attached a locality code T-4503, his record label T specifying a collection of termites. Many of Kirby’s termite collections were later identified to species in a series of papers including Moszkowski’s 1955 paper on Malagasy termites. T-4503 however has never been listed as a locality code for Cryptotermes kirbyi, or any other termite, leaving in question the identification of the host termite for M. emersoni. One worker of M. emersoni has been collected subsequently from a more northern location, (Toamasina, P.N. Mantadia, 18°47’30”S, 48°25’36”E, 895m, rainforest, 25 Nov-1Dec 1998, coll. H.J. Ratsirarson, HJR020, CASENT0003116, CASC).

Large fallen log inhabited by M. emersoni, in southern Madagascar. Photo by Christian Peeters
Cryptotermes sp. inhabiting the same log as M. emersoni, in southern Madagascar. Photo by Christian Peeters)




A single queen assigned to M. emersoni was collected from the Andohahela Special Reserve (24°46’35”S, 45°42’19”E), in southern Madagascar (P. Rabeson, 4.II. 1993, MCZC). When M. emersoni is rediscovered and queens are collected in association with workers, then the status of this single queen can be confirmed.


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

  • emersoni. Metapone emersoni Gregg, R.E. 1958: 115, fig. 2 (w.) MADAGASCAR.
    • Type-material: holotype worker, 1 paratype worker.
    • Type-locality: holotype Madagascar: 12 mi. from Perinet, (H. Kirby); paratype with same data.
    • Type-depository: FMNH.
    • Status as species: Kusnezov, 1960a: 126; Bolton, 1995b: 258; Alpert, 2007: 10; Taylor & Alpert, 2016: 509 (redescription).
    • Distribution: Madagascar.

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


Taylor and Alpert (2016) - General and diagnostic features as illustrated and in key (note especially the entire anterior clypeal border without median denticles, anteriorly converging lateral clypeal margins, relatively very wide petiolar node, and extended postpetiolar sternite appearing spinous in lateral view). Eyes structured similarly to those of Metapone madagascarica but a little larger. Subpetiolar process more-or-less basic in structure, the posterior face triangular, subpetiolar angle obtuse in side view, without spinose extension. Subpetiolar extension lamellate, approximately semi-circular, its base about two-thirds as long as the subpetiolar edge.

Type Material

Taylor and Alpert (2016) - Worker. 12 miles from Perinet [18°55'S, 48°25'E], Madagascar.


References based on Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics

  • Fisher B. L. 1997. Biogeography and ecology of the ant fauna of Madagascar (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Journal of Natural History 31: 269-302.
  • Fisher B. L. 2003. Formicidae, ants. Pp. 811-819 in: Goodman, S. M.; Benstead, J. P. (eds.) 2003. The natural history of Madagascar. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, xxi + 1709 pp.
  • Gregg R. E. 1958. Two new species of Metapone from Madagascar (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Proceedings of the Entomological Society of Washington 60: 111-121.
  • Taylor R. W., and G. D. Alpert. 2016. The myrmicine ant genus Metapone Forel (Hymenoptera: Formicidae): a global taxonomic review with descriptions of twelve new species. Zootaxa 4105(6): 501-545.