Metapone greeni

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Metapone greeni
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Crematogastrini
Genus: Metapone
Species: M. greeni
Binomial name
Metapone greeni
Forel, 1911



Forel's description of Metapone greeni, the type species of the genus, included a quote from the type series collector (E.E. Green) that the ants were found in “galleries in a decayed branch, which was also infested by two species of termites”.


Subpetiolar extension relatively large, longitudinally subrectangular with minutely rounded corners; its base almost as long as the ventral subpetiolar edge. (Sri Lanka, gyne & worker—Figs 16–27)

Keys including this Species


Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Oriental Region: Sri Lanka (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.

  • greeni. Metapone greeni Forel, 1911h: 449, pl. 14, figs. 1-10 (w.q.m.l.) SRI LANKA. See also: Emery, 1912b: 95; Wheeler, W.M. 1919h: 179; Wheeler, G.C. & Wheeler, J. 1953d: 186. Senior synonym of johni: Taylor & Alpert, 2016: 513.
  • johni. Metapone johni Karavaiev, 1933b: 115, fig. 10 (w.q.m.) SRI LANKA. Junior synonym of greeni: Taylor & Alpert, 2016: 513.

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

Taylor & Alpert (2016): We have seen 4 pins of M. greeni types from MHNG, a pin of two workers from MCZC and a single worker from USNMNH. All carry Forel’s distinctive handwritten multi-folded thin paper labels and his characteristic red printed “Typus” tags. The first MHNG pin has 3 workers. The topmost is the largest specimen examined. It is here designated lectotype (so labelled). The second pin has 3 small workers; the topmost being the smallest examined. A male lacking wings, and the dealate gyne depicted in Figs 21–23 are separately pinned. All appropriate specimens are here designated paralectotypes and so labelled. The worker specimen illustrated (Figs 16–20) is one of the MCZC paralectotypes. Any “typus” labelled specimens at large in other collections and not examined for this revision are formally not paralectotypes.

The M. johni syntypes (Figs 24–27) are 2 workers and 2 alate gynes, variously damaged and individually pinned on card points. A worker is here designated lectotype; the others paralectotypes (all so labelled). All carry identical white handwritten labels reading “4238 Col. Karavaiev” and red labels with “Syntypus Metapone johni Karaw.” The lectotype also has a white handwritten label reading “Hatana, Ceylon, O. John. 2. xii. 12” and another with “Metapone greeni For. DT Wheeler”. The white labels are in Karavaiev’s handwriting, and the red labels were added by J.A. Kostjuk when preparing his catalogue of Karavaiev types (Kostjuk, 1976) (A. Radchenko, pers com). The M. greeni determination label presumably indicates that Karavaiev consulted W.M. Wheeler regarding the identity of his specimens, and that at least one of them was seen by Wheeler, either before or after Karavaiev described them as M. johni (assuming that “DT Wheeler” stands for “Determined (by) Wheeler”). If before, Karavaiev presumably did not accept Wheeler’s M. greeni identification—if after, he appears never to have indicated the synonymy suggested by Wheeler and formalized here.



Taylor and Alpert (2016) - The M. greeni lectotype and the smallest MNHG paralectotype have the following dimensions: HL 1.41, 1.88; HW 1.01, 1.41; CI 72, 75; PMW 0.82, 1.17; MSL 1.56, 2.35. The two MCZC paralectotypes, the USNMNH paralectotype, and the M. johni lectotype have the following dimensions (note that the M. johni paralectotype has HW 1.30mm like the lectotype): TL: ca.6.4, 8.2; 6.9; 7.6; HL: 1.61, 1.91; 1.76; 1.74; HW: 1.22, 1.43; 1.37; 1.30; CI: 76, 75; 78; 75; PMW: 0.91, 1.13; 1.01; 1.04; MSL: 1.76, 2.27; 1.90; 2.16; PetL: 0.53, 0.62; 0.58; 0.60; PetW: 0.56, 0.70; 0.64; 0.66; PetH: 0.92, 1.13; 0.98; 1.04; PpetW: 0.71, 0.87; 0.75; 0.84; PpetH: 0.73, 0.89; 0.78; 0.82; GW -, -; 1.35; 1.42.

General and diagnostic features as in original description (Forel, 1911), the key to Asian Metapone species above and the accompanying figures. Clypeus anteriorly rostrate, the free lateral margins convergent apically, anterolateral corners rounded, anterior border broadly convex, no accessory denticles. Eyes relatively large; maximum diameter approximating the width of the apical antennomere, with many minute irregularly sized and arrayed unpigmented facets. Posterior face of subpetiolar process in side view almost vertical, its outline approximately aligned with posterior outline of node; framing lamella distinct, as illustrated. Subpetiolar extension rectangular, about twice as long as high, barely translucent, the antero- and posteroventral corners narrowly rounded; ventral outline shallowly convex.


Taylor and Alpert (2016) - General features as in original description (Forel, 1911) and figures of an M. johni syntype. That specimen has: TL: 9.8; HL: 1.74; HW (across eyes): 1.24; Maximum eye length: 0.52 CI: 71 MSL:2.90; PMW: 1.02; PDW: 0.84; PetL: 0.72; PetW: 0.68; PetH: 1.08; PpetL: 0.66; PpetW: 0.86; PpetH: 0.84.

Type Material

Taylor and Alpert (2016) - Worker, Gyne, Male; Type locality: Peradeniya [07°15'N, 80°36'E], Sri Lanka (as Ceylon).