According to Arnold (1916) this species, which he wrongly gives as Monomorium nitidiventre, is very agile and nests in loose sandy soil (Bolton 1987). A Namibia savannah study found this ant to be the dominant species at ground-baits (Campbell et al. 2015).
Bolton (1987) - A member of the M. bicolor complex in the M. salomonis species group. A distinctive and quite widespread member of the complex in southern Africa, rufulum is immediately diagnosed by its reduced basal mandibular tooth, numerous long arched ammochaete hairs on the ventral surface of the head, and densely hairy first gastral tergite contrasting to the hairless (or nearly hairless) dorsal alitrunk. Both alate and apterous females of rufulum are known.
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The following information is derived from Barry Bolton's New General Catalogue, a catalogue of the world's ants.
- rufulum. Monomorium salomonis var. rufula Stitz, 1923: 156 (w.) NAMIBIA. Raised to species and senior synonym of monardi: Bolton, 1987: 359. See also: Bolton, 1986b: 268.
- monardi. Monomorium (Xeromyrmex) monardi Santschi, 1937d: 226, figs. 15, 16 (w.) ANGOLA. Junior synonym of rufulum: Bolton, 1987: 359.
Unless otherwise noted the text for the remainder of this section is reported from the publication that includes the original description.
Bolton (1987) - TL 3.0-3.6, HL 0.76-088, HW 0.59-0.70, CI 75-80, SL 0.69-0.81, SI 112-120, PW 0.40-0.47, AL 0.98-1.16 (15 measured).
Fourth (basal) tooth of mandible reduced to a minute denticle which is only a fraction the size of the third tooth. Ventral surface of head with numerous very long anteriorly curved J-shaped or strongly arcuate hairs. Maximum diameter of eye 0.23-0.26 x HW, with 10-12 ommatidia in the longest row. Median portion of clypeus with its anterior margin transverse to shallowly convex in full-face view. Dorsum of head with a maximum of 3 pairs of hairs behind the level of the frontal lobes, but in full-face view the sides and occipital margin without projecting hairs. Dorsal alitrunk usually hairless but in Namibian specimens the pronotal humeri with a single hair on each side. Petiole node with 1-2 and postpetiole with 2-3 pairs of posteriorly projecting hairs. First gastral tergite densely pilose, with about 10 pairs in front of the apical transverse row. Colour dull orange to reddish orange on head, alitrunk , petiole and postpetiole; the gaster darker brown to blackish brown but frequently with a much paler spot or streak anteromedially. Dorsum and sides of head and entirety of alitrunk densely reticulate-punctate, the punctures small, crowded and sharply defined. Petiole and postpetiole reticulate-punctulate, the punctulae less well defined than on the alitrunk. Gaster feebly shagreened basally, the sculpture fading apically.
Bolton (1987) - Syntype workers, Namibia: Windhoek, v.1911 (Michaelsen); Omaruru, 21-22.v.1911 (Michaelsen) (Berlin Museum für Naturkunde der Humboldt-Universität) [examined].
- Bolton, B. 1986b. Apterous females and shift of dispersal strategy in the Monomorium salomonis-group (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). J. Nat. Hist. 20: 267-272 (page 268, see also)
- Bolton, B. 1987. A review of the Solenopsis genus-group and revision of Afrotropical Monomorium Mayr (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Bulletin of the British Museum (Natural History). Entomology. 54: 263-452. PDF. (page 359, Raised to species, and senior synonym of monardi)
- Campbell, H., M. D. E. Fellowes, and J. M. Cook. 2015. Species diversity and dominance-richness relationships for ground and arboreal ant (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) assemblages in Namibian desert, saltpan, and savannah. Myrmecol. News. 21:37-47.
- Stitz, H. 1923. Hymenoptera, VII. Formicidae. Beitr. Kennt. Land- Süsswasserfauna Dtsch.-Südwestafr. 2: 143-167 (page 156, worker described)