Polyrhachis cryptoceroides

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Polyrhachis cryptoceroides
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Formicinae
Tribe: Camponotini
Genus: Polyrhachis
Subgenus: Myrmhopla
Species: P. cryptoceroides
Binomial name
Polyrhachis cryptoceroides
Emery, 1887

Polyrhachis cryptoceroides casent0905591 p 1 high.jpg

Polyrhachis cryptoceroides casent0905591 d 1 high.jpg

Specimen Labels


A widespread and rather variable species that seems to form numerous local populations that show slight morphological differences. When specimens from across the whole range of its distribution are compared these morphological differences intergrade and I prefer to consider all of the examined populations conspecific. The workers of P. cryptoceroides superficially resemble those of Cataulacus and they are often seen foraging together on the trunks of rainforest trees. (Kohout 2006)


A member of the Polyrhachis cryptoceroides species group.

Keys including this Species


Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Indo-Australian Region: Borneo, Indonesia (type locality), Malaysia, Philippines, Sulawesi.
Oriental Region: Laos.

Distribution based on AntMaps


Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb





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

  • cryptoceroides. Polyrhachis cryptoceroides Emery, 1887a: 228, pl. 3, fig. 14 (w.) INDONESIA (Sulawesi). Combination in P. (Myrmhopla): Emery, 1925b: 190. Senior synonym of mystica: Dorow, 1995: 51. See also: Kohout, 2006a: 146.
  • mystica. Polyrhachis (Aulacomyrma) mystica Karavaiev, 1927e: 41, fig. 19 (w.q.m.) INDONESIA (Java). Junior synonym of cryptoceroides: Dorow, 1995: 51.

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



Kohout (2006) – P. cryptoceroides syntype: TL c. 6.00; HL 1.43; HW 1.51; CI 105; SL 1.40; SI 93; PW 1.68; MTL 1.62 (1 measured). P. mystica syntypes (workers cited first, ueen last): TL c. 5.43, 7.36; HL 1.31, 1.31, 1.68; HW 1.31, 1.28, 1.72; CI 100, 98, 102; SL 1.31, 1.25, 1.65; SI 100, 98, 96; PW 1.40, 1.40, 1.76; MTL 1.50, 1.47, 1.96 (2 workers and 1 alate queen measured). additional workers: TL c. 4.84 - 5.59; HL 1.15 - 1.40; HW 1.18 - 1.40; CI 98 - 105; SL 1.12 - 1.37; SI 88 - 102; PW 1.25 - 1.75; MTL 1.22 - 1.53 (14 workers measured).

Type Material

Kohout (2006)

Syntype workers. INDONESIA, SULAWESI, Macassar (O. Beccari), Museo Civico di Storia Naturale, Genoa (examined).

Polyrhachis (Aulacomyrma) mystica KARAWAJEW, 1927. Syntype workers, queens, males. Type locality: Indonesia, Java, Buitenzorg (= Bogor) (W. Karawajew #2323), IZAS, QMBA (examined).

The following notes on V.A. Karavaiev type specimens have been provided by Martynov & Radchenko (2016) based on material held in the Institute of Zoology, Ukrainian Academy of Science:

Polyrhachis (Aulacomyrma) mystica Karawajew, 1927.

Type locality(-ies): “Buitenzorg, 20.XII.1912 (Nr. 2323), ww, geflüg. qq und mm aus einem Nest”.

Original Karawajew label(-s): “Polyrhachis (Aulacomyrma) / mystica Kar. 2323 / Buitenzorg, Karavaev”; “Polyrhachis (Aulacomyrma) / mystica Karav. typus. / Tjiapus bei Buitenzorg, Java. 2362. / Leg. et det. V. Karavaiev” and “Tjiapus, Java, / Karav., 2362.”; “Polyrhachis (Aulacomyrma) / mystica Karav. typus. / Tjiapus bei Buitenzorg, Java. 2362. / Leg. et det. V. Karavaev” and “Polyrhachis (Aulacomyrma) / mystica Kar. 2362 / Buitenzorg Buitenzorg, Karavaiev.”.

Material: SYNTYPES, with original Karawajew number 2323: 4 w, 1 q, 1 m (newly mounted, IN 314/6/1), 208 w, 37 q, 12 m (in alcohol, IN 314/BAMS1/Karaw14–17); with original Karawajew number 2362: 11 w, 1 q (newly mounted, IN 314/6/1), 58 w, 25 larvae, 3 pupae (in alcohol, IN 314/BAMS1/Karaw37–38).

Notes. In his original description Karawajew (1927a) provided the collection number 2323 for the type series of this taxon. We found in the NMNH NASU two vials with P. mystica: one has the number 2323 (as in the original description), but in the other one bears n° 2362, while material was also marked as “typus” (see above). We compared material from both vials, as well as with the type specimens with collection number 2323 from SIZK, and confirm their conspecificity. We may only suppose that Karawajew did not provide both collection numbers when described this taxon, and we consider the specimens from both samples as syntypes.


References based on Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics

  • Andersen A. N., R. J. Kohout, and C. R. Trainor. 2013. Biogeography of Timor and Surrounding Wallacean Islands: Endemism in Ants of the Genus Polyrhachis Fr. Smith. Diversity 5: 139-148.
  • Chapman, J. W., and Capco, S. R. 1951. Check list of the ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) of Asia. Monogr. Inst. Sci. Technol. Manila 1: 1-327
  • Emery C. 1886. Saggio di un catalogo sistematico dei generi Camponotus, Polyrhachis e affini. Memorie della Reale Accademia delle Scienze dell'Istituto di Bologna 5: 363-382
  • Emery C. 1887. Catalogo delle formiche esistenti nelle collezioni del Museo Civico di Genova. Parte terza. Formiche della regione Indo-Malese e dell'Australia. [part]. Ann. Mus. Civ. Stor. Nat. 24(4): 209-258.
  • Emery C. 1901. Formiciden von Celebes. Zoologische Jahrbücher. Abteilung für Systematik, Geographie und Biologie der Tiere 14:565-580.
  • Emery, C. "Catalogo delle formiche esistenti nelle collezioni del Museo Civico di Genova. Parte terza. Formiche della regione Indo-Malese e dell'Australia." Annali del Museo Civico di Storia Naturale Giacomo Doria (Genova) (2) 4, no. 24 (1887): 209-258.
  • Floren A., W. Wetzel, and M. Staab. 2013. The contribution of canopy species to overall ant diversity (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) in temperate and tropical ecosystems. – Myrmecological News 19: 65-74.
  • Forel A. 1913. Wissenschaftliche Ergebnisse einer Forschungsreise nach Ostindien ausgeführt im Auftrage der Kgl. Preuss. Akademie der Wissenschaften zu Berlin von H. v. Buttel-Reepen. II. Ameisen aus Sumatra, Java, Malacca und Ceylon. Gesammelt von Herrn Prof. Dr. v. Buttel-Reepen in den Jahren 1911-1912. Zoologische Jahrbücher. Abteilung für Systematik, Geographie und Biologie der Tiere 36:1-148.
  • Ito, F.; Yamane, S.; Eguchi, K.; Noerdjito, W. A.; Kahono, S.; Tsuji, K.; Ohkawara, K.; Yamauchi, K.; Nishida, T.; Nakamura, K. 2001. Ant species diversity in the Bogor Botanic Garden, West Java, Indonesia, with descriptions of two new species of the genus Leptanilla (Hymenoptera, Formicidae). Tropics 10:379-404.
  • Jaitrong W., B. Guenard, E. P. Economo, N. Buddhakala, and S. Yamane. 2016. A checklist of known ant species of Laos (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Asian Myrmecology 8: 1-32. DOI: 10.20362/am.008019
  • Kohout R.J. 2006. A review of the Polyrhachis cryptoceroides species-group with description of a new species from Thailand. Myrmecologische Nachrichten 8: 145-150.
  • Kohout, R. J. 2008. A review of the Polyrhachis ants of Sulawesi with keys and descriptions of new species (Hymenoptera: Formicidae: Formicinae). Memoirs of the Queensland Museum 52:255-317.
  • Martynov A. V., and A. G. Radchenko. 2016. Karawajew’s ant type specimens (Hymenoptera, Formicidae) in the National Museum of Natural History of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine. Zootaxa 4097 (2): 244–254.
  • Pfeiffer M.; Mezger, D.; Hosoishi, S.; Bakhtiar, E. Y.; Kohout, R. J. 2011. The Formicidae of Borneo (Insecta: Hymenoptera): a preliminary species list. Asian Myrmecology 4:9-58
  • Robson Simon Database Polyrhachis -05 Sept 2014
  • Tanaka H. O., S. Yamane, and T. Itioka. 2012. Effects of a fern-dwelling ant species, Crematogaster difformis, on the ant assemblages of emergent trees in a Bornean tropical rainforest. Ann. Entomol. Soc. Am. 105(4): 592-598.
  • Trainor C.R., and A.N. Andersen. 2010. The ant fauna of Timor and neighbouring islands: potential bridges between the disjunct faunas of South East Asia and Australia. Australian Journal of Zoology 58: 133-144.
  • Yusah K. M., T. M. Fayle, G. Harris, and W. A. Foster. 2012. Optimizing diversity assesment protocols for high canopy ants in tropical rain forest. Biotropica 44(1): 73-81.