Ponera yuhuang

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Ponera yuhuang
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Ponerinae
Tribe: Ponerini
Genus: Ponera
Species: P. yuhuang
Binomial name
Ponera yuhuang
Terayama, 2009

Ponera yuhuang side (www.niaes.affrc.go.jp).jpg Ponera yuhuang top (www.niaes.affrc.go.jp).jpg Specimen labels


Nothing is known about the biology of Ponera yuhuang.


Terayama (2009) - Separated from the Taiwanese congeners by the absence of posteroventral teeth of subpetiolar process, the small body size (TL 2.2 mm), and the brown body.

Leong et al. (2019) - Diagnosis (worker). Although Ponera yuhuang presents similarities with Ponera bishamon, Ponera japonica, and Ponera taiyangshen, it can be distinguished by its four segmented club and its subpetiolar process without distinct teeth.

Keys including this Species


Latitudinal Distribution Pattern

Latitudinal Range: 24.39° to 24.39°.

Tropical South

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Oriental Region: Taiwan (type locality).

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.


Explore-icon.png Explore Overview of Ponera biology 
The general biology of species in the genus was summarized by Taylor (1967): Ponera are small ants that nest in rotting logs in forested areas or under stones in nonforested situations. In the tropical areas specimens are rarely encountered away from rain forest. In temperate areas, however, species may occur in relatively lightly forested areas. This appears to be the case with Ponera japonica, Ponera pennsylvanica and especially with Ponera coarctata. The Australian Ponera leae is essentially limited to rain forest in the northern parts of its range, but further south it may be found in dry, lightly forested areas.

Foraging is probably cryptobiotic, though some New Guinea species have been taken straying on the ground surface. Little information is available concerning feeding. However, most species are probably insectivorous. I have conducted feeding experiments with some of the New Guinea and Samoan species, including Ponera xenagos, Ponera elegantula, Ponera tenuis, Ponera incerta and Ponera woodwardi. These were unsuccessful with the larger species, except elegantula, which accepted moderately large (8-12 mm) campodeid and japygid Diplura. Tenuis and incerta accepted smaller (4-6 mm) campodeids, isotomid and sminthurid Collembola, and small newly hatched spiders (2 mm long). Negative feeding response was obtained with eggs and larvae of various ants, small crushed insects of various orders, and small myriapods. Stray workers were never observed carrying prey, and distinct middens of insect or other remains were not located near nests.

Colonies usually contain about 30 workers. Larvae and pupae are not segregated in most cases, but occasionally aggregations of pupae were observed. These may have included the total brood of the colonies involved. Larvae are attached to the floor or walls of the nest galleries by the glutinous abdominal tubercles described above, and the ants move them high up on the walls or ceilings of artificial nests, if they are flooded. Details of nuptial behavior of pennsylvanica were given by Wheeler (1900), and Haskins & Enzmann (1938). The flights appear to be of a pattern typical for ants, with the alates meeting in the air and mating there or on the ground. Colony foundation is non-claustral and independent in pennsylvanica (Kannowski 1959); judging from my observations this is typical for the genus. ‎



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

  • yuhuang. Ponera yuhuang Terayama, 2009: 110, figs. 52-54 (w.) TAIWAN.

Taxonomic Notes

Leong et al. (2019): P. yuhuang was described from a single specimen, for which the external morphology cannot be clearly observed. We redescribed P. yuhuang based on the holotype and additional specimens. Although P. yuhuangis closely related to Ponera taiyangshen, differences in the antennal segment ratios and the form of the subpetiolar teeth can demonstrate that they are separated species.

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



Terayama 2009 figs. 39-64

Holotype. Head coarsely microreticulate, 1.23 times as long as wide, with concave posterior margin in full face view. Antennal scape relatively short, not reaching posterior margin of head; SI = 82; club consist of 4 segments. Eye small, consisting of a single facet. Petiolar node with parallel anterior and posterior margins and weakly convex dorsum in profile: posterodorsal corner forming a dull angle; posterior margin in dorsal view almost straight. Subpetiolar process without posteroventral teeth.

Measurements (mm). HL 0.49, HW 0.40, SL 0.33, WL 0.70, PNL 0.15, PH 0.30, DPW 0.20, TL 2.2.

Color. Brown; legs and mandible yellowish brown.

Leong et al. (2019) - Holotype: HL 0.45; HW 0.37; SL 0.29; A06L 0.02; A07L 0.02; A08L 0.03; A09L 0.05; A10L 0.06; PrW 0.29; WL 0.62; PeH 0.28; PeNL 0.14; PeW 0.21; ATL 0.34; ATW 0.41; CI 83, SI 78, PeI 71, LPeI 51, DPeI 148, ATI 83. (n=1): HL 0.46; HW 0.37; SL 0.27; A06L 0.02; A07L 0.02; A08L 0.03; A09L 0.04; A10L 0.06; PrW 0.30; WL 0.62; PeH 0.31; PeNL 0.15; PeW 0.25; ATL 0.33; ATW 0.39; CI 81, SI 73, PeI 82, LPeI 49, DPeI 159, ATI 85.

Head. In full-face view, head rectangular and distinctly longer than broad (CI: 81–83), with slightly concave posterior margin, slightly convex lateral margins and rounded posterolateral corners. Eye small; composed of a total of 2–3 indistinct facets. Anterior clypeal margin with very blunt medial tooth. Masticatory margin of mandible with a series of about seven indistinct denticles, and three large on the apical part. Antennal scape, when laid backward, with a remaining distance of about 20% of the scape length to the posterolateral corner; average ratio of the length of antennomeres 7/6:8/6:9/6:10/6 = 1.00: 1.35: 2.38: 3.47 (n=2).

Mesosoma. Mesosomal dorsum in lateral view convex. Pronotum in dorsal view arched, with acutely convex anterior margin and slightly convex lateral margins. Metanotal groove distinct with a fine suture. Lateral mesopleural suture distinctly incised. Propodeal dorsum in dorsal view broad with straight and parallel lateral margins. Posterodorsal corner of propodeum rounded, propodeal dorsum and declivity forming approximatively a 125 angle.

Metasoma. Petiolar node in dorsal view thick and arched, with moderately convex anterior margin and straight posterior margin. Petiolar node in lateral view moderately thick and rectangular, with straight anterior and posterior margins, anterodorsal corner forming a right angle, anterodorsal corner as high as posterodorsal corner. Subpetiolar process with small and circular fenestra, anteroventral corner blunt, almost straight ventral margin, posterovental corner concave without distinct teeth. Third abdominal tergum distinctly broader than long (ATI: 85) with straight anterior and posterior margins, straight lateral margins.

Sculpture. Head densely punctate. Mandible sparsely punctate. Mesosoma evenly punctate. Mesopleuron with slightly striate lower portion and sparsely punctate upper portion. Metapleuron and propodeum densely striate, but especially smooth in the portion contained between metapleuron and propodeum. Propodeal declivity smooth and shining. Lateral face of petiole evenly punctate, posterior face shining, dorsum with few punctures. The third and fourth abdominal segments evenly punctate, other segments smooth and shining with few punctures.

Pubescence. Head, antennae, mesosoma, petiole, and gaster with evenly distributed short hairs. Mesopleuron, metapleuron, propodeum and lateral face of petiole with few short hairs. Dorsal and ventral faces of head, anterior margin of clypeus, sides of mandibles, dorsum of petiolar node, gastral sterna and posterior half of gastral terga with many long erect hairs. Subpetiolar process with a few long erect hairs.

Color. Body color black brown. Mandible, clypeus, antennae, legs, and apex of metasoma lighter.

Type Material

Holotype. Worker, Nanshan-Anleng, Yilan Pref., 28. vii. -2. viii. 1988. Type depository. NIAES.

Leong et al. (2019): Type material examined: TAIWAN. Holotype. Worker, Nanshan-Anleng, Yilan Pref., 28 VII to 2 VIII 1988 (Laboratory of Insect Systematics, National Institute of Agro-environmental Sciences). Note that “Nanshan-Aleng” mean Nanshan to Anleng, Taiwan, holotype specimen was collected by the members of the Japanese Society of Soil Zoology using Berlese funnel (per. comm. Dr. Maromu Terayama).


The specific epithet is the Chinese noun Yuhuang , which is the name of a Taiwanese god.


References based on Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics

  • Guénard B., and R. R. Dunn. 2012. A checklist of the ants of China. Zootaxa 3558: 1-77.
  • Leong C. M., B. Guénard, S. F. Shiao, & C. C. Lin. 2019. Taxonomic revision of the genus Ponera Latreille, 1804 (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) of Taiwan and Japan, with a key to East Asian species. Zootaxa 4594: 1-86.
  • Terayama M. 2009. A synopsis of the family Formicidae of Taiwan (Insecta: Hymenoptera). Research Bulletin of Kanto Gakuen University. Liberal Arts 17:81-266.
  • Terayama Mamoru. 2009. A synopsis of the family Formicidae of Taiwan (Insecta, Hymenoptera). The Research Bulletin of Kanto Gakuen University 17: 81-266.
  • Terayama, M. 2009. A synopsis of the family Formicidae of Taiwan (Insecta; Hymenoptera). The Research Bulletin of Kanto Gakuen University 17: 81-266.