Pristomyrmex profundus

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Pristomyrmex profundus
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Crematogastrini
Genus: Pristomyrmex
Species: P. profundus
Binomial name
Pristomyrmex profundus
Wang, M., 2003

Pristomyrmex profundus casent0901710 p 1 high.jpg

Pristomyrmex profundus casent0901710 d 1 high.jpg

Specimen Labels

Nothing is known about the biology of Pristomyrmex profundus.


Wang (2003) - Many characters possessed by its workers and queens are unique in the genus. In the entire Pristomyrmex fauna, three species (P. profundus, Pristomyrmex divisus, and Pristomyrmex pulcher) do not possess any denticles on the anterior clypeal margin, but the latter two species belong to the punctatus group.

The only member of the Profundus species group

Keys including this Species


Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Indo-Australian Region: Borneo, Indonesia, Malaysia (type locality).
Oriental Region: Vietnam.

Distribution based on AntMaps


Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb


The biology of most Pristomyrmex species is poorly known. From Wang (2003): Most species of Pristomyrmex dwell in the rainforest, foraging as predators or scavengers. An Asian species, Pristomyrmex punctatus, however, occurs in open and disturbed habitats (e.g., bare hills, agricultural areas, and beaches). These ants prefer to nest in soil, litter, or rotten wood; in rotten parts of living trees; in dead standing trees; or around plant roots.

Pristomyrmex is of great interest because it exhibits several unusual biological and evolutionary phenomena. The absence of morphologically normal queens and reproduction primarily by unmated workers in P. punctatus {=P. pungens) is a highly unusual life history in the Formicidae. Ergatoid queens, a special wingless female caste morphologically intermediate between the queen and the worker, are present in at least four species: Pristomyrmex punctatus, Pristomyrmex africanus, Pristomyrmex wheeleri, and Pristomyrmex mandibularis; two of them (P. africanus and P. wheeleri) possess both queen and ergatoid queen castes.

Simulating death, slowness of movement, and nocturnal foraging has been recorded in Pristomyrmex (Donisthorpe, 1946; Taylor, 1965; Weber, 1941). Colony size varies greatly among species, ranging from about a dozen to several thousand workers (Donisthorpe, 1946; Itow et al, 1984; Mann, 1919; Taylor, 1965, 1968).



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

  • profundus. Pristomyrmex profundus Wang, M. 2003: 515, figs. 241-244 (w.q.) BORNEO.

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



Holotype. TL 2.86, HL 0.64, HW 0.74, CI 119, SL 0.44, SI 59, EL 0.13, PW 0.52, AL 0.68, PPW 0.24, PPL 0.16, PPI 150. Workers. TL 1.74-2.86, HL 0.46-0.66, HW 0.46-0.74, CI 96-119, SL 0.36- 0.44, SI .59- 79, EL 0.09-0.14, PW 0.34- 0.52, AL 0.44-0.68, PPW 0.15- 0.24, PPL 0.11-0.16, PPI 123- 164 (n = 20).

Mandibles usually smooth and shining but sometimes with a few weak, short, basal rugae. Clypeus not depressed, usually with a median longitudinal carina and two transverse carinae. Anterior clypeal margin lacking any distinct denticles. Ventral surface of clypeus lacking any toothlike prominences but usually with a weak transverse ruga. Palp formula undissected. Frontal carinae divergent, extending beyond the level of the posterior margins of eyes and close to the occipital margin. Frontal lobes completely absent. Antennal scrobes deep, wide, present between the frontal carinae and the eyes for the reception of the scapes and funiculi of antennae. Antennal scapes, when lying in the scrobes, close to the occipital margin of head. Eyes containing five to eight ommatidia in the longest row. In full-face view, head widest near the occipital corners; occipital margin rather straight. Dorsum of alitrunk in profile not continuously arched, with the mesonotum much higher than the propodeal dorsum (i.e., a vertical cliff present between the mesonotum and the propodeal dorsum). Promesonotum forming a Single convex. Sometimes the mesonotum higher than the pronotum; thus, in dorsal view, a promesonotal impression is seen. Pronotum unarmed. Propodeum with a pair of moderately long spines. Metapleural lobes vestigial and indistinct. In profile view, petiole node high, ca. 0.21 to 0.29, much higher than long and also higher than postpetiole, with a single evenly blunt-rounded apex and a long anterior peduncle. Subpetiole with a narrow lamella. Postpetiole in profile high, ca. 0.15 to 0.23, distinctly higher than long, with a rounded dorsum. In dorsal view, postpetiole transoval and much broader than long. Dorsum of head, except for the antennal scrobes, fully covered with rugoreticulum. Similar sculpture present on the promesonotum. Propodeal dorsum with a few longitudinal rugae. Petiole smooth and shining, usually with a longitudinal carina on each side. Postpetiole and gaster smooth and shining. Dorsal surfaces of head, alitrunk, and gaster with numerous erect, thick, long hairs; sometimes some hairs somewhat clavate. A pair of hairs pre sent on the dorsum of petiole node and usually two pairs on the dorsum of postpetiole. A few pairs of forward-projecting hairs present near the anterior clypeal margin. Scapes and tibiae with some erect or suberect moderately long hairs. Color light yellow to yellow brown.


TL 3.48-3.92, HL 0.62-0.63, HW 0.76-0.77, CI 123-124, SL 0.44-0.46, SI 57-61, EL 0.15-0.16, PW 0.66-0.70, AL 0.92-0.98, PPW 0.28-0.29, PPL 0.18-0.20, PPI 140-161 (n = 3).

General shape with normal caste differences from the conspecific worker; mesonotum unsculptured, smooth, and shining; anterior end of mesoscutum medially slightly concave. Other characters similar to worker.

Type Material

Holotype Worker. The Natural History Museum. Malaysia: Sabah, Poring Hot Springs, 500 m, 7.v.1987 (Burckhardt and Lobl). Paratypes (BMNH, Museum of Comparative Zoology, Musee d'Histoire Naturelle Genève, Australian National Insect Collection, Los Angeles County Museum of Natural History). Seventeen workers and three queens with same data as holotype; two workers with same data as holotype but date 6.v.1987.


  • Wang, M. 2003. A Monographic Revision of the Ant Genus Pristomyrmex (Hymenoptera:Formicidae). Bull. Mus. Comp. Zool. 157(6): 383-542 (page 515, figs. 241-244 worker, queen described)

References based on Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics

  • CSIRO Collection
  • Eguchi K.; Bui T. V.; Yamane S. 2011. Generic synopsis of the Formicidae of Vietnam (Insecta: Hymenoptera), part I — Myrmicinae and Pseudomyrmecinae. Zootaxa 2878: 1-61.
  • Huong N. T. T., P. V. Sang, and B. T. Viet. 2015. A preliminary study on diversity of ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) at Hon Ba Nature Reserve. Environmental Scientific Conference 7: 614-620.
  • 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
  • Wang M. 2003. A Monographic Revision of the Ant Genus Pristomyrmex (Hymenoptera:Formicidae). Bull. Mus. Comp. Zool. 157(6): 383-542.