Strumigenys katapelta

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Strumigenys katapelta
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Attini
Genus: Strumigenys
Species: S. katapelta
Binomial name
Strumigenys katapelta
Bolton, 1983

Strumigenys katapelta casent0900629 p 1 high.jpg

Strumigenys katapelta casent0900629 d 1 high.jpg

Specimen Labels

Nothing is known about the biology of Strumigenys katapelta.


Bolton (1983, 2000) - A member of the dextra complex in the Strumigenys arnoldi-group. The non-paratypic material from Kenya answers to the description of the holotype but shows the following size range. HL 0.52-0.55, HW 0.43-0.48, CI 85-87, ML 0.20-0.23, MI 38-41, SL 0.26-0.30, SI 58-63 (5 measured).

The dextra-complex has only four species in which the distal preapical tooth of the left mandible has been lost, katapelta, Strumigenys irrorata, Strumigenys dextra and Strumigenys paranax. S. katapelta is easily separated from the other three as it is the only species to have an intercalary denticle between the apical fork teeth. Apart from this it separates from irrorata as that species has also lost the distal preapical tooth of the right mandible; from dextra as that species has flagellate hairs at the pronotal humeri; and from paranax as that species is much smaller, with a narrower head and longer antennal scapes.

Keys including this Species


Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Afrotropical Region: Burundi (type locality), Kenya, Uganda.

Distribution based on AntMaps


Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb


Strumigenys were once thought to be rare. The development and increased use of litter sampling methods has led to the discovery of a tremendous diversity of species. Many species are specialized predators (e.g. see Strumigenys membranifera and Strumigenys louisianae). Collembola (springtails) and other tiny soil arthropods are typically favored prey. Species with long linear mandibles employ trap-jaws to sieze their stalked prey (see Dacetine trap-jaws). Larvae feed directly on insect prey brought to them by workers. Trophallaxis is rarely practiced. Most species live in the soil, leaf litter, decaying wood or opportunistically move into inhabitable cavities on or under the soil. Colonies are small, typically less than 100 individuals but in some species many hundreds. Moist warm habitats and micro-habitats are preferred. A few better known tramp and otherwise widely ranging species tolerate drier conditions. Foraging is often in the leaf litter and humus. Workers of many species rarely venture above ground or into exposed, open areas. Individuals are typically small, slow moving and cryptic in coloration. When disturbed individuals freeze and remain motionless. Males are not known for a large majority of species.



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

  • katapelta. Strumigenys katapelta Bolton, 1983: 375, figs. 61, 76 (w.) BURUNDI. See also: Bolton, 2000: 593.

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



Holotype. TL 2.1, HL 0.51, HW 0.46, CI 90, ML 0.20, MI 39, SL 0.27, SI 59, PW 0.27, AL 0.56.

Mandibles short and conspicuously bowed outwards in full-face view. Apical fork of each mandible consisting of a long spiniform tooth dorsally, a smaller spiniform tooth ventrally and an intercalary denticle between the two longer teeth. Blade of left mandible with a single long spiniform preapical tooth, the proximal; right mandible with a -similar proximal preapical tooth and with a very small distal preapical tooth also present. Head broad, the upper scrobe margins strongly divergent and the eyes not visible in full-face view. Eyes small, with only 3-4 ommatidia, their maximum diameter distinctly much less than the maximum width of the scape. Preocular notch absent, the ventral surface of the head without a preocular transverse groove or impression. Antennal scapes short and curved, their anterior margins flattened and expanded in the median third, broadest at the midlength; their convex leading edges with a row of shallowly spoon-shaped to flattened large broad hairs. Cephalic ground-pilosity of inconspicuous short stubby flattened hairs which are closely applied to the surface; without the scale-like or broadly spoon-shaped hairs usually seen in the arnoldi-complex. Upper scrobe margins fringed by similar small hairs, these hairs distinctly very much smaller than those on the leading edges of the scapes. Dorsum of head with a row of 4 standing hairs dose to the occipital margin, without a further pair of hairs situated close to the highest point of the vertex. Dorsum of head reticulate-punctate. Pronotal humeri without flagellate hairs, instead each with a projecting straight stout hair which is thickened and flattened apically, directed laterally and slightly elevated. Mesonotum with a single pair of stout standing hairs. Ground pilosity of dorsal alitrunk of small hairs similar to those on the head. Metanotal groove represented by a line across the dorsum. Propodeal teeth short and triangular, subtended by infradental lamellae whose free margins are concave. Sides of alitrunk smooth except for weak punctures around the periphery. In dorsal view the pronotum sharply marginate anteriorly, weakly longitudinally rugulose and with feeble punctures between the rugulae. Mesonotum reticulate-punctate. Propodeal dorsum smooth anteriorly but punctate posteriorly and between the teeth. Dorsum of petiole node almost smooth, with only the faintest vestiges of reticular patterning; postpetiole smooth. Spongiform appendages of pedicel segments well developed. The petiole in profile with a ventral strip and triangular lateral lobe. Postpetiole with large ventral and lateral spongiform lobes, the former larger than the exposed area of the postpetiolar disc in profile. In dorsal view the disc of the postpetiole surrounded on all sides by projecting spongiform tissue. Basigastral costulae short but sharply defined. Petiole, postpetiole and gaster dorsally with stout standing hairs. Colour brownish yellow.

Paratypes. TL 2.0-2.2, HL 0.50-0.53, HW 0.44-0.46, CI 88-90, ML 0.20-0.21, MI 38-40, SL 0.26-0.27, SI 57-60, PW 0.25-0.28, AL 0.54-0.56 (4 measured). As holotype.

Type Material

Holotype worker, Burundi: Bujumbura, 1977, no. 42 (A. Dejean) (The Natural History Museum). Paratypes. 4 workers with same data as holotype (BMNH; Museum of Comparative Zoology).


References based on Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics

  • Bolton B. 1983. The Afrotropical dacetine ants (Formicidae). Bulletin of the British Museum (Natural History). Entomology 46: 267-416.
  • Bolton, B. 2000. The Ant Tribe Dacetini. Memoirs of the American Entomological Institute 65
  • IZIKO South Africa Museum Collection