Tetramorium angulinode species group

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Based on Agavekar et al. 2017.

Diagnosis

Eleven-segmented antennae; anterior clypeal margin notched and unspecialized; eyes of moderate size; antennal scapes short, not surpassing posterior head margin; antennal scrobes conspicuous and very well developed with clearly defined margins all-around; frontal carinae present and strongly developed; base of first gastral tergite not concave in dorsal view, without tubercles or teeth on each side; pilosity on dorsal surfaces of body erect with long and fine hairs; sting appendage spatulate.

Notes

This single Indomalayan member of this group represents a remarkable faunal oddity since it is the only member of a group of species otherwise endemic to the Afrotropical region. Interestingly, the distribution of the group is highly disjunctive with Tetramorium smithi being widely distributed in the Indomalayan and Australasian regions but strongly separated from its African relatives. Considering that the known distribution range of Tetramorium smithi grows consistently, and even reaches several pacific island archipelagos (Clouse, 2007), it appears that the species possesses some potential as a tramp species. Nevertheless, based on some of our recent morphological examination of material from several South East Asian localities, there is also the possibility that Tetramorium smithi as currently understood represents a complex of rather cryptic species.

Additional Resources

References