Tetramorium ferox

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Tetramorium ferox
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Crematogastrini
Genus: Tetramorium
Species: T. ferox
Binomial name
Tetramorium ferox
Ruzsky, 1903

Tetramorium ferox casent0280930 p 1 high.jpg

Tetramorium ferox casent0280930 d 1 high.jpg

Specimen Labels


Very little is known about the biology of T. ferox, other than it is a host for the inquilines Strongylognathus karawajewi and Strongylognathus testaceus.


Csösz and Schulz (2010) - A member of the Tetramorium ferox species complex in the Tetramorium caespitum species group. The feebly rugulose general sculpture, the microreticulate ground surface, and the relatively sparse pubescence on the first gastral tergite make the T. ferox gynes unique within this group.

Tetramorium ferox workers cannot be confused with those of Tetramorium diomedeum or Tetramorium aegeum. The general appearance of the head and mesosoma of T. ferox workers is always rugulose, microreticulate and dull, but head and mesosoma of the latter two species are always shiny and usually at least partly smooth.

Tetramorium feroxoides workers usually bear much feebler (and often parallel) rugulae on head and mesosoma than T. ferox workers, but in a few cases T. feroxoides workers can be confused with the smallest T. ferox workers.

A discriminant function using various morphological measurements has also been defined and can be used to make determinations in this species group.

Keys including this Species


Widely distributed over the western Palaearctic, from Central Europe to the Caucasus and Turkey. (Csösz and Schulz 2010)

Latitudinal Distribution Pattern

Latitudinal Range: 51.566667° to 24.633333°.

Tropical South

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Palaearctic Region: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bulgaria, China, Croatia, Czech Republic, Georgia, Greece, Hungary, Iran, Kyrgyzstan, Malta, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Romania, Russian Federation (type locality), Turkey, Turkmenistan.

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.




Images from AntWeb

Tetramorium ferox casent0281567 h 1 high.jpgTetramorium ferox casent0281567 p 1 high.jpgTetramorium ferox casent0281567 d 1 high.jpgTetramorium ferox casent0281567 l 1 high.jpg
Worker. Specimen code casent0281567. Photographer Estella Ortega, uploaded by California Academy of Sciences. Owned by CAS, San Francisco, CA, USA.
Tetramorium ferox casent0904806 h 1 high.jpgTetramorium ferox casent0904806 p 1 high.jpgTetramorium ferox casent0904806 d 1 high.jpgTetramorium ferox casent0904806 l 1 high.jpg
Syntype of Tetramorium feroxWorker. Specimen code casent0904806. Photographer Z. Lieberman, uploaded by California Academy of Sciences. Owned by MSNG, Genoa, Italy.
Tetramorium ferox casent0904808 h 1 high.jpgTetramorium ferox casent0904808 p 1 high.jpgTetramorium ferox casent0904808 d 1 high.jpgTetramorium ferox casent0904808 l 1 high.jpg
Type of unavailable quadrinomial: Tetramorium caespitum ferox perspicaxWorker. Specimen code casent0904808. Photographer Z. Lieberman, uploaded by California Academy of Sciences. Owned by MSNG, Genoa, Italy.
Csosz & Schulz 2010. Gyne and worker.


Images from AntWeb

Tetramorium ferox casent0904804 h 1 high.jpgTetramorium ferox casent0904804 p 1 high.jpgTetramorium ferox casent0904804 p 2 high.jpgTetramorium ferox casent0904804 d 1 high.jpgTetramorium ferox casent0904804 l 1 high.jpg
Type of unavailable quadrinomial: Tetramorium caespitum ferox striaticepsQueen (alate/dealate). Specimen code casent0904804. Photographer Z. Lieberman, uploaded by California Academy of Sciences. Owned by MSNG, Genoa, Italy.


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

  • ferox. Tetramorium caespitum var. ferox Ruzsky, 1903b: 309 (w.q.m.) RUSSIA. Subspecies of caespitum: Emery, 1909d: 703; Emery, 1916b: 194. Raised to species: Cori & Finzi, 1931: 239; Soudek, 1931: 10; Menozzi, 1933b: 75 (in key); Kratochvíl, 1944: 72; Tarbinsky, 1976: 112; Atanassov & Dlussky, 1992: 155. Senior synonym of silhavyi: Bernard, 1967: 235; Dlussky, Soyunov & Zabelin, 1990: 201; Radchenko, 1992b: 55; of confinis, perspicax: Csösz & Schulz, 2010: 20; material of the unavailable name striaticeps referred here by Radchenko, 1992b: 55.
  • silhavyi. Tetramorium (Lobomyrmex) ferox subsp. silhavyi Kratochvíl, in Novak & Sadil, 1941: 84, fig. 1 (w.q.) CZECHOSLOVAKIA. [Also described as new by Kratochvíl, in Kratochvíl, Novak & Snoflak, 1944: 72.] Junior synonym of ferox: Bernard, 1967: 235; Radchenko, 1992b: 55.
  • confinis. Tetramorium confinis Radchenko & Arakelian, 1990: 374, fig. 2 (w.q.m.) ARMENIA. Junior synonym of ferox: Csösz & Schulz, 2010: 20.
  • perspicax. Tetramorium perspicax Radchenko, 1992b: 56 (w.q.) TURKEY. [First available use of Tetramorium caespitum st. ferox var. perspicax Santschi, 1921a: 111; unavailable name.] Synonym of feroxoides: Radchenko, 1992b: 56. [Radchenko gives perspicax as senior name, but feroxoides has priority: Bolton, 1995b: 412.] Junior synonym of ferox: Csösz & Schulz, 2010: 21.

Type Material

Csösz and Schulz (2010) - Syntype workers, gynes, male (2w, 2q, 1m): Russia, Saratov (Ruzsky) [labels: Tetr. caespitum L., v. ferox Rusz, Ssaratov M.R.] (examined) Museo Civico di Storia Naturale, Genoa, Musee d'Histoire Naturelle Genève.

Bezděčková et al. (2017) - Tetramorium ferox silhavyi: Five syntypes are deposited in Museum of the Highlands, Jihlava, Czech Republic (all dry-mounted):

  • SYNTYPES (3 males 1 alate queen each glued on a small rectangular label and all together on one larger card label ca. 40 × 16 mm): ‘Tetramorium / ferrox [sic] / Šilhavýi. Krat. [hw] // Tetramorium ferrox [sic] / worker šilhavýi Krat. / Mohelno, cotypy, 05062 [hw] // Syntypus / (Bezděčková et al. 2017) [p, red label]’ [IN: E26-T10–E26-T13].
  • SYNTYPE (1 dealate queen, only head with one antenna and thorax with one leg glued on a card label ca. 40 × 16 mm): ‘Tetramorium / ferrox [sic] / šilhavýi Krat. [hw] // Tetramorium ferrox [sic]  / šilhavýi Krat. / Mohelno – paratyp, 05063 [hw] // Syntypus / (Bezděčková et al. 2017) [p, red label]’ [IN: E26-T14].

Remarks. The description was originally prepared by Josef Kratochvíl for publication in the proceedings on the fauna of the Mohelno serpentine steppe, which was, however, released later (KRATOCHVÍL 1944) than the identification key by NOVÁK & SADIL (1941) including a short description based on Kratochvíl’s manuscript and citing Kratochvíl as the author of the new name. Therefore, the text in NOVÁK & SADIL (1941) has priority for nomenclature.

Neither NOVÁK & SADIL (1941) nor KRATOCHVÍL (1944) provided any information on the number of the type specimens or the type locality; they only stated that T. ferox silhavyi was known from Moravia, Slovakia and Hungary. Based on the fact that the taxon was listed among new forms of ants discovered in the Mohelno serpentine steppe (KRATOCHVÍL 1944) and based on the locality data of the specimens in Museum of the Highlands, Jihlava, Czech Republic, at least a part of the type series was collected in Mohelno (Czech Republic, Moravia). Four specimens deposited in Museum of the Highlands, Jihlava, Czech Republic were originally labelled as cotypes (“cotypy”) and one specimen as a paratype, but no specimen designated as a holotype is available. Therefore, we consider all these specimens syntypes.

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



Csösz and Schulz (2010) - Medium to large size, CS 825 [693, 918]. Whole body and appendages greyish brown to dark brown. Head slightly longer than broad, CL/CW 1.03 [0.99, 1.09], with feebly convex sides, straight posterior margin with widely rounded corners. Eyes small, EYE 0.16 [0.15, 0.18]. Frons moderately wide, FR/CS 0.39 [0.36, 0.41], frontal lobes usually as wide as the frons, rarely slightly broader, FL/FR 1.01 [1.00, 1.03]. Scape long, SL/CS 0.79 [0.74, 0.83], with a feeble dorsal carina basally, its surface very finely microreticulate. Promesonotal dorsum slightly convex, metanotal groove shallow. Propodeal denticles moderately long. Petiolar node moderately high, NOH/NOL 1.05 [0.88, 1.29] trapezoid to cubic seen in profile.

Head longitudinally rugulose and microreticulate, posterior surface ruguloso-reticulate, ground surface microreticulate, appears dull. Mesosoma dorsum and mesopleura ruguloso-reticulate, ground surface coarsely microreticulate. Dorsum of petiolar node ruguloso-reticulate, ground surface microreticulate, median part smooth. Dorsum of postpetiole rugulose and microreticulate. First gastral tergite smooth, appears shiny. Ventral surface of head with a row of short setae only (without long C-shape hairs).


Csösz and Schulz (2010) - Medium to large size, CS 999 [955, 1095]. Whole body and appendages black. Head broader than long, CL/CW 0.92 [0.90, 0.94] with sides and posterior margin straight, with widely rounded corners. Head trapezoid in full face view, narrower at genae. Frons moderately wide, FR/CS 0.40 [0.39, 0.42]. Scape long, SL/CS 0.75 [0.70, 0.81], with a feeble dorsal carina basally, its surface smooth and shiny. Head slightly narrower than scutum, MW/CS 1.03 [0.99, 1.08]. Propodeal teeth long. Petiole and postpetiole wide, CS/PEW 1.65 [1.56, 1.78], CS/PPW 1.29 [1.11, 1.43].

Head dorsum, posterior surface and sides ruguloso-reticulate, ground surface microreticulate. Frons longitudinally rugulose and microreticulate. Scutum and scutellum longitudinally rugulose. Sides of mesosoma, rugoso-reticulate and microreticulate, ventral part of katepisternum always rugulose, or microreticulate. Dorsum of petiolar node and postpetiole coarsely reticulate and microreticulate. First gastral tergite smooth, appears shiny. Ventral surface of head with a row of short setae only (without long C-shape hairs).


Csösz and Schulz (2010) - Head sides feebly convex, posterior margin widely rounded. Scutum much broader than head. Propodeal denticles reduced, propodeum nearly rounded in profile. Dorsum of petiolar node blunt, dorsolaterally sharp and angulate. Whole body and appendages black. Head, scutum, scutellum, anepi- and katepisternum as well as petiole and postpetiole finely rugulo-reticulate, between main sculpturation microreticulate. First gastral tergite smooth, appears shiny.


References based on Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics

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