Tetramorium laevithorax

AntWiki: The Ants --- Online
Tetramorium laevithorax
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Crematogastrini
Genus: Tetramorium
Species: T. laevithorax
Binomial name
Tetramorium laevithorax
Emery, 1895

Tetramorium laevithorax casent0217220 p 1 high.jpg

Tetramorium laevithorax casent0217220 d 1 high.jpg

Specimen Labels


A ground nesting species. Tetramorium laevithorax has been sampled in pitfall traps and collected by hand in natural open (grassland, savannah) to semi-open habitats (Acacia woodland, Bushveld), and highly disturbed areas (maze field, urban garden).


Bolton (1980) - One of the few species of Tetramorium to have very reduced sculpture, T. laevithorax is quickly separated from its relatives by the lack of strong sculpture on the promesonotal dorsum.

Keys including this Species


Latitudinal Distribution Pattern

Latitudinal Range: 25.45° to -33.55207°.

Tropical South

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Afrotropical Region: Kenya, Namibia, South Africa (type locality), Sudan, Uganda.

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.


SAM-HYM-C000788 - Little grass turret at entrance c 1cm high. Origin: Nest. Method: saw nest/nest entrance. Habitat:grass. Habitat: citrus. Nest site: ground: underground. Entrance: in open away from basal parts of plants.



Images from AntWeb

Tetramorium laevithorax casent0249027 h 1 high.jpgTetramorium laevithorax casent0249027 d 1 high.jpgTetramorium laevithorax casent0249027 p 1 high.jpgTetramorium laevithorax casent0249027 l 1 high.jpg
Worker. Specimen code casent0249027. Photographer Ryan Perry, uploaded by California Academy of Sciences. Owned by AFRC, Pretoria, South Africa.
Tetramorium laevithorax casent0904842 h 1 high.jpgTetramorium laevithorax casent0904842 p 1 high.jpgTetramorium laevithorax casent0904842 d 1 high.jpgTetramorium laevithorax casent0904842 l 1 high.jpg
Syntype of Tetramorium laevithoraxWorker. Specimen code casent0904842. 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.

  • laevithorax. Tetramorium laevithorax Emery, 1895h: 39 (w.) SOUTH AFRICA. Senior synonym of jeanae: Bolton, 1980: 279.
  • jeanae. Tetramorium jeanae Weber, 1943c: 371, pl. 16, fig. 29 (w.) SUDAN. Junior synonym of laevithorax: Bolton, 1980: 279.

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



Bolton (1980) - TL 3.0-3.5, HL 0.70-0.78, HW 0.58-0.64, CI 81-84, SL 0.61-0.70, SI 103-113, PW 0.44-0.50, AL 0.84-0.96 (10 measured).

Mandibles longitudinally striate. Anterior clypeal margin entire, without median notch or impression. Median clypeal carina distinct but often failing to reach posterior margin; other sculpture vestigial or absent on clypeus. Frontal carinae strong, surmounted by a narrow, raised rim or flange and running back almost to the occipital margin. Antennal scrobes narrow and shallow, but fairly conspicuous. Antennal scapes relatively long, SI > 100. Maximum diameter of eye 0.16-0.18, about 0.27—0.29 x HW. With the alitrunk in profile the propodeal spines short but strong and acute, distinctly longer than the low, bluntly triangular metapleural lobes but not as long as the maximum diameter of the eye. Petiole in profile a high node, the dorsal length of the node less than the height of the tergal portion. Anterodorsal angle sharp, generally projecting into a low peak which in dorsal view is seen as a narrow crest or rim running along the anterior face of the node. In dorsal view the petiole node distinctly broader than long. Dorsum of head feebly sculptured, with only 3-5 weak and widely separated longitudinal rugulae between the frontal carinae at the level of the eyes. Occipital margin with a few rugular anastomoses or a weak reticulum; ground-sculpture vestigial, the head glossy. Promesonotal dorsum usually unsculptured, smooth and very shining, but quite commonly with 1-3 weak longitudinal rugulae traversing the glossy surface. Propodeal. dorsum usually with sparse rugular sculpture, rarely, effaced. Dorsal surfaces of petiole and postpetiole with traces of feeble punctulate sculpture, especially the postpetiole, and this segment commonly with traces of rugular sculpture also. First gastral tergite unsculptured except for hair-pits. All dorsal surfaces of head and body with numerous strong hairs; middle and hind tibiae only with fine decumbent to appressed dense pubescence. Colour mid-brown to dark brown.

Type Material

Bolton (1980) - Holotype worker, SOUTH AFRICA: Pietermaritzburg (Weitzecker) (probably in Museo Civico di Storia Naturale, Genoa). Tetramorium jeanae Weber, 1943: 371, pl. 16, fig. 29. Holotype worker, SUDAN: Imatong Mts, W. slopes, 6400 ft [1950 m], 2.viii.1939, no. 1395 (N. A. Weber) (Museum of Comparative Zoology) [examined].


  • Bolton, B. 1980. The ant tribe Tetramoriini (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). The genus Tetramorium Mayr in the Ethiopian zoogeographical region. Bull. Br. Mus. (Nat. Hist.) Entomol. 40: 193-384 (page 279, Senior synonym of jeanae)
  • Emery, C. 1895i. Voyage de M. E. Simon dans l'Afrique australe (janvier-avril 1893). 3e mémoire. Formicides. Ann. Soc. Entomol. Fr. 64: 15-56 (page 39, worker described)

References based on Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics

  • Arnold G. 1917. A monograph of the Formicidae of South Africa. Part III. Myrmicinae. Annals of the South African Museum. 14: 271-402.
  • Bolton B. 1980. The ant tribe Tetramoriini (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). The genus Tetramorium Mayr in the Ethiopian zoogeographical region. Bulletin of the British Museum (Natural History). Entomology 40: 193-384.
  • Emery C. 1895. Voyage de M. E. Simon dans l'Afrique australe (janvier-avril 1893). 3e mémoire. Formicides. Annales de la Société Entomologique de France 64: 15-56.
  • IZIKO South Africa Museum Collection
  • Nsengimana V., K. A. Beth, F. Frederic, K. M. M. Lombart, D. Wouter, and N. Donat. 2018. Use of soil and litter ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) as biological indicators of soil quality under different land uses in Southern Rwanda. Environmental Entomology 47(6): 1394-1401.
  • Weber N. A. 1943. The ants of the Imatong Mountains, Anglo-Egyptian Sudan. Bulletin of the Museum of Comparative Zoology 93: 263-389.
  • Wheeler W. M. 1922. Ants of the American Museum Congo expedition. A contribution to the myrmecology of Africa. VIII. A synonymic list of the ants of the Ethiopian region. Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History 45: 711-1004