Tetraponera mimula

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Tetraponera mimula
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Pseudomyrmecinae
Genus: Tetraponera
Species: T. mimula
Binomial name
Tetraponera mimula
Ward, 2001

Tetraponera mimula is known from two locations in Papua New Guinea. The types were collected “ex trunks and tops of felled trees” in rainforest at 1100 m. A more recent collection by Roy Snelling was made in lowland rainforest.


Ward (2001) - This species is closely similar to Tetraponera laeviceps, but it can be diagnosed by a suite of worker traits: the eyes are smaller (see REL and REL2 values), the frontal carinae are farther apart (FCI - 0.18), and the petiole is shorter and broader (compare PWI values). The index, MFC/EL, provides the sharpest distinction: 0.38-0.45 in T. mimula and 0.25-0.30 in T. laeviceps. Most T. laeviceps workers also have a more slender profemur, broader pronotum, and more elevated propodeum than those of T. mimula but T. laeviceps is sufficiently variable that these differences are not diagnostic (FI, PrWM/MTW and PDI values overlap). T. mimula is known from only two localities and at both of these it is sympatric with T. laeviceps, strengthening the inference that these are two different species.

Keys including this Species


Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Indo-Australian Region: New Guinea (type locality).

Distribution based on AntMaps


Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb




The following information is derived from Barry Bolton's New General Catalogue, a catalogue of the world's ants.

  • mimula. Tetraponera mimula Ward, 2001: 634, figs. 87, 93 (w.) NEW GUINEA.

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



HW 0.87-0.94, HL 1.01-1.08, LHT 0.66-0.78, CI 0.82-0.87, FCI 0.17-0.19, REL 0.36-0.39, REL2 0.41-0.45, SI 0.50-0.54, SI3 1.11-1.28, FI 0.49-0.50, PLI 0.58-0.61, PWI 0.55-0.57, PDI 1.10-1.15, LHT/HW 0.77-0.83, CSC 3-5, MSC 11-18.

Medium-sized species, with relatively broad head; similar to T. laeviceps in many respects, but frontal carinae more widely separated, the distance between them clearly exceeding maximum scape width; eyes smaller, REL <0.40, REL2 <0.46; profemur more robust than that of most T. laeviceps workers (see FI values); pronotum relatively narrow (PrWM/HW 0.57-0.60, PrWM/MTW 1.04-1.16), its maximum width occurring below the lateral margins; anteromedial surface of pronotum essentially flat; propodeum moderately elevated (see PDI values), its dorsal face somewhat flattened in profile, declining posteriorly, and more or less differentiated from the declivitous face; petiole relatively short and broad (see PLI and PWI values); postpetiole broader than long; metabasitarsal sulcus well developed, lying in a patch of darkened, raised cuticle occupying a little more than half the length of the basitarsus. Integument sculpture as in T. laeviceps, punctures rather dense (subcontiguous) on anteriormost portions of head and pronotum. Standing pilosity moderately well developed (see CSC and MSC values); appressed pubescence common on most of body, dense on postpetiole and abdominal tergites. Black to dark brownish-black, mandibles, antennae, protibial and tarsi medium brown.

Type Material

Holotype. Worker, Bulolo R. valley, 6 km NE [sic] Wau, Papua New Guinea, 1100 m, vi.l962 (R. W. Taylor #2048) (Australian National Insect Collection). Locality is actually north-west of Wau. Paratype. Worker, same data as holotype (Philip S. Ward Collection).


References based on Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics

  • CSIRO Collection
  • Janda M., G. D. Alpert, M. L. Borowiec, E. P. Economo, P. Klimes, E. Sarnat, and S. O. Shattuck. 2011. Cheklist of ants described and recorded from New Guinea and associated islands. Available on http://www.newguineants.org/. Accessed on 24th Feb. 2011.
  • Ward P. S. 2001. Taxonomy, phylogeny and biogeography of the ant genus Tetraponera (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) in the Oriental and Australian regions. Invertebrate Taxonomy 15: 589-665.
  • Ward, P. S. 2001. Taxonomy, phylogeny and biogeography of the ant genus Tetraponera (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) in the Oriental and Australian regions. Invertebrate Taxonomy 15:589-665.