Aphaenogaster lepida

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Aphaenogaster lepida
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Attini
Genus: Aphaenogaster
Species: A. lepida
Binomial name
Aphaenogaster lepida
Wheeler, W.M., 1930

MCZ-ENT00020601 Aphaenogaster silvestrii hal.jpg

MCZ-ENT00020601 Aphaenogaster silvestrii had.jpg

Type Specimen Label



Wheeler 1929 - The worker of this species seems to resemble that of Aphaenogaster tipuna from Formosa, to judge from Forel's description, but the male is very different in the structure of its epinotum and mesonotum, which does not overhang the head anteriorly. The worker is smaller than that of tipuna, with longer funicular joints and different sculpture.


Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Oriental Region: Taiwan (type locality).
Palaearctic Region: China.

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.

  • silvestrii. Aphaenogaster (Attomyrma) silvestrii Wheeler, W.M. 1929g: 37, fig. 3 (w.m.) TAIWAN. [Junior primary homonym of silvestrii Menozzi, above.] Replacement name: lepida Wheeler, W.M. 1930a: 96.
  • lepida. Aphaenogaster (Attomyrma) lepida Wheeler, W.M. 1930a: 96. Replacement name for silvestrii Wheeler, W.M. 1929g: 37. [Junior primary homonym of silvestrii Menozzi, 1929b: 282.] Senior synonym of phillipi, funkikoensis (unnecessary second and third replacement names): Brown, 1954d: 10.
  • phillipi. Aphaenogaster phillipi Menozzi, 1932b: 311 (footnote). Unnecessary (second) replacement name for silvestrii Wheeler, W.M. 1929g: 37. [Junior primary homonym of silvestrii Menozzi, 1929b: 282.] Junior synonym of lepida (first replacement name): Brown, 1954d: 10.
  • funkikoensis. Aphaenogaster funkikoensis Creighton, 1950a: 152 (footnote). Unnecessary (third) replacement name for silvestrii Wheeler, W.M. 1929g: 37. [Junior primary homonym of silvestrii Menozzi, 1929b: 282.] Junior synonym of lepida (first replacement name): Brown, 1954d: 10.

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



Length 4-6 mm.

Head subelliptical, nearly 1 1/3 times as long as broad, regularly rounded and narrowed, but not constricted behind the eyes, without posterior corners, the posterior border formed by the marginate occipital articulation. Eyes rather small, moderately convex, situated at the middle of the sides of the head. Mandibles large, flattened, with straight external borders, the long apical borders with three well-developed apical and several short, indistinct basal teeth. Clypeus convex posteriorly, its anterior border rather broadly emarginate in the middle and sinuate on each side. Frontal area very distinct, rounded-triangular. Antennae long and slender; scapes extending about 2/5 their length beyond the posterior border of the head; funicular joints 1-7 subequal, twice as long as broad, the four terminal joints longer and larger, forming a distinct club. Thorax slender; pronotum bluntly bituberculate on each side, somewhat flattened above; convex in profile; promesonotal suture strongly impressed. Mesonotum rather straight, sloping downward and backward from a projecting, transverse, medially emarginate ridge at its anterior end; mesoepinotal constriction short and acute; the base of the epinotum long, straight and horizontal in profile, except at the extreme anterior end where it rises abruptly from the mesoepinotal suture, nearly twice as long as the rather steep declivity, the spines slender, blunt, shorter than their distance apart at the base and directed backward, outward and slightly upward. Petiole longer than high through the node, which is about as long as the peduncle and rising rather abruptly from it, somewhat conical, narrowed above. Postpetiole half again as broad as the petiole, longer than broad, broadened behind, with a well- developed, somewhat transverse node, as high as that of the petiole. Gaster elongate-elliptical. Legs long and slender, the femora somewhat thickened in the middle.

Shining; mandibles subopaque, sharply longitudinally striate; clypeus and upper surface of head irregularly longitudinally rugulose. On the latter the rugules are most numerous near the eyes, the front smoother and more shining; cheeks and sides of gula with a few scattered elongate foveolre. Pronotum smooth and shining in the middle, vaguely and delicately rugulose on the sides; meso-epinotum less shining and somewhat longitudinally punctate-rugulose, the epinotal declivity smooth and shining. Gaster with scattered piligerous punctures. Scapes subopaque, finely striate and sparsely punctate.

Hairs glistening white, obtuse, coarse, sparse and erect on the body, on the appendages line, short and appressed, except on the femora which bear several suberect hairs on their flexor surfaces. Pubescence absent.

Deep reddish brown or blackish; mandibles, thorax, legs, clubs; of antennae and peduncle of petiole red.


Length 3.5 - 4 mm.

Head decidedly longer than broad through the eyes, flattened above and below; subtrapezoidal behind the eyes, which are moderately convex and half as long as the sides. Ocelli small. Cheeks very short. Mandibles with six well-developed teeth. Clypeus very convex, its anterior border thick and slightly impressed in the middle. Frontal area large and very distinct; frontal groove deeply impressed in front of the anterior ocellus. Antennal scapes cylindrical, slightly curved, four times as long as broad; funiculi long, resembling those of the worker in the proportions of the basal joints, but the four terminal joints forming the club are each strongly constricted at the base. Thorax lung, very broad and high through the wing-insertions. Pronotum very short and broad, its posterior lateral borders extending out on each side beyond the mesonotum. Mesonotum convex, especially in the middle anteriorly where it overhangs the pronotum though not as much as' in some other species of the genus. Seen from above the mesonotum is subpentagonal and distinctly broader than long, Scutellum convex and projecting. Epinotum fully 1 1/2 times as long as broad, as broad behind as in front, feebly and transversely constricted in the middle; in profile much lower than the mesonotum, its dorsal surface slightly convex, gradually sloping backward and downward; with a slight median impression and terminating behind in two stout, blunt, backwardly directed teeth, which are as long as broad at their bases; the declivity short and sloping, less than a third as long as the base. Petiole and postpetiole similar to those of the worker, but with lower nodes. Hind femora and tibiae constricted at the base, bent, bow-shaped, the bending opposite in the two segments, the femora being concave on the extensor, the tibiae on the flexor side. The metatarsi also exhibit a distinct sigmoidal flexure. Wings with two complete cubital, a closed submarginal and a rather large discoidal cell.

Smooth and shining, except the mandibles, head, scutellum and posterior portion of the mesonotum, which are finely and rather superficially punctate or reticulate and somewhat more opaque.

Pilosity similar to that of the worker but shorter and finer.

Piceous black; clubs of antennre, pronotum and legs paler. Wings faintly tinged with brown, with brown veins and dark brown stigma.

Type Material

Described from fourteen workers and four males taken at Funkiko, Formosa.


  • Brown, W. L., Jr. 1954d. The synonymy of the ant Aphaenogaster lepida Wheeler. Pan-Pac. Entomol. 30: 10 PDF (unnecessary second and third replacement names))
  • Menozzi, C. 1929c. Una nuova specie di Formica del genere Aphaenogaster Mayr del Nord America. Boll. Lab. Zool. Gen. Agrar. R. Sc. Super. Agric. 22: 282-284 (page 282, junior primary homonym of silvestrii)
  • Wheeler, W. M. 1929h. Ants collected by Professor F. Silvestri in Formosa, the Malay Peninsula and the Philippines. Boll. Lab. Zool. Gen. Agrar. R. Sc. Super. Agric. 24: 27-64 (page 37, primary homonym)
  • Wheeler, W. M. 1930b. Formosan ants collected by Dr. R. Takahashi. Proc. N. Engl. Zool. Club 11: 93-106 (page 96, replacement name for silvestrii)