Key to Meranoplus diversus group workers

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This worker key is based on: Schödl, S. 2007. Revision of Australian Meranoplus: the Meranoplus diversus group. Memoirs of the American Entomological Institute 80:370-424.

Schödl noted: The worn-down condition of the dentition in many specimens renders more difficult to decide how many mandibular teeth are structurally present.

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1

Schodle 2007. Figures 1-7.
Schodle 2007. Figures 8-13.
Schodle 2007. Figures 14-19.
Schodle 2007. Figures 20-25.
Schodle 2007. Figures 26-33.
Schodle 2007. Figures 34-39.
Schodle 2007. Figures 40-45.
Schodle 2007. Figures 46-51.
Schodle 2007. Figures 52-64.
Schodle 2007. Figures 65-77.
Schodle 2007. Plate 1.
  • Promesonotal shield with posterolateral and posterior projections short and at most bluntly rounded or triangular, lateral margins of the shield not or only little overhanging lateral mesosomal sides and propodeal declivity (Figs. 2, 3, 5, 7, 9, 11, 13, 41) . . . . . 2
  • Promesonotal shield with posterolateral and posterior projections well developed as acute or narrowly rounded projections, lateral margins distinctly overhanging lateral mesosomal sides and propodeal declivity (Figs. 15, 17, 19, 21, 23, 25, 27, 29, 31, 33, 35, 37, 39, 43, 45, 47, 49, 51) . . . . . 8

2

return to couplet #1

  • Paramedian projections on mesonotal hind margin absent (Fig. 41). Eyes very large (EYE 0.37 - 0.42; REL 0.23 - 0.26). (Western Australia) . . . . . Meranoplus occidentalis
  • Paramedian projections on mesonotal hind margin at least present as minute denticles. Eyes distinctly smaller (EYE < 0.35; REL < 0.22) . . . . . 3

3

return to couplet #2

  • Clypeus anteriorly bluntly bidentate. Posterior face of petiole costate or rugose. With four mandibular teeth . . . . . 4
  • Clypeal projection different. Posterior face of petiole rugose to rugulose. With three mandibular teeth . . . . . 5

4

return to couplet #3

  • Posterior petiolar face rugose. Promesonotal shield translucently margined, with mesonotal projections narrowly rounded (Fig. 11). Dorsal ocular margin well separated from ventral scrobal margin. (north-western Australia) . . . . . Meranoplus duyfkeni
Meranoplus duyfkeni casent0908938 p 1 high.jpg
  • Posterior petiolar face evenly and densely costate. Promesonotal shield not translucently margined, with mesonotal projections reduced or seen as minute denticles (Fig. 13). Dorsal ocular margin reaching ventral scrobal margin. (Queensland) . . . . . Meranoplus orientalis

5

return to couplet #3

  • Clypeus with conspicuous dorsal median keel-like carina, accompanied by lateral more or less developed carinate projections (Figs. 52, 53). (Widespread throughout most of arid to monsoonal Australia, absent in southernmost parts) . . . . . Meranoplus ajax
Meranoplus ajax casent0317389 p 1 high.jpg
  • Dorsal clypeus at most with weak median keel or with flat elaboration . . . . . 6

6

return to couplet #5

  • Anterior clypeal margin with upward flexion, somewhat lamellate and laterally denticulate and broadly rounded, frequently with weak median carina (Fig. 55; plate I, A). (Top End, Northern Territory) . . . . . Meranoplus snellingi
  • Anterior clypeal margin not lamellate, concave, with dorsal flat anteriorly rectangular or excised elaboration that may surpass anterior clypeal margin . . . . . 7

7

return to couplet #6

  • Larger species, HW 1.78 - 2.37. Dorsal clypeal elaboration seldom surpassing anterior margin (Fig. 54). First gastral tergite entirely coarsely striate to striatopunctate. (Kimberley throughout central Australia to northeastern Queensland) . . . . . Meranoplus unicolor
Meranoplus unicolor casent0908939 p 1 high.jpg
  • Smaller species with HW 1.58 - 1.80. Dorsal clypeal elaboration usually distinctly surpassing anterior clypeal margin (Fg. 56). First gastral tergite microreticulate, without striation. (Top End, Northern Territory) . . . . . Meranoplus berrimah

8

return to couplet #1

  • Posterior petiolar face evenly and conspicuously costate. Concolorous or bicolored species . . . . . 9
  • Posterior petiolar face reticulate rugulose. Distinctly bicolored species . . . . . 21

9

return to couplet #8

  • Clypeus bidentate or anteriorly deeply excised, with or without additional medial carina or bulge . . . . . 10
  • Clypeus not bidentate, either transversally vaulted with the anterolateral clypeal corners more or less acutely extended, or the clypeal projection flat with an occasional medial elevation and the anterior margin sinuate (Figs. 65 - 68) . . . . . 18

10

return to couplet #9

  • Clypeus dorsally with additional medial bulge or carina that may surpass the anterior clypeal margin . . . . . 11

11

return to couplet #10

  • Clypeus medially with triangular bulge-like projection (Fig. 59). Dorsal ocular margin confluent with ventral scrobal margin. (south-central to north-east coastal Australia) . . . . . Meranoplus mars
Meranoplus mars casent0908943 p 1 high.jpg
  • Clypeus medially with acute tooth merging into a narrow carina (Fig. 61). Dorsal ocular margin well separated from lower scrobal margin. (coastal and south-central Queensland; Alice Springs) . . . . . Meranoplus tricuspidatus

12

return to couplet #10

  • Dorsal ocular margin well separated from lower scrobal margin . . . . . 13
  • Dorsal ocular margin very close to or confluent with lower scrobal margin . . . . . 15

13

return to couplet #12

  • Promesonotal shield in overall impression not square, with apically acute posterolateral and posterior projections. Petiole in profile with posterior face angularly convex. Frontal carinae in anterior half abruptly broader (Fig. 71; plate I, B). (south-central Queensland; New South Wales) . . . . . Meranoplus christinae
  • Promesonotal shield in overall impression somewhat square with apically rounded posterior and posterolateral projections. Petiole in profile acutely triangular. Frontral carinae anteriorly not abruptly broader . . . . . 14

14

return to couplet #13

  • Clypeus medially deeply excised, with long, acute anterolateral projections that almost reach anterolateral frontal lobes (Fig. 69) (w. coastal to central Australia) . . . . . Meranoplus diversus
Meranoplus diversus casent0902044 p 1 high.jpg
  • Clypeus not as deeply excised, clypeal teeth short and bluntly triangular with upward flexion, distinctly shorter than extended frontal lobes (Fig. 70). (Queensland; southern-most Northern Territory) . . . . . Meranoplus diversoides

15

return to couplet #12

  • Larger species with HW 1.65 - 1.80. Frontal carinae distinctly narrower than head width (FI 124 - 129). (central Australia) . . . . . Meranoplus deserticola
  • Smaller species with HW 1.15 - 1.50. Frontal carinae less narrower than head width (FI 115 - 122) . . . . . 16

16

return to couplet #15

  • Propodeal spines long and massive (PSL 0.58 - 0.63) (northern South Australia) . . . . . Meranoplus crassispina

17

return to couplet #16

  • Eyes relatively large (REL 0.21 - 0.24) with 15 - 18 ommatidia. Promesonotal shield posteriorly not distinctly narrower (Fig. 21), with shorter pilosity. (Kimberley to Top End) . . . . . Meranoplus oxleyi
Meranoplus oxleyi casent0908937 p 1 high.jpg
  • Eyes relatively smaller (REL 0.18 - 0.20) with 14 - 15 ommatidia. Promesonotal shield posteriorly distinctly narrower (Fig. 17), with longer pilosity. (north-eastern NSW, southcentral and costal Queensland) . . . . . Meranoplus wilsoni

18

return to couplet #9

  • Clypeus a flat disc with an occasional medial elevation, anterior clypeal margin sinuate (Fig. 68). Propodeal spines short (PSL 45 - 50). (Cape York) . . . . . Meranoplus discalis
  • Clypeus transversely vaulted with lateral clypeal corners extended (Figs. 65 - 67). Propodeal spines longer (PSL 54 - 70) . . . . . 19

19

return to couplet #18

  • Eyes small (REL 0.15 - 0.17) with 14 - 17 ommatidia in the longest row. (south-east Australia) . . . . . Meranoplus convexius
  • Eyes larger (REL 0.16 - 0.20) with 17 - 19 ommatidia in the longest row . . . . . 20

20

return to couplet #19

  • Promesonotal shield distinctly wider than long (PMI 130 - 138), more irregularly reticulate-rugulose. Posterior medial projections digitate, with reduced or without lamellate material inbetween (Fig. 31). (NSW, south-central Queensland) . . . . . Meranoplus digitatus
  • Promesonotal shield not as distinctly wider than long (PMI 119 - 127), regularly reticulate. Posterior medial projections with lamellate material between. (Northern Territory) . . . . . Meranoplus naitsabes

21

return to couplet #8

  • Anterior clypeal margin broadly concave (Fig. 75). Mandibles with five teeth. (central and southern Australia; Western Australia) . . . . . Meranoplus mcarthuri
  • Anterior clypeal concavity much narrower. Mandibles with four teeth . . . . . 22

22

return to couplet #21

  • Anterolateral clypeal corners acutely pointing forward (Fig. 51). Posterior and posterolateral projections of promesonotal shield short and apically bluntly rounded, translucently flanged (Fig. 76). With short scapes (SI1 47 - 53), markedly narrow frontal carinae (FI 131 - 146) and relatively large eyes (REL 0.26 - 0.29). (central and southeastern Australia) . . . . . Meranoplus taurus
  • Anterolateral clypeal corners less acutely pointing forward. Posterior and postero-lateral projections of promesonotal shield more strongly developed. Scapes longer (SI > 56), frontal carinae broader (FI > 113 - 129) and eyes relatively smaller (REL 0.22 - 0.27) . . . . . 23

23

return to couplet #22

  • Petiole and postpetiole in lateral view narrow and high (PTI 55 - 61; PPI 48 - 58). Southeastern Australia) . . . . . Meranoplus angustinodis
  • Petiole and postpetiole in lateral view not as narrow and not as high (PTI > 64; PPI 53 - 72) . . . . . 24

24

return to couplet #23

  • Petiole in lateral view dorsally truncated with distinct dorsal face (Fig. 44). (central to south-east Australia) . . . . . Meranoplus variabilis
  • Petiole in lateral view triangular without or with narrow oblique dorsal face (Fig. 46). (Western and South Australia) . . . . . Meranoplus arcuatus