A taxonomic revision of seed harvester ants of the Tetramorium solidum group (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) in southern Africa

Nokuthula Mbanyana, Francisco Hita Garcia, Hamish Gibson Robertson, Johannes Jacobus Le Roux

Abstract


Ants of the Tetramorium solidum group occur in Africa, with the vast majority of species endemic to the arid regions of southern Africa. The first revision of the genus was published more than 30 years ago and ant surveys have since considerably expanded the number of specimens available for study. The revision of this group reveals five new species, expanding the total number to 19. Almost all the species in this group occur in the southern parts of the Afrotropical region, with the exception of T. setuliferum Emery, 1895 and T. rothschildi (Forel, 1907). These two species have broad distributions within African grasslands and savannas, with T. setuliferum occurring in southern Africa and T. rothschildi in East Africa and the Sahel. Five new species are described in this revision: T. aisha sp. nov., T. brigitteae sp. nov., T. duncani sp. nov., T. lerouxi sp. nov. and T. margueriteae sp. nov. An illustrated key is presented and descriptions of new species are provided, supported by montage images and distribution maps.

Keywords


ant taxonomy; arid regions; identification key; new species; systematics

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5852/ejt.2018.454

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