Acropyga acutiventris

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Acropyga acutiventris
Acropyga acutiventris
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Formicinae
Tribe: Plagiolepidini
Genus: Acropyga
Species: A. acutiventris
Binomial name
Acropyga acutiventris
Roger, 1862

Acropyga acutiventris side view

Acropyga acutiventris top view

Synonyms
Evolutionary Relationships
Acropyga



Acropyga ayanganna




Acropyga donisthorpei



Acropyga panamensis







Acropyga guianensis



Acropyga stenotes






Acropyga fuhrmanni



Acropyga smithii





Acropyga romeo




Acropyga hirsutula




Acropyga dubitata




Acropyga decedens, Acropyga goeldii



Acropyga epedana












Acropyga arnoldi



Acropyga silvestrii






Acropyga kinomurai



Acropyga lauta





Acropyga sauteri




Acropyga acutiventris




Acropyga myops




Acropyga butteli




Acropyga ambigua



Acropyga pallida










Based on Blaimer et al., 2016. Note only selected Acropyga species are included, and undescribed species are excluded.

A common wide-ranging species, A. acutiventris is known to occur in rainforest and, in Australia, savanna woodlands. Nests are located in rotten wood on the ground, under stones, and in the leaf litter. This species is a trophophoretic ant that has been found to be associated with two species of mealybugs (Xenococcus acropygae and X annandalei). Queens carry live mealbugs in their mandibles on their nuptual flights, with the mealybugs providing honeydew for her newly established nest.

Photo Gallery

  • A. acutiventris worker carrying a mealybug. From Sakaerat, Korat province, Thailand. (Image by Christian Peeters)
  • An Acropyga acutiventris worker ant pulls a cocoon to safety after the photographer disturbs her nest. Cape Tribulation, Queensland, Australia. (Image by Alex Wild.)
  • Acropyga acutiventris dealate queen with mealybug. Photo by Manoj Vembayam.

Identification

LaPolla (2004) - Worker: 11 segmented antennae; mandible with 5 teeth and distinct ridges that run along dorsal surface; many erect hairs on head, mesosoma and gaster giving ant a "spiky appearance"; eyes prominent. Queen: As in worker with modifications expected for caste. Male: 12 segmented antennae; parameres with dense covering of erect hairs and with dorsolateral expansions medially. Compare with Acropyga rubescens.

This species is fairly easy to recognize, with the only morphologically similar species being its close relative, Acropyga rubescens. A combination of large eyes (more than 20 facets), unique mesosomal shape, and 5-toothed mandibles with distinct striate sculpture on the dorsal surface, enable identification of A. acutiventris. Separating workers of this species from A. rubescens can be more difficult, though in general it is not as hairy as in A. rubescens, is slightly smaller in total length, and the striate sculpture extends approximately across the entire dorsal surface of the mandible. Males of A. acutiventris are also less hairy than in A. rubescens, but the most reliable means to identify them is by dissecting out the penis valves, which are distinct for each species. Given the large range and morphological variability of this species, it is not surprising that so many synonyms have been created. In the past, species have been based on variation in color, overall size, head shape differences and antennal segment shape differences. Here, they are all treated as being the same of a wide ranging, variable species. Dissection of males from across the range (penis valve dissections from Australia, India, Papua New Guinea, Singapore, and the Solomon Islands) of A. acutiventris revealed no discernable genitalic differences.

Australia

Within Australia this species can be separated from other members of the genus by the presence of long erect hairs on the antennal scapes and posterior margin of the head.

Keys including this Species

Distribution

Acropyga acutiventris has a large range that occupies much of the Australasian, Indo-Australian, and Oriental regions. It can be found from India east to northern Australia. It is one of the most commonly encountered species in the genus.

Australia

Limited to the Top End and northern Queensland where it occurs primarily in rainforest with a few records from savanna woodlands.

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Australasian Region: Australia (type locality).
Indo-Australian Region: Borneo, Indonesia, Krakatau Islands, Malaysia, New Guinea, Philippines, Singapore, Solomon Islands.
Oriental Region: India, Nicobar Island, Sri Lanka (type locality), Thailand, Vietnam.
Palaearctic Region: China.


Distribution based on AntMaps

AntMapLegend.png

Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb

Elevation Range

Occurrence at collecting sites during elevational surveys of rainforest in the Eungella region, Queensland, Australia (Burwell et al., 2020).
Species Elevation (m asl)
200 400 600 800 1000 1200
Acropyga acutiventris 30-40
Shading indicates the bands of elevation where species was recorded.
Numbers are the percentage of total samples containing this species.

Biology

Castes

Worker

Nomenclature

The following information is derived from Barry Bolton's Online Catalogue of the Ants of the World.

  • acutiventris. Acropyga acutiventris Roger, 1862a: 243 (w.q.) SRI LANKA.
    • Imai, et al. 1984: 68 (k.).
    • Combination in Plagiolepis: Mayr, 1863: 442,
    • combination in Acropyga: Roger, 1863b: 11.
    • Status as species: Mayr, 1862: 769; Roger, 1863b: 11; Mayr, 1863: 442; Smith, F. 1871a: 319; Emery, 1888a: 530; Dalla Torre, 1893: 174; Forel, 1894c: 418; Mayr, 1897: 432; Emery, 1900d: 697; Emery, 1901f: 121; Emery, 1901g: 567; Bingham, 1903: 333; Forel, 1903d: 407; Forel, 1909e: 395; Forel, 1911e: 286; Forel, 1913e: 663; Emery, 1925b: 28; Wheeler, W.M. 1929g: 57; Karavaiev, 1933a: 308; Chapman & Capco, 1951: 210; Taylor, 1992a: 58; Bolton, 1995b: 57; Terayama, Fellowes & Zhou, 2002: 23 (redescription); LaPolla, 2004a: 31 (redescription); Jaitrong & Nabhitabhata, 2005: 10; Mohanraj, et al. 2010: 6; Pfeiffer, et al. 2011: 36; Ran & Zhou, 2011: 65; Guénard & Dunn, 2012: 27; Sarnat, et al. 2013: 69; Bharti, Guénard, et al. 2016: 23.
    • Senior synonym of australis: Taylor, 1992a: 58; Bolton, 1995b: 57; Terayama, Fellowes & Zhou, 2002: 23; LaPolla, 2004a: 31.
    • Senior synonym of carinata: LaPolla, 2004a: 31.
    • Senior synonym of crassicornis: LaPolla, 2004a: 31.
    • Senior synonym of flava: Forel, 1894c: 418; Bolton, 1995b: 57; Terayama, Fellowes & Zhou, 2002: 23; LaPolla, 2004a: 31.
    • Senior synonym of indosinensis: LaPolla, 2004a: 31.
    • Senior synonym of javana: LaPolla, 2004a: 31.
    • Senior synonym of moluccana: LaPolla, 2004a: 31.
    • Senior synonym of mysolensis: LaPolla, 2004a: 31.
    • Senior synonym of occipitalis: LaPolla, 2004a: 31.
    • Senior synonym of opaca: LaPolla, 2004a: 31.
    • Senior synonym of papuana: LaPolla, 2004a: 31.
    • Senior synonym of undecemus: LaPolla, 2004a: 31.
  • australis. Acropyga moluccana var. australis Forel, 1902h: 477 (w.) AUSTRALIA (Queensland).
    • Wheeler, G.C. & Wheeler, J. 1968: 209 (l.).
    • Subspecies of acutiventris: Forel, 1911e: 286; Emery, 1925b: 28.
    • Subspecies of moluccana: Forel, 1910b: 58; Taylor & Brown, 1985: 108; Taylor, 1987a: 5.
    • Junior synonym of acutiventris: Taylor, 1992a: 58; Bolton, 1995b: 57; Terayama, Fellowes & Zhou, 2002: 23; LaPolla, 2004a: 31.
  • carinata. Acropyga acutiventris var. carinata Karavaiev, 1933a: 310 (w.) INDONESIA (Sumatra).
    • Subspecies of acutiventris: Chapman & Capco, 1951: 210; Bolton, 1995b: 57.
    • Junior synonym of acutiventris: LaPolla, 2004a: 32.
  • crassicornis. Acropyga crassicornis Emery, 1900d: 698 (footnote), fig. 13 (w.) NEW GUINEA (no state data).
    • Status as species: Forel, 1911e: 286; Viehmeyer, 1914c: 530; Emery, 1925b: 28; Chapman & Capco, 1951: 211; Bolton, 1995b: 57.
    • Junior synonym of acutiventris: LaPolla, 2004a: 31.
  • flava. Plagiolepis flava Mayr, 1862: 699 (q.m.) INDIA (Nicobar Is).
    • Combination in Acropyga: Mayr, 1862: 769.
    • Status as species: Roger, 1863b: 11; Mayr, 1863: 442; Mayr, 1865: 53 (redescription); Emery, 1889b: 510; Dalla Torre, 1893: 174; Emery, 1895k: 476.
    • Subspecies of acutiventris: Forel, 1913k: 100; Emery, 1925b: 28; Wheeler, W.M. 1935g: 38; Chapman & Capco, 1951: 210.
    • Junior synonym of acutiventris: Forel, 1894c: 418; Bolton, 1995b: 57; Terayama, Fellowes & Zhou, 2002: 23; LaPolla, 2004a: 31.
  • indosinensis. Acropyga (Rhizomyrma) indosinensis Wheeler, W.M. 1935c: 72.
    • Replacement name for Acropyga (Rhizomyrma) silvestrii Wheeler, W.M. 1927h: 100. [Junior primary homonym of Acropyga silvestrii Emery, 1915g: 21.]
    • Status as species: Chapman & Capco, 1951: 212; Bolton, 1995b: 57.
    • Junior synonym of acutiventris: LaPolla, 2004a: 32.
  • javana. Acropyga (Acropyga) acutiventris var. javana Karavaiev, 1933a: 308 (w.m.) INDONESIA (Java).
    • Subspecies of acutiventris: Chapman & Capco, 1951: 211; Bolton, 1995b: 57.
    • Junior synonym of acutiventris: LaPolla, 2004a: 31.
  • moluccana. Acropyga moluccana Mayr, 1879: 658 (w.) INDONESIA (Seram I.).
    • Karavaiev, 1933a: 310 (m.); Wheeler, G.C. & Wheeler, J. 1953c: 137 (l.).
    • Status as species: Emery, 1887a: 247; Dalla Torre, 1893: 174; Emery, 1900d: 697 (footnote); Forel, 1901b: 24; Dahl, 1901: 12; Forel, 1905c: 24; Emery, 1925b: 29; Karavaiev, 1933a: 310; Chapman & Capco, 1951: 211; Taylor & Brown, 1985: 107; Bolton, 1995b: 57.
    • Junior synonym of acutiventris: LaPolla, 2004a: 31.
  • mysolensis. Acropyga moluccana subsp. mysolensis Forel, 1911e: 285 (w.) INDONESIA (Misool I.).
    • Subspecies of moluccana: Chapman & Capco, 1951: 211; Bolton, 1995b: 57.
    • Junior synonym of acutiventris: LaPolla, 2004a: 31.
  • occipitalis. Acropyga moluccana var. occipitalis Stitz, 1912: 510, fig. 12 (w.) NEW GUINEA (no state data).
    • Subspecies of moluccana: Chapman & Capco, 1951: 211; Bolton, 1995b: 57.
    • Junior synonym of acutiventris: LaPolla, 2004a: 31.
  • opaca. Acropyga moluccana var. opaca Stitz, 1911a: 370 (w.) NEW GUINEA (Papua New Guinea).
    • Donisthorpe, 1948g: 139 (m.).
    • Subspecies of moluccana: Mann, 1919: 365; Wheeler, W.M. 1935g: 38; Donisthorpe, 1948g: 139; Chapman & Capco, 1951: 211; Bolton, 1995b: 57.
    • Junior synonym of acutiventris: LaPolla, 2004a: 31.
  • papuana. Acropyga (Acropyga) moluccana subsp. papuana Mann, 1919: 364 (w.) SOLOMON IS (Ugi I., Malaita I., San Cristoval I., Isabel I.).
    • Wheeler, G.C. & Wheeler, J. 1953c: 136 (l.).
    • Subspecies of moluccana: Wheeler, W.M. 1935g: 38; Bolton, 1995b: 58.
    • Junior synonym of acutiventris: LaPolla, 2004a: 31.
  • undecemus. Pseudolasius undecemus Donisthorpe, 1949c: 756 (w.) NEW GUINEA (Indonesia).
    • Combination in Acropyga: Bolton, 1995b: 58.
    • Status as species: Chapman & Capco, 1951: 207; Bolton, 1995b: 58.
    • Junior synonym of acutiventris: LaPolla, 2004a: 32.

Type Material

The following notes on V.A. Karavaiev type specimens have been provided by Martynov & Radchenko (2016) based on material held in the Institute of Zoology, Ukrainian Academy of Science:

Acropyga acutiventris var. javana

Type locality(-ies): “Depok, W. Java, Djungeln, 22.XII.1912 (Nr. 2344), zahlreiche ww von 2,5-3 mm Länge. Kolonie im Boden zwischen den Wurzeln eines großen Baumes, in der Nachbarschaft einer Termitenkolonie.— Bujtenzorg, Java, Botan. Garten (Nr. 2370), zahlreiche ww von 3-3,5 mm Länge und mm. Koloniein der Erde”.

Original Karawajew label(-s): “Acrotyga (Acropyga) / acutiventris v. javana Kar. / Buitenzorg, 2370.”.

Material: SYNTYPES, 5 w (newly mounted, IN 314/6/1), 211 w (in alcohol, IN 314/BAMS1/Karaw61).

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

Description

Worker

LaPolla (2004) - (n=l0): TL: 2.67-3.53; HW: 0.8-0.912; HL: 0.803-0.896; SL: 0.628-0.827; ML: 0.836-1.03; GL: 0.933-1.74; CI: 91.07-104.25; SI: 78.7-97.97.

Head: yellow to light brownish-yellow; head about as broad as long; posterior margin concave; covered in a thick layer of appressed hairs, with many scattered erect hairs, especially along posterior margin; eyes relatively large, placed at lower 1/4 of head; 11 segmented, incrassate antennae; scape reaches or surpasses posterior margin by about length of pedicel; clypeus broad, slightly convex medially with many erect hairs, the longest ones along anterior clypeal margin; mandible with 5 uneven teeth; 3rd and 5th tooth (from apical to basal) smaller than others; dorsal surface of mandible with distinct ridges across surface from about base of teeth toward insertion of mandibles; slight gap present between inner mandibular surface and anterior clypeal margin. Mesosoma: yellow to light brownish-yellow; pronotum in lateral view typically with short shelf before rising sharply toward mesonotum; mesonotum rounded with many erect and appressed hairs at apex; metanotal area distinct; propodeum below level of mesonotum, dorsum flat before steep declivity; propodeum with short erect and appressed hairs. Gaster: yellow to light brownish-yellow to reddish-yellow; petiole thick and erect reaching height of propodeum; yellow to light brownish-yellow; gaster covered in thick layer of appressed hairs with many scattered erect hairs throughout giving a "spiky" appearance.

Queen

LaPolla (2004) - (n=3): TL: 4.56-5.09; HW: 1.02-1.06; HL: 0.967-1.01; SL: 0.902-0.971; ML: 1.4-1.63; GL: 2.19-2.63; CI: 102.97-106; SI: 85.09-95.2. As in worker with modifications expected for caste.

Male

LaPolla (2004) - (n=3): TL: 2.89-3.33; HW: 0.604-0.644; HL: 0.588-0.626; SL: 0.529-0.617; ML: 1.03-l. l6; GL: 1.27-1.56; CI: 102.72-103.09; SI: 87.58-95.81.

Head: yellow to light brownish-yellow, darker around three prominent ocelli; head about as broad as long; covered in layer of appressed hairs with scattered suberect to erect hairs; 12 segmented, slightly incrassate antennae; scape surpasses posterior margin by about length of first two funicular segments; clypeus broad, relatively flat, with scattered short erect hairs; mandible with 3-4 teeth; gap present between inner mandibular margin and anterior clypeal margin. Mesosoma: yellow to light brownish-yellow; pronotum short and collar-like; mesonotum large, rounded anteriorly; mesonotum flat dorsally, with layer of shorter appressed hairs and scattered longer erect hairs throughout; propodeum lower than mesonotum and scutellum; declivity not distinct from propodeum. Gaster: petiole thick and erect; gaster yellow to light brownish-yellow to reddish-yellow, darker dorsally; covered in dense layer of appressed hairs with scattered erect hairs throughout. Genitalia: in lateral view parameres thick, tapering to rounded apices; parameres with medial dorsolateral extensions; cuspi short, bent toward approximately middle of digiti, where cuspi meet digiti with short, peg-like teeth at apices; digiti long and erect; apex rounded; digiti with short-peg-like teeth where cuspi meet.

Karyotype

  • 2n = 28; 29 (Malaysia) (Imai et al., 1983) (suggested Robertsonian polymorphism).

References

References based on Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics

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