Aenictus philiporum

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Aenictus philiporum
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Dorylinae
Genus: Aenictus
Species: A. philiporum
Binomial name
Aenictus philiporum
Wilson, 1964

Aenictus philiporum side view

Aenictus philiporum top view

This rare species has been collected only a limited number of times on Cape York Peninsula, Queensland and in eastern Papua New Guinea. Little is known concerning its biology (Shattuck, 2008).


A member of the pachycerus group. Head capsule smooth posteriorly and weakly punctate between the frontal carinae and above the mandibular insertions; pronotum with large smooth areas dorsally and laterally, other areas micro-reticulate.

Keys including this Species


Latitudinal Distribution Pattern

Latitudinal Range: -7.199999809° to -12.73333359°.

Tropical South

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

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

Distribution based on AntMaps


Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb

Countries Occupied

Number of countries occupied by this species based on AntWiki Regional Taxon Lists. In general, fewer countries occupied indicates a narrower range, while more countries indicates a more widespread species.

Estimated Abundance

Relative abundance based on number of AntMaps records per species (this species within the purple bar). Fewer records (to the left) indicates a less abundant/encountered species while more records (to the right) indicates more abundant/encountered species.


A colony from Bandong was found running in file during the late afternoon in midmountain rain forest. The workers wer carrying brood consisting of half-grown larvae; thus the colony is interpreted as being in the nomadic phase. Three Pheidole soldiers, representing at least 2 species, were retrieved from the mandibles of the the workers. (Wilson 1964)


Known only from the worker caste.

Wilson 1964 Army Ant fig 64-75


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

  • philiporum. Aenictus philiporum Wilson, 1964a: 473, fig. 74 (w.) AUSTRALIA (Queensland), NEW GUINEA (Papua New Guinea).
    • Type-material: holotype worker, 5 paratype workers.
    • Type-locality: holotype Australia: Queensland, Cape York, Iron Range, i.1958 (P.F. & P.J. Darlington); paratypes with same data.
    • Type-depository: MCZC.
    • Status as species: Taylor & Brown, 1985: 53; Taylor, 1987a: 6; Bolton, 1995b: 60; Shattuck, 2008c: 13 (redescription).
    • Distribution: Australia, Papua New Guinea.

Type Material


Mandible broad, triangular, with 6–9 widely spaced short teeth; anterior clypeal border broadly convex, even with or slightly posterior to anterior margin of frontal lobes; parafrontal ridges present; subpetiolar process weakly developed, broadly rounded anteriorly, flat posteriorly; head smooth laterally, remainder weakly to moderately punctate; posterior section of pronotum and entire mesonotum completely smooth to very weakly reticulate; anterior of pronotum, mesopleuron and entire propodeum weakly punctuate; body red-brown, head, antennae and legs lighter yellow-red.

Measurements. Worker (n = 10) - CI 88–94; HL 0.66–0.71; HW 0.59–0.67; MTL 0.47–0.57; ML 0.96–1.06; SI 83–89; SL 0.52–0.59.


  • Shattuck, S.O. 2008 Review of the ant genus Aenictus (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) in Australia with notes on A. ceylonicus (Mayr). Zootaxa 1926, 1–19.
  • Wilson, E. O. 1964a. The true army ants of the Indo-Australian area (Hymenoptera: Formicidae: Dorylinae). Pac. Insects 6: 427-483 (page 473, fig. 74 worker described)

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 Accessed on 24th Feb. 2011.
  • Sagata, K., A.L. Mack, D.D. Wright and P.J. Lester. 2010. The influence of nest avaiability on the abundance and diversity of twig-dwelling ants in a Papua New Guinea forest. Insectes Sociaux 57:333-341
  • Shattuck, S. O. 2008. Review of the ant genus Aenictus (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) in Australia with notes on A. ceylonicus (Mayr). Zootaxa 1926:1-19.
  • Wilson E. O. 1964. The true army ants of the Indo-Australian area (Hymenoptera: Formicidae: Dorylinae). Pacific Insects 6: 427-483.