Aphaenogaster semipolita

AntWiki: The Ants --- Online
Aphaenogaster semipolita
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Attini
Genus: Aphaenogaster
Species group: testaceopilosa
Species: A. semipolita
Binomial name
Aphaenogaster semipolita
(Nylander, 1856)

Aphaenogaster semipolita casent0281584 p 1 high.jpg

Aphaenogaster semipolita casent0281584 d 1 high.jpg

Specimen Labels


A member of the A. testaceopilosa group. Boer (2013) - The workers of A. semipolita resemble Aphaenogaster spinosa because of their shine, but the two are easily separated by the characters provided in the key. These species are examples of allopatric speciation. The glossy to shiny gaster of the gyne is a remarkable character. The nearly smooth and shiny gaster of the male is also a distinct characteristic.

Keys including this Species


Latitudinal Distribution Pattern

Latitudinal Range: 45.786944° to 37.066667°.

Tropical South

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Palaearctic Region: Italy (type locality).

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.




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

  • semipolita. Myrmica semipolita Nylander, 1856b: 86 (w.) ITALY.
    • Emery, 1878b: 53 (m.); André, 1883b: 370 (q.).
    • Combination in Atta: Roger, 1859: 256;
    • combination in Aphaenogaster: Roger, 1863b: 29.
    • Junior synonym of testaceopilosa: Mayr, 1861: 66 (in key); Mayr, 1863: 397; Dours, 1873: 167.
    • Subspecies of testaceopilosa: Emery, 1878b: 53 (footnote); Emery & Forel, 1879: 462; André, 1883b: 362; Emery, in Dalla Torre, 1893: 107 (footnote); Ruzsky, 1902d: 27; Ruzsky, 1905b: 722; Emery, 1908c: 319; Forel, 1910a: 24; Forel, 1911d: 346; Karavaiev, 1912a: 4; Emery, 1915a: 256; Emery, 1916b: 131; Menozzi, 1921: 26; Emery, 1921f: 63; Soudek, 1925b: 14; Kutter, 1927: 98; Finzi, 1930d: 312; Grandi, 1935: 99; Zimmermann, 1935: 14; Donisthorpe, 1950e: 1059.
    • Status as species: Roger, 1859: 256; Roger, 1863b: 29; Forel, 1886e: clxviii; Dalla Torre, 1893: 104; Santschi, 1933c: 390; Baroni Urbani, 1964b: 28; Baroni Urbani, 1964c: 150; Baroni Urbani, 1968b: 422; Baroni Urbani, 1971c: 42; Agosti & Collingwood, 1987b: 269 (in key); Bolton, 1995b: 72; Poldi, et al. 1995: 3; Petrov, 2006: 90 (in key); Gratiashvili & Barjadze, 2008: 137; Legakis, 2011: 7; Borowiec, L. & Salata, 2012: 466; Kiran & Karaman, 2012: 17; Boer, 2013: 80 (redescription); Borowiec, L. 2014: 17; Lebas, et al. 2016: 250.

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


Boer (2013):


Rugulose sculpture in general weak. Punctation on mesosoma and head in full-face view, occasionally(!) weak or absent. Lateral sides of mesosoma with longitudinal rugulae. Dorsal side of mesosoma without rugulae, weakly rugulose or with distinct transverse rugulae on propodeum. Head with longitudinal rugulae (not always) on frontal side with some cross connections. Dorsal side of petiolar node weakly punctate or without punctation. Dorsal side of postpetiole with longitudinal costulae. Dorsal side of first gastral tergite largerly smooth, microstriae limited to the base: 0–30% of the surface. Lateral sides of petioles nearly smooth to smooth. Whole body with some shine, especially temple, occiput, ventral side of head, legs and gaster. Underside of head, posterior side of propodeum, beneath the propodeal spines and lateral sides of gaster shiny. Petioles shiny. Dorsal side of gaster wax glossy to glossy. Antennal club 4-segmented. In lateral view setae on head and mesoma of equal length. Petiole equal in height to postpetiole or somewhat higher.

Measurements (n = 26). CI 70–83 (77); CL 1.11–1.69 (1.41) mm; CW 0.95–1.30 (1.08) mm; PHI 26–35 (32); PI 68–90 (82); PPPI 46–54 (51); PSI 136–188 (154); PSLWI 81–150 (104); PWI 20–25 (-43) (23); RPH 131–152 (140); RPSI 25–56 (35); SI 134–150 (143); SI/CI: 168–206 (186); SL 1.34–1.82 (1.55) mm; SPD 1–3 (1.7); SPL 1–5 (3.4).


Longitudinal rugulae on clypeus, head and mesoscutum. Rugulae on lateral sides weak. Transverse rugulae on pronotum, propodeum, scutellum and posterior sides of the petioles. Punctation on head, very weak on mesosoma and petioles. Less than ten transverse microstriae near base of first gastral tergite. Anterior side of petioles smooth. Mesosoma, petioles and gaster satin to glossy. Antennal club 4-segmented. Scutellum rises weakly above mesoscutum and does not bend over metanotum.

Measurements (n = 2). CI 88–93; CL 1.58–1.64 mm; CW 1.44–1.46 mm; PHI 40–43; PI 69–71; PPPI 71–79; PSI 169–179; PSLWI 100–113; PWI 29–33; RPH 130–139; RPSI 44–46; SI 111; SI/CI 119–126; SL 1.60–1.62 mm; SPD 1; SPL 5–5.5.


Rugulae are absent on whole body, except longitudinal rugulae on lateral sides of propodeum. Whole body punctate, weak on propopeum and petioles. The punctation on mesonotum is ranked as a fine striated sculpture. Dorsal side of the first gastral tergite with very weak microreticulation, nearly smooth, without microstriae. Head and mesonotum soft glossy, dorsal side of gaster glossy, propodeum with transverse striation, glossy. Clypeus without rugulae or punctation, soft glossy. Antennal club 5-segmented. Pubescence on scape and hind tibia appressed to decumbent, their length shorter than diameter of scape/tibia. Scutellum slightly erect above mesoscutum, partly or not bent over metanotum. Head without frontal midline. Mandibles with one large apical tooth, tooth 2 and or 3 relatively large, rest of masticatory margin contains 4 denticles. A weak groove between the two knobs at the posterior side of the propodeum. Corner of terminal end of propodeum not sharp, not dentate.

Measurements (n = 5). CI 86–93 (91); CL 0.81–0.90 (0.87) mm; CW 0.75–0.84 (0.78) mm; EYI 38–44 (41); OCI 46–48 (47); SL/CL 48–52 (50); SL 0.39–0.48 (43) mm.


References based on Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics

  • Baroni Urbani C. 1968. Studi sulla mirmecofauna d'Italia. IV. La fauna mirmecologica delle isole Maltesi ed il suo significato ecologico e biogeografico. Ann. Mus. Civ. Stor. Nat. Giacomo Doria 77: 408-559.
  • Baroni Urbani, C. "Formiche dell'Italia appenninica (Studi sulla mirmecofauna d'Italia, III)." Memorie del Museo Civico di Storia Naturale di Verona 12 (1964): 149-172.
  • Baroni Urbani, C. "Studi sulla mirmecofauna d'Italia. II. Formiche di Sicilia." Atti dell'Accademia Gioenia di Scienze Naturali in Catania (6) 16 (1964): 25-66.
  • Boer P. 2013. Revision of the European ants of the Aphaenogaster testaceopilosa-group (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Tijdschrift voor Entomologie 156: 57-93.
  • Borowiec L. 2014. Catalogue of ants of Europe, the Mediterranean Basin and adjacent regions (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Genus (Wroclaw) 25(1-2): 1-340.
  • Borowiec L., and S. Salata. 2012. Ants of Greece - Checklist, comments and new faunistic data (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Genus 23(4): 461-563.
  • Cagniant H., and A. Ledoux. 1974. Nouvelle description d'Aphaenogaster senilis sur des exemplaires de la région de Banyuls-sur-Mer (P.-O.), France. Vie et Milieu. Série C. Biologie Terrestre 24: 97-110.
  • De Stefani T. 1889. Miscellanea imenotterologica sicula. Nat. Sicil. 8: 140-145.
  • Emery C. 1916. Fauna entomologica italiana. I. Hymenoptera.-Formicidae. Bullettino della Società Entomologica Italiana 47: 79-275.
  • Emery, C. "Catalogo delle formiche esistenti nelle collezioni del Museo Civico di Genova. Parte seconda. Formiche dell'Europa e delle regioni limitrofe in Africa e in Asia." Annali del Museo Civico di Storia Naturale 12 (1878): 43-59.
  • Forel A. 1909. Études myrmécologiques en 1909. Fourmis de Barbarie et de Ceylan. Nidification des Polyrhachis. Bull. Soc. Vaudoise Sci. Nat. 45: 369-407.
  • Forel, A. "Nouvelles fourmis de Grèce récoltées par M. E. von Oertzen." Annales de la Société Entomologique de Belgique 30 (1886): clix-clxviii.
  • Grandi G. 1935. Contributi alla conoscenza degli Imenotteri Aculeati. XV. Boll. R. Ist. Entomol. Univ. Studi Bologna 8: 27-121.
  • Gratiashvili N., Barjadze S. 2008. Checklist of the ants (Formicidae Latreille, 1809) of Georgia. Proceedings of the Institute of Zoology (Tbilisi) 23: 130-146.
  • Karavaiev V. 1912. Ameisen aus Tunesien und Algerien, nebst einigen unterwegs in Italien gesammelten Arten. Rus. Entomol. Obozr. 12: 1-22.
  • Kiran K., and C. Karaman. 2012. First annotated checklist of the ant fauna of Turkey (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Zootaxa 3548: 1-38.
  • Poldi B., M. Mei, and F. Rigato. 1995. Hymenoptera, Formicidae. Vol 102. Checklist delle specie della fauna Italiana: 1-10.
  • Scupola I. 2009. Le formiche delle Isole Egadi (Sicilia) (Hymenoptera, Formicidae). Bollettino del Museo Civico di Storia Naturale di Verona Botanica Zoologia 33: 97-103