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Basiceros manni
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Attini
Genus: Basiceros
Schulz, W.A., 1906
Type species
Meranoplus singularis, now Basiceros singularis
9 species
(Species Checklist, Species by Country)

Basiceros manni casent0052769 profile 1.jpg

Basiceros manni

Basiceros manni casent0052769 dorsal 1.jpg

Specimen Label

Evolutionary Relationships

Ochetomyrmex (2 species), Tranopelta (2 species)

Allomerus (8 species), Blepharidatta (4 species), Diaphoromyrma (1 species), Lachnomyrmex (16 species), Wasmannia (11 species)

Acanthognathus (7 species), Colobostruma (16 species), Daceton (2 species), Epopostruma (20 species), Lenomyrmex (7 species), Mesostruma (9 species), Microdaceton (4 species), Orectognathus (29 species),

Acromyrmex (56 species), Apterostigma (44 species), Atta (20 species), Cyatta (1 species), Cyphomyrmex (23 species), Kalathomyrmex (1 species), Mycetophylax (21 species), Mycetagroicus (4 species), Mycetarotes (4 species), Mycetosoritis (2 species), Mycocepurus (6 species), Myrmicocrypta (31 species), Sericomyrmex (11 species), Trachymyrmex (9 species), Xerolitor (1 species)

  (1,294 species)

  (123 species)

  (44 species)

  (859 species)

  (1 species)

  (1 species)

  (7 species)

  (16 species)

  (9 species)

  (35 species)

  (55 species)

  (1 species)

Based on Ward et al. (2014), Blaimer et al. (2018) and Li et al. (2018).

Known only from Neotropical rainforests, the elusiveness of Basiceros is reinforced by an impressive form of crypsis exhibited by adult workers and queens, which accumulate soil and leaf litter particles on their integument with the aid of specialized setae. Little information is available regarding their natural history. Currently a member of the ‘Basiceros-genus group’ (Eurhopalothrix, Octostruma, Protalaridris, Rhopalothrix, Talaridris). For mouthparts, labral and mandibular morphologies present considerable variation in the Basiceros-genus group, likely a result of adaptive evolution. In Basiceros, those differences can be observed in the labrum shape and the various degrees of development of the labral cleft and the clypeomandibular space. Mouthpart traits indicate a strong correlated evolutionary history potentially associated with specialized feeding habits (Probst et al. 2019).


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Keys including this Genus


Keys to Species in this Genus


Distribution and Richness based on AntMaps

Species by Region

Number of species within biogeographic regions, along with the total number of species for each region.

Afrotropical Region Australasian Region Indo-Australian Region Malagasy Region Nearctic Region Neotropical Region Oriental Region Palaearctic Region
Species 0 0 0 0 0 9 0 0
Total Species 2837 1734 3036 929 832 4375 1686 2823


Probst et al. (2019) - Direct evidence of Basiceros preying on gastropods comes from photographic accounts - a larva of Basiceros singularis feeding on a gastropod with a rounded shell. For other Basiceros species, data on feeding preference are scarce. Part of a colony of Basiceros conjugans was collected in Peru, nesting in a rotten log, and the trash chamber included a gastropod shell, ant remains, and a cephalic capsule of Isoptera (Syntermitinae) (Probst 2015), suggesting that B. conjugans could have scavenger habits. Mandible shape is known to be a highly labile trait in ants; however, the labrum is often overlooked in the discussions of mouthpart evolution. This work provides the first step for examining ecological specialization of members of the Basiceros-genus group in the light of mouthpart traits, showing transitions in the mandible and labrum, probably due to prey specialization.

Life History Traits

  • Mean colony size: 9-32 (Greer et al., 2021)
  • Compound colony type: not parasitic (Greer et al., 2021)
  • Nest site: hypogaeic (Greer et al., 2021)
  • Diet class: predator (Greer et al., 2021)
  • Foraging stratum: subterranean/leaf litter (Greer et al., 2021)
  • Foraging behaviour: solitary (Greer et al., 2021)



Worker Morphology

• Antennal segment count: 12 • Antennal club: 2 • Palp formula: 2,2; 1,2 • Total dental count: 11-15 • Spur formula: 0,0 • Eyes: 11-100 ommatidia • Pronotal Spines: absent • Mesonotal Spines: absent • Propodeal Spines: dentiform • Petiolar Spines: absent • Caste: none or weak • Sting: present • Metaplural Gland: present • Cocoon: absent

These characters are collated in the Worker Morphology table.


All Karyotype Records for Genus

Explore Data: All, Drilldown
Click here to show/hide karyotype data.
Taxon Haploid Diploid Karyotype Locality Source Notes
Basiceros convexiceps 20 20M Brazil Mariano et al., 2013


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

  • BASICEROS [Myrmicinae: Basicerotini]
    • Basiceros Schulz, W.A. 1906: 156. Replacement name for Ceratobasis Smith, F. 1860c: 78. [Junior homonym of Ceratobasis Lacordaire, 1848: 362 (Coleoptera).]
    • Basiceros senior synonym of Aspididris: Brown, 1974c: 132.
    • Basiceros senior synonym of Creightonidris: Fernández, 2003d: 314, 392; Feitosa, Brandão & Dietz, 2007: 17.
    • Basiceros senior synonym of Acanthidris, Eurhopalothrix, Heptastruma, Octostruma, Protalaridris, Rhopalothrix, Talaridris: Baroni Urbani & De Andrade, 2007: 88.
  • ASPIDIDRIS [junior synonym of Basiceros]
    • Aspididris Weber, 1950c: 3. Type-species: Aspididris militaris, by monotypy.
    • Aspididris junior synonym of Basiceros: Brown, 1974c: 132.
  • CERATOBASIS [junior homonym, see Basiceros]
    • Ceratobasis Smith, F. 1860c: 78. Type-species: Meranoplus singularis, by monotypy. [Junior homonym of Ceratobasis Lacordaire, 1848: 362 (Coleoptera).]
    • Basiceros Schulz, W.A. 1906: 156, replacement name for Ceratobasis Smith.
  • CREIGHTONIDRIS [junior synonym of Basiceros]
    • Creightonidris Brown, 1949f: 89. Type-species: Creightonidris scambognatha, by original designation.
    • Creightonidris junior synonym of Basiceros: Fernández, 2003d: 314, 392; Feitosa, Brandão & Dietz, 2007: 17.

Taxonomic Notes

All taxa of genera Eurhopalothrix, Octostruma, Protalaridris, Rhopalothrix and Talaridris were combined in Basiceros, sensu Baroni Urbani & De Andrade, 2007: 90-93. Synonymy of all basicerotine genera under Basiceros, by Baroni Urbani & De Andrade, 2007: 88, is incorrect procedure as Rhopalothrix has priority. Basicerotine genus-rank taxonomy documented in Bolton, 2003: 183-185, is retained.