AntWiki: The Ants --- Online
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Calyptomyrmex beccarii
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Crematogastrini
Genus: Calyptomyrmex
Emery, 1887
Type species
Calyptomyrmex beccarii
38 species
(Species Checklist, Species by Country)

Calyptomyrmex beccarii casent0010655 profile 1.jpg

Calyptomyrmex beccarii casent0010655 dorsal 1.jpg

Specimen Label

Evolutionary Relationships















































some Lordomyrma



[some Lordomyrma


some Lordomyrma











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

Members of the genus Calyptomyrmex are rare ants that forage on the ground or in leaf litter. They are most commonly encountered in rainforests where they forage singly or in small numbers (Bolton, 1981). The few nests that have been found were in rotten wood (Shattuck, 1999; Taylor, 1991) or directly in soil (Bolton, 1981). Workers are often covered with a layer of soil, the enlarged and often spatulate hairs presumably assisting in the retention of this camouflaging material. Similar behaviours are known in many species of basicerotines as well as Stegomyrmex (Holldobler & Wilson, 1986), this behaviour being convergent as these groups are not closely related. The majority of species of Calyptomyrmex are known from only limited numbers of collections, with even the most common having been collected fewer than 20 times. Although this rarity makes estimates of true distribution patterns problematic, it appears that most species have restricted ranges while only a single species has become widespread.

Biogeographically, Calyptomyrmex is known from Africa and India east to New Caledonia. Baroni Urbani (1975) revised the fauna of the Indian subcontinent and Bolton (1981) the Afrotropical species while Shattuck (2011) investigated the fauna of South-east Asia and eastward. Shattuck (2011) added 14 new species, bringing the total known for the genus to 28 (Bolton et al., 2006). Taylor (1991) provided an overview of the Australian fauna, synonymised the only Australian-based name with the widespread species Calyptomyrmex beccarii and outlined seven undescribed Australian species (although none were formally named).

The South-east Asian Calyptomyrmex fauna is similar in diversity to that of Australia, with eight species so far known (Calyptomyrmex asper, Calyptomyrmex beccarii, Calyptomyrmex danum, Calyptomyrmex loweryi, Calyptomyrmex rectopilosus, Calyptomyrmex retrostriatus, Calyptomyrmex ryderae, Calyptomyrmex sabahensis), one of these (Calyptomyrmex beccarii) being shared with Australia. Given that many of these species are known from only single or a few collections it is likely that additional species exist which are yet to be encountered. Only single species are known from Papua New Guinea (Calyptomyrmex beccarii) and New Caledonia (Calyptomyrmex caledonicus).

At a Glance • Larval Hemolymph Feeding  



Workers belonging to Calyptomyrmex may be separated from those of other myrmicine genera by the presence of distinct, elongate depressions (antennal scrobes) on the front of the head which contain the entire antennae when at rest and the conspicuous, broad, bilobed appendage (the clypeal fork) which projects over the rear section of the mandibles. The deep antennal scrobes and the unique configuration of the clypeus will separate these ants from all others. For a more complete description see Bolton (1981).

Eguchi, Bui and Yamane (2011) - The worker of the Vietnamese species is somewhat similar to that of Mayriella, but in the latter the antenna is 10-segmented, the eye is large and elongate, and the dorsa of the head and mesosoma bear sparse, long, standing hairs.

AntWeb icon 02.png See images of species within this genus

Keys including this Genus


Keys to Species in this Genus


Distribution and Richness based on AntMaps



Worker Morphology

  • Antennal segment count: 12
  • Antennal club: 3
  • Palp formula: 2,2
  • Total dental count: 6-9
  • Spur formula: 0, 0
  • Sting: present

Male Morphology

 • Antennal segment count 12 • Antennal club 0 • Palp formula 3,2; 2,2 • Total dental count 5-6 • Spur formula 0, 0


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

  • CALYPTOMYRMEX [Myrmicinae: Stenammini]
    • Calyptomyrmex Emery, 1887b: 471. Type-species: Calyptomyrmex beccarii, by monotypy.
    • Calyptomyrmex senior synonym of Weberidris: Donisthorpe, 1949f: 186; Brown, 1949f: 84.
  • WEBERIDRIS [junior synonym of Calyptomyrmex]
    • Weberidris Donisthorpe, 1949a: 281. Type-species: Weberidris rufobrunnea (junior synonym of Calyptomyrmex beccarii), by original designation.
    • Weberidris junior synonym of Calyptomyrmex: Donisthorpe, 1949f: 186; Brown, 1949f: 84.


  • Arnold, G. 1917. A monograph of the Formicidae of South Africa. Part III. Myrmicinae. Ann. S. Afr. Mus. 14: 271-402 (page 360, Calyptomyrmex in Myrmicinae, Meranoplini)
  • Ashmead, W. H. 1905c. A skeleton of a new arrangement of the families, subfamilies, tribes and genera of the ants, or the superfamily Formicoidea. Can. Entomol. 37: 381-384 (page 384, Calyptomyrmex in Cryptoceridae, Cataulacinae)
  • Baroni Urbani, C. 1975a. Primi reperti del genere Calyptomyrmex Emery nel subcontinente Indiano. Entomol. Basil. 1: 395-411 (page 410, Revision of Oriental species)
  • Bolton, B. 1981a. A revision of the ant genera Meranoplus F. Smith, Dicroaspis Emery and Calyptomyrmex Emery (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) in the Ethiopian zoogeographical region. Bull. Br. Mus. (Nat. Hist.) Entomol. 42: 43-81 (page 61, Revision of Afrotropical species)
  • Bolton, B. 1994. Identification guide to the ant genera of the world. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 222 pp. (page 106, Calyptomyrmex in Myrmicinae, Stenammini)
  • Bolton, B. 2003. Synopsis and Classification of Formicidae. Mem. Am. Entomol. Inst. 71: 370pp (page 202, Calyptomyrmex in Myrmicinae, Stenammini)
  • Brown, W. L., Jr. 1949h. Revision of the ant tribe Dacetini: IV. Some genera properly excluded from the Dacetini, with the establishment of the Basicerotini new tribe. Trans. Am. Entomol. Soc. 75: 83-96 (page 84, Calyptomyrmex senior synonym of Weberidris)
  • Brown, W.L., Jr. (1951) New synonymy of a few genera and species of ants. Bulletin of the Brooklyn Entomological Society, 46, 101–106.
  • Dalla Torre, K. W. von. 1893. Catalogus Hymenopterorum hucusque descriptorum systematicus et synonymicus. Vol. 7. Formicidae (Heterogyna). Leipzig: W. Engelmann, 289 pp. (page 136, Calyptomyrmex in Myrmicinae)
  • Dlussky, G. M.; Fedoseeva, E. B. 1988. Origin and early stages of evolution in ants. Pp. 70-144 in: Ponomarenko, A. G. (ed.) Cretaceous biocenotic crisis and insect evolution. Moskva: Nauka, 232 pp. (page 80, Calyptomyrmex in Myrmicinae, Calyptomyrmecini)
  • Dlussky, G.M. & Radchenko, A.G. (1990) The Ants (Hymenoptera, Formicidae) of Vietnam. Subfamilies Pseudomyrmicinae and Myrmicinae (tribes Calyptomyrmecini, Meranoplini and Cataulacini), pp. 119–125 in Akimov, I.A., Emelianov, I.G. & Zerova, M.D. (eds.). News of Faunistics and Systematics, Kiev (Naukova Dumka) [in Russian].
  • Donisthorpe, H. (1949a) A new genus and species of dacetine ant from New Guinea. Entomologist's Monthly Magazine, 84 (1948), 281.
  • Donisthorpe, H. 1949g. A species of Calyptomyrmex Emery (Hym., Formicidae) from New Guinea. Entomol. Mon. Mag. 85: 186 (page 186, Calyptomyrmex senior synonym of Weberidris)
  • Eguchi, K., Bui, T.V. & Yamane, S. 2011. Generic synopsis of the Formicidae of Vietnam. Part 1 – Myrmicinae and Pseudomyrmecinae. Zootaxa 2878: 1-61.
  • Emery, C. 1887h. Catalogo delle formiche esistenti nelle collezioni del Museo Civico di Genova. Parte terza. Formiche della regione Indo-Malese e dell'Australia (continuazione e fine). [concl.]. Ann. Mus. Civ. Stor. Nat. 25[=(2)(5): 465-473 (page 471, Calyptomyrmex as genus)
  • Emery, C. 1895l. Die Gattung Dorylus Fab. und die systematische Eintheilung der Formiciden. Zool. Jahrb. Abt. Syst. Geogr. Biol. Tiere 8: 685-778 (page 770, Calyptomyrmex in Myrmicinae, Tetramoriini)
  • Emery, C. 1914e. Intorno alla classificazione dei Myrmicinae. Rend. Sess. R. Accad. Sci. Ist. Bologna Cl. Sci. Fis. (n.s.) 18: 29-42 (page 41, Calyptomyrmex in Myrmicinae, Meranoplini)
  • Emery, C. 1924f [1922]. Hymenoptera. Fam. Formicidae. Subfam. Myrmicinae. [concl.]. Genera Insectorum 174C: 207-397 (page 224, Calyptomyrmex in Myrmicinae, Meranoplini)
  • Forel, A. (1901) Formiciden des Naturhistorischen Museums zu Hamburg. Neue Calyptomyrmex, Dacryon, Podomyrma, und Echinopla-Arten. Jahrbuch der Hamburgischen Wissenschaftlichen Anstalten, 18, 45–82.
  • Forel, A. 1917. Cadre synoptique actuel de la faune universelle des fourmis. Bull. Soc. Vaudoise Sci. Nat. 51: 229-253 (page 244, Calyptomyrmex in Myrmicinae, Meranoplini)
  • Hölldobler, B. & Wilson, E.O. (1986) Soil-binding pilosity and camouflage in ants of the tribes Basicerotini and Stegomyrmecini (Hymenoptera, Formicidae). Zoomorphology (Berl.), 106, 12–20.
  • Ito F. 2001. Specialized predation on arthropod eggs in a myrmicine ant, Calyptomyrmex sp. (Hymenoptera, Formicidae), in the Oriental tropics. Tropics 10, 405–407.
  • Shattuck, S.O. (1999) Australian Ants: Their biology and identification. Monographs in Invertebrate Taxonomy, 3, 1–226.
  • Shattuck, S.O. (2011) Revision of the ant genus Calyptomyrmex (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) in South-east Asia and Oceania. Zootaxa, 2743, 1-26.
  • Taylor, R.W. (1991) Nomenclature and distribution of some Australasian ants of the Myrmicinae. Memoirs of the Queensland Museum, 30, 599–614.
  • Wheeler, W. M. 1910b. Ants: their structure, development and behavior. New York: Columbia University Press, xxv + 663 pp. (page 141, Calyptomyrmex in Myrmicinae, Tetramoriini)
  • Wheeler, W.M. (1919) The ants of Borneo. Bulletin of the Museum of Comparative Zoology, 63, 43–147.
  • Wheeler, W. M. 1922i. Ants of the American Museum Congo expedition. A contribution to the myrmecology of Africa. VII. Keys to the genera and subgenera of ants. Bull. Am. Mus. Nat. Hist. 45: 631-710 (page 664, Calyptomyrmex in Myrmicinae, Meranoplini)
  • Wheeler, W. M. 1934a. Formicidae of the Templeton Crocker Expedition, 1933. Proc. Calif. Acad. Sci. (4) 21: 173-181 (page 176, Calyptomyrmex in Myrmicinae, Meranoplini)