Cardiocondyla koshewnikovi

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Cardiocondyla koshewnikovi
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Crematogastrini
Genus: Cardiocondyla
Species: C. koshewnikovi
Binomial name
Cardiocondyla koshewnikovi
Ruzsky, 1902

Cardiocondyla koshewnikovi casent0904464 p 1 high.jpg

Cardiocondyla koshewnikovi casent0904464 d 1 high.jpg

Specimen Labels

This species inhabitats moist areas in deserts and semideserts.


Seifert (2003) - A member of the Cardiocondyla stambuloffii group. Cardiocondyla koshewnikovi is considered here as a Central Asian sister species of the W Palaearctic Cardiocondyla stambuloffii. The gynes are outstanding by a head size clearly above the upper extremes of any known Palaearctic species including C. stambuloffii and they additionally differ from the latter by a much stronger sculpture. The workers are more similar but can be separated on the individual level by a discriminant function.

Accessory discriminative characters of C. koshewnikovi are the sharper propodeal spines and the more sloping prespinal profile of propodeum.

Keys including this Species


Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Palaearctic Region: China, Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia, Russian Federation (type locality), Turkmenistan.

Distribution based on AntMaps


Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb


Seifert (2003) - Moister spots in deserts or semideserts, which are frequently salty and situated at the margins of lakes or rivers, are reported as habitats of this species. Two nests were completely dug out by the author in the Saissan Depression 25 July 2001 in a moist Phragmites stand in the dune valley of a semidesert. One or two simple entrances (in one nest hidden under fragments of dead Phragmites leaves) led to one vertical duct that passed through three levels of horizontal galleries or chambers in the upper 10 cm of soil. One nest contained 7 ergatoid males, 5 freshly eclosed alate gynes, 35 gyne pupae, 5 gyne prepupae and 440 workers. Another nest contained 409 workers and as much as 27 dealate gynes, the reproductive status of which was not checked.



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

  • koshewnikovi. Cardiocondyla koshewnikovi Ruzsky, 1902b: 480 (w.q.) KAZAKHSTAN.
    • [Also described as new by Ruzsky, 1902c: 16.]
    • [Misspelled as koshewnikowi by Forel, 1902h: 440.]
    • Junior synonym of stambuloffii: Pisarski, 1970: 308.
    • Subspecies of stambuloffii: Forel, 1902h: 440; Ruzsky, 1905b: 629; Emery, 1909a: 24; Emery, 1922e: 126; Kuznetsov-Ugamsky, 1927d: 37; Pisarski, 1967: 388; Tarbinsky, 1976: 72 (redescription); Dlussky, 1981a: 17; Dlussky & Zabelin, 1985: 213.
    • Status as species: Dlussky, Soyunov & Zabelin, 1990: 195; Bolton, 1995b: 132; Radchenko, 1995b: 450; Seifert, 2003a: 266 (redescription); Schultz, R. et al. 2006: 206; Guénard & Dunn, 2012: 40.

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



Seifert (2003) - Head moderately long, CL/CW 1.155. Postocular distance rather large, PoOc/CL 0.444. Scape slightly longer than in Cardiocondyla stambuloffii, SL/CS 0.791. Eyes small, EYE 0.219. Frontal carinae immediately behind FRS level converging caudad. Whole clypeus, frontal laminae, and vertex anteromedianly longitudinally carinulate-rugulose. Remaining vertex strongly longitudinally rugulose (in the type specimens these rugulae form together with weaker anostomosae a semi-reticulum whose meshes carry in their centre flat tubercles of 7 - 9 mm diameter around bases of pubescence hairs; in other specimens reticulum almost lacking). Pronotum anteriorly transversely rugulose. Mesosoma dorsally on most of its surface longitudinally carinulate-rugulose; rugae usually stronger than in C. stambuloffii; triangular area anterior of spine bases or whole dorsal propodeum glabrous and only with a very fine superficial reticulum. Lateral area of mesonotum, mesopleurae, lateral area of propodeum, and metapleurae longitudinally rugulose. Spines as short as in C. stambuloffii, but more acute. Propodeal dome more steeply sloping caudad than usually seen C. stambuloffii. Spine bases much more approached than in C. stambuloffii. Nodes of waist segments smooth. Petiole with a high node that is in dorsal view slightly wider than long. Postpetiole in dorsal view with straight or very weakly concave anterior margin, relatively narrower than in C. stambuloffii: ratio PPW/PPL 1.704 ± 0.075 [1.612, 1.846] n=23. Concolorous medium to dark brown with yellowish tinge.


Seifert (2003) - Much larger than Cardiocondyla stambuloffii, CS 767 ± 27; head shorter, CL/CW 1.106. Postocular index very large, PoOc/CL 0.476. Postocular head much wider than preocular head, overall shape of head capsule trapezoidal. Occipital margin straight. Frontal carinae immediately caudal of FRS level converging caudad. Mesosoma massive, MW 624 ± 48. Whole dorsal head capsule fully microsculptured and covered with dense subdecumbent pubescence, thus appearing entirely mat, in particular occipital region in contrast to C. stambuloffii not shining. Clypeus, frontal laminae and vertex posterior of frontal laminae clearly longitudinally rugulose; remaining vertex more finely and densely longitudinally rugulose (the rugulae partially form a semireticulum); interspaces between rugulae with densely-packed tubercles of 8 - 10 mm diameter that form the bases of pubescence hairs. Foveolae on vertex completely lacking. Mesonotum because of shallower microsculpture more shining than vertex, rugulose, with small tubercles of 8 - 11 mm diameter at hair bases. Scutellum longitudinally rugulose, with similar tubercles in the interspaces. Whole propodeum, metapleuron, mesopleuron and anepisternite densely carinate, clearly stronger sculptured than in C. stambuloffii. Propodeal spines reduced to rather blunt dents. Petiole very high, dorsum less shining than in C. stambuloffii, clearly wider than long and not ending in a caudal corner. Postpetiole more than twice as wide as long and almost twice as wide as petiole, PPW/CS 0.862; postpetiolar sternite with strong and acute anteromedian dent. Whole body with dense subdecumbent to decumbent pubescence; pubescence on first gaster tergite extremely dense, sqrtPDG 2 .46. Whole body more or less concolorous medium brown, mesosoma sclerites occasionally with lighter patches; appendages lighter.

Type Material

Seifert (2003) - M. Ruzsky sent type specimens to A. Forel and to the late G. Mayr, which are still present in the collections of Musee d'Histoire Naturelle Genève and Naturhistorisches Museum Wien, Vienna. These ants were mounted by Forel and Mayr in a different way but the original labels of Ruzsky written with a pencil and the high morphometric (coefficient of variation in CS, SL/CS, PoOc, EYE, PEW/SC, PPW/CS only 1.3 - 1.5 %) and structural similarity indicate that all 5 syntypes in MHNG and NHMW came from the same source. In detail these types are: lectotype worker (by present designation) labelled by Ruzsky “Card. Koshewnikovi Umg.d.Aralsees 1902 M.R.” and carrying a blue printed label “Cotypus”; 1 paralectotype worker, originally from the same pin but transferred by the author to another pin and labelled with a laser printer and identical text “Card. koshewnikovi Umg.d.Aralsecs 1902 M.R.”, both in MHNG; 1 paralectotype worker labelled by Forel “Card. stambulotlii koshewnikovi Ruzsky Umgbg.d.Aralsees (Ruzsky)” and carrying a blue printed label “Cotypus”; MHNG. 1 paralectotype worker labelled by Ruzsky with a pencil “Card. koshewnikovi, Aralsee W 5.” and by G. Mayr in ink “Aralsee Ruzsky”, NHMW; 1 paralectotype worker with same mode of preparation labelled by G. Mayr “Aralsec, Coll. G.Mayr” and “stambuloffi v. koshasnikovi [writing error, B.S.] Ruzsky, Type”, NHMW.

The published type locality “Ust'ye rek Syr-Darya, Raim” (= “mouth of river Syr-Darya, Raim”) does not contradict to the labelling “Umgebung des Aralsee”. Hence, these specimens can be accepted as types of Ruzsky.

Radchenko (1995) believed that type specimens of C. koshewnikovi from Lake Aral have been lost and he “fixed” a neotype without, however, publishing its collecting date and locality. Furthemlore he did not publish any character of discriminative value. Hence, Radchenko's neotypc fixation is invalid according to the articles 75.3.2 - 75.3.6 of ICZN.


  • Dlussky, G. M.; Soyunov, O. S.; Zabelin, S. I. 1990 [1989]. Ants of Turkmenistan. Ashkhabad: Ylym Press, 273 pp. (page 195, Revived status as species, and senior synonym of gibbosa.)
  • Dlussky, G. M.; Zabelin, S. I. 1985. Ant fauna (Hymenoptera, Formicidae) of the River Sumbar Basin (south-west Kopetdag). Pp. 208-246 in: Nechaevaya, N. T. (ed.) The vegetation and animal world of western Kopetdag. Ashkhabad: Ylym, 278 pp. (page 213, Revived from synonymy as subspecies of stambuloffi)
  • Forel, A. 1902j. Fourmis nouvelles d'Australie. Rev. Suisse Zool. 10: 405-548 (page 440, Variety\subspecies of stambuloffi)
  • Kuznetsov-Ugamsky, N. N. 1927d. Contributions to the knowledge of the myrmecology of Turkestan. II. Rus. Entomol. Obozr. 21: 33-42 (page 37, Variety\subspecies of stambuloffi)
  • Pisarski, B. 1970a [1969]. Beiträge zur Kenntnis der Fauna Afghanistans. (Sammelergebnisse von O. Jakes 1963-64, D. Povolny 1965, D. Povolny & Fr. Tenora 1966, J. Simek 1965-66, D. Povolny, J. Gaisler, Z. Sebek & Fr. Tenora 1967). Formicidae, Hym. Cas. M (page 308, Junior synonym of stambuloffi)
  • Ruzsky, M. 1902b. Neue Ameisen aus Russland. Zool. Jahrb. Abt. Syst. Geogr. Biol. Tiere 17: 469-484 (page 480, worker, queen described)
  • Ruzsky, M. 1902c. The ants of the vicinity of the Aral Sea. Izv. Turkest. Otd. Imp. Rus. Geogr. Obshch. 3(1 1: 1-24 (page 16, also described as new)
  • Seifert, B. 2003. The ant genus Cardiocondyla (Insecta: Hymenoptera: Formicidae) - a taxonomic revision of the C. elegans, C. bulgarica, C. batesii, C. nuda, C. shuckardi, C. stambuloffii, C. wroughtonii, C. emeryi, and C. minutior species groups. Annalen des Naturhistorischen Museums in Wien Serie B Botanik und Zoologie. 104:203-338.
  • Tarbinsky, Y. S. 1976. The ants of Kirghizia. Frunze: Ilim, 217 pp. (page 72, Revived from synonymy as subspecies of stambuloffi)

References based on Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics

  • Dlussky G. M., O. S. Soyunov, and S. I. Zabelin. 1990. Ants of Turkmenistan. Ashkabad: Ylym Press, 273 pp.
  • Dubovikoff D. A., and Z. M. Yusupov. 2018. Family Formicidae - Ants. In Belokobylskij S. A. and A. S. Lelej: Annotated catalogue of the Hymenoptera of Russia. Proceedingss of the Zoological Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences 6: 197-210.
  • Guénard B., and R. R. Dunn. 2012. A checklist of the ants of China. Zootaxa 3558: 1-77.
  • Marikovsky P. I. 1979. Ants of the Semireche Desert. [In Russian.]. Alma Ata: Nauka, 263 pp.
  • Pisarski B. 1967. Fourmis (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) d'Afghanistan récoltées par M. Dr. K. Lindberg. Annales Zoologici (Warsaw) 24: 375-425.
  • Radchenko A. G. 1996. Palaearctic ants of the genus Cardiocondyla Emery (Hymenoptera, Formicidae). Entomological Review (Washington). 75(7): 99-109.
  • Ruzsky M. 1902. Neue Ameisen aus Russland. Zool. Jahrb. Abt. Syst. Geogr. Biol. Tiere 17: 469-484.
  • Schultz, R., A. G. Radchenko, and B. Seifert. "A critical checklist of the ants of Kyrgyzstan (Hymenoptera: Formicidae)." Myrmecologische Nachrichten 8 (2006): 201-207.
  • Seifert B. 2003. The ant genus Cardiocondyla (Insecta: Hymenoptera: Formicidae) - a taxonomic revision of the C. elegans, C. bulgarica, C. batesii, C. nuda, C. shuckardi, C. stambuloffii, C. wroughtonii, C. emeryi, and C. minutior species groups. Annalen des Naturhistorischen Museums in Wien. B, Botanik, Zoologie 104: 203-338.