Messor orientalis

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Messor orientalis
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Stenammini
Genus: Messor
Species: M. orientalis
Binomial name
Messor orientalis
(Emery, 1898)

Messor orientalis casent0281206 p 1 high.jpg

Messor orientalis casent0281206 d 1 high.jpg

Specimen Labels

This taxon, along with other species within the Messor structor group, need further taxonomic study to clarify its identity (Borowiec, 2014).



Latitudinal Distribution Pattern

Latitudinal Range: 41.716667° to 31.989442°.

Tropical South

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Palaearctic Region: Afghanistan, China, Greece, Iran, Iraq, Israel, North Macedonia, Turkey (type locality).

It occurs in the Middle East and South East Europe (Abdul-Rassoul et al. 2013).

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.


Association with Other Organisms

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This species is a mutualist for the aphid Chaitophorus israeliticus (a trophobiont) (Mortazavi et al., 2015; Saddiqui et al., 2019).


Images from AntWeb

Messor orientalis casent0281207 p 1 high.jpgMessor orientalis casent0281207 d 1 high.jpgMessor orientalis casent0281207 h 1 high.jpgMessor orientalis casent0281207 l 1 high.jpgMessor orientalis casent0281207 p 2 high.jpg
Queen (alate/dealate). Specimen code casent0281207. Photographer Estella Ortega, uploaded by California Academy of Sciences. Owned by CAS, San Francisco, CA, USA.
Messor orientalis casent0281208 d 1 high.jpgMessor orientalis casent0281208 p 1 high.jpgMessor orientalis casent0281208 h 1 high.jpgMessor orientalis casent0281208 l 1 high.jpg
Worker (major/soldier). Specimen code casent0281208. Photographer Estella Ortega, uploaded by California Academy of Sciences. Owned by CAS, San Francisco, CA, USA.
Messor orientalis casent0281591 h 1 high.jpgMessor orientalis casent0281591 d 1 high.jpgMessor orientalis casent0281591 p 1 high.jpgMessor orientalis casent0281591 l 1 high.jpg
Worker. Specimen code casent0281591. Photographer Shannon Hartman, uploaded by California Academy of Sciences. Owned by NHMUK, London, UK.
Messor orientalis casent0904132 h 1 high.jpgMessor orientalis casent0904132 p 1 high.jpgMessor orientalis casent0904132 d 1 high.jpgMessor orientalis casent0904132 l 1 high.jpg
Syntype of Stenamma structor orientalisWorker. Specimen code casent0904132. Photographer Will Ericson, uploaded by California Academy of Sciences. Owned by MSNG, Genoa, Italy.


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

  • orientalis. Stenamma (Messor) structor var. orientalis Emery, 1898c: 143 (w.q.m.) LEBANON, TURKEY, GEORGIA, UZBEKISTAN/TURKMENISTAN.
    • Type-material: syntype workers, syntype queens, syntype males (numbers not stated).
    • Type-localities: Lebanon: Sarepta (Christoph), Uzbekistan or Turkmenistan: Syr Darya (Stenroos), Turkey: Mersina (M. Holtz), Georgia: Tiflis (Christoph).
    • Type-depository: MSNG.
    • Combination in Messor: Ruzsky, 1903b: 315; Emery, 1908e: 456.
    • As unavailable (infrasubspecific) name: Emery, 1908e: 456; Forel, 1910a: 9; Karavaiev, 1910b: 67; Forel, 1911d: 347; Emery, 1912f: 96; Wheeler, W.M. & Mann, 1916: 170; Donisthorpe, 1918b: 166; Emery, 1921b: 212; Emery, 1921f: 73; Santschi, 1926f: 292; Menozzi, 1933b: 54; Santschi, 1934d: 275; Santschi, 1939c: 6.
    • Junior synonym of structor: Kuznetsov-Ugamsky, 1929d: 12.
    • Junior synonym of darianus: Pisarski, 1967: 383; Pisarski, 1969b: 306.
    • Subspecies of structor: Ruzsky, 1903b: 315; Menozzi, 1933b: 56 (in key); Zimmermann, 1935: 15; Aktaç, 1977: 120; Tohmé, G. & Tohmé, 2014: 134 (error).
    • Status as species: Collingwood, 1961a: 61; Tohmé, G. & Tohmé, H. 1981: 150; Collingwood, 1985: 251; Agosti & Collingwood, 1987a: 54; Agosti & Collingwood, 1987b: 271 (in key); Kugler, J. 1988: 257; Collingwood, 1993b: 194; Bolton, 1995b: 256; Collingwood & Heatwole, 2000: 7; Petrov, 2006: 92 (in key); Vonshak, et al. 2009: 42; Legakis, 2011: 11; Borowiec, L. & Salata, 2012: 515; Guénard & Dunn, 2012: 45; Kiran & Karaman, 2012: 20; Nezhad, et al. 2012: 70; Borowiec, L. 2014: 110; Lebas, et al. 2016: 298; Borowiec, L. & Salata, 2020: 11.
    • Distribution: Afghanistan, Georgia, Greece, Iran, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan.



References based on Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics

  • Agosti, D. and C.A. Collingwood. 1987. A provisional list of the Balkan ants (Hym. Formicidae) and a key to the worker caste. I. Synonymic list. Mitteilungen der Schweizerischen Entomologischen Gesellschaft, 60: 51-62
  • Aktaç, N.. "Studies on the myrmecofauna of Turkey I. Ants of Siirt, Bodrum and Trabzon." Istanbul Universitesi Fen Fakultesi Mecmuasi. Seri B 41 (1977): 115-135.
  • 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.
  • Borowiec L., and S. Salata. 2017. Ants of the Peloponnese, Greece (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Polish Journal of Entomology 86: 193-236.
  • Bracko G., K. Kiran, C. Karaman, S. Salata, and L. Borowiec. 2016. Survey of the ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) of the Greek Thrace. Biodiversity Data Journal 4: e7945. doi: 10.3897/BDJ.4.e7945
  • Collingwood C., and H. Heatwole. 2000. Ants from Northwestern China (Hymenoptera, Formicidae). Psyche 103 (1-2): 1-24.
  • Collingwood, C. A. 1993. A Comparitive Study of the Ant Fauna of Five Greek Islands. Biologia Gallo-hellenica. 20,1:191-197
  • Collingwood, C. A.. "A comparative study of the ant fauna of five Greek islands." Biologia Gallo-Hellenica 20 (1993): 191-197.
  • Czechowski W., A. Radchenko, W. Czechowska and K. Vepsäläinen. 2012. The ants of Poland with reference to the myrmecofauna of Europe. Fauna Poloniae 4. Warsaw: Natura Optima Dux Foundation, 1-496 pp
  • Donisthorpe H. 1918. A list of ants from Mesopotamia; with a description of a new species and a new variety. Entomologist's Record and Journal of Variation 30: 165-167.
  • Emery, C.. "Beiträge zur Kenntniss der palaearktischen Ameisen." Öfversigt af Finska Vetenskaps-Societetens Förhandlingar (Helsinki) 20 (1898): 124-151.
  • Emery, C.. "Beiträge zur Monographie der Formiciden des paläarktischen Faunengebietes. (Hym.) Teil III. Messor, Goniomma, Oxyopomyrmex." Deutsche Entomologische Zeitschrift 1908 (1908): 437-465.
  • Forel A. 1911. Fourmis nouvelles ou intéressantes. Bull. Soc. Vaudoise Sci. Nat. 47: 331-400.
  • Guénard B., and R. R. Dunn. 2012. A checklist of the ants of China. Zootaxa 3558: 1-77.
  • Karavaiev V. 1911. Ameisen aus Transkaspien und Turkestan. Tr. Rus. Entomol. Obshch. 39: 1-72.
  • Kiran K., and C. Karaman. 2012. First annotated checklist of the ant fauna of Turkey (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Zootaxa 3548: 1-38.
  • Kugler J. 1988. The zoogeography of Israel. 9. The zoogeography of social insects of Israel and Sinai. Monographiae biologicae 62: 251-275.
  • Mortazavi Z. S., H. Sadeghi, N. Aktac, L. Depa, L. Fekrat. 2015. Ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) and their aphid partners (Homoptera: Aphididae) in Mashhad region, Razavi Khorasan Province, with new records of aphids and ant species for fauna of Iran. Halteres 6:4-12.
  • Salata S., and L Borowiec. 2017. Species of Tetramorium semilaeve complex from Balkans and western Turkey, with description of two new species of (Hymenoptera: Formicidae: Myrmicinae). Annales Zoologici (Warsaw) 62:279–313.
  • Santschi F. 1926. Travaux scientifiques de l'Armée d'Orient (1916-1918). Fourmis. Bulletin du Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle 32: 286-293.
  • Santschi, F.. "Trois notes sur quelques fourmis du Musée Royal d'Histoire Naturelle de Belgique." Bulletin du Musée Royal d'Histoire Naturelle de Belgique 15 (1939): 1-15.
  • Tohme G. 1996. Formicidae. Etude de la diversité biologique n° 4 . Ministère de l’Agriculture à Beyrouth (Eds.). P85-87.
  • Tohme G., and H. Tohme. 2014. Nouvelles liste des especes de fourmis du Liban (Hymenoptera, Formicoidea). Lebanese Science Journal 15(1): 133-141.
  • Tohmé, G., and H. Tohmé. "Les fourmis du genre Messor en Syrie. Position systématique. Description de quelques ailés et de formes nouvelles. Répartition géographique." Ecologia Mediterranea 7 (1) (1981): 139-153, fig. 1-22.
  • Vonshak M., and A. Ionescu-Hirsch. 2009. A checklist of the ants of Israel (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Israel Journal of Entomology 39: 33-55.
  • Wheeler W. M. and W. M. Mann. 1916. The ants of the Phillips Expedition to Palestine during 1914. Bulletin of the Museum of Comparative Zoology 60: 167-174.
  • Wheeler W. M., and W. M. Mann. 1916. The ants of the Phillips Expedition to Palestine during 1914. Bulletin of the Museum of Comparative Zoology 60: 167-174.