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Ochetomyrmex semipolitus
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Attini
Genus: Ochetomyrmex
Mayr, 1878
Type species
Ochetomyrmex semipolitus
2 species
(Species Checklist, Species by Country)



Specimen Label

Evolutionary Relationships

  (2 species)

  (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 (19 species), Lenomyrmex (7 species), Mesostruma (9 species), Microdaceton (4 species), Orectognathus (29 species),

Acromyrmex (55 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)

Basiceros (8 species), Cephalotes (119 species), Eurhopalothrix (53 species), Octostruma (34 species), Phalacromyrmex (1 species), Pheidole (1,299 species), Pilotrochus (1 species), Procryptocerus (44 species), Protalaridris (7 species), Rhopalothrix (16 species), Strumigenys (853 species), Talaridris (1 species)

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

Biological information is limited to habitat (cerrado, wet forest, rainforest) and collection information (found in leaf litter, from pitfalls and at bait) taken from specimen labels of these rarely collected ants. There are only two known species of Ochetomyrmex.


Fernández (2003) - The following combination of characters, unique among myrmicine ants, allows the separation of Ochetomyrmex from all other genera: Antennae with 11 segments and a 3 -segmented club, mandibles with 4 to 5 teeth, propodeum with spines, petiole with ventrally bifurcated carinae and postpetiole with ventrally posterior process.

Ochetomyrmex closely resembles Wasmannia. Wasmannia presents a roughly striated promesonotum, inconspicuous metanotal groove, elongated propodeal spines, inconspicuous bulla of the metapleural gland and a petiole lacking bifurcated carinae.

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


Keys to Species in this Genus


Ochetomyrmex is restricted to South America, ranging in lowland tropical forests east of the Andes and nesting in leaf- litter.

Distribution and Richness based on AntMaps


Life History Traits

  • Mean colony size: ? (Greer et al., 2021)
  • Compound colony type: not parasitic (Greer et al., 2021)
  • Nest site: hypogaeic (Greer et al., 2021)
  • Diet class: herbivore; omnivore (Greer et al., 2021)
  • Foraging stratum: subterranean/leaf litter; arboreal (Greer et al., 2021)



Worker Morphology

• Antennal segment count: 11 • Antennal club: 3 • Palp formula: 3,2 • 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

Male Morphology

 • Antennal segment count 13 • Antennal club 0 • Palp formula 3,2 • Total dental count 4 • Spur formula 0, 0


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

  • OCHETOMYRMEX [Myrmicinae: Formicoxenini]
    • Ochetomyrmex Mayr, 1878: 871. Type-species: Ochetomyrmex semipolitus, by monotypy.
    • Ochetomyrmex senior synonym of Brownidris: Kempf, 1975c: 355.
  • BROWNIDRIS [junior synonym of Ochetomyrmex]
    • Brownidris Kusnezov, 1956: 25 (diagnosis in key). Type-species: Brownidris argentinus, by original designation.
    • [Brownidris also described as new by Kusnezov, 1957a: 275.]
    • Brownidris junior synonym of Ochetomyrmex: Kempf, 1975c: 355; Bolton, 1994: 106.
    • [Brownidris retained as genus: Wheeler, G.C. & Wheeler, J. 1985: 257 (anachronism); Dlussky & Fedoseeva, 1988: 80 (anachronism)].

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


Fernández, 2003. Figure 1.

Fernández (2003):


Monomorphic. Mandibles with four to five teeth. Palpal formula 3.2. Median portion of clypeus gently convex. Antennae 11-segmented with 3-segmented club. Compound eyes well developed, multifaceted, with angular inferior orbits, situated slightly behind the mid-length of head. Head without antennal scrobes. Mesosoma with promesonotum and propodeum separated by the metanotal groove in lateral view. Propodeum with spines. Propodeal spiracles round, large, conspicuous. Bulla of metapleural gland large and bulging, with dorsal margin approaching propodeal spiracle. Petiole with differentiated peduncle and node. Petiolar spiracle situated at midway between propodeal lobes and node. Petiole with dentiform ventral process. Petiole ventrally with median carina that diverges posteriorly. Workers smooth to finely sculptured, sparsely to moderately hairy.


Larger than worker, length around 8 mm. Masticatory border of mandible with a well-developed apical and subapical tooth only. Basal tooth inconspicuous. Palpal formula 4,3. Median portion of clypeus anteriorly subtruncated with a denticle in each corner. Front wing with open marginal cell. Petiolar spiracle situated in front of the mid-length of the peduncle. Postpetiole broadly attached to the gaster. Dorsal pilosity short and dense.


Size: Total length about 7 mm. Mandibles with 3 to 4 teeth. Clypeus strongly bulging medially. Mandibles subtriangular with four teeth, apices slightly overlapping when closed. Petiole lacking both subpetiolar process and a ventrally bifurcated carina.


  • 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 383, Ochetomyrmex in Myrmicinae, Tetramoriini)
  • Bolton, B. 1994. Identification guide to the ant genera of the world. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 222 pp. (page 106, Ochetomyrmex in Myrmicinae, Ochetomyrmecini)
  • Bolton, B. 2003. Synopsis and Classification of Formicidae. Mem. Am. Entomol. Inst. 71: 370pp (page 10, Ochetomyrmex in Myrmicinae, Formicoxeni)
  • Dalla Torre, K. W. von. 1893. Catalogus Hymenopterorum hucusque descriptorum systematicus et synonymicus. Vol. 7. Formicidae (Heterogyna). Leipzig: W. Engelmann, 289 pp. (page 135, Ochetomyrmex 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, Ochetomyrmex in Myrmicinae, Ochetomyrmecini)
  • 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, Ochetomyrmex in Myrmicinae, Attini)
  • Emery, C. 1914e. Intorno alla classificazione dei Myrmicinae. Rend. Sess. R. Accad. Sci. Ist. Bologna Cl. Sci. Fis. (n.s.) 18: 29-42 (page 42, Ochetomyrmex in Myrmicinae, Ochetomyrmecini)
  • Emery, C. 1924f [1922]. Hymenoptera. Fam. Formicidae. Subfam. Myrmicinae. [concl.]. Genera Insectorum 174C: 207-397 (page 293, Ochetomyrmex in Myrmicinae, Ochetomyrmecini)
  • Fernández, F. 2003h. Myrmicine ants of the genera Ochetomyrmex and Tranopelta (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Sociobiology 41:633-661.
  • Forel, A. 1895b. A fauna das formigas do Brazil. Bol. Mus. Para. Hist. Nat. Ethnogr. 1: 89-139 (page 126, Ochetomyrmex in Myrmicinae, Myrmicini)
  • Forel, A. 1917. Cadre synoptique actuel de la faune universelle des fourmis. Bull. Soc. Vaudoise Sci. Nat. 51: 229-253 (page 245, Ochetomyrmex in Myrmicinae, Ochetomyrmecini)
  • Jaffe, K. 1993. El mundo de las hormigas. Baruta, Venezuela: Equinoccio (Ediciones de la Universidad Simón Bolívar), 188 pp. (page 10, Ochetomyrmex in Myrmicinae, Solenopsidini)
  • Kempf, W. W. 1975c. Miscellaneous studies on neotropical ants. VI. (Hymenoptera, Formicidae). Stud. Entomol. 18: 341-380 (page 355, Ochetomyrmex senior synonym of Brownidris, and review of genus)
  • Kempf, W. W. 1975c. Miscellaneous studies on neotropical ants. VI. (Hymenoptera, Formicidae). Stud. Entomol. 18: 341-380 (page 358, Ochetomyrmex in Myrmicinae, Solenopsidini)
  • Mayr, G. 1878. Formiciden. Gesammelt in Brasilien von Professor Trail. Verhandlungen der k.k. Zoologisch-Botanischen Gesellschaft in Wien 27 (1877): 867-878. [(31.xii).1878.] (page 871, Ochetomyrmex as genus)
  • Meurer, E., Battirola, L.D., Marques, M.I. & Delabie, J.H.C. 2015. New records and distribution for the Neotropical ant genus Ochetomyrmex Mayr (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Sociobiology 62(2): 266-269.
  • Wheeler, G. C.; Wheeler, J. 1991a. The larva of Blepharidatta (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). J. N. Y. Entomol. Soc. 99: 132-137 (page 133, Ochetomyrmex in Myrmicinae, Solenopsidini)
  • Wheeler, W. M. 1910b. Ants: their structure, development and behavior. New York: Columbia University Press, xxv + 663 pp. (page 141, Ochetomyrmex in Myrmicinae, Tetramoriini)
  • 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, Ochetomyrmex in Myrmicinae, Ochetomyrmecini)