Prenolepis melanogaster

AntWiki: The Ants --- Online
Prenolepis melanogaster
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Formicinae
Tribe: Lasiini
Genus: Prenolepis
Species: P. melanogaster
Binomial name
Prenolepis melanogaster
Emery, 1893

Prenolepis melanogaster 98.jpg

Prenolepis melanogaster 100.jpg


Nothing is known about the biology of Prenolepis melanogaster.


Williams and LaPolla (2016) - Relatively large in overall size (TL > 4.25mm); yellow-brown head and mesosoma with a dark brown to black gaster; head as broad as or broader than long (CI > 97) with round compound eyes that are spaced far apart (REL3 < 35); setae on scapes are erect.

This species is much larger and more hirsute than all other Prenolepis species and has a distinctly broad head (CI: 97–105). Prenolepis melanogaster also has a yellow-brown head and mesosoma with a dark brown to black gaster, similar to the coloration seen in Prenolepis fustinoda.

Keys including this Species


Latitudinal Distribution Pattern

Latitudinal Range: 23.8° to 22°.

Tropical South

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Oriental Region: India, Myanmar (type locality), Thailand, Vietnam (type locality).
Palaearctic Region: China (type locality), Republic of Korea.

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.




Images from AntWeb

Prenolepis melanogaster casent0906258 h 1 high.jpgPrenolepis melanogaster casent0906258 p 1 high.jpgPrenolepis melanogaster casent0906258 d 1 high.jpgPrenolepis melanogaster casent0906258 l 1 high.jpg
Worker. Specimen code casent0906258. Photographer Estella Ortega, uploaded by California Academy of Sciences. Owned by NHMUK, London, UK.
Prenolepis melanogaster casent0905675 h 1 high.jpgPrenolepis melanogaster casent0905675 p 1 high.jpgPrenolepis melanogaster casent0905675 d 1 high.jpgPrenolepis melanogaster casent0905675 l 1 high.jpg
Syntype of Prenolepis melanogasterWorker. Specimen code casent0905675. Photographer Z. Lieberman, 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.

  • melanogaster. Prenolepis melanogaster Emery, 1893e: 223 (w.) MYANMAR.
    • [Also described as new by Emery, 1895k: 476.]
    • Status as species: Bingham, 1903: 327; Wheeler, W.M. 1927h: 106; Bolton, 1995b: 364; Wu, J. & Wang, 1995: 137; Xu, 1995c: 338 (in key).
    • Senior synonym of carinifrons, nigriflagella: Williams & LaPolla, 2016: 234.
  • carinifrons. Prenolepis melanogaster st. carinifrons Santschi, 1920g: 173 (w.) VIETNAM.
    • Subspecies of melanogaster: Wheeler, W.M. 1927h: 106; Bolton, 1995b: 363.
    • Junior synonym of melanogaster: Williams & LaPolla, 2016: 234.
  • nigriflagella. Prenolepis nigriflagella Xu, 1995c: 338, figs. 1-3 (w.) CHINA.
    • Junior synonym of melanogaster: Williams & LaPolla, 2016: 234.

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



Williams and LaPolla (2016) - (n=3): CMC: 46–50; EL: 0.24–0.29; EW: 0.23–0.26; HL: 1.06–1.24; HLA: 0.53–0.66; HLP: 0.41–0.47; HW: 1.03–1.30; IOD: 0.70–0.90; LF1: 0.29–0.35; LF2: 0.20–0.25; LHT: 1.92–2.29; MMC: 4–8; MTW: 0.55–0.70; MW: 0.37–0.45; PDH: 0.42–0.47; PMC: 11–16; PrCL: 0.65–0.77; PrCW: 0.39–0.45; PrFL: 1.26–1.49; PrFW: 0.22–0.26; PTH: 0.42–0.47; PTL: 0.43–0.55; PTW: 0.33–0.42; PW: 0.64–0.77; SL: 1.47– 1.70; TL: 4.28–4.93; WF1: 0.09; WF2: 0.08–0.09; WL: 1.55–1.92; BLI: 143–151; CI: 97–105; EPI: 128–139; FLI: 135–144; HTI: 171–187; PetHI: 100–101; PetWI: 75–77; PrCI: 58–60; PrFI: 17–18; REL: 21–23; REL2: 21–23; REL3: 31–33; SI: 129–144.

Relatively large in overall size (TL > 4.25mm); yellow-brown head and mesosoma with a dark brown to black gaster; cuticle of head, pronotum, mesopleuron, propodeum, and gaster smooth and shiny; abundant very long, erect setae on scapes, head, mesosoma, gaster, and legs; head slightly broader than long and round in shape with indistinct posterolateral corners and a weakly convex posterior margin; eyes moderately sized, convex, and placed far apart (REL3 < 35); compound eyes do not surpass the lateral margins of the head in full-face view; torulae overlap with the posterior border of the clypeus; anterior border of clypeus with a pair of prominent anterolateral lobes; mandibles with 6 teeth on the masticatory margin; ectal surface of mandibles smooth and shiny; in profile view, propodeum is domed with a rounded dorsal face; dorsal apex of petiole scale is sharply angled and forward-inclined.

Type Material

Williams and LaPolla (2016) - Holotype worker, Myanmar: Carin, Asciuii Cheba, 1100m, 01.xii.1887 (Museo Civico di Storia Naturale, Genoa: CASENT0905675) [examined].


References based on Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics

  • Chen Y. Q., Q. Li, Y. L. Chen, Z. X. Lu, X. Y. Zhou. 2011. Ant diversity and bio-indicators in land management of lac insect agroecosystem in Southwestern China. Biodivers. Conserv. 20: 3017-3038.
  • Chen Z., and S. Zhou. 2018. A review of the ant genus Prenolepis (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) in China, with descriptions of four new species. Zoological Systematics 43(1): 58-65.
  • Collingwood C. A. 1981. Ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) from Korea, 2. Folia Entomologica Hungarica 42(34): 25-30.
  • Emery, C. "Voyage de MM. Bedot et Pictet dans l'Archipel Malais. Formicides de l'Archipel Malais." Revue Suisse de Zoologie 1 (1893): 187-229.
  • Guénard B., and R. R. Dunn. 2012. A checklist of the ants of China. Zootaxa 3558: 1-77.
  • Jaitrong W.; Nabhitabhata, J. 2005. A list of known ant species of Thailand. The Thailand Natural History Museum Journal 1(1): 9-54.
  • Kim B.J. 1996. Synonymic list and distribution of Formicidae (Hymenoptera) in Korea. Entomological Research Bulletin Supplement 169-196.
  • Li Z.h. 2006. List of Chinese Insects. Volume 4. Sun Yat-sen University Press
  • Ran H., and S. Y. Zhou. 2013. Checklist of Chinese Ants: Formicomorph Subfamilies ( Hymenoptera: Formicidae) (III). Journal of Guangxi Normal University : Natural Science Edition 31(1): 104-111.
  • Tang J., Li S., Huang E., Zhang B. and Chen Y. 1995. Hymenoptera: Formicidae (1). Economic Insect Fauna of China 47: 1-133.
  • Wheeler W. M. 1930. The ant Prenolepis imparis Say. Annals of the Entomological Society of America 23: 1-26.
  • Williams J. L., and J. S. LaPolla. 2016. Taxonomic revision and phylogeny of the ant genus Prenolepis (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Zootaxa 4200: 201-258.
  • Wu J. and Wang C. 1995. The ants of China. China Forestry Publishing House, Beijing. 214 pp.
  • Xu Z. 1995. Two new species of the ant genus Prenolepis from Yunnan China (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Zoological Research 16(4): 337-341.