Tapinoma williamsi

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Tapinoma williamsi
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Dolichoderinae
Genus: Tapinoma
Species: T. williamsi
Binomial name
Tapinoma williamsi
(Wheeler, W.M., 1935)

Tapinoma williamsi casent0172846 profile 1.jpg

Tapinoma williamsi casent0172846 dorsal 1.jpg

Specimen labels


This species is very close to Tapinoma wheeleri described from soldiers received from Samoa by the Federal Quarantine Station in Honolulu. This species, however, has 5-toothed mandibles and the funicular joints 2-10 are distinctly broader than long as in Tapinoma annandalei. (Wheeler 1935)


Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Indo-Australian Region: Malaysia, Philippines (type locality).

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

Tapinoma williamsi casent0172848 head 1.jpgTapinoma williamsi casent0172848 profile 1.jpgTapinoma williamsi casent0172848 dorsal 1.jpgTapinoma williamsi casent0172848 label 1.jpg
Worker. Specimen code casent0172848. Photographer April Nobile, uploaded by California Academy of Sciences. Owned by MCZ, Cambridge, MA, USA.


Images from AntWeb

Tapinoma williamsi casent0172847 head 1.jpgTapinoma williamsi casent0172847 profile 1.jpgTapinoma williamsi casent0172847 dorsal 1.jpgTapinoma williamsi casent0172847 label 1.jpg
Cotype of Tapinoma williamsiQueen (alate/dealate). Specimen code casent0172847. Photographer April Nobile, uploaded by California Academy of Sciences. Owned by MCZ, Cambridge, MA, USA.


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

  • williamsi. Zatapinoma williamsi Wheeler, W.M. 1935b: 44 (s.w.) PHILIPPINES. Combination in Tapinoma: Shattuck, 1992c: 152.

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



Length nearly 3 mm.

Very similar to the soldier of Tapinoma annandalei of India but differing in the following characters: Integument thicker and more rigid, clypeal swellings somewhat less pronounced and not bilobed or biprotuberant on each side; mandibles with 8 coarse teeth, the first, second and fourth larger than the others, the seventh and eighth fused; frontal area obsolete; funicular joints 3-8 as long as broad (in annandalei distinctly broader than long); eyes distinctly larger, situated a distance equal to their greatest diameter from the posterior clypeal border, which is more distinct than in the Indian species. Thorax more slender, the pronotum as long as broad, the epinotum slightly longer than broad.

Sculpture and pilosity very similar in the two species, but the color of williamsi is different, being brownish yellow instead of whitish yellow, the mandibles and clypeus are concolorous with the remainder of the head and the second to fourth gastric segments are brown at the base.


Length 3.5 mm.

Resembling the soldier, but the head is proportionally smaller and somewhat more narrowed anteriorly, the eyes though flat are much larger, twice as long as their distance from the anterior corners of the head. Ocelli well-developed, near the occipital border. Clypeus without the peculiar lateral swellings of the soldier, feebly convex in the middle, depressed on each side. Frontal area large and indistinct. Antennal scapes reaching to the posterior fourth of the head. Thorax collapsed, but apparently as broad as the head, with flattened mesonotum. Gaster large, shaped like that of the soldier. Wings long, the anterior pair with long closed radial cell, a single long cubital but no discoidal cell. There are no traces of a pterostigma.

Sculpture and pilosity much as in the soldier, but the pubescence is more abundant and longer, especially on the gaster and the segments of this region also bear sparse and rather long, coarse hairs. Wings pubescent.

Clypeus and thorax brown; antennae, head and legs brownish yellow; gaster pale yellow, with a broad, dark brown basal fascia on each segment. Wings hyaline, with very pale yellow veins.

Type Material

Single soldier and female specimens taken by Dr. F. X. Williams as Los Banos, Luzon Island, Philippines. As I am not certain that the two specimens collected by Dr. Williams are from the same colony, only the soldier is to be regarded as the type.


References based on Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics

  • Chapman, J. W., and Capco, S. R. 1951. Check list of the ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) of Asia. Monogr. Inst. Sci. Technol. Manila 1: 1-327