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Yavnella argamani
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Leptanillinae
Tribe: Leptanillini
Genus: Yavnella
Kugler, J., 1987
Type species
Yavnella argamani
2 species
(Species Checklist, Species by Country)

Yavnella argamani casent0101728 profile 1.jpg

Yavnella argamani

Yavnella indica casent0102374 dorsal 1.jpg

Specimen Label

Evolutionary Placement

  (1 species)

  (3 species)

  (13 species)

  (47 species)

  (2 species)

Based on Ward & Fisher, 2016. The genera Noonilla, Phaulomyrma and Scyphodon are excluded as they have yet to be studied in detail.

The two species of Yavnella are only known from males.


Kugler (1987) - The male of Yavnella is similar to the male of Noonilla by having a short head with vertical or strongly oblique frons, and by the alitrunk not laterally compressed. The wing venation is also similar to that of Noonilla, differing only by the number of basal cells which are 2 in Noonilla and only 1 large, undivided cell in Yavnella. The petiole is simple in both genera, without well differentiated node. The main difference between Noonilla and Yavnella is the structure of propodeum and genitalia. In Noonilla the propodeum is convex, the gonocoxites fused and strongly reduced, the gonostyli are missing and the gonapophyses are united in a cylindrical tube. In Yavnella the basal part of the propodeum is strongly concave, the genitalia are similar to those of most Leptanilla males: the gonocoxites are large sclerites, separated dorsally and ventrally. The gonostyli are present and the gonapophyses are united into a large shield-like structure. Yavnella is easily distinguished from Leptanilla by the shape of the head and petiole. In Leptanilla the head is longer than wide, the frons is horizontal or only slightly oblique and the petiole has a well differentiated node. In Yavnella the head is wider than long, the frons is vertical or strongly oblique, the petiolar node is not well differentiated.

Keys including this Genus



Distribution and Richness based on AntMaps



Known only from males.


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

  • YAVNELLA [Leptanillinae: Leptanillini]
    • Yavnella Kugler, J. 1987: 52. Type-species: Yavnella argamani, by original designation.

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

Collingwood and Agosti (1996) reported males collected from a light trap in Yemen that do not appear to be one of the two species already described.



Head: Oblique to nearly vertical, inclusive of eyes wider than long, with bulge on vertex which carries the ocelli; eyes bare, very large and very convex; antennae filiform, very long, 13-segmented; scapus and 1st funicular segment short, other segments more than 3 time as long as wide; clypeus well differentiated; mouthparts typical for Leptanillinae males, mandibles short, not reaching one another, toothless, with spoon-like excavation, maxillary and labial palps each with 1 segment.

Alitrunk: Not compressed laterally, much longer than wide, mesonotum bulging anteriorly above the pronotum; scutellum strongly convex; dorsal margin of propodeum concave; metapleural glands absent.

Legs: Long, slender, fore tibia with 1 spur, mid and hind tibiae with 2 spurs.

Wings: With reduced venation; forewing with costa, subcosta, radialis, analis and 1 basal vein; only 2 cells are present, a costal and an undivided basal cell; hind wings veinless.

Petiole: Simple, anteriorly with short stalk; posteriorly separated from gaster by only a very slight constriction.

Gaster: Long oval, slightly curved, with 6 visible tergites.

Genitalia: Not contractile, very large, more than 1/2 length of gaster; gonoforceps (goncoxite + gonostylus) well developed, pointed at distal end; gonapophyses united into large shield-like dorsally convex plate.


The generic name is derived from Yavne, the locality in Israel, where the first specimens of the type-species were collected.


  • Bolton, B. 1990d. The higher classification of the ant subfamily Leptanillinae (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Syst. Entomol. 15: 267-282 (page 277, Yavnella in Leptanillinae, Leptanillini)
  • Bolton, B. 1994. Identification guide to the ant genera of the world. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 222 pp. (page 70, Yavnella in Leptanillinae, Leptanillini)
  • Bolton, B. 1995b. A new general catalogue of the ants of the world. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 504 pp. (page 424, Yavnella in Leptanillinae, Leptanillini)
  • Bolton, B. 2003. Synopsis and Classification of Formicidae. Mem. Am. Entomol. Inst. 71: 370pp (page 153, Yavnella in Leptanillinae, Leptanillini)
  • Collingwood, C. A. and D. Agosti. 1996. Formicidae (Insecta: Hymenoptera) of Saudi Arabia (part 2). Fauna Saudi Arabia. 15:300-385.
  • Hölldobler, B.; Wilson, E. O. 1990. The ants. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, xii + 732 pp. (page 12, Yavnella in Leptanillinae, Leptanillini)
  • Kugler, J. 1987 [1986]. The Leptanillinae (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) of Israel and a description of a new species from India. Isr. J. Entomol. 20: 45-57 (page 52, Yavnella as genus; Yavnella in Leptanillinae, Leptanillini)
  • Ogata, K.; Terayama, M.; Masuko, K. 1995. The ant genus Leptanilla: discovery of the worker-associated male of L. japonica, and a description of a new species from Taiwan (Hymenoptera: Formicidae: Leptanillinae). Syst. Entomol. 20: 27-34 (page 32, Yavnella in Leptanillinae, Leptanillini)