Acanthostichus fuscipennis

AntWiki: The Ants --- Online
Revision as of 10:06, 19 June 2023 by SShattuck (talk | contribs) (Text replacement - "↵↵==References based on [ Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics]==" to " ==References based on [ Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics]==")
Acanthostichus fuscipennis
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Dorylinae
Genus: Acanthostichus
Species: A. fuscipennis
Binomial name
Acanthostichus fuscipennis
Emery, 1895

Acanthostichus fuscipennis casent0281969 p 1 high.jpg

Acanthostichus fuscipennis casent0281969 d 1 high.jpg

Specimen Labels

Often collected in light traps in January and from April to October. Specimens from Colombia and Venezuela were captured in malaise traps in September, October and February. (Mackay 1996)


Mackay 1996. Figures 59-76.

A member of the brevicornis species complex. Mackay (1996) - There has been considerable confusion regarding this species as the description was based on a mixed species series. Emery (1895) illustrated the upper specimen of two (lectotype, here desg.) in Plate 17, Fig. 13 as A. fuscipennis. Figures 5a, b. c, and d are of the lower specimen on the pin, which is that of Acanthostichus quadratus. Due to the mixed series, Emery concluded that A. fuscipennis was closely related to Acanthostichus serratulus (which is incorrect. and is the result of the mixed species type series). As a result of this many males in collections were identified by myrmecologists as A. fuscipennis. The males of A. fuscipennis are among the most distinct and easily recognized in the genus, based on the shape of the petiole. The node of the petitole (as seen from above and with the anterior face hidden from view) is broader than long (elongate in most other known species) and narrowed posteriorly. with a suture which passes over the posterior edge of the petiole (Fig. 70). The node of the petiole is smooth, shining and broadly rounded anteriorly. Most specimens have bluish reflections on most of the body parts, especially the head and pronotum. This characteristic must be used with caution as others, such as A. serratulus, Acanthostichus kirbyi and Acanthostichus laticornis, also have bluish reflections, but the petioles in these species are elongate. Specimens of A. fuscipennis without bluish reflections can be recognized by the shape of the petiole. In addition, the aedeagus is elongate with small widely spaced teeth (which are occasionally absent). The ventrally directed teeth are well developed on both the aedeagus and the volsella. A Colombian specimen has relatively larger eyes and less bluish reflections. A Venezuelan specimen has eyes of normal size, but the node of the petiole is triangular shaped, and not rounded as in the typical A. fuscipennis. There seems to be a reasonable amount of variation in this species, even in specimens collected at the same locality. I tentatively conclude that all of these specimens are A. fuscipennis, although this may be incorrect. Unfortunately it is impossible to link this species to workers of any other species; thus the workers of A. fuscipennis are unknown at this time. This species is not the male of any of the described species of the brevicornis species complex as all the species in this group without known males occur outside the distribution of A. fuscipennis.

Keys including this Species


Latitudinal Distribution Pattern

Latitudinal Range: -0.4° to -27.11°.

Tropical South

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Neotropical Region: Brazil (type locality), Colombia, Ecuador, Venezuela.

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.



Known only from the male caste.


Images from AntWeb

Acanthostichus fuscipennis casent0281969 p 2 high.jpgAcanthostichus fuscipennis casent0281969 d 2 high.jpg
Male (alate). Specimen code casent0281969. Photographer Shannon Hartman, uploaded by California Academy of Sciences. Owned by NHMUK, London, UK.


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

  • fuscipennis. Acanthostichus fuscipennis Emery, 1895j: 752, pl. 17, fig. 13 (m.) BRAZIL (Pará).
    • Type-material: lectotype male (by desigantion of Mackay, 1996: 153).
    • Type-locality: Brazil: Pará, Belém (A. Schulz).
    • [Note: original type-series mixed; other specimens, now excluded from fuscipennis, are A. quadratus (Mackay, 1996: 153).]
    • Type-depository: MSNG.
    • Combination in A. (Acanthostichus): Emery, 1911d: 13.
    • Junior synonym of quadratus: Kusnezov, 1962a: 132.
    • Status as species: Emery, 1911d: 13; Borgmeier, 1923: 51; Kempf, 1964c: 265; Brown, 1975: 42; Bolton, 1995b: 54; Mackay, 1996: 153.
    • Distribution: Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Venezuela.

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


Emery 1895. Page 752.

Type Material

Mackay (1996) - A. fuscipennis Emery, 1895:752, male, Plate 17: Fig. 13 (lectotype male specimen in illustration. here designated). BRAZIL: Para. Belem (Museo Civico di Storia Naturale, Genoa) [seen]. Lectotype male (here deSignated) (MCSN) [seen]; Para, No. 180, 251293; Acanthostichus fuscipennis Em.; Typus; Museo Civico di Genova. Type series is mixed, upper specimen is designated as lectotype, lower specimen is male of A. serratulus. Third specimen mentioned by Emery (1895) not seen.


References based on Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics

  • Kempf, W.W. 1972. Catalago abreviado das formigas da regiao Neotropical (Hym. Formicidae) Studia Entomologica 15(1-4).
  • Kusnezov N. 1953. La fauna mirmecológica de Bolivia. Folia Universitaria. Cochabamba 6: 211-229.
  • MacKay W. P. 1996. A revision of the ant genus Acanthostichus (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Sociobiology 27: 129-179