The Ants of Africa
Genus Polyrhachis
Polyrhachis latispina Emery

Polyrhachis latispina Emery

return to key {link to the Hymenoptera Name Server} Type location Zaïre (Polyrhachis (Myrma) atalanta new species, Wheeler, 1922: 263, illustrated, queen; name preoccupied so renamed as latispina by Emery, 1925: 206), from Kisangani (Stanleyville), collected by Lang & Chapin - no type images on Antweb (June 2018)
junior synonym iperpunctata (Polyrhachis (Myrma) iperpunctata n. sp., Menozzi, 1942: 181, illustrated, worker) from Fernando Po I., worker holotype collected at Musola, by Eidmann - no type images on Antweb (June 2018).
Also recorded from Eala, Zaïre, by H.J. Bredo (Bolton, 1973b: 309); female and workers described .

Rigato (2016) reported new findings but gave no other information and no indication of sighting the Wheeler type.

{Polyrhachis latispina}Wheeler's (1922) illustrated description of the queen is at {original description}. Menozzi's (1942) illustrated description of iperpunctata is at {original description}. Bolton's modern description (1973b) is at {original description}.

{Polyrhachis latispina}WORKER - TL 9.4-11.2 mm.

At Musola they were nesting in hollow petioles and fallen leaves of a tree fern, using coarse carton to close gaps.

Oxford University Museum specimens

Polyrhachis latispina
B Taylor det.
Central African Republic
P Annoyer

392 m; nuit, à vue, Sipo trap on tree at mid-trunk, camp de base lac 1, samuel

{Polyrhachis latispina}The photomontage is of a worker from the Central African Republic, Dzanga- Sangha NP; collector Philippe Annoyer (CAR PZ).

{Polyrhachis latispina}The photomontage is of a specimen from Kenya, compiled from

Note: I suspect this is a closely related species rather than the Congo Basin type. Overall it is well below the size range reported by Bolton (1973b); from the Antweb photos - HL 2.07, HW 1.75, CI 85; SL 1.83, SI 104 (?); PW 1.24. It also differs in a number of ways. For instance the type has a reticulate-punctate gaster, with overlying fine dense longitudinal rugulation - this is wholly shiny. The pronotal sculpture is descibed by Bolton as "heavily sculptured", this appears quite weakly sculptured. The sculpturation of the petiole also differs. The type has parts of the legs and apices of the funiculi that are yellow-brown, this is wholly black.

A specimen from Cameroun which matches that above from CAR can be seen at

© 2007, 2008, 2012, 2015, 2018 - Brian Taylor CBiol FRSB FRES
11, Grazingfield, Wilford, Nottingham, NG11 7FN, U.K.