Solenopsis semilaevis Mayr - revived status
Type location South
Africa (Solenopsis semilaevis nov. spec., Mayr, 1901b: 15,
minor; in Oligomyrmex (Aeromyrma)
by Emery 1915c: 59) Port Elizabeth - see below
(see Bolton, 1995) .
The "subspecies" hewitti (Oligomyrmex
(Aeromyrma) Hewitti n. sp., Santschi, 1919a: 341, illustrated,
major & minor; synonymy Arnold, 1926: 236) from South Africa,
Grahamstown, Cape Province, Hewitt - is readily
separable. it is a distinct Oligomyrmex
and is not related to semilaevis. See Oligomyrmex hewitti.
photomontage is of a syntype minor worker collated
Emery (1915c: 58), reviewing the Solenopsis of Africa, wrote
of S. semilaevis from South
Africa - "this species has the clypeus without teeth and the mandible
with five teeth, with the masticatory margin slightly oblique". He
continued that as - "In general, the Solenopsis
have the clypeus armed with four teeth, or at least
two, .... with a more oblique margin to the mandible, with five teeth,
or by anolamy in large species, five teeth". As the workers of the
genus Aeromyrma had
10-segmented antennae, as do the workers of Solenopsis, he felt this species,
of which no major was known, and, as the workers of the latter have no
teeth on the clypeus and five teeth on the mandibles, this should be
assigned to the genus (or subgenus) Aeromyrma.
It seems from his text, however, that Emery relied on Mayr's
description. The type image shown here is clearly a Solenopsis in form and the
presence of a well formed minute eye.
Thus, I am restoring it to the genus Solenopsis. Another Solenopsis from the Cape of Good
Hope described by Mayr (1866b) was the queen of Solenopsis capensis.
Mayr noted that as differing from S.
fugax by having a clypeus without cariane, with only minute
The worker is smaller than Solenopsis africana and has a
relatively wider postpetiole viewed from above.