The Ants of Africa
Genus Camponotus subgenus Tanaemyrmex
Camponotus (Tanaemyrmex) cognatocompressus Forel

maculatus species-group
TL 8-10-12 mm plus; alitrunk profile convex in a smooth elongated curve, propodeal declivity not or poorly separable from dorsum, if the latter always much shorter than dorsum; petiole scale of major cuneiform, with convex anterior face and quite sharp dorsal margin; mostly bicoloured with alitrunk lighter and distinct light areas on gaster; dimorphic (?) minors with head narrowed posteriorly but not dramatically so and without any "neck".

Camponotus (Tanaemyrmex) cognatocompressus Forel

return to key {link to the Hymenoptera Name Server} Type locality "Africa" (Camponotus rubripes Drury r cognatus Sm. var. cognato-compressus, Forel, 1886f: 143 & 151, "unavailable name"; Forel, 1904b: 379, worker, queen & male - no images on Antweb (September 2014); probably wrongly synonymized and raised to species under name xerxes, Pisarski, 1967: 414, see below)
all forms described (see Bolton, 1995) .

Arguably this and Camponotus xerxes are separate species but without type images of cognatocompressus one cannot be sure.

Forel's (1886f) description is at {original description}; the specimens were earlier described (under the much smaller Camponotus cognatus) in his (1879a) paper - the text is at {original description}. Forel's (1904f) description of xerxes is at {original description}. The overall feature from Forel's several pieces, is of a form that is larger and matt relative to maculatus s.s. The specimens were from Egypt and Tunisia, although I suspect the Forel (1879a) specimens were those listed by Magretti (1884) from the Sudan-Eritrea border area. Forel's (1904f) brief note on xerxes gives that as wholly black, whereas the cognatocompressus from Africa had the alitrunk and even part of the gaster reddish-yellow. In the earlier work (1886f) he noted the soldiers were larger TL ca 15 mm) than any Camponotus maculatus variety. The xerxes type major is similra in TL but has a larger head, both in width and length to the Egypt major shown below.

For comparison, Emery's (1893f) description of Camponotus adenensis is at {original description}. Although generally like "compressus", see Camponotus compressus; this has relatively shorter scapes, SI 0.85; there are no "aiguillons" or short setae on the lower margin of the tibiae; the petiole scale has a rounded upper margin.

Oxford University Museum specimens

Camponotus (Tanaemyrmex) cognatocompressus
B Taylor det.
M Sharaf

3039' N
3426' E
no details
Camponotus (Tanaemyrmex) cognatocompressus
B Taylor det.
A Shepherd

2833' N
3356' E
St Katherine’s Protectorate
Large Blue at night

Camponotus (Tanaemyrmex) cognatocompressus
B Taylor det.
J Kugler   


{Camponotus cognatocompressus} The photomontage is of a major worker from Egypt, Zaranik, N. Sinai; collector Mostafa Sharaf.

This has CI 89, distinct setae on lower margin of hind tibiae, a sharp summit to the petiole scale.

{Camponotus cognatocompressus media} The photomontage is of a media worker from Egypt, Sinai, St Kathsrine's; collector Amy Shepherd.

{Camponotus cognatocompressus minor} The photomontage is of a minor worker from Egypt, Sinai, St Kathsrine's; collector Amy Shepherd.

{Camponotus cognatocompressus} The photomontage is of a major worker from Israel; collector J Kugler.

2007, 2008, 2011, 2013, 2014 - Brian Taylor CBiol FSB FRES
11, Grazingfield, Wilford, Nottingham, NG11 7FN, U.K.