Introduction The Ants of Africa
Chapter 2 - Geography and History - Angola

Colonial era geography

In reviewing the original descriptions now (late-2003) made available by the efforts of Donat Agosti, I realised that the geography as understood in the late-19th century was not fully comprehended by modern researchers.

In my possesssion I have a copy of the Eton Compendium of Geography, edition published around January 1856, by C.G.N. of King's College, London; the first edition, by Rev. Aaron Arrowsmith, having been published in 1831. I have reproduced the relevant pages as a pdf which can be read by using the link {original description}. From the descriptions, however, it will be obvious that almost nothing was known by Europeans of any part of away from the coastal area.


A history of German expeditions in the nineteenth century is given at -

Summary of known collectors
Ph Allaer (Bolton,1973b); A de Barros Machado (Brown, 1954k, 1959c, 1964a, Bolton, 1983x); J Bequaert (Santschi, 1919h); Dr M Berr (Santschi, 1937d); Max Buchner (Emery, 1893e; Forel, 1886f); A Cardosa (Bolton, 1980a); Luna de Carvalho (Bolton, 1980, 1983, 1987); J Cruchet (Santschi, 1911g, 1912b, 1930a), with Dr Decorse (Santschi, 1911g); Baum & van der Kellen [H H Braun & Van der Kellen] (Forel, 1901d, 1910e); T D A Cockerell (Bolton, 1980, 1981b, 1987); Dr Falkenstein (Forel, 1886f); A P Ferrao (Bolton, 1973b); Gleiche (Forel, 1901d); G R Gradwell & D Snow (Bolton, 1973b, 1982, 1987); D Hollis (Bolton, 1980, 1981a); B Malkin (Bolton, 1980); Dr A Monard, with J Cruchet (Santschi, 1930a, 1937d); Picardi (Forel, 1910e); [Mission?] Rohan Chabot (Santschi, 1925h, 1926a); E S Ross & K Lorenzen (Bolton, 1978c), E S Ross & R E Leech (Bolton, 1981b); Prof F Silvestri (Santschi, 1914d, 1928f); von Schultze (Stitz, 1910); Creighton Wellman (Forel, 1909b, 1910c); Welwitsch (Radoskowsky, 1881).


Santschi (1930a) examined ant specimens collected by Dr A Monard during a Swiss expedition to the Rio Kubango (Cubango) area of southern Angola, from September 1928 to the end of January 1929. Santschi separated a total of 73 different forms of ant, including 53 species, 19 races or sub-species and 28 varieties. He separated 5 species, 4 races and 8 varieties that were new.

Santschi cited previous studies of ants from Angola as being -

  • Forel (1901d) with 8 species, 2 races and 3 varieties;
  • Forel (1909b) species collected in Benguela by Creighton Wellman, with 15 forms, among them 5 species and 3 varieties that were new;
  • Forel (1910e, unavailable) 7 forms with 2 species, 2 races and one variety that were new;
  • Santschi (1911) with more from Benguela, collected by his late colleague Jean Cruchet, these were 2 species, 5 races and 3 varieties that were new, plus 5 other forms;
  • Santschi (1925h) reported ants from the Mission de Rohan-Chabot, comprising 33 forms, without counting several indeterminable males and queens.

All told Santschi (1930b) listed 139 forms - with 93 species, 23 races and 22 varieties, over half coming from Dr Monard's efforts.

Santschi (1937d) described ants collected by Dr Monard during a further expedition, this time to. This second expedition yield up 104 forms, 55 of which had not previously been reported from Angola, of which 28 were new forms - 7 species, 7 stirps and 14 varieties.

List of places visited by Dr Monard -
{places in Angla visited by Dr Monard}

2005, 2006, 2009, 2012 - Brian Taylor CBiol FSB FRES
11, Grazingfield, Wilford, Nottingham, NG11 7FN, U.K.