The Ants of Africa
Contents - Myrmicinae - MYRMICINAE Introduction

Genus Meranoplus F.Smith (1854: 244)


Diagnostic Features - Antennae 9-segmented with a 3-segmented club; antennal scrobes well developed and deep. Eyes situated towards the posterior of the ventral border of the scrobes. Promesonotum fused, strongly margined all around, projecting posteriorly as a shelf which overhangs the near vertical propodeum. Posterior margin of shelf with a number of teeth or spines. Propodeum unarmed or bidentate or bispinose. Petiole and postpetiole scale-like. All are brown to dark brown, with all dorsal surfaces having abundant, long, soft hairs giving the ants a furry appearance.

Arnold (1917) gave a transcription of Smith (1854 - unavailable in HNS) and a key to South African forms; these are at {original description}. Botlon's (1981a) revsion is at {original description}.

Key to the workers of African species (adapted from Bolton, 1981a):

1 Apex of petiole with a pair of spines 2
-- Apex of petiole unarmed 4
2 {Meranoplus glaber}Dorsal surfaces with no more than short appressed hairs; TL 2.5-3.4 mm; uniform pale yellow, gaster may be darker .
. {Meranoplus glaber} southern east Africa - glaber
-- {Mernoplus spininodis}Dorsal surfaces with conspicuous dense covering of long hairs 3
3 {Meronoplus spininodis pedicel}Postpetiole low and nodiform, with abundant soft hairs on dorsum; petiole with short spines; TL 2.8-3.6 mm; mid-brown with darker gaster to uniform dark brown .
. {Meronoplus spininodis} southern east Africa - spininodis
-- {Meranoplus sthenus}Postpetiole high and narrow with few erect hairs; petiole with long spines; TL 2.8-3.2 mm; yellowish-brown, gaster slightly darker .
. {Meranoplus sthenus} Zimbabwe - sthenus
4 {Meranoplus peringueyi pedicel}Postpetiole in profile broad and nodiform; long propodeal spines which project beyond mesonotal margin in dorsal view 5
-- {clypeatus & nanus pedicels}Postpetiole in profile squamiform or very strongly antero-posteriorly compressed 6
5 {Meranoplus magrettii}Mandibles with four teeth; anterior of clypeus with a prominence or denticle on each corner; TL 2.8-4.3 mm; medium to dark brown, gaster usually darker, sometimes with reddish tint .
. {Meranoplus magrettii}. Senegal, Ghana (savannah) plus east and southern Africa - magrettii
-- Meranoplus peringueyiMandibles with five teeth; anterior of clypeus without lateral prominences; TL 3.2-4.9mm; uniform medium to blackish-brown .
. Meranoplus peringueyi. southern Africa - peringueyi
6 {Meranoplus inermis}Propodeum without spines; TL 2.7-4.0 mm; mid to dark brown, gaster often darker .
. {Meranoplus inermis} Pan-African - inermis
-- {Meranoplus nanus}Propodeum armed with a pair of short spines 7
7 {Meranoplus nanus}Posterior margin of mesonotum with 4-6 opaque cuticular projections; spaces between with translucent lamellae; postpetiole dorsum a crest without rugae; TL 2.8-3.8 mm; mid to dark brown, gaster often darker .
. {Meranoplus nanus} Pan-African - nanus
-- {sMeranoplus clypeatus}Posterior margin of mesonotum with broad shelf-like lamella, may be projected into 2-4 triangular teeth; postpetiole dorsum narrow but flattened, with rugae; TL 2.8-3.8 mm; uniform mid to dark brown .
-- {sMeranoplus clypeatus} Pan-African - clypeatus
Contents MYRMICINAE Introduction
2007, 2011, 2013 - Brian Taylor CBiol FSB FRES
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