The Ants of Africa
Genus Tetraponera
Tetraponera angolensis Santschi - new status

Tetraponera angolensis Santschi - new status

return to key {link to the Hymenoptera Name Server} Type location Angola (Tetraponera ophthalmica Em. st. angolensis n. stirps, Santschi, 1930b: 61; illustrated, worker) from Chimporo worker only described .

{Tetraponera opthhalmica}Santschi's (1930b) description is at {original description}.

Notes - Ward (2006: 123), who synonymised angolensis under Tetraponera ambigua states "mesonotum weakly convex and not separated from anterior margin of propodeum by prominently raised metanotal spiracles".
Santschi (1930b), in his description of angolensis has these spiracles as prominent.
Ward's drawing of ambigua shows roughened patches on the lateral occipitum and prominent erect hairs on the sides of the head; these are not shown or mentioned by Santschi of angolensis.
The specimen from Gabon (below) appears to wholly match the Santschi description of angolensis in having no roughened patches on the occipitum, no lateral erect hairs on the head, indeed very few erect hairs at all, a more rounded propodeum and a lower petiole; it also has finely reticulated but quite distinct sculpturation on the head.
It is distinctly smaller than the specimen in Ward's drawing, for which he gave no origin, and has the darkened posterior to the gaster mentioned by Santschi, plus the narrow frontal area shown by Santschi. There appear to be five distinct teeth on the mandible as opposed to four for Ward's ambigua and the anterior margin of the clypeus is evenly convex, not toothed as in Ward's drawing of ambigua.
I feel the combination of features are so distinct as to merit elevation to full species status.

Tetraponera angolensisThe photomontage of the type worker is collated from

An identical worker also from Angola and labelled by P S Ward as T. ambigua can be seen at

Oxford University Museum specimens

Tetraponera angolensis
B Taylor det.
Y Braet
Gabon 62
00°34' N
09°19' E
Kengéré road; mangroves, sweep net

{Tetraponera ambigua angolensis}The photomontage is of a worker from Gabon, Pongara National Park; collector Yves Braet (Gabon 62). This is an exact match for the type worker shown above.

© 2007, 2008, 2010, 2012, 2014, 2019 - Brian Taylor CBiol FRSB FRES
11, Grazingfield, Wilford, Nottingham, NG11 7FN, U.K.