Contributions to the knowledge of Formicidae (Hymenoptera, Aculeata): a new diagnosis of the family, the first global male-based key to subfamilies, and a treatment of early branching lineages

  • Brendon E. Boudinot Department of Entomology/Nematology, Briggs Hall, Rm. 381 University of California, Davis, U.S.A.
Keywords: Formicoidea, taxonomy, apomorphies, mesosoma morphology, coxal morphology


The diagnosis of the Formicidae is revised, including five new, unreversed apomorphies, of which one is a unique synapomorphy. The first global male-based key to all subfamilies is provided and illustrated, and all ant subfamilies are diagnosed for males on a global scale for the first time. Three lineages of “basal ants” are assessed in detail: the Amblyoponinae, Leptanillinae, and Martialinae. The males of Martialis heureka (Martialinae) and Apomyrma (Amblyoponinae) are described. The Martialinae and Leptanillinae are diagnosed based on males, and additional diagnostic traits for the male of Amblyoponinae and worker of Martialis are provided. The placement of Scyphodon and Noonilla in the Formicidae and Leptanillinae is confirmed. Morphological characters of the Amblyoponinae, the Leptanillinae, and the Martialinae are contrasted, and potentially homologous apomorphies are signaled.


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How to Cite
Boudinot, B. E. (2015). Contributions to the knowledge of Formicidae (Hymenoptera, Aculeata): a new diagnosis of the family, the first global male-based key to subfamilies, and a treatment of early branching lineages. European Journal of Taxonomy, (120).