Black tyrant ants Iridomyrmex anceps or I. rufoniger attacking a caterpillar, from Brisbane Insects.

Belongs within: Dolichoderinae.

Iridomyrmex, the meat ants, is a genus of generalist, often aggressive carnivorous and scavenging ants. Larger members of the genus are often referred to by the vernacular name of 'meat ants'.

Characters (from Heterick 2009): Eyes placed relatively high on sides of head capsule, about the mid-point; anterior margin of clypeus usually with central protuberance (rarely absent); palpal formula 6, 4.

<==Iridomyrmex Mayr 1862 B03
    |--*I. purpureus (Smith 1858) [=Formica purpurea] Z01
    |    |--I. p. purpureus (see below for synonymy) TB85
    |    `--I. p. castrae Viehmeyer 1925 [=I. detectus castrae] TB85
    |--I. agilis Forel 1907 TB85
    |--I. albitarsus Wheeler 1927 TB85
    |--I. anceps (Roger 1863) Z01 (see below for synonymy)
    |--I. arcadius Forel 1915 TB85
    |--I. bicknelli Emery 1898 TB85
    |    |--I. b. bicknelli TB85
    |    |--I. azureus Viehmeyer 1913 TB85
    |    |--I. b. brunneus Forel 1902 TB85
    |    |--I. b. lutea Forel 1915 TB85
    |    `--I. b. splendidus Forel 1902 TB85
    |--I. biconvexus Santschi 1928 [incl. I. foetans Clark 1929] TB85
    |--I. calvus Emery 1914 E14
    |--I. cephaloinclinus MC13
    |--I. chasei Forel 1902 TB85
    |    |--I. c. chasei TB85
    |    |--I. c. concolor Forel 1902 TB85
    |    `--I. c. yalgooensis Forel 1907 TB85
    |--I. coeruleus MC13
    |--I. conifer Forel 1902 K09
    |--I. cyaneus Wheeler 1915 TB85
    |--I. discors Forel 1902 TB85 [incl. I. discors var. exilior S36]
    |    |--I. d. discors TB85
    |    |--I. d. aeneogaster Wheeler 1915 TB85
    |    |--I. d. obscurior Forel 1902 TB85
    |    `--I. d. occipitalis Forel 1907 TB85
    |--I. dromus Clark 1938 TB85
    |--I. emeryi Crawley 1918 TB85
    |--I. exsanguis Forel 1907 TB85
    |--I. flavipes (Kirby 1896) [=Hypoclinea flavipes; incl. I. rostrinotus Forel 1910] TB85
    |--I. flavus Mayr 1868 TB85
    |--I. fornicatus Emery 1914 TB85
    |--I. froggatti Forel 1902 TB85
    |--I. gibbus Heterick & Shattuck 2011 T13
    |--I. gilberti Forel 1902 TB85
    |--I. gracilis (Lowne 1865) [=Formica gracilis] TB85
    |    |--I. g. gracilis TB85
    |    |--I. g. fusciventris Forel 1913 TB85
    |    |--I. g. mayri Forel 1915 TB85
    |    |--I. g. rubriceps Forel 1902 TB85
    |    `--I. g. spurcus Wheeler 1915 TB85
    |--I. greensladei H09
    |--I. hartmeyeri Forel 1907 TB85
    |--I. hesperus H09
    |--I. humilis WW90
    |--I. iniquus WW90
    |--I. innocens Forel 1907 TB85 [incl. I. argutus H09, I. occiduus H09]
    |    |--I. i. innocens TB85
    |    `--I. i. malandanus Forel 1915 TB85
    |--I. itinerans (Lowne 1865) [=Formica itinerans] TB85
    |    |--I. i. itinerans TB85
    |    |--I. i. ballaratensis Forel 1902 TB85
    |    |--I. i. depilis Forel 1902 TB85
    |    `--I. i. perthensis Forel 1902 TB85
    |--I. laevigatus Emery 1894 B03
    |--I. lividus H09
    |--I. longiceps Forel 1907 TB85
    |--I. macrocephalus (Erichson 1842) [=Formica macrocephala] TB85
    |--I. mattiroloi Emery 1898 TB85
    |    |--I. m. mattiroloi TB85
    |    |--I. m. continentis Forel 1907 TB85
    |    |--I. m. parcens Forel 1907 TB85
    |    `--I. m. splendens Forel 1907 TB85
    |--I. minor Forel 1915 H13, TB85 [=I. gracilis minor H09]
    |--I. mjobergi Forel 1915 TB85
    |--I. nitidiceps André 1896 TB85
    |--I. nitidus Mayr 1862 [=I. nitida] TB85
    |    |--I. n. nitidus [incl. Acantholepis tuberculatus Lowne 1865] TB85
    |    |--I. n. clitellarius Viehmeyer 1925 TB85
    |    `--I. n. queenslandensis Forel 1901 TB85
    |--I. notialis H09
    |--I. obscurus Crawley 1921 TB85
    |--I. obsidianus Emery 1914 E14
    |--I. prismatis H09
    |--I. prociduus (Erichson 1842) [=Formica procidua] TB85
    |--I. punctatissimus Emery 1887 TB85
    |--I. reburrus H09
    |--I. rufoniger (Lowne 1865) [=Formica rufonigra] TB85
    |    |--I. r. rufoniger [incl. Acantholepis mamillatus Lowne 1865] TB85
    |    |--I. r. domesticus Forel 1910 H09, TB85 [=I. rufoniger domestica TB85]
    |    |--I. r. incerta Forel 1902 [=I. rufoniger incertus] TB85
    |    |--I. r. pallidus Forel 1901 TB85
    |    |--I. r. septentrionalis Forel 1902 TB85
    |    |--I. r. suchieri Forel 1907 TB85
    |    `--I. r. victorianus Forel 1902 TB85
    |--I. sanguineus Forel 1910 H13, TB85 [=I. detectus sanguinea TB85, I. purpureus sanguinea TB85]
    |--I. setoconus H09
    |--I. spodipilus H09
    |--I. tenuiceps MC13
    |--I. turbineus H09
    |--I. vicina Clark 1934 TB85
    |--I. viridaeneus Viehmeyer 1913 H09, TB85 [=I. detectus viridiaeneus TB85, I. purpureus viridiaeneus TB85]
    `--I. viridigaster Clark 1941 TB85

Iridomyrmex anceps (Roger 1863) Z01 [=Formica anceps Z01; incl. I. excisus Mayr 1867 Z01, I. anceps papuana var. neocaledonica Emery 1914 E14, I. gracilis papuana Emery 1897 Z01, I. anceps papuanus E14]

Iridomyrmex purpureus purpureus (Smith 1858) [incl. Liometopum aeneum Mayr 1862, Formica detecta Smith 1858, Iridomyrmex detectus, F. smithii Lowne 1865] TB85

*Type species of generic name indicated


[B03] Bingham, C. T. 1903. The Fauna of British India, including Ceylon and Burma. Hymenoptera. Vol. II. Ants and Cuckoo-Wasps. Taylor and Francis: London.

[E14] Emery, C. 1914. Les fourmis de la Nouvelle-Calédonie & des îles Loyalty. In: Sarasin, F., & J. Roux (eds) Nova Caledonia: Forschungen in Neu-Caledonian und auf den Loyalty-Inseln. A. Zoologie vol. 1 pt 4 pp. 393–436, pl. 12. C. W. Kreidels Verlag: Wiesbaden.

[H09] Heterick, B. E. 2009. A guide to the ants of south-western Australia. Records of the Western Australian Museum Supplement 76: 1–206.

[H13] Heterick, B. E. 2013. A taxonomic overview and key to the ants of Barrow Island, Western Australia. Records of the Western Australian Museum Supplement 83: 375–404.

[K09] Kejval, Z. 2009. Taxonomic revision of the genus Chileanthicus Werner (Coleoptera: Anthicidae). Zootaxa 2180: 1–82.

[MC13] Majer, J. D., S. K. Callan, K. Edwards, N. R. Gunawardene & C. K. Taylor. 2013. Baseline survey of the terrestrial invertebrate fauna of Barrow Island. Records of the Western Australian Museum Supplement 83: 13–112.

[S36] Solomon, M. E. 1936. Description and life-history of a new Western Australian psyllid. Journal of the Royal Society of Western Australia 22: 41–48.

[T13] Taylor, C. K. 2013. Annotated bibliography for Barrow Island terrestrial invertebrates. Records of the Western Australian Museum Supplement 83: 135–144.

[TB85] Taylor, R. W., & D. R. Brown. 1985. Formicoidea. In: Walton, D. W. (ed.) Zoological Catalogue of Australia vol. 2. Hymenoptera: Formicoidea, Vespoidea and Sphecoidea pp. 1–149. Australian Government Publishing Service: Canberra.

[WW90] Wheeler, G. C., & J. Wheeler. 1990. Insecta: Hymenoptera Formicidae. In: Dindal, D. L. (ed.) Soil Biology Guide pp. 1277–1294. John Wiley & Sones: New York.

[Z01] Zhou, S. 2001. Ants of Guangxi. Guangxi Normal University Press: Guilin (China).

Last updated: 25 May 2020.

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