It’s been nearly three weeks since the last new myrmicine ant genus was announced. An eternity, it seems. I’ve been going through novel-myrmicine-ant-withdrawal after a spate of descriptions earlier this year. Where will we be able to satisfy our craving for new and difficult to distinguish myrmicines?
Zootaxa, of course. This week Michael Branstetter gives us Propodilobus, a monotypic myrmicine that had been placed in the existing genus Stenamma.
Branstetter’s paper is basically a detailed genetic and morphological study intended to better define Stenamma, a group that has been a bit of a taxonomic mess. In doing so, he revealed that S. pingorum didn’t belong. Not only that, it couldn’t be made to fit anywhere else in the myrmicines. So we get a new genus.
source: Branstetter, M. G. 2009. The ant genus Stenamma Westwood (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) redefined, with a description of a new genus Propodilobus. Zootaxa 2221: 41–57.