Encyclopedia of Social Insects

Living Edition
| Editors: Christopher K. Starr


  • Sarah BengstonEmail author
  • Daniel Charbonneau
  • Anna Dornhaus
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-90306-4_125-1


Acorn ants; House-hunting ants; Rock ants

Myrmicine ants of the genus Temnothorax are generally small (body length 2–4 mm), with colony sizes ranging from fewer than 100 workers up to large, polydomous colonies of 1300 workers. There are nearly 400 named species in the genus, most of which can be found in the Holarctic Region, although with a few exceptions (e.g., four species in the Afrotropics) [9]. The taxonomic history of Temnothorax is closely linked with genus Leptothorax, with several revisions before 2003 treating Temnothorax as a junior synonym or subgenus of Leptothorax. In 2003, Temnothorax was revived as a genus with many junior synonyms: Antillaemyrmex, Chalepoxenus, Croesomyrmex, Dichothorax, Icothorax, Chalepoxenus, Macromischa, Myrafant, Myramammophilus, Myrmoxenus, and Protomognathus. Additionally, Myrmetaerus and Epimyrma are junior synonyms for Myrmoxenus, and Leonomyrma is a junior synonym of Chalepoxenus.

A notable feature of many species in the genus is...

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sarah Bengston
    • 1
    Email author
  • Daniel Charbonneau
    • 2
  • Anna Dornhaus
    • 3
  1. 1.CUNY Baruch College, Department of Natural SciencesNew YorkUSA
  2. 2.Arizona State University, School of Life SciencesTempeUSA
  3. 3.University of Arizona, Ecology and Evolutionary BiologyTucsonUSA