New ant species discovered from Kerala
- Posted By
Science & Technology
27th Jan, 2021
Two new species of a rare ant genus have been discovered in India.
The discovered species
- The species of the ant genus Ooceraeafound in Kerala, and Tamil Nadu add to the diversity of this rare genus.
- They differ from others of the same genus on the basis of the number of antennal segments.
- One of them found in the Periyar Tiger Reserve of Kerala, has been named Ooceraea joshii, in honour of Amitabh Joshi, a distinguished evolutionary biologist from Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research (JNCASR).
- The two new species, the first ones spotted with ten-segmented antennae among this rare genus, were discovered by a team led by Prof. Himender Bharti of Punjabi University, Patiala.
- The discovery has been published in the journal ZooKeys.
- The genus is currently represented by 14 species of which
- eight possess nine-segmented antennae
- while five possess eleven- segmented antennae
- one species has recently been reported with eight-segmented antennae
- In India, the genus was so far represented by two species with nine- and eleven-segmented antennae respectively.
Significance of the discovery
- The newly discovered ant species with ten segmented antennae discovered, establish an old world lineage that contains a species emerging as the only model organism among the ant subfamily.