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Monomorium pharaonis. (1) Head of worker from Luzon, Philippines; (2) lateral view of the same worker; (3) dorsal view of the same worker; (4) worker foraging indoors on gouda cheese in Lower Austria, Austria (1-3 by D.M. Sorger, copyright NHMW Image Database & www.antbase.net; 4 by B.C. Schlick-Steiner & F.M. Steiner).

Monomorium pharaonis. (1) Head of worker from Luzon, Philippines; (2) lateral view of the same worker; (3) dorsal view of the same worker; (4) worker foraging indoors on gouda cheese in Lower Austria, Austria (1-3 by D.M. Sorger, copyright NHMW Image Database & www.antbase.net; 4 by B.C. Schlick-Steiner & F.M. Steiner).

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The pharaoh ant, Monomorium pharaonis (LINNAEUS, 1758), has long been considered the most ubiquitous house ant in the world. Monomorium pharaonis is particularly notorious as a pest in hospitals, where it is known as a vector for disease. I compiled and mapped specimen records of M. pharaonis from > 1200 sites to document its known worldwide distri...

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... The introduced exotic Monomorium pharaonis can readily be distinguished from the other four taxa by its having the frons of the head capsule and the entire mesosoma finely densely reticulate-punctate, and other cephalic sculpture is also present; the mandibles are longitudinally rugulose and shagreenate. This species is believed to have originated in tropical Asia but has now been documented for 225 geographic areas including very many countries (Wetterer 2010c). On a global scale, this is probably the most pestiferous Monomorium species, and it has thus attracted a voluminous literature. ...
... Monomorium pharaonis appears to have penetrated native forest or other natural environments on the mainland and on offshore islands in north-east QLD, and the author has seen several samples from these areas -WAM holdings include material from QLD's Magdelaine Cays, South West Coringa Cay, and South West Herald Island. As well as causing annoyance by scavenging foodstuffs in houses, this species can be a (mechanical) vector of disease (Wetterer 2010c). The other Monomorium introduction to Australia, namely, M. floricola, is built along the same morphological lines as M. antipodum and M. orientale, and shares the same low, bluntly triangular petiolar node. ...
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This is the secod part of a 2 volume Guide to the ants of Western Australia. This volume examines the ecology and distribution of Western Australian ants.
... 1.5 mm for M. triviale, 1.7-2.0 mm for M. floricola(Wetterer 2010a), and 2.2-2.4 mm for M. pharaonis(Wetterer 2010b).The total developmental period of M. triviale was estimated to be about 59 days (egg: 13 days + larva: 29 days + pupa: 17 days). These results are slightly longer than those of the tropical congeners M. pharaonis (egg: 11 days + larva: 22 days + pupa: 12 days, 27°C; Pontieri et al. bioRxiv) and M. hiten (egg: 12 days + larva: 17 days + pupa: 20 days, 24°C; ...
Article
The ant genus Monomorium is one of the most species-rich but taxonomically problematic groups in the hyperdiverse subfamily Myrmicinae. An East Asian species, M. triviale Wheeler, produces both reproductive queens and sterile workers via obligate thelytokous parthenogenesis. Here, we describe the immature forms of M. triviale based on light and scanning electron microscopy observations, with a note on the striking caste dimorphism in the last larval instar. The last-instar queen larvae were easily recognized by their large size, “aphaenogastroid” body shape, and rows of doorknob-like tubercles on the lateral and dorsal body surface. This type of queen-specific structure has not been found in ants in general, let alone congeneric species found in Japan. In stark contrast to the queen larvae, worker larvae showed a “pheidoloid” body shape and a body surface similar to other ants. The worker larvae were estimated to have three instars, consistent with previously described congeners. The pupae of both castes had no cocoon, a characteristic commonly described in other Myrmicinae species. In total, the developmental period from egg to adult worker averaged 59 days under 25°C. We discuss possible functions of the tubercles of queen larvae based on previous studies.
... The introduced exotic Monomorium pharaonis can readily be distinguished from the other four taxa by its having the frons of the head capsule and the entire mesosoma finely densely reticulate-punctate, and other cephalic sculpture is also present; the mandibles are longitudinally rugulose and shagreenate. This species is believed to have originated in tropical Asia but has now been documented for 225 geographic areas including very many countries (Wetterer 2010c). On a global scale, this is probably the most pestiferous Monomorium species, and it has thus attracted a voluminous literature. ...
... Monomorium pharaonis appears to have penetrated native forest or other natural environments on the mainland and on offshore islands in north-east QLD, and the author has seen several samples from these areas -WAM holdings include material from QLD's Magdelaine Cays, South West Coringa Cay, and South West Herald Island. As well as causing annoyance by scavenging foodstuffs in houses, this species can be a (mechanical) vector of disease (Wetterer 2010c). The other Monomorium introduction to Australia, namely, M. floricola, is built along the same morphological lines as M. antipodum and M. orientale, and shares the same low, bluntly triangular petiolar node. ...
... Paratrechina longicornis is known to outcompete and displace several arthropod species by their aggressive behaviour and their ability to monopolise resources (Wetterer et al., 1999). Monomorium pharonis is another invasive species with a global footprint that appears to be a human commensal and is also known to pose potential health risk to humans by carrying several pathogenic germs (Wetterer, 2010). Although T. destructor is a globally important invasive, it does not seem to have great impact on natural ecosystems (Wetterer, 2009) and does not contribute much to beta diversity in our study (Fig. 2). ...
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1. Understanding how biodiversity is distributed is increasingly becoming important under ongoing and projected human land use. Measures of beta diversity, and its partitions, can offer insights for conservation and restoration of biodiversity. 2. We ask how different species, functional groups, and land use contribute to beta diversity, and whether invasive species have a negative influence on beta diversity. We address these questions using ant assemblages (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) at 277 sites distributed across five geomorphic land use types in Goa, India. 3. We recorded 68 species (35 genera, 7 subfamilies) of which 5 were invasive. We classified them into eight functional groups. Oecophylla smaragdina—a common tropical arboreal species, and Anoplolepis gracilepis—a globally significant invasive, contributed the most to beta diversity. Large-bodied omnivores which may influence soil functions contributed more to beta diversity than small-bodied predators. Lateritic plateaus contributed most to beta diversity, whereas human-influenced plantations contributed the least. Beta diversity across sites was related to species turnover, whereas nestedness was more prominent for functional groups. This indicates how species replace one another with change in land use, but functional roles are lost despite such turnover. Sites with human land use had higher incidence of invasive species, and invaded sites contributed less to beta diversity than non-invaded sites. 4. Human land use strongly influences diversity and distribution of ant assemblages. Land use may spare local species richness, but not functional groups. A small number of invasive species exert negative influence even in very speciose communities.
... In temperate zones, it prefers humid and warm conditions, such as those found in heated buildings (Adams et al., 1999). Among the house infesting ant species, it is considered the hardest to eradicate, because its colonies fragment often and even fragments with only workers and eggs are capable of reconstituting a functioning colony (Wetterer, 2010). Worker length is about 2 mm and, as observed in our breeding system, they are able to pass through and colonise small openings, crevices and even the small bars used for BSF egg collection. ...
Article
Livestock farms represent a source of attraction for other species, which find food resources on the animals themselves, in the food supplied to them, in their manure, etc. Insect farms too can suffer infestation by different organisms living on substrates or behaving as parasites and/or predators. Breeding of the black soldier fly (BSF), Hermetia illucens (L.) requires organic materials which are attractive for other arthropods (commensals, mycetophages, scavengers, etc.). During recent years, the breeding system adopted at the Di.Pro.Ve.S. of the Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Piacenza (Italy), has suffered the presence of the following ‘pests’: Megaselia scalaris (Loew) (Diptera Phoridae), Muscina stabulans (Fallén) (Diptera Muscidae), Monomorium pharaonis (L.) (Hymenoptera Formicidae) and Caloglyphus berlesei (Michael) (Astigmata Acaridae). The use of fermented fruit, vegetables or of an artificial diet to induce egg laying proved to be attractive for small flies such as M. scalaris. This species also takes advantage of the aqueous sugar solution used to feed BSF adults. Infestations by M. scalaris are worrying because its larvae can compete efficiently with those of the BSF in substrate colonisation. Likewise, M. stabulans can be attracted by the substrates, even though this species has not shown the same levels of high competitiveness as the previously mentioned species. M. pharaonis was observed to prey on eggs and newborn BSF larvae. Lastly, infestations by the mite C. berlesei were detected when conditions for the larval development of the BSF were not optimal. This species could also be harmful for the workers involved in the breeding. The establishment of insect and mite populations inside BSF rearing boxes suggests that a careful analysis should be made based on the location of the breeding facility and a series of measures should of course be adopted when this kind of structure and activities are designed and realised.
... Urban pest problems are mostly of an economic character or connected to health issues (Bonnefoy et al. 2008;Mallis et al. 2011;Robinson 2005), and while disease-carrying vectors are monitored closely to predict, detect and mitigate human and animal health threats (Kading et al. 2018;Takken and Bart 2007), many of the more common tramp species are often ignored. Continuous urban invasions are best exemplified by the persistent worldwide presence of insects such as the German cockroach (Tang et al. 2019), Pharaoh ants (Wetterer 2010) and more recently the major comeback of the common bed bug (Doggett et al. 2018). ...
... The basic route of introduction of indoor tramp species is believed to be travel or trade items (Doggett et al. 2018;Tang et al. 2019;Wetterer 2010). The swiftness of nationwide dispersal in Norway also clearly supports this assumption for C. longicaudata. ...
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Urban insects are continuously introduced to new areas as stowaways or contaminants of trade goods and may, if established in the recipient country, affect society on several levels. The bristletail Ctenolepisma longicaudata, an indoor nuisance pest, was recently detected in Norway and has shown a swift and nationwide upsurge. This study describes its numerical increase and spatio-temporal dispersal into all 18 counties of Norway within a period of 5 years. C. longicaudata showed a distinct 2–3-fold increase per year in measures of submitted pest samples, reported professional pest control cases, insurance claims, news coverage and court cases concerning disputes in transfer of ownership in real estate sales. The insurance claims concerning C. longicaudata are strongly dominated by buildings constructed in the last 15 years and reflect C. longicaudata’s use of the urban habitat, while the 6788 pest control cases pinpoint the magnitude of the problem. The dispersal biology and societal impact of this nuisance pest is discussed in relation to other bristletail species and indoor pests in Norway. The study suggests that an increased import risk, aspects of modern construction and the environmental stability in new buildings may promote populations of C. longicaudata.
... Monomorium pharaonis (Linnaeus) (Myrmicinae) is a tiny, yellow ant thought to be native to Asia (Wetterer 2010b). This species is a widespread tramp that occurs in many warm regions of the world. ...
... Monomorium pharaonis is a widespread species that is suspected to inhabit most, if not all, large cities in the U.S. (Wetterer 2010b). Colonies are polygynous, and even though some winged females are produced, they spread through budding. ...
... Monomorium pharaonis is thought to be native to Asia (Wetterer 2010b ...
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Introductions of exotic organisms have become commonplace worldwide, in large part due to extensive global trade. When conditions are favorable, introduced species can become established in new regions, and in some cases become invasive. In the U.S., the Southeastern region has been particularly susceptible to successful establishment of exotic ant species, which may be related to the numerous oceanic ports in the region and suitable climatic conditions for tropical and subtropical species to thrive. To date, 69 exotic ant species are now established in the Southeast. Faunal surveys in Mississippi predating 2001, by Marion Smith and other researchers, recorded only eight exotic ant species. Since 2001, Mississippi Entomological Museum (MEM) faunistic surveys have recorded an additional 22 species of exotic ants to the known fauna of the state. These 30 introduced ant species are native to many regions, including Central America, South America, Europe, Africa, and Asia. In this bulletin, we present descriptions, photographs, natural history information, economic importance, and distribution maps for each exotic ant species in Mississippi.
... In Italy, M. monomorium presence was mostly recorded in the north ( Baroni Urbani, 1971;Castracani et al., 2020). The only Monomorium species we are aware of in Sicily is M. subopacum (Smith, F. 1858), while a record of the tramp species M. pharaonis (Linnaeus 1758) is the consequence of a series of errors on the part of the FaunaEur database (Wetterer, 2010;Schifani & Alicata, 2018). ...
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The ant fauna of Sicily, the largest island in the Mediterranean basin, has been significantly overlooked over the time. Drafting a reliable Sicilian ant checklist requires extensive field surveys, a careful review of the literature and of museum specimens, as well as the taxonomic investigation of some problematic issues. As a part of these ongoing efforts, we present our results on the presence or absence of 25 species. By analyzing specimens collected during the last 35 years across the island and reviewing old records in the light of present-day taxonomy, we provide evidence of the presence of 9 species (Camponotus ruber, Lasius myops, L. platythorax, Plagiolepis schmitzii, Ponera testacea, Solenopsis orbula, Temnothorax clypeatus, T. nylanderi, and T. ravouxi), while suggesting the absence of 19 others (Camponotus ligniperda, C. sicheli, C. spissinodis, Formica lugubris, Lasius alienus, L. flavus, L. niger, L. paralienus, Messor minor, M. wasmanni, Monomorium monomorium, Myrmica scabrinodis, M. spinosior, Nylanderia sp. 2 sensu Schifani & Alicata 2018, Solenopsis fugax, Temnothorax luteus, T. tuberum, Tetramorium caespitum, and T. indocile). Similar studies are necessary across Italy, as a significant portion of the existing ant records is outdated due to the evolved taxonomic framework.
... The genus Monomorium is one of the most species-rich genera among ants [13] and has a worldwide distribution [14]. With the marked exception of tramp species such as the pharaoh ant M. pharaonis [15], most Monomorium species remain to be investigated [16]. M. triviale is reported from East Asia, encompassing Japan, South Korea and mainland China [14]. ...
... Although some studies have categorized M. triviale as invasive [1,19], no exotic distribution has been reported so far [14] and there is insufficient information to support the possibility of an introduced origin of the Japanese population of M. triviale. The known distribution range of this species is far more limited than those of successful invasive congeners such as M. pharaonis and Monomorium floricola [15,51]. A preference for disturbed and urban habitats is shared widely among invasive ants [52]. ...
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We report comprehensive evidence for obligatory thelytokous parthenogenesis in an ant Monomorium triviale . This species is characterized by distinct queen–worker dimorphism with strict reproductive division of labor: queens produce both workers and new queens without mating, whereas workers are completely sterile. We collected 333 nests of this species from 14 localities and three laboratory-reared populations in Japan. All wild queens dissected had no sperm in their spermathecae. Laboratory observation confirmed that virgin queens produced workers without mating. Furthermore, microsatellite genotyping showed identical heterozygous genotypes between mothers and their respective daughters, suggesting an extremely low probability of sexual reproduction. Microbial analysis detected no bacterial genera that are known to induce thelytokous parthenogenesis in Hymenoptera. Finally, the lack of variation in partial sequences of mitochondrial DNA among individuals sampled from across Japan suggests recent rapid spread or selective sweep. M . triviale would be a promising model system of superorganism-like adaptation through comparative analysis with well-studied sexual congeners, including the pharaoh ant M . pharaonis .
... Some species are well known as tramp species (Passera 1994). However, biological knowledge is still insufficient except for the notorious pest species, M. pharaonis (Linnaeus, 1758) (e.g., Børgesen 2000;Wetterer 2010a;Boonen & Billen 2016) and the tramp species, M. floricora (Jerdon, 1851) (e.g., Way & Bolton 1997;Ozaki et al. 2000;Eow et al. 2004;Wetterer 2010b). Knowledge of reproductive structure and ecology in several species of Monomorium will help develop our understanding of reproduction without males in ants. ...
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Thelytokous reproduction by dealate queens in Monomorium hiten Terayama, 1996, collected from four islands of the Nansei Islands (Okinawa Prefecture, Japan) was confirmed in the field and laboratory. Dissection revealed that all dealate queens (N = 38) found in nine field collected colonies were uninseminated. Orphan colonies reared in the laboratory produced alate queens and they laid eggs from which workers or alate queens emerged. Alate queens reared in isolation produced nanitic workers without food supply. Two laboratory colonies produced a total of four males; their morphology is described.