Fossil evidence for the early ant evolution

@article{Perrichot2007FossilEF,
  title={Fossil evidence for the early ant evolution},
  author={Vincent Perrichot and S{\'e}bastien Lacau and Didier N{\'e}raudeau and Andr{\'e} Nel},
  journal={Naturwissenschaften},
  year={2007},
  volume={95},
  pages={85-90}
}
Ants are one of the most studied insects in the world; and the literature devoted to their origin and evolution, systematics, ecology, or interactions with plants, fungi and other organisms is prolific. However, no consensus yet exists on the age estimate of the first Formicidae or on the origin of their eusociality. We review the fossil and biogeographical record of all known Cretaceous ants. We discuss the possible origin of the Formicidae with emphasis on the most primitive subfamily… 

The Phylogeny and Evolution of Ants

Ant evolutionary history has been propelled by the use of molecular phylogenetic methods, in conjunction with a rich (and still growing) fossil record, and heterogeneity in evolutionary rates and base composition among ant lineages needs to be given careful consideration.

Newly discovered sister lineage sheds light on early ant evolution

The authors' analyses have reduced the likelihood of long-branch attraction artifacts that have troubled previous phylogenetic studies of early-diverging ants and therefore solidify the emerging view that the most basal extant ant lineages are cryptic, hypogaeic foragers.

The Phylogeny and Evolution of Ants

Ant evolutionary history has been propelled by the use of molecular phylogenetic methods, in conjunction with a rich (and still growing) fossil record, and heterogeneity in evolutionary rates and base composition among ant lineages must be given careful consideration.

Phylogeny, classification, and species-level taxonomy of ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae)*

Progress in this area of ant systematics will require sustained individual efforts, expansion of job opportunities, enlistment of new technologies, and a deeper understanding of the nature of ant species and the differences between them.

Title Tracing the rise of ants-Out of the a ground

Recon reconstructing the habitat transitions of crown-group ants through time shows that in contrast to the current consensus based on verbal arguments that ants evolved in tropical leaf litter, the soil is supported as the ancestral stratum of all ants.

Tracing the Rise of Ants - Out of the Ground

This work reconstructs the habitat transitions of crown-group ants through time, focusing on where they nest and forage (in the canopy, litter, or soil), and shows that in contrast to the current consensus based on verbal arguments that ants evolved in tropical leaf litter, the soil is supported as the ancestral stratum of all ants.

Integrating molecular phylogenetic results into ant taxonomy (Hymenoptera: Formicidae)

The interplay between molecular and morphological evidence, and the integration of molecular phylogenetic results into ant classification are considered, which presents a classificatory conundrum if the authors wish to maintain a Linnaean classification system.

New fossil ants in French Cretaceous amber (Hymenoptera: Formicidae)

A new sphecomyrmine ant, allied to the Burmese amber genus Haidomyrmex, is described from mid-Cretaceous amber of France and the diagnosis of the tribe HaidOMyrmecini is emended based on the new type material, which includes a gyne (alate female) and two incomplete workers.

Cretaceous African life captured in amber

A unique find of African amber with inclusions, from the Cretaceous of Ethiopia, revealing the interactions of plants, fungi and arthropods during an epoch of major change in terrestrial ecosystems, which was caused by the initial radiation of the angiosperms.
...

References

SHOWING 1-10 OF 53 REFERENCES

Molecular Evidence for a Jurassic Origin of Ants

This review estimates the time of origin of the ant family using the divergences between mitochondrial DNA sequences from ants of six subfamilies and a vespid wasp to place the ants in the early Jurassic, at least 70 Ma earlier than recorded by fossils.

The rise of the ants: a phylogenetic and ecological explanation.

  • E. WilsonB. Hölldobler
  • Environmental Science
    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
  • 2005
A history of major ecological adaptations at the subfamily level appears to have been a mid-Cretaceous initial radiation in forest ground litter and soil coincident with the rise of the angiosperms, followed by an expansion of some of the lineages, aided by changes in diet away from dependence on predation, upward into the canopy, and outward into more xeric environments.

Evaluating alternative hypotheses for the early evolution and diversification of ants

The largest ant molecular phylogenetic data set published to date is generated, containing ≈6 kb of DNA sequence from 162 species representing all 20 ant subfamilies and 10 aculeate outgroup families, and casts strong doubt on the existence of a poneroid clade as currently defined.

New fossil ants in French Cretaceous amber (Hymenoptera: Formicidae)

A new sphecomyrmine ant, allied to the Burmese amber genus Haidomyrmex, is described from mid-Cretaceous amber of France and the diagnosis of the tribe HaidOMyrmecini is emended based on the new type material, which includes a gyne (alate female) and two incomplete workers.

A formicine in New Jersey cretaceous amber (Hymenoptera: formicidae) and early evolution of the ants.

  • D. GrimaldiD. Agosti
  • Biology, Geography
    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
  • 2000
The apex of the gaster has an acidopore and, thus, allows definitive assignment of the fossil to the large extant subfamily Formicinae, members of which use a defensive spray of formic acid.

New and rediscovered primitive ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) in Cretaceous amber from New Jersey, and their phylogenetic relationships

Discovery of new and exclusively primitive ants in upper Cretaceous ambers indicates an origin of the ants probably in the lowermost Cret Jurassic, but no older, contrary to a recent molecular hypothesis.

Phylogeny and biogeography of the ant subfamily Myrmeciinae (Hymenoptera: Formicidae)

The myrmeciine ants appear to be a formerly widespread group that retained many ancestral formicid characteristics and that became extinct everywhere except in the Australian region, supporting the contention that many of the major lineages of ants arose at around the same time during a bout of diversification in the middle or late Cretaceous.

Phylogeny of the Ants: Diversification in the Age of Angiosperms

Divergence time estimates calibrated by minimum age constraints from 43 fossils indicate that most of the subfamilies representing extant ants arose much earlier than previously proposed but only began to diversify during the Late Cretaceous to Early Eocene, which also witnessed the rise of angiosperms and most herbivorous insects.

Ants From the Cretaceous and Eocene Amber of North America

The discovery of Sphecomyrmafreyi in amber from New Jersey disclosed the existence of an extinct subfamily of ants (Sphecomyrminae) intermediate in some traits between modern ants and nonsocial wasps

Diversity of Hymenoptera and other insects in the Late Cretaceous (Turonian) deposits at Orapa, Botswana: a preliminary review

Comparison with hymenopteran assemblages from other Cretaceous localities, shows that the Orapa assemblage conforms with the Armaniid Kind, but with an unusually high number of Chalcidoidea (exceeding Scelionidae), and is essentially concordant with expectations based on other Turonian assemblaging of Hymenoptera.
...