Conocephalus (Xiphidion) decaspinosus , Nagar, Rajendra & Swaminathan, R., 2016

Nagar, Rajendra & Swaminathan, R., 2016, Notes on the genus Conocephalus (Orthoptera: Tettigoniidae; Conocephalinae; Conocephalini) from India and description of two new species, Zootaxa 4126 (1), pp. 1-43: 3-7

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Conocephalus (Xiphidion) decaspinosus

sp. nov.

Conocephalus (Xiphidion) decaspinosus  sp. nov.

( Fig. 1View FIGURE 1, 9View FIGURE 9, 17, 25, 33, 40, 47, 54, 61, 68 & 76; Plate I, II & III) Orthoptera 477711

Material examined. (05 Specimens, 3 ♂ & 2 ♀). Holotype: India: Maharashtra; Akola: 07.x. 2014, Coll. Rajendra Nagar ( PDKV, Akola) 17 o 57 ’– 21 o 46 ’N Longitude 75 o 57 ’– 80 ’ 59 ’E Latitude 305m MSL.

Paratype: India: Rajasthan; 26.ix. 2012, Coll. Rajendra Nagar (Alsigarh, Udaipur); 13.x. 2013, Coll. Rajendra Nagar (Khemli, Udaipur); 08.ix. 2015, Coll. Rajendra Nagar (Kotda, Udaipur).

Habitus. The katydids inhabit mixed deciduous forest areas adjacent to agricultural fields and probably feed on the grasses. Specimens were collected from such areas during the day.

Description. Small to medium-sized meadow katydids, ( Conocephalini  : Conocephalinae  ); vertex more or less laterally flat and the apex of vertex round, does not surpass the frontal fastigium and is usually higher than head in lateral view. The lateral lobes of pronotun oblique, triangular, with a translucent gibbous area near the hind margin above the auditory organ. Pronotum not produced backwards to cover the stridulatory file. Prosternum unarmed or bispinose. Both, macropterous or brachypterous forms exist. Tympanum on fore tibiae with closed. Stridulatory area on left male forewing comparatively small. Fore and mid tibiae with 4–12 external and internal spines (as described for Conocephalus  subgenera Conocephalus  , Anisoptera  and Chloroxiphidion by Pitkin, 1980). Mid and hind femora usually unarmed. Male tenth abdominal tergite with a median projection at apex; otherwise truncate. Male cerci with 1–3 internal spines. Male subgenital plate with wide, shallow, V-shaped incision, or often truncate. Ovipositor straight or occasionally curved and of variable length.

Male: Fastigium of vertex narrower than scape, apex obtuse, dorsal surface obtusely rounded. Anterior margin of pronotum slightly concave, posterior margin obtusely rounded, metazona raised upwards, lateral lobes of pronotum triangular, with a tumid oval semitransparent area along posterior margin on both sides. Prosternum bispinose, elongate, apices obtusely rounded. Tegmina and wing transparent; tegmina with small black markings along the coastal region; tegmina short, apices reaching the middle of third abdominal segment. Stridulatory file on underside of left tegmina with about 49 teeth, which are large and spaced in basal half, gradually becoming narrower and denser towards the apex. Mesosternum with long tubercle-like structure and meta-sternal lobes rounded. Knee lobes of all femora rounded with one spine each on the external and internal sides. Coxal spines elongate. Tympanam on fore tibiae conchate on internal and external sides; ten pairs of spines on the ventral side, dorsum smooth, protibiae with one pair of apical spurs; mesotibiae with 7–8 ventro-external, 9–10 ventro-internal spines and the tibiae with one pair of apical spurs. Hind femur with 0–1 externoventral spines and no internoventral spines. Hind tibiae with 30–32 dorsointernal, 28–30 external spines; 10–11 ventrointernal, 8–9 external spines with three pairs of apical spurs. Cerci conical, with a small tubercle when viewed dorsally, two internal spines — one longer and the other smaller, in ventral view, the smaller spine has a ridge like formation; the apex is pointed and hairy. Subgenital plate with apex extended, roundly excised in middle; styli long. Tenth abdominal tergite broadly prolonged behind in middle and curved ventrad, with V-shaped down curved medial margin. Supra anal plate small, tongue-shaped with apex rounded.

Female. Similar to male; tenth abdominal tergite excised in middle, epiproct triangular, apex obtuse with a small growth in the middle. Cerci conical at base, suddenly narrowing apically, apex obtuse, small, pointed and hairy. Subgenital plate triangular, apex obtuse, apical lobe triangular and rounded. Ovipositor long, straight and slightly curved.

Colouration. General colour green, brown or straw coloured when alive, dorsum of head and pronotum with nearly wide brown stripe, light lateral border, head light brownish, brown including the fastigium, frons, clypeus, gena and scapus, apex of maxillary and labial palpi brown and yellowish, mouthparts reddish or brown; labrum partly light green; Antennae pale light brown, annulated, first two segments yellowish. Anterior legs generally brown or straw coloured, anterior tibial tympanum yellowish brown. Tegmen appears green when live, but is hyaline with veins and veinlets brown; femora of all legs with genicular lobe brown, spines with black tip, hind femur at apex with back marking. Stridulatory vein medium brown, file brown with blackish tinge, forewing sometimes green, transparent with dark black markings. Cerci brown with black tips. Sternum with tubercle, meso and metasternum whitish. Spines on all legs with apex black/brown, tarsal segment ends with black marking. Legs with various shades of brown, marbled with whitish dots of variable size; ventro-internal lobes of meso- and meta coxa nearly white, sometimes indistinct; ventral areas of all femora reddish brown, darker towards trochanter; trochanter dark reddish brown; base of tibiae black or dark brown, spines with dark tips; hind femur reddish brown, sometimes light brown

Depositories. The specimens are deposited in the Reference Chamber of the Insect Museum (Kushwaha Keet Sangrahalaya), Department of Entomology, Rajasthan College of Agriculture, Maharana Pratap University of Agriculture and Technology, Udaipur, Rajasthan, INDIA.

Discussion. The new species appears morphologically close to the African species Conocephalus (Conocephalus) inaequalis Uvarov, 1928  , as per personal communication with Dr. George Beccaloni, Curator of Orthopteroid Insects and Director of the A.R. Wallace Correspondence Project, NHM, London; besides, it is similar to Conocephalus (Conocephalus) bispinatus Pitkin, 1980  and Conocephalus (Conocephalus) bambusanus Ingrisch, 1990  ; but, differs in the following characters: being brachypterous (short-winged), tegmina covering third abdominal segment, wing transparent with small black markings on coastal region; tenth abdominal tergite broadly prolonged behind in middle, curved ventrad, V-shaped and down curved along medial margin; hind femur with no spine on dorsal and ventral side, fore tibiae with ten pairs of spines on the ventral side; cerci bearing two spines with the apical part black; the stridulatory file on left tegmina differs in the number of teeth and size being smaller than that in C. bispinatus  ; and the ovipositor is relatively longer (19mm).

Etymology. The name of the new species refers to the number of ventral spines on fore tibiae.

Distribution. India: Maharashtra (Akola) and Rajasthan (Udaipur).

PLATE I. Conocephalus decaspinosus  sp. nov. male 1–8: 1. Lateral view of male; 2. Lateral view of female; 3. Dorsal view of fastigium vertices; 4. Dorsal view of head; 5. Dorsal view of pronotum 6. Dorsal view of Stridulatory file with tegmina; 7. Fore tibia; 8. Mid tibia.

PLATE II. Conocephalus decaspinosus  sp. nov. male 9–14: 9. Pro sternum tubercle; 10. Meso and metasternum; 11. Dorsal view of left cerci; 12. Ventral view of left cerci; 13. Dorsal view of tenth abdominal tergite; 14. Lateral view of genitalia.

PLATE III. Conocephalus decaspinosus  sp. nov. male 15–16: 15. Ventral view of subgenital plate; 16. Stridulatory file on left tegmina; female 17–20: 17. Lateral view of ovipositor; 18. Lateral view of right cerci; 19. Ventral view of subgenital plate; 2 0. Dorsal view of tenth abdominal tergite with supra anal plate.