Brachymeria philornisae Delvare,

Delvare, Gérard, Heimpel Hannes Baur, George E., Chadee, Dave D., Martinez, Raymond & Knutie, Sarah A., 2017, Description of Brachymeria philornisae sp. n. (Hymenoptera: Chalcididae), a parasitoid of the bird parasite Philornis trinitensis (Diptera: Muscidae) in Tobago, with a review of the sibling sp, Zootaxa 4242 (1): -1

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Brachymeria philornisae Delvare

sp. nov.

Brachymeria philornisae Delvare  sp. nov.

( Figs 5View FIGURE 5 A −J, 6A −G)

Type material. Holotype ♀. TOBAGO  : Western Tobago, Store Bay, Milford Road, Bon Accord , 9 m, N 11°09'18.6", W 060°50'17.9",, ex Philornis trinitensis  pupa within Mimus gilvus  nest, Sarah A. Knutie leg [ TRMO #2] [molecular code GDEL 0366] (in USNM). Paratypes. Same sampling information (9 ♀) respectively with refGoogleMaps  . TRMO #1 (in CIRAD), TRMO #3 [molecular code GDEL0367] (in CIRAD), TRMO #4 [molecular code GDEL0368] (in Cirad), TRMO #5 and TRMO #10 [specimen dissected] (in CIRAD), TRMO #6 and TRMO #7 (in BMNH), TRMO #8 and TRMO #9 (in MNM). TOBAGO  : Western Tobago, Tropical Paradise Hotel, Arnos Vale Road, Plymouth, 1 m, N 11°13'09.2", W 060°46'29.4",, ex Philornis trinitensis  pupa within Mimus gilvus  nest, Sarah A. Knutie leg (2 ♀) [ TRMO T25 #1 and #2] (in MNM)GoogleMaps  . TOBAGO: Western Tobago, Tobago Plantations, Unnamed Road, Lowlands , 4 m, N 11°08'59.6", W 060°46'58.3",, ex Philornis trinitensis  pupa within Mimus gilvus  nest, Sarah A. Knutie leg (2 ♀) [ TRMO T32 #1 and #2] (in MNM)GoogleMaps  . TOBAGO: Western Tobago, William Mackenzie Park, Claude Noel Highway, Signal Hill , 36 m, N 11°08'59.6", W 060°46'58.3",, ex Philornis trinitensis  pupa within Tiaris bicolor  nest, Sarah A. Knutie leg (1 ♂) [ BFGR BF 39 #1] (in MNM).GoogleMaps 

Etymology. The name philornisae  refers to the generic name of the known host, Philornis  .

Female holotype. Length 6.72 mm. Body black, including most of outer surface of mandibles ( Fig. 6View FIGURE 6 B), radicula, scape, pedicel, all coxae, pro- and mesofemur on basal two thirds of dorsal surface and four fifths of ventral surface, a small spot at mid length of protibia, incomplete broad ring (broken on ventral side) on mesotibia ( Fig. 6View FIGURE 6 K), outer and inner sides of metafemur except for an apical pale spot, relatively broad ring at mid length of metatibia, broadening ventrally ( Figs 5View FIGURE 5 F, 6K). Tegula and rest of legs pale yellow but claws and arolia dark brown. Flagellum also dark brown but last segment of clava yellowish. Palpi, maxillae and labium brownish-testaceous. Humeral plate and base of submarginal vein of fore and hind wing testaceous, becoming dark brown for rest of venation.

Head somewhat narrower (0.92×) than mesosoma, 2.21× as wide as long and 1.25× as wide as high. Left mandible with 2 teeth, the right with 3 teeth; teeth sharp, lower one the largest, median one not much shorter than the upper; surface of mandibles strongly depressed near base, mesal surface punctured, rugulose and densely setose. Labrum semi elliptic, faintly alutaceous, with marginal fringe and a few hairs centrally. Clypeus subtriangular, receding on a narrow ventral stripe, its upper margin below lower ocular line, smooth except for piliferous punctures—7 large punctures mostly in a dorsal row and 4 smaller punctures ventrally ( Fig. 6View FIGURE 6 B, C). Lower face except between subtorular swellings and gena densely setose, punctulate-rugulose, the setae thin, about as long as the shorter distance between antennal scrobes and clypeus ( Fig. 6View FIGURE 6 A, B). Subtorular swellings converging to each other and tapering ventrally ( Fig. 6View FIGURE 6 B). Adtorular ridge vestigial and incomplete, visible only in certain light ( Fig. 6View FIGURE 6 C). Oral fossa 2.38× length of malar space. Malar grove present but narrow, underlined below lower edge of eye by an adjacent swelling, continuing as postorbital carina and hence delimiting a long and deep postorbital grove which is ventrally crenulate-punctulate and with 1–4 imbricate rows of setae oriented downwards ( Fig. 6View FIGURE 6 A).

Carina bordering gena concave in lateral view, leaving the postgena partly visible ( Fig. 6View FIGURE 6 A). Eyes large, separated by 0.89× their own height, completely bare. Interantennal projection compressed and with 21 setae. Antennal scrobes large, 1.27× as high as broad, and reaching lower margin of median ocellus. Adscrobal stripe and frontovertex punctured, the former with 3 rows of setae directed downwards. Preorbital carinae merging near twothirds of antennal scrobes height, blunt along eyes, continuing on vertex where sharper and together forming an inverted U-like ornamentation ( Fig. 5View FIGURE 5 A). Ocelli large, about same size, the median ocellus separated from lateral ocellus by about own diameter. Setae on either side of median ocellus directed upwards. Lateral ocellus with small fovea along outer side. Median ocellus diameter 2.6× OOL. Occiput strongly sloping, setae adpressed and directed outwards. Temples not progressively merging to occiput but forming a right angle with it ( Fig. 5View FIGURE 5 A). Genal carina continuing upwards behind eyes.

Antenna. Scape 5.2× as long as wide, its apex reaching vertex, broadest on inner than outer side near apex. Pedicel relatively short, one-third longer than wide, with evident dorsobasal constriction ( Fig. 6View FIGURE 6 E). Anellus discoid. Flagellum with numerous MPS and adpressed setae and sparse suberect short setae. Funicular segments progressively shortened with F1 1.18× as long as broad, F2 subquadrate and F7 strongly transverse ( Fig. 6View FIGURE 6 D). Clava subovoid, the terminal segment unsclerotized (as in all Brachymeria  ) and bearing a large area of micropilosity ( Fig. 6View FIGURE 6 F, 6G).

Mesosoma relatively stout, 1.25× as long as wide, 1.08× as broad as head. Pro- and mesonotum with subcircular piliferous punctures, bearing fine and adpressed setae which are about twice as long as diameter of punctures ( Fig. 5View FIGURE 5 B). Interspaces distinctly coriaceous ( Fig. 5View FIGURE 5 C). Pronotal carina over two-thirds of width of pronotum, progressively fading mesally. Crenulate admarginal stripe visible along hind margin. Lateral panel with transverse groove at mid height and ventral fovea; surface of panel otherwise very faintly reticulate ( Fig. 5View FIGURE 5 D). Mesonotum with dorsal outline evenly and distinctly convex ( Fig. 5View FIGURE 5 D). Interspaces on median lobe of mesoscutum about as long as half diameter of punctures. Notauli appearing as rows of larger punctures ( Fig. 5View FIGURE 5 B). Lateral lobes sparsely and superficially punctured, especially towards notauli. Mesoscutellum about as long as broad (0.98×) with moderately convex longitudinal dorsal outline, the punctures denser towards apex. Frenal carina expanded but with apical edge virtually straight mesally. Mesoscutellum punctured above lateral arm of frenal carina ( Fig. 5View FIGURE 5 D). Reflexed frenal area very finely reticulate on anterior surface of lateral arm, then crenulate posteriorly ( Fig. 5View FIGURE 5 D). Postscutellum with median areola and oblique smooth stripes laterally ( Fig. 5View FIGURE 5 E). Propodeum sloping at an angle of about 70° with main axis of mesosoma; median areola relatively broad, other areolae polygonal, with sublateral setose surface at mid length between spiracle and petiolar foramen ( Fig. 5View FIGURE 5 E). Adscrobal area of mesepisternum with one row of large punctures dorsally; femoral depression and mesepimeron smooth except for a large subalar pit and the groove formed by the transepimeral sulcus ( Fig. 5View FIGURE 5 D). Metepimeron regularly punctured over dorsal three-quarters, with large anteroventral areola and densely setose supracoxal stripe ( Fig. 5View FIGURE 5 D).

Hind leg. Metacoxa 1.7× as long as broad, with short and fine adpressed setation on ventral side, without ventral tooth or tubercle. Metafemur broad, 1.64× as long as wide, with basal inner boss, the basal tooth on ventral margin shorter than the following teeth; disc of femur alutaceous in addition to piliferous punctures ( Fig. 5View FIGURE 5 F). Metatibia distinctly emarginate on apical truncation, which forms a short spine ventrally ( Fig. 5View FIGURE 5 F). Hind tarsus not thickened, falcate setae of pretarsus thick and strongly curved ( Fig. 5View FIGURE 5 H).

Wings. Fore wing 2.86× as long as broad, marginal vein 0.43× as long as costal cell and 2.9× as long as postmarginal vein. Cubital fold and basal cell bare, basal fold with 15 setae arranged in one row. Hind wing 3.4× as long as broad; tip of venation reaching 0.56× of length of wing.

Metasoma. Metasoma 2.29× as long as broad, GT1 0.3× as long as gaster, completely smooth dorsally, with straight hind margin ( Fig. 5View FIGURE 5 I). Margins of GT2 and GT3 distinctly concave, that of GT4 hardly so; GT5 and GT6 straight on hind margin ( Fig. 5View FIGURE 5 I). GT2−GT4 bearing several imbricate rows of silvery setae that are progressively thicker and longer from base to apex of gaster; GT5 with whole surface setose ( Fig. 5View FIGURE 5 I). Syntergum somewhat elongate, more than twice as long as basal width, densely punctured laterally, bearing fine, black setae ( Fig. 5View FIGURE 5 J). Ovipositor sheaths slightly surpassing apex of gaster. Tip of hypopygium at about two-thirds of gastral length, hypopygium somewhat emarginate mesally ( Fig. 5View FIGURE 5 J).

Variation and comments (Table 3, Fig. 7View FIGURE 7 G). Most of observed variation involves the size of the paratypes TRMO T25 #1 and #2, which are distinctly smaller. This smaller size affects the dimensions of their different parts, but apparently in the same proportions, as the calculated ratios are within the range of variation of the other specimens (Table 4). The small size partly affects the number of setae on the basal fold. Some paratypes exhibit a visible unpunctured median stripe on the center of mesoscutellum. The dissection of paratype TRMO #10 showed that the metepisternum (= ventral shelf of metapleuron) is entirely black except for a brownish ridge of the petiolar foramen.

Male. The two males reared are about the same size as the two females TRMO T25. The only informative character of this sex, the special setation on the ventral side of the flagellum, was not visible because of their fairly poor condition.

Diagnosis. Mandibles almost entirely black ( Fig. 6View FIGURE 6 B). Mesotibia with incomplete black ring ( Fig. 6View FIGURE 6 K). Gena, lower face and supracoxal stripe of micropilosity on metepimeron densely setose ( Fig. 6View FIGURE 6 A, B, C, H). Head about as broad as mesosoma. Eyes separated by 0.77−0.84× their own height. Clypeus with 7−9 large piliferous punctures dorsally and 4 or 5 smaller ones below ( Fig. 6View FIGURE 6 B, C). Adtorular carina thin and incomplete, i.e. not reaching inner margin of eye ( Fig. 6View FIGURE 6 B, C). Antennal scrobes reaching base of median ocellus, smaller than eye height (0.85− 0.91×), hence their upper edge somewhat below upper ocular line. Ocellar ocular distance much shorter than median ocellus diameter ( Fig. 5View FIGURE 5 A). Clava subovoid and with a large area of micropilosity ( Fig. 6View FIGURE 6 F, G). Mesosoma 1.25−1.31× as long as broad. Edge of frenal carina straight mesally. Basal fold of fore wing with 10−15 setae arranged in one row (median 13). Metasoma 2.2−2.4× as long as wide ( Fig. 5View FIGURE 5 I). Hypopygium somewhat emarginate mesally ( Fig. 5View FIGURE 5 J).

Recognition. B. philornisae  is readily separated from B. subconica  by the antennal scrobes reaching the lower edge of the median ocellus, the much shorter ocellar ocular distance, stouter mesosoma, less densely setose basal fold, and relatively longer gaster. The last two states also distinguish it from Brachymeria  'Brassolis'. It is separated from B. subrugosa  and B. costalimai  by the denser setation on its gena, lower face and supracoxal stripe of the metepimeron, the ornamentation of the clypeus, the thin and vestigial adscrobal carina, and incomplete black ring on the mesotibia. It is also distinguished from the former species by the antennal scrobes being shorter than eye height. It differs from B. costalimai  by the reduced orange parts on the ventral side of the mesosoma, especially the upper half of epicnemium.

The ratios from the LDA extractor (Tab. 4) are also useful. The ratios of head breath: head height and head breath: frontovertex breath readily separate it from B. subrugosa  while the ratio metasoma length: mesosoma length in combination with head breath: head height distinguish it from B. costalimai  (Tab. 4 and Fig. 4).

Distribution. Tobago.

Hosts. Seven T. bicolor  nests and twelve M. gilvus  nests collected contained P. trinitensis  parasites (Knutie et al. in press). One out of seven (14%) T. bicolor  nests and four out of twelve (33%) M. gilvus  nests had B. philornisae  emerging from P. trinitensis  pupae.


Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History