Samea coffea, Bernard Landry, 2016

Bernard Landry, 2016, Taxonomic revision of the Spilomelinae (Lepidoptera, Pyralidae s. l.) of the Galápagos Islands, Ecuador, Revue suisse de Zoologie 123 (2), pp. 315-399: 373-377

publication ID 10.5281/zenodo.155309

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scientific name

Samea coffea

sp. n.

Samea coffea  sp. n.

Figs 55, 56View Figs 49 - 56, 87View Figs 81 - 91, 126View Figs 125 - 127, 172View Figs 168 - 172

Material examined

Holotype: ♀, ‘ ECUADOR [sideways on left side] | GALÁPAGOS | San Cristóbal | pampa zone | 15.II.1989, M[ercury]V[apour]L[ight] | [legit] B. Landry’; ‘HOLOTYPE | Samea  | coffea  | B. Landry’. Deposited in CNC. 

Paratypes: 6 ♂, 61 ♀ from the Galápagos Islands. – Fernandina: 1 ♀, W side, 1100’ [feet], 5.ii.1964 (D.Q. Cavagnaro); 2 ♀ (one dissected, slide MHNG- ENTO-8726), SW side, GPS: 815 m elev[ation]., S 00° 21.270’, W 91°35.341’, 11.ii.2005, u[ltra]v[iolet]l[ight] (B. Landry, P. Schmitz); 1 ♀ (dissected, slide MHNG- ENTO-8727), SW side, crater rim, GPS: 1341 m elev., S 00° 21.910’, W 91°34.034’, 12.ii.2005, uvl (B. Landry, P. Schmitz); 1 ♂ (dissected, slide MHNG-ENTO-8725), 1 ♀, idem except 13.ii.2005. – Isabela: 1 ♂, 1 ♀, Volcan Sierra Negra, Corason [sic] Verde, 360 m, L67 (R. Perry & Tj. De Vries, B.M. 1971-79); 2 ♀, 3 km N S[an]to Tómas, Agr[iculture]. Zone, 8.iii.1989, M[ercury] V[apour]L[ight] (B. Landry); 1 ♂ (dissected, slide CNC PYR 347), 1 ♀, Sierra Negra, pampa zone, 1000 m, 12.iii.1989, MVL (B. Landry); 1 ♀ (dissected, slide MHNG-ENTO-8720), NE slope Alcedo, ca. 400 m up (S) Los Guayabillos Camp, GPS: 892 m elev., S 00°25.208’, W 91°04.765’, 1.iv.2004, uvl (B. Landry, P. Schmitz); 3 ♀, V[olcan]. Darwin, 1000 m elev., 18.v.1992, MVL (B. Landry); 1 ♂, V. Darwin, 1240 m elev., 19.v.1992, MVL (B. Landry); 1 ♂ (dissected, slide MHNG-ENTO-8719), 1 ♀, ± 15 km N P[uer]to Villamil, 25.v.1992, MVL (B. Landry); 1 ♀, Albermarle, San[to] Tomas, 1200 f[ee]t. alt[itude]., 22.viii. [19]06 (F.X. Williams); 1 ♂, idem except date 1- 5.ix. [19]06. – Pinta: 1 ♀, 200 m elev., 16.iii.1992, MVL (B. Landry); 3 ♀, 400 m elev., 17.iii.1992, MVL (B. Landry); 1 ♀, idem except 18.iii.1992; 2 ♀, 421 m elev., N 00° 34.591’, W 90° 45.137’, 17.iii.2006, uvl (P. Schmitz, L. Roque); 1 ♀, ± 50 m elev., 20.iii.1992, MVL (B. Landry). – San Cristóbal: 1 ♂ (dissected, slide BL 1804), 2 ♀, 4 km SE Pto Baquarizo [sic], 12.ii.1989, MVL (B. Landry); 1 ♀, idem except 20.ii.1989; 1 ♀, 1 km S El Progreso, 14.ii.1989, MVL (B. Landry); 2 ♀, same data as holotype; 1 ♀, pampa zone, 18.ii.1989, 18.ii.1989, MVL (B. Landry); 1 ♀, base of Cerro Pelado, 22.ii.1989, MVL (B. Landry); 1 ♂ (dissected, slide MHNG-ENTO-8702), El Junco, east side, GPS: 654 m elev., S 00° 53.734’, W 89° 28.727’, 25.ii.2005, uvl (B. Landry). – Santa Cruz: 4 ♀, Media Luna, pampa zone, 21.i.1989, MVL (B. Landry); 2 ♀, Los Gemelos, 31.i.1989, MVL (B. Landry); 1 ♀, Academy Bay, Darwin Research Sta[tion]., 5.ii.1964 (R.O. Schuster); 2 ♀, Media Luna, pampa zone, 8.ii.1989, MVL (B. Landry); 1 ♀, Horneman Farm, 220 m, 15.ii.1964 (D.Q. Cavagnaro, R.O. Schuster); 3 ♀ (one dissected, slide MHNG-ENTO-8704), Los Gemelos, 4.v.2002, uvl (B. Landry, L. Roque); 1 ♀, Horneman Farm, 220 m, 7.v.1964 (D.Q. Cavagnaro); 1 ♀, vic[inity] “Mirador” (W of Media Luna), ± 620 alt., 26.v. [19]70 (R. Silberglied); 1 ♀, Los Gemelos, 27.v.1992, MVL (B. Landry); 1 ♀, [no precise locality], vi.1970, Ref.. L67 (R. Perry & Tj. De Vries, B.M. 1970-371). – Santiago: 1 ♀, San Salvador, N end, Bahia James  , 1- 2.ii. [19]67 (I.L. Wiggins); 2 ♀, NE side, close to Caseta, GPS: 686 m elev., S 00°14.177’, W 90°44.619’, 6.iii.2005, uvl (P. Schmitz); 2 ♀, Aguacate [camp], 520 m elev., 6.iv.1992, MVL (B. Landry); 2 ♀, Central [camp], 700 m elev., 9.iv.1992, MVL (B. Landry); 4 ♀, idem except 10.iv.1992. Deposited in BMNH, CAS, CDRS, CNC, MCZ, and MHNG.

Diagnosis: In habitus Samea coffea  sp. n. ( Figs 55, 56View Figs 49 - 56) is similar to Samea alophalis Hampson, 1912  , but the latter is a smaller species (LT female and largest PLT female respectively 7 and 8 mm forewing length) with dissimilar markings, especially in that the forewing markings are all white, the white postmedian markings reach the costa, they are more prominent in the cubital sector postmedially, and in the hindwing there are very clear postmedian and submedian lines. In male genitalia ( Fig. 126View Figs 125 - 127 and S. alophalis  PLT Pyralidae Brit. Mus. Slide.  21116) the differences are slight, but in S. alophalis  the sclerotized band running along the costa of the valva curves subapically, extending dorsally to the middle of the valva, the base of the fibula is not extended basally into a club, there are no setae mounted on small stubs on the edge of the sclerotized ventrobasal section of the valva near the base of the fibula, and the vesica is apparently adorned with only one, short and spiny cornutus, although there may be two, on top of each other, on the preparation, but not three as in S. coffea  sp. n. In wing markings this species is very similar to S. druchachalis Dyar, 1924  , described from Mexico. The faint olive tinge and smaller size (n= 1 ♀: 8 mm forewing length) of S. druchachalis  will help to separate the two. In the female genitalia, the ductus bursae of S. coffea  has a short, lightly sclerotized, spiculate section following the colliculum ( Fig. 172View Figs 168 - 172) while in S. druchachalis  most of the ductus bursae following the colliculum has sclerotized ridges. male of S. druchachalis  was not available for dissection and comparison.

Etymology: Refers to the similarity between the forewing colour of this species and that of roasted coffee beans.

Description: Male (n=6) ( Fig. 56View Figs 49 - 56). Head: frons flat with vestiture short scaled, appressed, mostly dark greyish brown except for dorsal white band, white scaled also along eye margin next to antennal base and ocellus, and medially on occiput as wide scales projecting anterodorsally, with narrow greyish brown scales between antennae projecting anteriorly, hiding white appressed scales below, with thin scales behind eye dark greyish brown, with thin yellowish orange and greyish brown erect scales behind antenna and laterally on occiput; antenna filiform with ciliation about 1.7X width of corresponding flagellomeres, vestiture grey, darker on basal half; maxillary palpus small, projecting anteriorly slightly beyond frons, with scales dark greyish brown on apical segment, white at base; labial palpus short, projecting anterodorsally at half right angle to level of frontoclypeal margin and anteriorly for about 1/3 eye diameter beyond frons, vestiture of palpomeres I and II shortly fan shaped, white with pale brown on basal palpomere and ventral base of second, dark greyish brown on most of second and all of third segments, latter short, hardly distinct from second palpomere, with scales short and thin. Thorax dorsally blackish brown on collar laterally and base of tegulae, paler greyish brown and yellow on most of tegulae and collar medially, dark greyish brown medially on mesoscutellum and metascutum, yellow and white laterally on metascutum, with short, thin, white scale undercoating at least on mesothorax. Foreleg coxa dark greyish brown with white or cream at base laterally and paler greyish brown apically; femur blackish brown with pale greyish brown apically; tibia dark greyish brown with white apically, sometimes with paler scales medially, with thin, long scales covering epiphysis and ventral surface of tibia dirty cream; tarsomeres greyish brown, progressively paler, with dirty cream apically on first four. Midleg femur greyish brown with paler edges on basal half, blackish brown on distal half; tibia dark greyish brown with white at apex and base at joint with femur, spurs pale greyish brown dorsally and dirty cream below; tarsomeres as on foreleg. Hindleg femur greyish brown, paler on basal half and apex; tibia greyish brown with white apex and pale, whitish cream base; tarsomeres as on midleg. Forewing length: 8.5-10.0 mm (wingspan: 17.5-21.5 mm). Wing vestiture dark brown with markings white and pale yellowish orange as shown, with variation in width of white markings not sex related. Abdomen blackish brown with white to yellowish orange apical margin of tergites and apex of scales covering genitalia; laterally with yellowish orange patch visible from above and longitudinal greyish brown to blackish brown line visible from below; ventrally mostly dirty white or pale cream with some pale greyish brown medially on distal sternites. Segment VIII with sclerotization pattern as shown ( Fig. 87View Figs 81 - 91).

Male genitalia (n=3) ( Fig. 126View Figs 125 - 127). Uncus short, wide, as long as tegumen along dorsum, narrowing to 1/3 basal width, slightly down curved, with distal 1/3 medially divided and with short, thick spines laterally, basally fused with tegumen. Subscaphium of medium sclerotization and width, about 3/8 width of uncus basally, slightly widening, reaching well beyond tip of uncus. Tegumen of medium size, bare, laterally partly fused with vinculum, with basal margin deeply concave and slightly thickened. Gnathos lightly sclerotized plates with dorsal edges thicker and medially connecting at base of subscaphium. Transtilla arms projecting dorsomedially, enlarging slightly, with dorsobasal angles connecting though not fused, and dorsoapical angles diverging. Valva elongate, about 2.5X longer than widest, median section, with dorsal margin widely convex, with thickly sclerotized support along dorsal margin subapically thinning and curving medially, with narrowly rounded apex appearing to project dorsally, medially at base with thickly sclerotized support structure abutting transtilla and prolonged by thin, curved fibula directed ventrally and medially, with narrowly-rounded apex. Juxta a short triangle of medium width and slightly rounded base apically reaching hinges of vinculum with dorsal margin of valva, apically hinging with narrow, pointed tent-like structure about as long as juxta and connecting with membrane and apex of phallus. Vinculum short and narrow laterally; saccus forming recurved rounded hood with lateral margins membranous, narrow crest along dorsal midline, and wide opening ventrally. Phallus shaft straight, laterally compressed, with dorsal margin membranous at base and then only lightly sclerotized, with thickly sclerotized narrow ventral edge, laterally only more thickly sclerotized at apex, with apical margin ventrally projecting and rounded in dorsal view; vesica with one long cornutus of 3/5 length of shaft with apex more thickly sclerotized, slightly curved and ventrally toothed, also with pair of small, toothed compact cornuti arranged side by side near apex of shaft when vesica invaginated.

Female (n=62) ( Fig. 55View Figs 49 - 56): Antenna filiform with ciliation about as long as 1/3 width of flagellomeres. Forewing length: 8.5-12.0 mm (holotype: 10 mm); wingspan: 17.5- 25.0 mm (holotype: 21.5 mm). Abdomen with white apical band of tergites sometimes reduced, concentrated medially.

Female genitalia (n=5) ( Fig. 172View Figs 168 - 172). Papillae anales narrow, medially about twice as long as dorsal or ventral ends, dorsally connected; sclerotized basal margin very narrow and half as short ventrad from apophysis; posterior apophyses very thin, about 10% longer than width of papillae anales, with slight enlargement subbasally. Segment VIII with tergum of medium size, only slightly shorter and almost connecting ventrally, with medium length setae mostly dorsally and lateroventrally; without ventral plate(s); anterior apophyses very thin, about 1/3 longer than posterior apophyses. Membrane posterad of ostium bursae laterally with elongate zones set with short scales, without sclerotized plate(s). Ductus bursae at base with colliculum well sclerotized ventrally and laterally, not at all dorsally, about 1/4th of whole length of ductus, with short rounded extension on right side beyond middle; inception of ductus seminalis ventrally just after colliculum; next section shorter than colliculum, lightly sclerotized and spiculate; rest of ductus bursae gently widening into corpus bursae, although limit between these very unclear, without modifications. Corpus bursae elongate, ovoid, about as long as ductus bursae, with signum a pair of thickly sclerotized and spiny depressions attached by narrow bridge, like pair of narrow eye glasses (without supporting branches).

Biology: Galápagos specimens are mostly from the higher elevation zones, including the pampa zone, but a few were collected in the littoral zone. Collecting months are January to June as well as August and September.

Distribution: widespread Galápagos endemic found on Fernandina, Isabela, Pinta, San Cristóbal, Santa Cruz, and Santiago.

Remarks: Samea alophalis Hampson, 1912  , was described from Mexico, Presidio and Surinam River, Geldersland ( Suriname) from five specimens. Munroe (1995: 171, note 147) designated a lectotype female in the BMNH from Geldersland, two males and one female paralectotypes in the BMNH from Presidio, and one male paralectotype from Geldersland in the USNM. The paralectotypes in the BMNH are actually two females and a male and these being from Presidio, and differing in pattern, may represent a different species, I believe. The other 40 or so other specimens associated with the lectotype series in the BMNH also appear to be different from either the lectotype or the paralectotypes. revision of this genus would be extremely useful.


Canada, Ontario, Ottawa, Canadian National Collection of Insects


Canadian National Collection of Insects, Arachnids, and Nematodes


California Academy of Sciences


Invertebrate Collection


Museum of Comparative Zoology


Museum d'Histoire Naturelle


Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History