Udea sideralis, 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: 395-397

publication ID

http://doi.org/ 10.5281/zenodo.155309

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scientific name

Udea sideralis

sp. n.

Udea sideralis  sp. n.

Figs 71, 72View Figs 65 - 72, 91View Figs 81 - 91, 135View Figs 134 - 135, 181View Figs 178 - 183

Material examined

Holotype: ♂, ‘ ECU

[ADOR]., GALAPAGOS | Santiago, Central [camp] | 700 m elev[ation]., 9.iv.1992 | M[ercury] V[apour]L[ight], leg [it]. B. Landry’; ‘[slide] MHNG | ENTO | 00009024 ’; ‘genitalia slide | BL 1230 ♂ ’ (upside down); ‘HOLOTYPE | Udea  | sideralis  | B. Landry’. Deposited in MHNG.


Paratypes: 3 ♂, 15 ♀ from the Galápagos Islands, Ecuador. – Isabela: 1 ♀, NE slope Alcedo, ca. 400 m up (S) Los Guayabillos camp, GPS: elev[ation]. 892 m, S 00° 25.208’, W 91° 04.765’, 1.iv.2004, u[ltra]v[iolet]l[ight] (B. Landry, P. Schmitz); 1 ♀, V[olcan]. Alcedo, 700 m [e] t[er]s elev., Lado Este, 6.iv.1999, UVL-F[lood].L[ight]. (L. Roque); 1 ♀, Alcedo, lado NE, 700 m, camp guayabillos, uvl, 16.iv.2002 (B. Landry, L. Roque); 1 ♀ (dissected, slide MHNG-ENTO-8965), ± 15 km N P[uer] to Villamil, 25.v.1992, MVL (B. Landry); 1 ♂ (dissected, B.M. Pyralidae  Genitalia slide. 21193), Sierra Negra, Corazon Verde, 23-27.vi.1974 (T.J. de Vries, B.M. 1976- 58); 2 ♀, same data except date, xi-xii.1974. – Santa Cruz: 1 ♀, Los Gemelos, 31.i.1989, M[ercury]V[apour]L[ight] (B. Landry); 1 ♀, Media Luna, pampa zone, 8.ii.1989, MVL (B. Landry); 1 ♀, Horneman Farm, 200 m, 7.v.1964 (D. Q. Cavagnaro); 1 ♂, vic[inity]. “Mirador” (W of Media Luna), Alt. ± 620 m, 26.v.1970 (R. Silberglied). – Santiago: 1 ♂, 4 ♀, N side, GPS: 527 m elev., S 00° 13.690’, W 9090° 44.135’, 5.iii.2005, uvl (P. Schmitz); 1 ♀, close to Caseta, NE side, GPS: 686 m elev., S 00° 14.177’, W 090° 44.619’, 6.iii.2005, uvl (P. Schmitz); 1 ♀ (dissected, slide MHNG-ENTO-8710), same data as holotype. Deposited in BMNH, CAS, CDRS, MCZ, and MHNG.

Other specimens: 3 ♀, one with label ‘147’, relating to the following notes in CDRS notebook: ‘Sta Cruz, CDRS, Jan. onwards ’69; caseta, Feb. ’70; Isabela, St Tomas, Jan. ’71; Food: Ipomoea’.

Diagnosis: The combination of spots and postmedian line on the forewing ( Figs 71, 72View Figs 65 - 72), reminiscent of that of a Scopariinae, is unique among Udea  species examined and other species of Spilomelinae in the Galápagos.

Etymology: The specific name is from the Latin and refers to the spotted aspect of the forewings, which is evocative of a starry sky.

Description: Male (n=4) ( Fig. 71View Figs 65 - 72). Head: frons flat with vestiture mostly white, with few blackish brown and pale greyish brown scales, white scales from ventrolateral corners directed medially, eyes large, forming 70% of width of head measured below antennae, thin scales behind eye blackish brown, with short, blackish brown scales at base of antennae medially, with long, narrow, mostly white occipital scales directed dorsally, mixed with few greyish brown tipped scales, with mostly pure white vertex scales projecting anterodorsally between antennae; antenna slightly serrate, ciliation half as long as width of flagellomeres, dorsal vestiture with basal scales white and middle scales greyish brown, darker and thus more contrasting toward base of flagellum, distal 1/3 of flagellum also with erect greyish brown ventral scales; maxillary palpus small, projecting dorsally barely above pilifer, blackish brown scaled; labial palpus of medium length, projecting anterodorsally at half right angle, with reclining apical segment, reaching just above top of head and anteriorly beyond frons to distance almost as long as diameter of eye, vestiture of basal segment mostly greyish brown with white apically, with rather sparse scaling of medium length projecting ventrally and anteriorly, second palpomere with white basal scales ventrally slightly projecting anteriorly, otherwise pale greyish brown, third palpomere with short, thin appressed scales mostly pale greyish brown, white apically; haustellum mostly white with pale greyish brown scales paler at their bases. Thorax dorsally mostly white with pale greyish brown to blackish brown tipped scales at base of tegulae, as patches laterally on mesoscutum, as patches laterally or as band across median section of metascutellum, and at apex of tegulae and adjacent metascutum, the latter scales narrow and curving upward. Foreleg coxa light greyish brown with few scattered darker brown scales and larger apical white scales; femur blackish brown at base, then white, blackish brown medially, greyish brown in distal half with scattered white scales and white ventral edge; tibia dark greyish brown with white postbasally, thin scales covering epiphysis light grey; tarsomeres white with dark greyish brown patches on distal half on first and at apex and decreasing in size and intensity on second to fourth. Midleg femur white with greyish brown subbasally, medially (darkest patch), and apically; tibia dark greyish brown with white postbasally and subapically, spurs white with light greyish brown dorsally; tarsomeres as on foreleg. Hindleg femur white with light greyish brown, slightly darker medially; tibia white with scattered light greyish brown and dark greyish brown patches at bases of spurs, that of median spurs smaller, spurs white; tarsomeres white with patches of dark greyish brown decreasing in size and intensity on first to third. Forewing length: 6.0- 7.0 mm (holotype: 7.0 mm) (wingspan: 12.5-15.0 mm). Wing vestiture as shown, with markings greyish brown, blackish brown, and sometimes grey with slight green tinge, with some scales raised, with blackish brown scaling between markings sometimes more prevalent. Abdomen with tympanal organs much reduced, without tympanic drums (bullae tympani); vestiture dorsally greyish brown with white as broad band laterally and apically on tergite I, as broad apical band on tergite II, and as thin marginal band apically on tergites III-VII, ultimate scales over genitalia dirty white, preceded by blackish brown; laterally with small apical blackish brown spot on segments IV-VI; ventrally white, with greyish brown underneath genitalia. Segment VIII with sclerotization pattern as shown ( Fig. 91View Figs 81 - 91).

Male genitalia (n=2) ( Fig. 135View Figs 134 - 135). Uncus short, with quadrangular base, slightly wider than long, second section (‘neck’) poorly sclerotized, indistinct, distal section (‘head’) longest, about as long as first two sections, spiny. Subscaphium of medium width, shaped like mirror image of ‘J’ in side view, with narrow base gently enlarging to about 4X basal width near middle and then parallel-margined, reaching shortly before apex of uncus. Tegumen medium sized, narrowing to half basal width, with median ridge from base to apex, with strongly sclerotized lateral and basal margins, the latter more widely sclerotized and medially concave, bare along basal margin and medially to mid-length. Pseudognathos lightly sclerotized, forming narrow elongate triangles ending at base of subscaphium. Transtilla with fat lateral arms triangular, slightly upcurved, not medially connected. Valva narrow, narrowing from base to 1/3 basal width at rounded apex, with dorsal margin more thickly sclerotized until before slightly upturned apex, medially with more thickly sclerotized band from below transtilla to ventral margin at 4/5 of length set toward base with thin fibula at right angle reaching ventral margin, recurved and without setae, sclerotized median band at 2/3 also with series of stiff, medioanteriorly curving setae, ventral margin set with extra-long setae on basal half. Juxta elongate, quadrangular, with broadly convex basal margin. Vinculum very narrow, only slightly enlarging toward dorsum; saccus a narrowly rounded bulge directed at right angle dorsally. Phallus straight, less than 2/3 length of valva, without distinct coecum penis, basal half sclerotized only ventrally, then forming complete tube; vesica with one ridged, straight and pointed cornutus about 1/3 length of phallus shaft.

Female (n=18) ( Fig. 70View Figs 65 - 72): Antenna filiform with ciliation about 1/3 width of flagellomeres. Forewing length: 6.5- 8.5 mm (wingspan: 14.0-19.0 mm). Abdomen dorsally sometimes with blackish brown medially within paler greyish brown base on tergites I and III-V.

Female genitalia (n=2) ( Fig. 181View Figs 178 - 183). Papillae anales short, about 5X wider than long, gently narrowing ventrally; sclerotized basal margin narrow, longer ventrad of base of apophyses and reaching ventral margin; posterior apophyses strong, slightly longer than width of papillae anales, with distinct enlargement ventrally at 1/4. Segment VIII short, with tergum narrowing by 1/3 to base of apophyses, then widening ventrally, with setae of medium length along apical margin mediodorsally and at apicoventral angles; sternal plate covering width of segment, more thickly sclerotized medially at base, dorsad of ostium bursae, with single unsclerotized spot (setal socket?, glandular pore?) medially and subbasally; anterior apophyses about 10% longer than posterior apophyses, strong, with distinct dorsal enlargement at 1/4. Ductus bursae long and of medium girth, with colliculum short, about 5% whole length of ductus bursae, following constriction sporting inception of ductus seminalis, rest of ductus bursae lightly spinulose. Corpus bursae circular and short, about 1/3 length of ductus bursae, lightly spinulose.

Biology: note associated with a specimen labelled ‘147’ in the CDRS mentions that the caterpillar feeds on Ipomoea  ( Convolvulaceae  ), a genus with 14 species, including endemics, on the Galápagos (Jaramillo Díaz & Guézou, 2015). Moths have been collected from January until June in habitats generally above 220 m in elevation, up to about 1000 m, although the CDRS specimen labelled ‘147’ mentioned above refers to specimens having been collected on the grounds of the CDRS, which are located in the littoral and arid zones, not much above 20 m in elevation.

Distribution: This is a Galápagos endemic so far found on Isabela, Santa Cruz, and Santiago.

Remarks: The reduction of the tympanal organs is an uncommon feature among Pyraloidea in general.


Switzerland, Geneva, Museum d'Histoire Naturelle


Edith Cowan University


Museum d'Histoire Naturelle


California Academy of Sciences


Invertebrate Collection


Museum of Comparative Zoology