Meomyia penicillata ( Macquart, 1850 ),

Li, Xuankun & Yeates, David K., 2020, Revision of the Australian bee fly genus Meomyia Evenhuis, 1983, with description of three new species (Bombyliidae, Bombyliinae, Bombyliini), Zootaxa 4810 (2), pp. 201-243: 226-229

publication ID

publication LSID

persistent identifier

treatment provided by


scientific name

Meomyia penicillata ( Macquart, 1850 )


7. Meomyia penicillata ( Macquart, 1850) 

( Figs 15–17View FIGURE 15View FIGURE 16View FIGURE 17)

Bombylius penicillatus Macquart, 1850: 422  (118). Type locality: “Nouvelle-Hollande, côte orientale” [= eastern Australia] [H in MNHN].

penicillutus, incorrect original spelling of penicillatus  [ Macquart, 1850: 474 (170)].

Type specimens. Holotype of Bombylius penicillatus Macquart, 1850  ( MNHN ED9265View Materials). 

Other specimens examined. Australia, NSW, ♂ (16), Jervis Bay , 1 Oct 1952, SJ Paramonov  . ♀ Jervis Bay , 2 Oct 1952, SJ Paramonov  . ♂ Jervis Bay , 18 Sep 1951, SJ Paramonov  . ♂ (1) ♀ (1), Jervis Bay , 18 Sep 1949, SJ Paramonov  . ♀ Bald Rock N[ational] P[ark], 25km SE Stanthorpe, 5-10 Dec 1982, D Yeates ( QM)  . ♂ Pilliga Scrub , 9km N of Coonabarabran, 5 Dec 1976, EM Exley, T Low, on Leptospermum flavescens  ( QM)  .

Diagnosis. Posterior margin of scutum without black band. Posterior margin of scutellum and abdominal tergites 3–6 with black setae. Lateral margin of male gonocoxite strongly curved subapically; apex of epiphallus bifid, branch slender and rounded apically.

Redescription. Male. Body length 9.8–12.9 mm, wing length 9.3–11.2 mm.

Head. Head about 1.9 x wider than long, mostly black with thick pale pruinescence and covered in white hairs and scales. Eye holoptic. Frons long, 4.4 x length of ocellar tubercle, upper narrow and black; lower half triangular, 0.5 x as long as upper half, with thick pale pruinescence, and white scales. Ocellar tubercle slightly raised, blackish brown to black with sparse pale pruinescence, with long black hairs admixed with short white scales. Face with thick pale pruinescence and covered in long white hairs. Gena with thick pale pruinescence and sparse white hairs. Clypeus with thick pale pruinescence and otherwise bare. Occiput with thick pale pruinescence and long white hairs. Posterior eye margin slightly concave.Antennal scape and pedicel brown with sparse pale pruinescence, scape with long black hairs on dorsal half and long white hairs on ventral half, pedicel with short black hairs; flagellum black without pruinescence, bare. Scape 2.3 x as long as wide, and 2.3 x as long as pedicel, uniform from base to apex. Pedicel 1.2 x as long as wide. Flagellum 10.0 x as long as wide, 2.4 x as long as scape + pedicel, 3.3 x as long as scape, conical and slightly laterally compressed, one-segmented with apical stylus ( Fig. 16cView FIGURE 16). Palpus not extending beyond oral cavity, black with black and white hairs, one-segmented, without palpal pit. Mouthparts slender, 3.9 x as long as eye length, 2.2 x as long as head length, labellum large and fleshy ( Fig. 16hView FIGURE 16).

Thorax. Integumental colour of scutum mostly black with sparse grey pruinescence. Scutum covered with white to pale yellow hairs, admixed with few black hairs, hairs denser on anterior half; postalar callus with five pale yellow and black setae and admixed with dense black and white hairs. Nine brownish yellow notopleural setae present. Scutellum black with sparse grey pruinescence, pruinescence denser on the margin, covered with long white hairs, admixed with some black hairs, posterior margin with black setae, admixed with some brownish yellow setae. Pleura black with thick pale pruinescence, mostly covered in long white hairs, except anterodorsal area of anepisternum with brownish yellow setae, anepimeron, meron, laterotergite and mediotergite bare.

Legs. Legs mostly brown, except basal half of femora turning black; femora mostly covered in white scales and hairs, except fore femur admixed with black scales on anterior face; tibia mostly covered in black scales, except posterior half of fore and mid femora covered in white scales. Fore femur with one row of anterior bristles medially; mid femur with one row of anterior bristles; hind femur with one row of anteroventral bristles, and more separate bristles on apical half. Bristles and other hairs on legs brown. Fore tibia 2.0 x longer than fore basitarsus, mid tibia 2.5 x longer than mid basitarsus, hind tibia 2.2 x longer than hind basitarsus.

Wings. Wing membrane hyaline. Cell r 5 closed; cell br shorter than cell bm, crossvein r-m arising from base of cell dm; crossvein m-m as long as crossvein r-m; cell cua open ( Fig. 16dView FIGURE 16). Haltere stem and knob blackish brown.

Abdomen. Integumental colour of tergites black mostly with thick pale pruinescence. Tergite 1 with dense pale yellow hairs; tergite 2 with pale yellow hairs, except posterior margin with black hairs and seate, admixed with few brownish yellow setae; tergites 3–4 with dense white hairs; tergites 5–7 with dense black hairs, except hairs sparse medially; posterior margin of tergites 2–6 with black setae; tergite 8 with dense white hairs. Sternites black with thick pale pruinescence, sternites covered in white scales, and with pale yellow setae on posterior margin. Genitalia. Epandrium anterior margin strongly concave, posterior margin slightly concave ( Fig. 17dView FIGURE 17). Lateral margin of gonocoxite strongly curved subapically ( Figs 17View FIGURE 17 a–b); apex of epiphallus bifid, branch slender and rounded apically ( Fig. 17cView FIGURE 17).

Female. Body length 13.0– 13.1 mm, wing length 13.6–13.7 mm. Very similar to male, except frons black with thick pale pruinescence, 2.5 x as wide as ocellar tubercle, frons with short white scales admixed with brownish yellow setae ( Fig. 16kView FIGURE 16). Occiput admixed with brownish yellow setae. Seven acanthophorite spines present on each side of tergite 9+10 ( Fig. 17gView FIGURE 17).

Remarks. Roberts (1928: 417) considered Bombylius penicillatus  as a synonym of Bombylius albiceps  . We examined the type specimen in MNHN, and found it matches the diagnostic characters with a series of specimens collected from NSW. This species is redescribed and illustrated based on the specimens in ANIC.

Meomyia penicillata  can be easily distinguished from Meomyia albiceps  by male fore tibiae without outer brush on apical half.

Distribution. Australia (NSW).


Museum National d'Histoire Naturelle


Queensland Museum














Meomyia penicillata ( Macquart, 1850 )

Li, Xuankun & Yeates, David K. 2020

Bombylius penicillatus

Macquart, P. J. M. 1850: 422