Alepia aculeocauda Durán-Luz, Ibáñez-Bernal & Sandoval-Ruiz

Durán-Luz, Juana, Ibáñez-Bernal, Sergio & Sandoval-Ruiz, César Antonio, 2018, First record of Alepia Enderlein (Diptera, Psychodidae) in Mexico, with the description of two new species, Zootaxa 4497 (4), pp. 547-558: 548-551

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Alepia aculeocauda Durán-Luz, Ibáñez-Bernal & Sandoval-Ruiz

sp. nov.

Alepia aculeocauda Durán-Luz, Ibáñez-Bernal & Sandoval-Ruiz  , sp. nov.

( Figs. 1–14View FIGURES 1–5View FIGURES 6–8View FIGURES 9–14)

Diagnosis. Eyes separated by 1.5 facet diameters; gonostyli simple with curved apex outward directed in dorsoventral view; surstyli pyriform, tapered toward apex, with apical retinaculum and a group of 18–20 accessory retinacula confined over a basal dark patch; distiphallus with the form of a scorpion tail in lateral view.

Male description. ( Figs. 1–8View FIGURES 1–5View FIGURES 6–8). Head wider than long; eye bridge with three rows of facets, getting narrow toward midline; eyes separated by 1.5 facet diameters; interocular suture as an inverted “Y”; frontal patch of alveoli with the dorsal margin straight and the ventral margin bilobed; proportion of palpal segments: 1.0: 1.93: 2.12: 2.25; palpus reaching well the level of the median portion of flagellomere 6 ( Fig. 1 View Figure ). Labium with inverted “Y” sclerite, and internally with 8–10 small spiniform setae near middle and two long spiniform setae at level of labrum; labella bulbous with some setae and four short spiniform setae on the internal margin ( Fig. 2 View Figure ). Antenna with scape twice the length of pedicel ( Fig. 3 View Figure ), and 14 fusiform flagellomeres, each with two belts of verticils, ascoids not differentiated; apical flagellomere with long apiculus ( Fig. 4 View Figure ).

Wing length 2.6 its width; with setae on the costal area; wing membrane with dark spots at middle of costal cell, the base of R4, R5, M, at R and M forks, and at apices of all veins, slightly infuscate across the wing from the apical dark spot of R1 and CuA1 to apex of wing, leaving rounded hyaline spots between the apex of veins ( Fig. 5 View Figure ).

Abdomen without patches of specialized setae or squamae. Terminalia: Gonocoxites with an apical group of setae which are slightly shorter than gonocoxites, anterior condyles plate-like, nearly quadrangular, and fused at midline. Gonostyli simple, turned outwards in the apical third, and with the apex hook-like, 1.5 times the length of gonocoxites ( Fig. 6 View Figure ). Distiphallus large, in dorso-ventral view expanded at apex from which an acute point develops; in lateral view, it seems like a scorpion sting; aedeagal sheath membranous, more or less globular in apical third and covering the distiphallus to level of the middle portion of the distiphallus vesicle; a laminar membranous tunica with microtrichia covers ventrally the distiphallus from base to the beginning of the vesicle, with the posterior margin straight, so in dorso-ventral view it seems bell-like; basiphallus with oval transparent bulging, anteriorly expanded ( Fig. 6, 7 View Figure ). Epandrium wider than long, without setae alveoli on the external surface, laterally rounded, with an anterior sclerotized strap, one large foramen near base, from which internally two laminar struts diverge toward the base of surstyli. Sternum X pyramidal with round apex. Tergum X wide with apical margin irregular but nearly straight. Surstyli longer than epandrium, pyriform, with the apical fourth thin, a clavate retinaculum at apex, and a prebasal dark cluster of about 18–20 very long and capitate accessory retinacula ( Fig. 8 View Figure ).

Measurements. Head width: 0.598 (0.56–0.64) n=13; head length: 0.503 (0.47–0.53) n=13; length from vertex to dorsal margin of eye: 0.142 (0.12–0.15) n=13; labrum length: 0.134 (0.12–0.15) n=13; proboscis length: 0.153 (0.13–0.17) n=13; palpus length: 0.672 (0.61–0.74) n=13; antenna length: 1.758 (1.68–1.88) n=4; wing length: 2.0 (1.83–2.25) n=13; wing width: 0.768 (0.70–0.88) n=13; length of R2+3: 0.055 (0.04–0.09) n=13; length of R2: 0.805 (0.70–0.91) n=13; length of M1+2: 0.488 (0.46–0.58) n=13, length of M2: 0.988 (0.90–1.23) n=13; epandrium width: 0.238 (0.21–0.25) n=8; epandrium length at midline: 0.13 (0.12–0.14) n=8; epandrium maximum length: 0.246 (0.24–0.25) n=8; surstylus length: 0.225 (0.19–0.26) n=12; retinaculum length: 0.075 (0.07–0.09) n=11; gonocoxite length: 0.142 (0.11–0.16) n=13; gonostylus length: 0.204 (0.18–0.22) n=13; aedeagus length: 0.389 (0.37–0.40) n=8.

Female description. ( Figs. 9–14 View Figure ). As male, except for the following characteristics: Eyes separated by 2.5 facet diameters; proportion of palpal segments: 1.0: 1.97: 2.03: 2.23 ( Fig. 9 View Figure ); all flagellomeres with a pair of digitiform ascoids, which are somewhat shortest than the respective flagellomere ( Figs. 10, 11 View Figure ); and wing length 2.75 its width ( Fig. 12 View Figure ).

Subgenital plate long, its anterior margin shallow and with long setae which are more numerous at lateral margins, narrowed at the union with the hypogynial valves (or subgenital lobes); hypogynial valves longer than subgenital plate, laterally expanded and as wide as the base of the plate; each valve rounded and separated from one another by a rounded space; valves covered with setae which have similar size and form than those of the plate; internal surface of plate with an V-shaped sclerotization at level of the base of valves, and with a sensilla patch near the anterior margin at the same level as the genital chamber; ventral receptacle with a pair of posterior sclerotized rods near middle articulated with a pair of short transversal rods that are laterally expanded in the form of halfmoon, and with two short anterior sclerotized projections that support a quadrangular plate. Cerci short and broad, about 2.0 times the length of the subgenital plate and valves ( Figs. 13, 14 View Figure ).

Measurements. (n=3). Head width: 0.597 (0.58–0.61); head length: 0.51 (0.50–0.52); length from vertex to dorsal margin of eye: 0.167 (0.16–0.17); labrum length: 0.147 (0.14–0.15); proboscis length: 0.157 (0.15–0.16); palpus length: 0.723 (0.71–0.74); antenna length: 1.755 (1.73–1.78) n=2; wing length: 2.32 (2.28–2.35); wing width: 0.843 (0.80–0.88); length of R2+3: 0.083 (0.07–0.09); length of R2: 0.93 (0.92–0.95); length of M1+2: 0.587 (0.92–0.95); length of M2: 1.083 (1.02–1.15); basal width of subgenital plate: 0.16; total length of subgenital plate: 0.183 (0.18–0.19); hypogynial valves length: 0.133 (0.13–0.14); cerci length: 0.343 (0.34–0.35).

Material examined. Holotype ♂: Mexico, Puebla, Jolalpan, Rancho El Salado (18°20'08.5" N, 98°57'27.1" W, altitude: 930 m), CDCAbout CDC light trap, J. Durán-Luz, col. 14–ii–2015, 1 #mGoogleMaps  . Paratypes 12 ♂, 3 ♀: same data as holotype, except: 15–x–2014, 1 ♂; 13–ii–2015, 1 ♂, 1 ♀; 01–v–2015, 1 ♂; 12–ii–2017, 1 ♂; 13–ii–2017, 2 ♂; 01–v–2017, 3 ♂; 27–xiii–2017, 1 ♂, 1 ♀; 29–xiii–2017, 1 ♂. Malaise trap: 4–6–ii–2016, 1 ♂, 1 ♀.GoogleMaps 

Etymology. From Latin, aculeum = sting, and cauda = tail, referring to the form of a scorpion sting that has the distiphallus in lateral view.

Type locality. Mexico, Puebla, Jolalpan, Rancho El Salado. 

Comments. Alepia aculeocauda  is similar to Alepia bifida Tkoč, Ježek & Le Pont 2017  , by the structure of the male terminalia, mainly of the aedeagus. Alepia bifida  can be separated in the male by the presence of ascoids, accessory retinacula umbellate, bifurcate apical projection of distiphallus, and gonostylus apex hook-like. Also, A. aculeocauda  can be confused with Alepia apachis Quate, 1999  , but this species has a short scape, the surstylus has 6–8 accessory retinacula and does not have an apical retinaculum, the basiphallus end anteriorly in a point, and the distiphallus is not widen like a scorpion tail vesicle nor having a sting like protuberance. With Alepia ancylis Quate & Brown, 2004  , it shares the shape of the surtyli with an apical tenaculum, but A. ancylis  has a preapical group of spatulate specialized setae, the gonostyli has a group of four sensilla near the base, and its apex is wider as compared with its base, whereas the female has the hypogynial valves narrowest with the external margins straight, and the sclerotization of the genital chamber is T-shaped.

Alepia aculeocauda  belongs to the no-named group of species mentioned by Quate & Brown (2004) characterized by a compact group of accessory retinacula originated on a dark area of surtyli, having the eye bridge ending in a small number of facet rows.


Changdu Institute for Drug Control