Eretmocera artemisiae Li,

Lou, Kang, Yu, Dian, You, Wanxue & Li, Houhun, 2019, Taxonomic study of the genus Eretmocera Zeller, 1852 (Lepidoptera: Scythrididae) from China, with descriptions of three new species, Zootaxa 4624 (2), pp. 205-218: 212-215

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Eretmocera artemisiae Li

sp. nov.

Eretmocera artemisiae Li  , sp. nov.

( Figs 4View FIGURES 2−5 a–c, 7, 13–22)

Type materials. Holotype ♂: CHINA, Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region: Xijingtan (37.87°N, 107.57°E), 1343 m, Yanchi County, 26.v.2017, leg. Kang Lou, net, slide No. LK 17201.GoogleMaps 

Paratypes (80 ♂, 29 ♀): CHINA, Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region  , Yanchi County: 32 ♂, 17 ♀  , 26.v– 23.viii.2017, other data same as holotype, slide Nos. LK 17058GoogleMaps  ♂, LK17059 ♀, LK17063 ♀, LK17064 ♀, LK17068 ♀, LK17069 ♀, LK17205 ♀, LK17206 ♀; 1 ♂, Liuyangpu , 1320 m,, leg. Houhun Li et al  .; 1 ♂, 1 ♀, Liuyan- gpu, 1320 m, 20.viii.2014, leg. Meiqing Yang & Peixin Cong, net, slide Nos. LK16066 ♂, LK16088 ♀; 7 ♂, 2 ♀, Sandaochuan , 1311 m,–26.vii.2017, leg. Kang Lou, net, slide Nos. LK 17094  ♂, LK17094W; 5 ♂, 1 ♀, Huangjijuan , 1374 m, 14–, leg. Houhun Li et al., net, slide Nos. LK 16050  ♂, LK16052 ♂, LK16053 ♀, LK16054 ♂, LK16055 ♂; 11 ♂, 1 ♀, Tongjijuan , 1332 m, 29.v.2017 – 29.viii.2018, leg. Kang Lou, net, slide No. LK 17070  ♂; 1 ♂, Erdaohu , 1397 m, 26.viii.2014, leg. Meiqing Yang and Peixin Cong, net  ; 5 ♂, 1 ♀, Zhouzhuan- gzi, 1452 m, 4.viii.2016 –, leg. Kang Lou, net; 10 ♂, 2 ♀, Qingyangjing , 1469 m, 19.v.2017 – 12.ix.2018, leg. Kang Lou, net, slide Nos. LK 17071  ♂, LK17103 ♀; 2 ♂, 3 ♀, Dongdui , 1530 m, 26.viii.2018, leg. Kang Lou  ; Tianjin: 1 ♂, Shuyansuo [Tianjin Vegetable Research Institute], 15 m, 13.vii.1959  ; 5 ♂, Qingguang Farm , 10 m,–10.vii.1965, slide Nos. ZJ 08134  ♂, ZJ08145 ♂, ZJ08149 ♂, ZJ08248 ♂; 1 ♀, Limutai , Ji County, 500 m,, leg. Houhun Li et al., slide No. ZJ 08250  ♀.

Diagnosis. This species is similar in external appearance and genitalia to Eretmocera medinella (Staudinger, 1859)  which ranges from North Africa to Central Asia. It can be distinguished by the valva which is almost parallel on both sides, the posterior margin of tergum VIII rounded in male genitalia, and the ostium bursae small and rounded in female genitalia. In E. medinella  , the basal half of valva is widened, the posterior margin of tergum VIII is truncate or shallowly concave in male genitalia, and the ostium bursae is rectangular in female genitalia ( Bengtsson 1997).

Description. Adult ( Figs 4View FIGURES 2−5 a–c) wingspan 9.5−11.5 mm. Head dark brown, with pale purplish blue sheen, smoothly scaled; neck with white hair-like scales extending from each lateral side to base of basal segment of labial palpus. Labial palpus with basal segment shining white; second and third segments white on dorsal surface, black on ventral surface except second segment white at base; third segment approximately 3/4 length of second, acute at apex. Antenna shining black, 3/5 length of forewing, shortly ciliate in male ventrally; flagellum with basal half thickened by moderately raised scales on posterior margin. Haustellum covered with white scales basally. Collar, thorax, and tegula blackish brown, with copper-coloured shine; metathorax ochreous yellow tinged with a few blackish brown scales. Forewing narrowly elongate, lanceolate, basal 2/3 uniformly wide, distal 1/3 narrowed to narrowly rounded apex; blackish brown, with greyish copper-coloured and bluish shine; with four indistinct or greyish yellow spots, inconspicuous or diffuse in male ( Fig. 4aView FIGURES 2−5), conspicuous in female ( Figs 4View FIGURES 2−5 b–c): costal margin with a spot at distal 1/4 or 1/5, cell with a spot at basal 2/5, sometimes crossing fold posteriorly, dorsum with a spot at basal 1/3 and beyond end of fold respectively; cilia greyish brown tinged with orange yellow around apex. Hindwing and cilia dark brown, cilia tinged with yellow basally. Legs blackish brown except fore- and mid femora and tibiae creamy white on dorsal surface. Abdomen: dorsal surface blackish brown with copper and purplish metallic hue except ochreous yellow from fourth to seventh segment in male, from fourth to sixth segment in female; ventral surface yellow tinged with brown.

Male genitalia ( Fig. 13View FIGURES 13−15): Uncus strongly sclerotized, slightly shorter than tegumen; basal 3/5 fused, subrectangular, slightly narrower at base; distal 2/5 bilobed, each lobe slender and straight, digitate, slightly narrowed to rounded apex. Gnathos with basal arm broad-banded, H-shaped, longer than uncus, serrate along lateral margin of distal 1/3; distal process weakly sclerotized, as wide as basal arm, abruptly narrowed and beak-like from before apex to pointed tip, curved ventrad before apex. Tegumen widened anteriorly, roundly concave at middle on anterior margin. Valva slender, rounded apically, sparsely setose basally, densely setose distally, approximately 1.5 times length of tegumen. Vinculum very narrow, Y-shaped, both lateral arms almost as long as saccus. Saccus narrow triangular, nearly as long as uncus. Phallus approximately 5/8 length of valva, slender, slightly S-shaped.

Segment VIII ( Fig. 14View FIGURES 13−15). Tergum short, broad tongue-shaped, rounded on posterior margin, anterior margin with deep semicircular concavity, forming two slender lateral lobes more than half-length of sternum. Sternum with anterior half slightly wider, posterior half slightly narrowed, with fine spines on posterior 3/4; posterior margin concave at middle, forming two sub-triangular lobes with rounded apex; anterior margin deeply concaved in broad V-shape.

Female genitalia ( Fig. 15View FIGURES 13−15). Papillae anales sub-quadrate, sparsely setose. Apophyses posteriores approximately 1.5 times length of apophyses anteriores. Sterigma being a pair of thumb-like lobes, rounded at apex. Ostium bursae small and rounded. Antrum thin and short. Ductus bursae slender, shorter than corpus bursae. Corpus bursae large, elliptical.

Distribution. China (Ningxia, Tianjin).

Biology. This species mainly occurs in arid and semi-arid desert ( Fig. 16View FIGURES 16−22), mountains ( Fig. 17View FIGURES 16−22) and lowland environments ( Fig. 18View FIGURES 16−22). Adults were collected from mid-May to mid-August at altitudes from 10 m to 1530 m. The host plant is unknown, but its biology may be closely related to Artemisia  plants. Most of the collected specimens rested on Artemisia ordosica Krasch.  ( Fig. 20View FIGURES 16−22). Adults are flower visitors, as seen on flowers of Heteropappus altaicus (Willd.)  ( Fig. 19View FIGURES 16−22), Tamarix austromongolica Nakai  ( Fig. 21View FIGURES 16−22) and Astragalus melilotoides Pall.  ( Fig. 22View FIGURES 16−22).

Etymology. The specific epithet is derived from the plant genus Artemisia  , on which many adults were collected.

Remarks. The Chinese specimens of this species were once considered Eretmocera medinella (Staudinger, 1859)  ( Bengtsson 1997; Lou et al. 2018), but careful study showed them to be a distinct species, here described.