Sychraella Gustafsson & Bush

Bush, Sarah E., 2017, Morphological revision of the hyperdiverse Brueelia - complex (Insecta: Phthiraptera: Ischnocera: Philopteridae) with new taxa, checklists and generic key, Zootaxa 4313 (1), pp. 1-443: 74-75

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Sychraella Gustafsson & Bush

new genus

Sychraella Gustafsson & Bush  , new genus

Type species. Sychraella sinsutura  new species

Diagnosis. Sychraella  n. gen. ( Figs 106–107View FIGURES 106 – 107) is most similar to some Mirandofures  n. gen. ( Figs 98–99View FIGURES 98 – 99). Both genera have rows of tps  on male tergopleurites V –VIII (also on male tergopleurite IV in Sychraella  and some Mirandofures  ; Table 2), sexually dimorphic antennae, and lack pns but both genera have s3; together, these characters separate these genera from most Brueelia  s. str. ( Fig. 44View FIGURES 44 – 48). Mirandofures  ( Fig. 92View FIGURES 92 – 97) and Sychraella  ( Fig. 108View FIGURES 108 – 113) are also similar in that both genera lack pos, pst1 is situated distal to pst2 ( Figs 96View FIGURES 92 – 97, 104View FIGURES 100 – 105, 112View FIGURES 108 – 113), the parameres may have a distinct heel distal to mesosome ( Figs 104View FIGURES 100 – 105, 112View FIGURES 108 – 113), vos do not approach the vulval margin, and females lack all dorsal abdominal setae except the trichoid seta of segment VIII and the setae of segment IX+X.

Several characters separate Sychraella  from Mirandofures  : cross-piece in absent in Mirandofures  ( Figs 97View FIGURES 92 – 97, 105View FIGURES 100 – 105), whereas in Sychraella  ( Fig. 113View FIGURES 108 – 113) there is a detached laterally submarginal cross-piece; aps  or psps are present in Sychraella  ( Figs 106–107View FIGURES 106 – 107) but absent in Mirandofures  ( Figs 90–91View FIGURES 90 – 91); Mirandofures  ( Fig. 92View FIGURES 92 – 97) has a transversally continuous dorsal preantennal suture, but there is no preantennal suture in Sychraella  ( Fig. 108View FIGURES 108 – 113); marginal carinal plate present at osculum in Mirandofures  ( Fig. 92View FIGURES 92 – 97), but not in Sychraella  ( Fig. 108View FIGURES 108 – 113); mesosomal lobes are separate distally in Mirandofures  ( Figs 95View FIGURES 92 – 97, 103View FIGURES 100 – 105), but fused in Sychraella  ( Fig. 111View FIGURES 108 – 113); fI-p2 absent in Mirandofures  , but present in Sychraella  .

Description. Both sexes. Head flat-dome shaped ( Fig. 108View FIGURES 108 – 113). Marginal carina uninterrupted; displaced posteriorly and dorsally at osculum. Ventral carinae clearly continuous with marginal carina anteriorly. Dorsal preantennal suture, dorsal anterior plate, and ventral anterior plate absent. Head setae as in Fig. 108View FIGURES 108 – 113; as3, pns, and pos absent. Coni long but slender. Antennae sexually dimorphic; male scapes and pedicel ( Fig. 108View FIGURES 108 – 113) longer and thicker than in female ( Fig. 109View FIGURES 108 – 113). Temporal carinae not visible; mts  3 only macrosetae. Gular plate rhomboid.

Prothorax rectangular ( Figs 106–107View FIGURES 106 – 107); ppss on postero-lateral corner. Proepimera slender, median ends hookshaped. Pterothorax trapezoidal; lateral margins slightly divergent; posterior margin flat or barely convergent to median point; mss widely separated medianly, and further separated into distinct groups (most conspicuous in female). Meso- and metasterna not fused, the latter very large; 1 seta on posterior margin on each side of each plate. Coxae II and III widely separated by wide metepisterna with broad, blunt median ends; metepisterna often diffuse and hard to see. Leg chaetotaxy as in Fig. 25View FIGURES 25, except fI-d1, fI-v4, fII-v2, fIII-v2 absent; cI-v1 thorn-like, very stout; fI-v3–4 microsetae. Only one cI-a present. Only genus treated here in which fI-p2 is present.

Abdomen oval in male, more elongated in female ( Figs 106–107View FIGURES 106 – 107). Abdominal chaetotaxy as in Table 2. Female entirely lack dorsal abdominal setae, apart from trichoid setae on segment VIII. Tergopleurites rectangular in female, rounded triangular in male; tergopleurites II –IX+X in male and tergopleurites II –VIII in female narrowly divided medianly. Sternal plates broad, lateral margins concave, pigmentation more intense in anterior and posterior thirds than in middle section of each sternal plate; sternal plates do not approach pleurites. Pleural incrassations slender. Re-entrant heads large, translucent. Male subgenital plate broad, irregularly shaped, reaching distal end of abdomen. Female subgenital plate pentagonal, lateral margins concave, posterior extension rounded triangular, not approaching vulval margin. Detached cross-piece present, continuous with vulval margin medianly but lateral sections submarginal. Vulval margin with distinct median bulge ( Fig. 113View FIGURES 108 – 113); slender vms, thorn-like vss; vos nn two parallel rows of slender setae on each side of subgenital plate; set not approaching vulval margin.

Basal apodeme broad, rectangular ( Fig. 110View FIGURES 108 – 113). Proximal mesosome slender, with concave lateral margins. Gonopore large, dominating mesosome; open distally; anterior end with lateral extensions. Mesosomal lobes fused medianly, forming crescent distal to gonopore ( Fig. 111View FIGURES 108 – 113); 1 ames present antero-lateral to gonopore on each side. 1 pmes present just lateral to gonopore on each side; 2 additional pmes present as microsetae near antero-lateral margins of each primary mesosomal lobe. Parameral heads ( Fig. 112View FIGURES 108 – 113) bluntly bifid. Parameral blades strongly curved around mesosome; distinct heel present; blades elongated distally; pst1 sensilla, distal to pst2 near distal ends of parameres; pst2 microseta, lateral, near distal tip.

Host distribution. Presently known only from two subspecies of Pomatostomus isidorei  . 

Geographical range. Presently known only from New Guinea, but the host family extends to Australia.

Etymology. Sychraella  is named in honour of phthirapterist Oldrich Sychra (University of Veterinary and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Brno, Czech Republic), in recognition of his many contributions to louse taxonomy, and for his long friendship with the authors. Gender: feminine

Remarks. The host Pomatostomus temporalis strepitans (Mayr & Rand, 1935)  , congeneric to the only known host of Sychraella  , is parasitised by a very dissimilar species in the Brueelia  -complex, which we here place in its own genus, Anarchonirmus  n. gen. (see below). The morphological differences among lice from these hosts echo recent hypotheses that the hosts are not close relatives. Indeed, recent authors have placed P. isidorei  in the monotypic genus Garritornis Iredale, 1956  ( Cibois 2003; Geland et al. 2008). In the future, molecular studies of these lice may help elucidate the evolutionary history of their hosts.

Included species

* Sychraella sinsutura  new species