Smicronyx (s. str.) albosquamosus Wollaston, 1854,

Haran, Julien, Schütte, André & Friedman, Ariel-Leib-Leonid, 2017, A review of Smicronyx Schoenherr (Coleoptera, Curculionidae) of Israel, with description of two new species, Zootaxa 4237 (1), pp. 17-40: 27-29

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Smicronyx (s. str.) albosquamosus Wollaston, 1854


5. Smicronyx (s. str.) albosquamosus Wollaston, 1854 

( Fig. 18View FIGURES 15 – 20)

Material examined. Har Hermon: Har Dov [ Mt Dov ], 10.vii.1987, Y. Zvik (1, SMNHTAU); Har Dov, 33o15’N 35o40’EGoogleMaps  , 300m,, L. Friedman (2, SMNHTAU); Har Hermon, 2175m, 19.vii.2009, L. Friedman (1, SMNHTAU); Har Hermon, dolinat Sol’am, 2050m, 23.vii.2015, L. Friedman (1, SMNHTAU); Har Hermon, 2000m, 5.viii.2004, L. Friedman, on Juniperus  (1, SMNHTAU); Har Hermon, Upper Cable Station   , 2000m, 23.vii.2015, L. Friedman, on Juniperus  (4, SMNHTAU); Har Hermon, 1900m, 22.v.1973, D. Furth (1, SMNHTAU); Har Hermon, 1800m, 25.x.1977, D. Furth (1, SMNHTAU), 12.v.2010, L. Friedman (1, SMNHTAU); Har Hermon, 1700m, 6.vii.1987, Y. Zvik (2, SMNHTAU), 5.viii.2005, L. Friedman (2, SMNHTAU), on Prunus  (1, SMNHTAU), 17.viii.2005, L. Friedman (1, SMNHTAU), 17.v.2009, L. Friedman (1, SMNHTAU),, L. Friedman (1, SMNHTAU); Har Hermon, 1600m, 3.vii.1987, Y. Zvik (1, SMNHTAU); Newe Ativ, 13.viii.1973, D. Furth (1, SMNHTAU); Newe Ativ,, I. Zonstein (1, SMNHTAU); Golan Heights: ‘En Qinya, 13.x.2013, L. Friedman, on Phragmites  (1, SMNHTAU); Birket Ram, 23.v.1979, D. Furth (1, SMNHTAU); Quneitra, 10kmS, 23.viii.1972, D. Furth (1, SMNHTAU); Upper Galilee: Qiryat Shemona, Rt.90XRt.99, ‘ En Brom , 150m, 23.vii.2015, L. Friedman (1, SMNHTAU); Ne’ot Mordekhay, 15.xii.1963, J. Halperin, on Populus  (1, SMNHTAU); Har Addir  , 980m, 20.v.2013, L. Friedman, on Q. boissieri  and Q. calliprinos  (1, SMNHTAU); Har Meron, 1200m, 16.x.1979, D. Furth (1, SMNHTAU); Har Meron, 900m, 33o01’N 35o24’E, 3.x.2001, A. Freidberg (1, SMNHTAU); Yarka, 16.viii.1959, J. Halperin, on Pinus halepensis  (1, SMNHTAU); Samaria: Yizhar, Salman Farsi Nature Reserve, 818 m,, L. Friedman, on Quercus calliprinos  (5, SMNHTAU, 1 specimen sequenced from this series, voucher code: 2652-HAR_24067_JHA15.16666. Deposited at Curci), 1.x.2013, L. Friedman, on Quercus calliprinos  (1, SMNHTAU); Elon More, Har Kabbir, Mizpe Kabbir, 745m,, L. Friedman, on Quercus calliprinos  (2; TAUI); Har Kabbir, Mizpe Kabbir, 745m, 13.xi.2014, on Quercus calliprinos  (1, SMNHTAU); Nahal Qana Reserve, 290m, 5kmSW Qarne Shomeron , 32o08’N 35o02’E, 9.vii.2007, A. Freidberg (1, SMNHTAU); Nahal Tirza [W. Faria], 24.iii.1973, D. Furth (1, SMNHTAU); Foothills of Judea: Hulda, vii.1940, on Olea europaea  (1, SMNHTAU); Judean Hills: Matta’, 13.v.2006, I. Shtirberg (2, SMNHTAU)GoogleMaps  ; Southern Coastal Plain: Miqwe Israel, 27.x.1988, J. Halperin (1, SMNHTAU)  ; Dead Sea Area: Qalya , 13.iv.1992, J. Halperin, on Zygophillum (1, SMNHTAU)  ; Northern Negev: HaBesor Nature Reserve, South , 2.viii.2010, wet meadow (pitfall trap), L. Friedman, C. Drees (1, SMNHTAU); Ze’elim, 15.v.1987, Y. Zvik (1, SMNHTAU), 17.iv.2005, A. Gotlieb (1, SMNHTAU); ‘Aro’er, 3.v.2003, W. Kuslitzky (1, SMNHTAU)  ; Central Negev: Mishor Yamin , 13.iii.1990, J. Halperin, ex Calligonum comosum  , 9.vii.1990 (1, SMNHTAU); Mezad Tamar (Ma’ale Tamar),, L. Friedman, on Retama raetam  (1, SMNHTAU); Mezad Tamar, 20.vii.2015, L. Friedman, on Polygonum  (1, SMNHTAU); Nahal Zin, Rt. 40, near ‘Avedat, 29.v.2002, A. Freidberg (1, SMNHTAU), L. Friedman (1, SMNHTAU); Sede Boqer, 29.v.2002, A. Freidberg (5, SMNHTAU), L. Friedman (17, SMNHTAU); Har Horesha, Rt 171, 30°30 N 34°36 E  , 935 m,, L. Friedman (3, SMNHTAU), N.

Dorchin (1, SMNHTAU), on Achillea fragrantissima  , Arthemisa herba-alba  , Centaurea damascenea  ; Arava Valley: Hazeva,, V. Kravchenko (3, SMNHTAU)  . Israel (exact loc.?) 1900–1915, p. E. Schmitz (1, SMNHTAU); Palaestina  , Reitter (1, SMNHTAU). 

Biology. No precise potential host plant could be identified from the labels. This species was found on various Asteraceae  and also on Quercus  sp., which are probably used by adults for feeding activity or as a shelter. Months of collection: March –December.

Distribution. This species is widely distributed throughout the Mediterranean basin and throughout Israel. It is here reported for the first time for Israel.

Discussion. The general appearance of this species is close to S. jungermanniae  in both external and internal morphology. In addition to the characters presented in the identification key, S. albosquamosus  is wider than S. jungermanniae  . The median lobe of the male genitalia is similar in conformation but slightly larger in S. albosquamosus  (0.2–0.3 mm for S. jungermanniae  versus 0.3–0.4 mm for S. albosquamosus (Péricart 1957))  . The identification is difficult in some specimens, in particular regarding the length of the claws as well as intermediate phenotypes that are found. However, the genetic distances clearly show that these species are distinct from one another (11.4–12.2 % of divergence). Both species are often sympatric and no differences in biology and phenology were observed in the course of this study.

6. Smicronyx (s. str.) jordanicus Haran  sp. nov. ( Fig. 2View FIGURES 1 – 3, 5View FIGURES 4 – 5, 7View FIGURES 6 – 10, 11, 12View FIGURES 11 – 14, 20View FIGURES 15 – 20)

Description. 1.9–2.2 mm, close to S. jungermanniae  , integument of body black and shiny, covered with elongate pale yellow scales, oval, twice as long as wide. Rostrum black, longer than pronotum and strongly arched at base in both sexes ( Fig. 11–12View FIGURES 11 – 14); scales on dorsal surface oriented backward, not concealing integument, grouped at base of rostrum (♀) or reaching antennal insertion and forming four distinct rows (6), apical part glabrous (♀) or exhibiting rows of very short yellow scales (6); antennae black, base of scape reddish, inserted at apical 1/3, scape slightly “S” shaped and clavate at apex, not reaching eyes; club oval and acuminate. Head covered with scales similar to those of rostrum. Pronotum slightly wider than long (l/w: 0.85), moderately narrowed near apex and basis, sides feebly rounded, widest after middle; scales concealing integument laterally, in the centre integument visible through vestiture; finely punctate. Elytra (l/w: 1.6) with prominent humeri, base distinctly broader than pronotum, widest in middle, sides strait in basal 2/3 (6) or feebly rounded (♀); dorsal surface covered by overlapping pale yellow scales, concealing integument, forming 2–3 row on intervals, striae distinct; abdominal sternites densely coated with whitish scales, overlapping, integument almost invisible. Legs black, covered with elongated overlapping scales, not concealing integument; femora and tibiae of normal structure, fore femora armed with a small ventral tooth that may be concealed by scales; tarsi elongated, last article longer than 2 basal articles; claws equals. Genitalia 6: median lobe elongated ( Fig. 7View FIGURES 6 – 10), three time longer than wide (l/w: 3), sides subparallel, slightly expanding at apex, feebly curved in lateral view; parameres almost as long as median lobe. Genitalia ♀: of common structure. Sexual dimorphism: Females exhibit a slightly longer rostrum. Variability: scale cover varies from homogenous pale yellow to pale yellow with pale brownish shades.

Type material. Holotype: Jordan (complete location in Sahlberg (1912): iii.1904, shore of Jordan River , near the seasonal river Vadi en Navâime, recently Wadi Nueima, north to Yeriho), J. Sahlberg, “ hierichonticus K. Daniel  “, “var-Holotypus Smicronyx rufipennis  f. hierichontica K. Daniel “ ( ZSM, specimen identified with a type label: Holotype Smicronyx jordanicus Haran  )  . Paratype 1: Israel, Deir Hajla , 28.iv.1999, L. Friedman leg.  , 1♀ deposited at SMNHTAU (specimen identified with the label: Paratype Smicronyx jordanicus Haran  ). Paratype 2: Israel, Yeriho (Jericho), 7.v.2014, J. Haran leg., sweeping Cuscuta monogyna  , 1 6 deposited at MNHN (specimen identified with the label: Paratype Smicronyx jordanicus Haran  )  . Paratype 3: data as for Paratype 2  , 1♀ deposited at BMNH (specimen identified with the label: Paratype Smicronyx jordanicus Haran  ). Paratypes: data as for Paratype 2  , 4♀, 1 6 deposited at JHcoll (specimen identified with the label: Paratype Smicronyx jordanicus Haran  ), 1 Paratype specimen from this series sequenced, voucher code: 2650-HAR_24065_JHA-13.16664. Deposited at Curci).

Etymology. The species is named in reference to the location where all the known specimens were recorded: namely, within the Jordan Valley.

Biology. This species is recorded on Cuscuta monogyna Vahl  , which is a parasite of shrubs of Acacia  sp. at the sampling site ( Fig. 23View FIGURES 22 – 23). Sahlberg (1912) noted that this species can be found in the same biotope as S. fulvipes  . Months of collection: March –June.

Distribution. All older and recent collection sites are in the Jordan Valley near the Dead Sea, where this species seems to be restricted. We found no data from adjacent countries. This species is very rare in museum collections. During the intensive regular collecting in February –August 2016 around Yeriho, undertaken by LF, no additional specimens of S. jordanicus  were found.

Discussion. This species was first noted in Sahlberg (1912) as a new species described by K. Daniel. We examined the material from ZSM collection and found that the corresponding specimen was labeled by the author not as a new species but rather as a subspecies, “ hierichontica”, of the species S. rufipennis Tournier  (= S. pauperculus Wollaston  ). The other specimen of the series from “Jerico” and similarly labeled (subspecies “ hierichontica ”) corresponded to the species S. syriacus  (specimen with pale vestiture) and was therefore relabelled accordingly. Other than in Sahlberg’s (1912) catalogue, the species hierichonticus  has never been formally described and no diagnosis exists. Consequently, S. hierichonticus  of K. Daniel is not an available name, similar to others in Sahlberg (1912) (Lutz Behne pers. comm.). We establish that the specimen collected by John Sahlberg is indeed a new species and we provide a description for it. Smicronyx jordanicus  is morphologically similar to S. jungermanniae  and particularly resembles pale specimens of the latter species. The arched base of the rostrum and the length of the tarsi are diagnostic characters by which S. jordanicus  can be distinguished from S. jungermanniae  . The median lobe of the male genitalia is also similar to S. jungermanniae  , but lacking helical scleromes in the internal sac ( Fig. 7View FIGURES 6 – 10). Molecular data also reveals that this species is close to, but distinct from S. jungermanniae  (10.3–11.1 % of divergence).


Bavarian State Collection of Zoology


Museum National d'Histoire Naturelle