Encolapta najuensis Park & Byun

Park, Kyu-Tek, Heo, Un-Hong & Byun, Bong-Kyu, 2021, Two new species of Gelechiidae (Lepidoptera) from Korea, with some biological data including larval host plants, Zootaxa 4996 (2), pp. 301-308: 304-306

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Encolapta najuensis Park & Byun

sp. nov.

Encolapta najuensis Park & Byun   , sp. nov.

LSIDurn:lsid:zoobank.org:pub: E963A96C-1BEC-472B-AAA6-53F16DBC6376

(Figs 2A–F, 3C)

Type specimen. Holotype: ♂, Naju, Naju Forest Res. Institute, Jeonnam Prov., 9.vi.2019, gen. slide no. CIS-8150, deposited in NIBR.  

Diagnosis. This species is superficially similar to E. marginans ( Li & Zheng, 1998)   described from Shaanxi Prov., China, but it can be distinguished from the latter by the male genital characters as follows (Fig. 2C, F): 1) the uncus is broadened distally (Figs 2C-①), whereas in E. marginans   it is nearly parallel-sided (Fig. 2F); 2) the gnathos is larger and stronger than that of E. marginans   (Fig. 2C-②); 3) the basal protrusion on inner margin of valva is much larger in the new species (Fig. 2C-③); 4) the saccus is slender, nearly parallel-sided (Fig. 2C-④), whereas in E. marginans   , it is dilated distally, nearly clavate.

Description. Male. Wingspan 14.0 mm.

Head: Grayish white to orange gray, speckled with brownish scales dorsally. Antenna with scape elongated, dark fuscous dorsally, yellowish white ventrally; flagellum dark fuscous dorsally, yellowish white ventrally. Second segment of labial palpus with triangular scale tuft ventrally, dark brown speckled with grayish white scales on outer surface, paler on inner surface; 3 rd segment rather stout, longer than 2 nd segment, grayish white, with dark-brown bands at base, middle, and beyond 2/3.

Thorax: Thorax and tegula orange gray ventrally. Hind tibia with yellowish-white rough setae dorsally, dark brown ventrally. Forewing lanceolate, with sharply produced apex; ground color dark brown, with blackish short streaks irregularly scattered; 5–6 yellowish-white small patches along costa from near base prior to apex; fringe concolorous with ground color; venation with R 3 free, arising from upper corner of cell; R 4 and R 5 stalked for about basal 1/3; R 5 to costa; M 1 free from R 4+5; M 2 present, nearer to M 3 at base; M 3 arising from lower corner of cell; CuA 1 free, arising from near the lower corner of cell. Hind wing grayish white; venation with M 3 and CuA 1 connate; fringe concolorous. Abdomen: Spinous zones on tergites absent; sternite VIII deeply emarginated at middle on caudal margin.

Male genitalia (Figs 2C, D): Uncus oblong, dilated distally with round apex, separated from basal sclerite. Gnathos strong, longer than uncus, heavily sclerotized, curved medially, with sharply pointed apex. Tegumen weakly sclerotized. Valva narrowed in basal 3/5, with semi-ovate membranous protrusion at base on ventral margin; cucullus significantly dilated distally, with round apex, densely setose, Valvella slender, about half the length of valva, sclerotized in posterior half. Juxta with large triangular latero-caudal plates, bearing strong along margins. Vinculum with triangular anterior plate, bearing setae. Saccus slender, as long as uncus. Aedeagus globular in basal 3/5, then narrowed distally with two small spines apically; cornutus absent. Abdomen lacking spinose zones.

Biology. Little is known about the biology of Encolapta species. E   . tegulifera (Meyrick) is only a single species whose larval host plants Quercus sp.   has been known ( Inoue et al. 1982, Li 2002). The two matured larvae were collected under the trees of Koelreuteria paniculata Laxm   on 05.ix.2019, that were dropping down with silk-net. The larvae are about 10 mm in body length, the head capsule is black, with purplish brown lines at both sides on the body. It is considered that the larva is probably feeding on fruits of the host plant, since it was observed that larvae made silk-nets around the fruit of Koelreuteria paniculata Laxm   , and one pupated inside the hull of the fruit after two days of rearing in laboratory conditions. Thus, the larvae of the new species were kept with the fruits that provided them a shelter for the pupation. The first moth has emerged on 9.vi.2020, but second larva failed to pupate. The larval habits have not been observed and documented, but it is no doubt that the larva is associated with the fruit of Koelreuteria paniculata   .

Distribution. Korea.

Etymology. The species name is derived from the type locality, “Naju”, Korea.


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