Paraphlebia ixchel Ortega-Salas & González-Soriano, 2022

Ortega-Salas, Héctor, González-Soriano, Enrique & Jocque, Merlijn, 2022, Untangling the waterfall damsels: a review of the Mesoamerican genus Paraphlebia Selys in Hagen, 1861 (Odonata: Thaumatoneuridae) with descriptions of 11 new species, Zootaxa 5089 (1), pp. 1-66 : 19-20

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Paraphlebia ixchel Ortega-Salas & González-Soriano

sp. nov.

Paraphlebia ixchel Ortega-Salas & González-Soriano sp. nov.

Figs. 25 View FIGURES 20–27 (thorax ♀), 121 (posterior lobe of prothorax ♀), 130 (S8– 10 ♀), 150 (map).

Holotype. GUATEMALA • 1 ♀; Solola, Santa Catarina Ixtahuacán, Río Nahulate, 3.6 km S. of Santa Catarina , forest (200 m above river); [14.800°N, 91.366°W]; 1900 m; 29 Jun 1962; T. Donnelly leg.; TWD; IBUNAM:CNIN: OD22715. GoogleMaps

Etymology. Named ixchel /ɪksˈʃel/ (L. noun in apposition), after Ix Chel (also Chac Chel, Chak Chel or Sak Chel) the Mayan old goddess of creation, divination, and curing. Ix Chel is one of the few known feminine divinities in the Mayan pantheon, is therefore suitable to give its name to the only species described from a female specimen.

Description of female holotype

Head. Chiefly black, labrum dark glossy blue, anteclypeus pale, postclypeus pale, frons pale cream with black lateral spots, vertex with two pale spots anterolateral to lateral ocelli, occiput with occipital bar restricted to spots on the lateral edges, eyes dark brown to black; antennal scape with distal margin pale, flagellum light brown.

Thorax. Prothorax: chiefly black; anterior lobe mostly pale, with black line on anterior margin; middle lobe with pale markings along central pit and outer margins; posterior lobe brown to black towards middle, see Fig. 121 View FIGURES 117–128 for morphology. Pterothorax: chiefly black with diffuse green metallic reflections over dark colouration on mesepisternum and mesepimeron; mediodorsal carina with mediodorsal pale line covering one-fourth width of mesepisternum; see Fig. 25 View FIGURES 20–27 for colour pattern; metepimeron pale, with a hint of a black curved line, may be lost in preservation;; sternum pale; depression mesad to mesostigmal lobe in mesostigmal plate angulated; legs mostly pale; femora with black extensor surfaces and distal joints; tibiae with black distal joints; claws reddish.

Wings. Hyaline, with a slightly amber tint; FW with one post-quadrangular cell, the vein that descends from the subnodus at the first Vx; HW field between CuA and posterior margin lacking supplementary veins. Px: FW 40/38, HW 27/26.

Abdomen. Black with pale areas as follow: S1 with anteroventral spots and posterior margin; S9 with dorsal spot widened posteriorly. Ovipositor short, not reaching tip of cerci.

Measurements. Abdomen: 39.0, FW: 37.0, HW: 34.6.

Description of male. Male unknown.

Diagnosis. Paraphlebia ixchel , P. esperanza and P. kukulkan belong to the group of species with a short ovipositor that never surpasses the tip of the cercus ( Figs. 129–130 View FIGURES 129–137 ). The posterior lobe of the prothorax in P. ixchel is similar to that of P. esperanza . It differs from that of P. kukulkan in presenting digitiform projections towards the lateral edges of the posterior margin while in the latter the posterior lobe is entire, without projections. In dorsal view, these projections are directed posterodorsally, making a V-shaped gap between them and the posterior margin of the medial lobe in P. ixchel , while in P. esperanza they are directed posteroventrally, not forming such gap ( Figs. 121–122 View FIGURES 117–128 ). The female of P. esperanza can be readily separated from all other species by the position of the vein that descend from the subnodus, in the FW this vein is always closer to the second post-quadrangular Vx than to the first. In all other species there is always closer to the first post-quadrangular Vx.

Habitat. This species was collected in forest, 200 m from a river.

Distribution. Southwest Guatemala: it is only known from the type locality near Santa Catarina in the Solola department. It was collected at ca. 1900 m.a.s.l.

Remarks. Although not all the females of the species hereby described are known, it is clear that the morphology of the posterior lobe of prothorax presents a strong parallelism between males and females at the species level. Therefore P. ixchel is considered as a distinct species as, with the exception of P. esperanza , no other male described presents a similar structure. Based on the female morphology, the male probably will be similar to that of P. esperanza : it should have a convex posterior margin on the posterior lobe of prothorax with digitiform projections, and it is possible that such projections are projected posteriorly. The cerci should have the mediodorsal flange welldeveloped and the vein that descends from the nodus in the FW should be closer to the first Vx than to the second, the latter character allowing differentiation of the two species.


Instituto de BiIología, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México