Carcinops corticalis ( LeConte, 1851 ), Marseul, 1855

Reese, Ellen M. & Swanson, Alexander P., 2017, A Review of the CactophilicCarcinopsMarseul (Coleoptera: Histeridae) of the Sonoran Desert Region, with Descriptions of Six New Species, The Coleopterists Bulletin 71 (1), pp. 159-190: 168-169

publication ID 10.1649/0010-065X-71.1.159

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scientific name

Carcinops corticalis ( LeConte, 1851 )


Carcinops corticalis ( LeConte, 1851)   ( Figs. 9C View Fig , 10C View Fig , 13 View Fig )

Hister corticalis LeConte 1851: 163   . (The name “ Hister cirticalis   ” appears in some editions of Mazur’ s catalogue. This is an incorrect spelling and has since been corrected.)

Carcinops corticalis (LeConte) ( Marseul 1855)   .

Carcinops corticis Marseul 1862: 712   . This name is an unjustified emendation to C. corticalis   that was present in early versions of Mazur’ s histerid catalogue.

See Taxonomic Notes for discussion on this

species’ debated synonymy with Carcinops   tene-

llus (Erichson).

Diagnosis. This species is recognized by the following combination of characters: Body: Strongly depressed, minute. Head: Frontal stria continuous with marginal epistomal stria ( Fig. 4B, C View Figs ). Pronotum: Marginal stria slightly divergent from anterior edge of pronotum behind head ( Fig. 6B View Figs ). Elytra: Dorsal stria 5 and sutural stria shorter than dorsal striae 1–4, terminating in basal third of elytra ( Fig. 8 View Figs ); internal and external subhumeral striae present. First abdominal ventrite: One stria present, smooth surface texture ( Fig. 2A View Fig ). Aedeagus: Parameres straight and sharply pointed at tips ( Fig. 9C View Fig ).

Geographic Distribution and Natural History. Carcinops corticalis   is found under tree bark and in necroses of Cactaceae   , Agavoideae   , and Nolinoideae   . The species is found in the USA in California and Arizona and in Mexico in Sonora and Baja California Sur. The type locality of C. corticalis   is the Colorado River in California, where it was collected under tree bark ( Horn 1873). Specimens from Arizona were taken from necrotic Ferocactus sp.   as well as under cottonwood and ocotillo bark. Sonoran specimens were collected from necrotic S. montanus   and the decaying basal stalks of Agave sp.   in the Sierra Madre Occidental near Alamos. This species was rare in EMR’ s collection, with only two individuals present in a sample of 551 Carcinops   . These individuals were collected from a necrosed P. pringlei   in Baja California Sur and a necrosed F. cylindraceus   in California.

Taxonomic Notes. Carcinops corticalis   was synonymized under Paromalus tenellus Erichson, 1834   (later Carcinops tenellus   ) by Horn (1873). Horn had access to LeConte’ s workspace and likely his types of C. corticalis   , but it appears that Horn did not examine types of C. tenellus   , only stating that LeConte’ s C. corticalis   “agrees perfectly with the description and figure” of C. tenellus   . This is concerning because Erichson’ s description for C. tenellus   is quite brief and lacks descriptions for some of the key traits outlined in this paper. It is also worth mentioning that the holotype for P. tenellus   was collected from Colombia, whereas the holotype for C. corticalis   was collected from tree bark along the Colorado River ( Horn 1873). Casey weighed in on the matter in 1893, stating “ Corticalis is apparently not the same as tenellus Er.   , the size being much smaller...”. Casey’ s notes imply that he, like Horn, only examined the figure of C. tenellus   . Mazur’ s (2011) Histeridae   catalogue lists the two as separate species, stating that C. corticalis   occurs in the USA, whereas C. tenellus   occurs in Colombia. Mazur does not give an explanation for why he lists the species separately. His sources include both Horn (1873) and Casey (1893), so it is likely that he weighed in Casey’ s favor on the matter. While we agree that Horn’ s synonymy was not well supported to begin with, there is still no literature directly comparing types of C. corticalis   and C. tenellus   . It seems that this discrepancy can only be put to rest through a direct comparison of the types.

Material Examined. 28 specimens. MEXICO: Sonora: Rancho Santa Barbara nr. Alamos , 27.11326°N 108.72591°W GoogleMaps   , 1,350 m, 29.V.2007, ex. decaying Agave sp.   , A. Swanson ( APS, 13; DNA voucher: APS145); Arroyo Santa Barbara nr. Alamos , 27.09443°N 108.7126°W GoogleMaps   , 900 m, 30.V. 2007, ex. necrotic Stenocereus montanus, A. Swanson   ( APS, 3)   . Baja California Sur: nr. La Paz, 23.8257°N 110.272°W, sea level, 7.XII.2012, ex. necrotic Pachycereus pringlei, E. Reese   ( EMR, 1; DNA voucher: EMR001) GoogleMaps   . USA: California: Davis, XII.1937, R. M. and G. E. Bohart ( CASC, 1); Davis, II.1938, J. J. duBois ( CASC, 1); Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, 33.099932°N 116.465996°W, sea level, 12.IV.2014, ex. necrotic Ferocactus cylindraceus, E. Reese   ( EMR, 1). California : “[gold disk], “ Type 6908” [red label], “ H. corticalis   LeC”, “ P. tenellus Er   ” ( MCZ, 1) GoogleMaps   . Arizona: Pima Co., Santa Catalina Mts. , 32°18.53’N 110°44.15’W, 4.VI.06, ex. necrotic Ferocactus sp.   , A. Swanson, ( APS, 2); Tucson, 3.IV.1936, ocotillo bark ( CASC, 1); Benson, 22.IV.1933, damp cottonwood bark, Bryant ( CASC, 1); San Pedro R. near Tombstone, 31.6276°N 110.1747°W GoogleMaps   , 1,200 m, under cottonwood bark, ( APS, 1; DNA voucher: APS170); Phoenix , 16.III.1920, E. Schifel ( CASC, 1)   .


Museum of Comparative Zoology














Carcinops corticalis ( LeConte, 1851 )

Reese, Ellen M. & Swanson, Alexander P. 2017

Hister corticalis

LeConte, J. L. 1851: 163