Ita kirschi Tournier, 1879

Meregalli, Massimo & Borovec, Roman, 2011, Radiation in the halophytic coenoses of the Peri-Tethys: taxonomy and biogeography of the genus Ita (Coleoptera: Curculionidae), Journal of Natural History 45 (21 - 22), pp. 1331-1401: 1382-1385

publication ID 10.1080/00222933.2011.557550

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scientific name

Ita kirschi Tournier, 1879


Ita kirschi Tournier, 1879  

(Figures 18, 19)

Ita kirschi Tournier, 1879: 16   .

Type locality

Armenia, Karasu (according to Tournier, 1879); Etschmiazdin [40 ◦ 09 ′ N 44 ◦ 17 ′ E] on the label of the lectotype GoogleMaps   .

Material examined

Lectotype ♀ (here designated): “1. Etschmiazdsin, Schneider [hw]; 2. Caucase, Kirsch [hw]; 3. MUSEUM PARIS, Coll Tournier [pr]; 4. Ita kirschi   , Lectotype, 2009 Meregalli and Borovec des. [red, hw].” ( MNHN, coll. Tournier).  

Non-type specimens: ARMENIA, “Armenia, Schneider”, one ♀ ( MTD)   ; Georgia , “Tiflis [41 ◦ 42 ′ N 44 ◦ 47 ′ E], Kirsch” one ♂ ( MTD) GoogleMaps   . AZERBAIJAN, “Azerb. SSSR, Aljat (marit) [40 ◦ 18 ′ N 49 ◦ 46 ′ E], Odvárka leg.”, two ♂, two ♀ ( BMNH, BOR, MER) GoogleMaps   .


Lectotype female. Head, pronotum, elytra, coxae and underside black; rostrum dark ferruginous; legs and antennae yellow to light ferruginous (Figures 18A, B). Scales slender, whitish, 3.5 to 4 times as long as wide, moderately densely inserted on elytra, integument not completely covered, visible among scales, scales on pronotum slightly narrower on dorsum and shorter on sides; scales on legs smaller and less dense, alternated with a few narrow translucent setae (Figures 18K, L). Rostrum medially robust, in lateral view slightly gibbous in basal part and moderately curved at apex; antennal insertion very near to base, sides in dorsal view strongly concave between base and antennal insertion, moderately broadened at antennal insertion and near to apex, with sides slightly but distinctly concave in front of antennal insertion; surface matt, sparsely and minutely punctured in basal part, more shallowly punctulate towards apex (Figures 18D, F). Scrobes oval, deep and fovea-shaped, glossy, margins shortly interrupted basad. Antennal scape short, as long as rostrum width at antennal insertion, curved forwards and weakly thickened in apical third; funicle short, segment 1 conical, twice as long as wide and at apex twice as broad as segment 2; segments 2–7 subquadrate, small and short; club elliptical. Pronotum with moderately and regularly curved sides, maximum width slightly beyond mid-length. Elytra convex, moderately broadened from base to apical third, rounded at apex, in lateral view declivity curved, moderately rounded, suboblique. Tarsi slender, segment 1 scarcely broadened at apex, nearly four times as long as wide, segment 2 twice as long as wide, conical, segment 3 with short, weakly divergent lobes; onychium narrow, moderately and regularly broadened. Genitalia not examined.

Description of the male (specimen from Baku). Rostrum slightly shorter, particularly from antennal insertion to apex, deeply sculptured near base and more distinctly gibbous above antennal insertion. The other traits are very similar in both the sexes, including the antenna (Figure 18I, 19J) and the tarsi (Figure 18J, 19I). Aedeagus curved, median lobe with sclerotized margins moderately broadened in the postmedian part, as wide as membranous median part at point of maximum width; sides distinctly sinuate towards apical lamella, ostium elongate, elliptical; lamella broad, upward-curved (Figures 19G, H).

Natural history

No data have been reported.

Distribution and variation

Unusually for the genus, this species appears to have a relatively broad range, both altitudinally and geographically. It is known from the surroundings of Yerevan, at nearly 2000 m a.s.l., to the Azerbaijan coasts of the Caspian Sea , near Baku, more than 400  

Figure 18. Ita kirschi   , lectotype ♀: (A, B) body; (D, F) rostrum; (K) scales of dorsum and (L) side of elytra. Ita kirschi   , Tiflis, ♂: (C, E) rostrum; (G, H) aedeagus; (I) antenna; (J) fore tarsus. Scale bar: (A, B) 1 mm; (C–J) 250 µm.

km distant. Unfortunately the very few specimens known, and the absence of any male from Armenia, do not allow us to evaluate the variation in such a broad range, that nevertheless appears to be surprisingly limited (cf. Figures 19A–L for the specimens from Baku), the two females from the type locality being indistinguishable from the one from Baku. The male labelled “Tiflis” has an aedeagus slightly less broadened, thus with scarcely sinuate sides, with respect to the specimen from Baku (Figures 18G, H vs. 19G, H), and the rostrum is a little less broadened at the apex (Figures 18C, E vs. 19C, E).


Ita korotyaevi   is the sister species, and it mainly differs in the more convex elytra, the longer and more narrow rostrum, and the more curved aedeagus compared with the males of I. kirschi   from Tiflis and Baku. The very basal insertion of the antennae differentiates these two species from all the others. Ita latirostris   , which is nearly sympatric with I. kirschi   , is clearly distinct in the rostrum more broadened at the apex and with less basal antennal insertion (see Table 1), in the more elongate, slender elytral scales and in the 3 rd tarsal segment small, very scarcely lobed.


Museum National d'Histoire Naturelle


Museum of Zoology Senckenberg Dresden


Guermonprez Museum


Universidad de Los Andes














Ita kirschi Tournier, 1879

Meregalli, Massimo & Borovec, Roman 2011

Ita kirschi

Tournier H 1879: 16