Perlesta leathermani, Kondratieff & Zuellig & Kirchner & Lenat, 2006

Kondratieff, Boris C., Zuellig, Robert E., Kirchner, Ralph F. & Lenat, David R., 2006, Three New Species Of Perlesta (Plecoptera: Perlidae) From Eastern North America And Notes On New State Records, Illiesia 2 (5), pp. 31-38 : 31-33

publication ID


persistent identifier

treatment provided by


scientific name

Perlesta leathermani

sp. n.

Perlesta leathermani   , sp. n.

Kondratieff & Zuellig ( Figs. 1-8 View Figs View Fig ).

Material examined. Holotype ♂ and 48 ♂, 24 ♀ paratypes from NORTH CAROLINA: Hoke/Moore Co., Little River , Morrison Bridge Road , East of Southern Pines , N 35°11’31” W 079°11’01”, 18 May 2004, B. Kondratieff, R. Kirchner, R. E. Zuellig, and D. Lenat. GoogleMaps  

The holotype is deposited at the National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution , Washington, D. C. Paratypes will be deposited at the following museums and individual collections: Bill P. Stark, Clinton , Mississippi ( BPSC), C. P. Gillette Museum of Arthropod Diversity , Colorado State University ( CSUC), and Ralph F. Kirchner ( RFKC), Huntington, West Virginia.

Male. Forewing length 8 - 9 mm. Head yellow with a large black to brown ocellar patch and large diffuse dark spot anterior to patch, epicranial suture arms extending well beyond ocelli as a distinct dark line, prothorax brown ( Fig. 1 View Figs ). Wing membrane and veins brown except for pale costal margin. Femora dorsally brown, proximally and distally yellow, tibiae brown basally, yellow apically. Abdominal terga yellow with transverse brown bands on terga 1-9, brown coloration diffuse on terga 1-3; sterna yellow. Cercus yellow basally, distal segments brown. Tergum 10 mesal sclerite brown, sensilla basiconica patch distinct, not elevated into patches, also with long hairs ( Fig. 2 View Figs ). Paraproct short, stout, broad at base, with a prominent subapical mesad directed tooth ( Fig. 3 View Figs ), in caudal view long and narrowly acute at tip, tooth not visible ( Fig. 4 View Figs ). Penis tube + sac long, caecum prominent, longer than wide, lateral sclerite prominent, dorsal patch narrower medially, expanded basally, and slightly apically ( Figs. 5 & 6 View Figs ).

Female. Forewing length 11 - 12 mm. Color pattern similar to male but paler. Subgenital plate lobes short, truncate and separated by a deep U to Vshaped notch ( Fig. 7 View Figs ).

Egg. Oval. Collar buttonlike. Chorion slightly pitted, micropylar orifices distinct ( Fig. 8 View Fig ).

Larva. Unknown.

Diagnosis. Males of P. leathermani   will key in Stark (2004) to those species that have the epicranial suture arms that extend well beyond the ocelli as a distinct dark line ( Fig. 1 View Figs ), and the adult head is largely dark brown ending at couplet 6, which includes P. xube Stark and Rhodes   and P. cinctipes (Banks)   . The dorsal aedeagus patch is more similar to P. cinctipes   (see Stark 2004, Fig. 7.300 View Figs ), but the dorsal patch of the aedeagus of P. leathermani   is clearly expanded basally ( Fig. 6 View Figs ). The lobes of the subgenital plate of the female of P. leathermani   are short, truncate, and separated by a deep V-shaped notch ( Fig. 7 View Figs ); whereas the subgenital plate of P. cinctipes   has the lobes rounded (see Stark 2004, Fig. 7.377 View Figs ). The egg of P. leathermani   is slightly pitted and lacks a micropylar ring. Additionally, the currently known geographic range of P. cinctipes   is Midwestern including Arkansas and Oklahoma ( Stark 2004).

Remarks. The (Lower) Little River comprises Cape Fear Subbasin 14 ( /bar.html). The upper portion in Moore County (and running along the Moore/Hoke county line) is located in the Sandhills ecoregion ( Griffith et al. 2002) and it is designated by the state of North Carolina (NC) as High Quality Waters (NCDENR 2004). Except for some problems following a drought in 2002, a site near the Morrison Bridge has been consistently rated as Excellent by NC Department Environment and Natural Resources (NCDENR) based on benthic macroinvertebrate community samples.

Mean width of the Lower Little River in this area is about 15 m. The substrate is mostly sand and gravel, although important habitats also include bank areas, snags, and leaf packs. The water is humiccolored, with median pH values of 5.8 and minimum pH values <5.0. Median specific conductance has been about 35 umhos/cm (NCDENR, 2004) with no documented water quality problems.

Collections of both immature and adult aquatic insects at this site have documented a high diversity of “EPT” (Ephemeroptera/ Plecoptera   /Trichoptera) species. Many rare benthic macroinvertebrates have been recorded at this site, potentially making it one of the most important conservation areas in NC (NC Natural Heritage Program, in preparation). Rare stoneflies collected at the Morrison bridge site include Haploperla fleeki Kondratieff and Kirchner   (type locality, Kondratieff et al. 2005) and the recently described Alloperla lenati Kondratieff and Kirchner   (Kondratieff and Kirchner 2004). Additional stonefly species collected concurrently included Acroneuria abnormis (Newman)   , Perlinella zwicki Kondratieff, Kirchner, and Stewart   (1 ♂, representing a new state record for North Carolina; Kondratieff et al. 1995), P. ephyre (Newman)   , Neoperla clymene (Newman)   , and at least one undescribed species of Isoperla   . Adult caddisflies (Trichoptera) also were collected by the authors at this site, with identifications done by David Ruiter, Centennial, Colorado. These data include at least eight caddisfly species not previously listed as occurring in NC (Lenat, unpublished data).

The Fort Bragg Military Reservation provides protection of the area immediately adjacent to the Morrison Bridge site, but the upstream area near Southern Pines and the US 1 corridor is rapidly developing. Preservation of this portion of the Little River will be dependent on controlling both point and nonpoint sources of pollution.

Etymology. The patronym honors David A. Leatherman, a truly consummate naturalist, expert entomologist, and good friend to the senior author.


USA, Colorado, Fort Collins, Colorado State University


California State University, Chico, Vertebrate Museum