Iselma stellaris, Pitzalis & Bologna, 2008

Pitzalis, Monica & Bologna, Marco A., 2008, Taxonomy and faunistics of the southern African genus Iselma, with the description of nine new species (Coleoptera: Meloidae: Eleticinae), Zootaxa 1876 (1), pp. 35-59 : 48-49

publication ID 10.11646/zootaxa.1876.1.4


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scientific name

Iselma stellaris

sp. n.

Iselma stellaris sp. n.

Diagnosis. A large sized Iselma , completely black but elytra with cupreous-greenish metallic reflection; head short and pronotum largely rounded on sides, with two suboval lateral depressions; last maxillary palpomere parallel on sides and securiform at apex; mandibles evidently curved in the apical third; elytra convex, with humeral depression extended only to the basal third; last visible abdominal hemisternite slightly curved internally, apically with scarce long setae. Head and pronotum with dense long black erected setae.

Description. Body uniformly black, but elytra with cupreous-greenish metallic reflection. Body setation black, composed by both long, dense, erected setae and scattered shorter setae; legs with elongate black setae, rare on tibiae. Body length (apex of mandibles-apex of elytra): 14.2–20.0 mm; pronotum length: 2.3–2.7 mm; elytral width (greatest at posterior third): 3.5–5.0 mm.

Head short, only slightly longer than wide at eye level (excluding the mandibles); mandibles shorter than head capsule; tempora subsquared; front quite flat, frontal suture almost subarcuate; punctures very dense, approached and quite deep, except in the middle, intermediate surface shiny and subrougose; labrum slightly longer than clypeus. Antennae slender, antennomeres subcylindrical, III–VIII subequal in length, but IV slightly shorter, antennomere IX slightly shorter than VIII and X, evidently shorter than VI and VII; antennomere I–II with normal elongate setae, III–X with dense microsetae and with elongate, erected setae at apex.

Pronotum as long as wide, with sides progressively widened and then convergent in the fore third; maximal width at two thirds of its length, wider than head at eye level; a suboval depression on each side and one longitudinal unpunctuated raised area; punctures as on head, but wider. Sides of mesonotum convergent posteriorly. Elytra elongate, only slightly convex, about twice as wide as pronotum at base, without tracks of venation and with a depression extended from humerus to the basal third; punctures very dense, subrugose and less deep than on head and pronotum. Legs slender, with punctures dense and quite large; fore and middle tibial spurs slender; both hind spurs elongate and spoon-like, the inner one longer than the external, both shorter than half tarsomere I.

Last male visible abdominal sternite ( Fig. 3d View FIGURE 3 ) slightly curved on internal margin and evidently curved on the external one, the portion not depressed wide, apically with scarce and scattered long setae. Male gonostyli in lateral view slender and very narrow, depressed longitudinally in the middle as well as on dorsal side, at base and on ventral side in the apical third; sides subparallel, apex conical, slightly curved and with microsetae, with a basal appendix as long as one third of the gonostylus with a tuft of setae reaching almost the apex of gonostylus ( Fig. 2l View FIGURE 2 ).

Type material. Holotype male ( CB), 1 male Paratype ( CB) “ South Africa, Northern Cape, 19 km NW Sutherland vs. Bo-Visrivier 32.44902°S 20.49269°E 1500 m a.s.l., 27.IX.2007, M. Bologna & M. Pitzalis ” GoogleMaps . 1 female Paratype ( CB) “ South Africa, Northern Cape, 27 km NW Sutherland vs. Bo-Visrivier 32.40078°S 20.45220°E 1345 m a.s.l., 27.IX.2007, M. Bologna & M. Pitzalis ”. We added the labels GoogleMaps Holotype / Paratype, male and female, “ Iselma stellaris sp.n. M. Pitzalis & M. Bologna des. 2008” .

Type locality. South Africa, Northern Cape, 19 km NW Sutherland vs. Bo-Visrivier , 32.44902°S 20.49269°E, 1500 m a.s.l. GoogleMaps

Etymology. The name of this species is inspired by the type locality, Sutherland, a town well known for its starry sky and the astronomical observatory (in latin star = stella).

Affinities. This new species belongs to the group of I. ursus , and is particularly related to I. ursus and I. lanuginosa (Pitzalis and Bologna, unpublished). Phenetically it is very similar to the latter species, which clearly differs because of the shape of last male sternite ( Fig. 3c View FIGURE 3 ) and the presence of two hooks on the distal portion of aedeagus ( Fig. 2k View FIGURE 2 ).


The CB Rhizobium Collection