Calliphora peruviana Robineau-Desvoidy, 1830: 438,

Rognes, Terry Whitworth With An Appendix By Knut & Whitworth, Terry, 2012, Identification of Neotropical blow flies of the genus Calliphora Robineau- Desvoidy (Diptera: Calliphoridae) with the description of a new species, Zootaxa 3209, pp. 1-27: 25

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Calliphora peruviana Robineau-Desvoidy, 1830: 438


Calliphora peruviana Robineau-Desvoidy, 1830: 438 

Robineau-Desvoidy gave a short description, but the sex was not given. He stated that “[c] ette belle espèce, orginaire du Pérou, fait partie de la collection du comte Dejean [this beautiful specimen, collected in Peru, belongs in the collection of Count Dejean]”. Parts of Dejean’s collection were bought by Bigot, whose collection was obtained by Verrall and is now in OUMNH (Pont, pers. comm.). Macquart (1844: 288) observed that “[l] ’individu que M. Robineau-Desvoidy a décrit sans distinction de sexe, et que nous avons vu, est une femelle… [the specimen which Mr. Robineau-Desvoidy described without indicating its sex, and which we have seen, is a female …]”. Furthermore he illustrated the wing (Macquart 1844: Plate 16, fig. 9). Hall (1948: 301), citing the name as a senior synonym of and the valid name for Calliphora nigribasis Macquart, 1851  , claimed that the type “male from Peru, …” is “in the Bigot collection, Newmarket, England [= OUMNH]”. James (1970: 12) followed Hall and cited peruviana  as the senior synonym of Calliphora nigribasis Macquart, 1851  . However, it seems that neither Hall nor James had actually studied the OUMNH specimen or its labels.

According to Pont (pers.comm, and unpublished notes on the Bigot collection of Calliphoridae  in Oxford, in KR’s possession) there are two specimens, one male and one female, under the drawer label reading “S. [= Somomyia, where Bigot placed all the Robineau-Desvoidy and Macquart Lucilia  and Calliphora  names] Peruviana  3 / Calliphora  . id. R.D. / Peruvi. Rob.Desv.”. The male, not a type, is Calliphora nigribasis Macquart. The  female, the type, carries a label in Robineau-Desvoidy’s own handwriting reading “ Calliphora  peru / viana RD”. James Dear has labelled this specimen with (1) a holotype label reading: “ HOLOTYPE / Calliphora  / peruviana  R-D / 1830: 438. / det. J.P.Dear 1977 ”; and (2) an identification label reading “= Lucilia  / peruviana  R-D / J.P.Dear 1977 ”. Dear thus considered the holotype to belong in the genus Lucilia  , and not in Calliphora  , as assumed by Robineau-Desvoidy himself. This interpretation of the specimen has not been published, neither the details of the drawer or specimens labels.

It is not known which Neotropical Lucilia  species the name peruviana Robineau-Desvoidy (1830: 438)  should be applied to. The type was not studied by Whitworth (2010). However, the problem of its identity is of academic interest only. Since there is another nominal species with an identical name, i.e., Lucilia peruviana Robineau-Desvoidy (1830: 455)  (treated below), the former becomes a secondary homonym of the latter, and cannot be used. Although the identity of the latter is not known, it serves no purpose to resurrect this name by designation of a neotype to resolve its identity.

Mariluis & Peris (1985: 82) removed Calliphora peruviana Robineau-Desvoidy (1830: 438)  from its position as a senior synonym of Calliphora nigribasis Macquart, 1851  , on the basis of information given to them from Pont (citing Dear in litt.) to the effect that the holotype of Calliphora peruviana Robineau-Desvoidy, 1830: 438  is a Lucilia  species.

In Systema Dipterorum (Pape & Thompson 2010) this nominal species is erroneously listed under the entry “ Aldrichina peruviana  Robineau-Desvoidy, 1830: 438 ”, and the type erroneously listed as being present in MNHN (Warning Work Record, Record # 38 329).


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