Psilota purpurea Thompson and Young,

Young, Andrew D., Skevington, Jeffrey H. & Steenis, Wouter Van, 2020, Revision of the Psilota Meigen, 1822 flower flies (Diptera: Syrphidae) of Australia, Zootaxa 4737 (1), pp. 1-127: 70

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Psilota purpurea Thompson and Young

sp. nov.

Psilota purpurea Thompson and Young  sp. nov.

(Species plate: Fig. 30View FIGURE 30; Genitalia: Fig. 45View FIGURE 45 C–D; Map: Fig. 62AView FIGURE 62)

Austropsilota sp. 88–36 Thompson, unpublished

Diagnosis: Face bare. Male dichoptic. Hind leg simple. Anepisternum, anepimeron, legs, tergite 1 and tergite 2 all pinkish-red. Tergites 3 and 4 purplish-blue, tergite 3 with a distinct median tubercle. Wing with apical half dark brown. Body length: 9.2–12.7 mm.

Description: MALE: Head: Head black, face densely pale pollinose. Face bare of pilosity, frons and vertex pale pilose. Antenna entirely brown, postpedicel somewhat elongate, approximately 2 times as long as wide. Male widely dichoptic. Eye sparsely pale pilose. Thorax: Scutellum, meron, and ventral three-quarters of katepisternum purplish-black, remainder of thorax red-orange. Scutum mostly purplish-black, with red-orange lateral stripes reaching as far back as the transverse suture. Femora pinkish red, tibiae and tarsomeres orange-brown. Hind leg simple, with no pronounced ridge on femur or tibia. Pleuron shining, free of pollinosity. Thoracic pile white. Wing with apical half of cell R 1, and all of cells R 2+3 and R 4+5 dark brown, with apical half of cell bm, apical half of cell cua, and basal third of cell c bare. Alula microtrichose. Halter pale yellow. Calypter pale with a dark brown border. Abdomen: Tergite 1 and anterior half of tergite 2 pinkish-red. Posterior half of tergite 2 and all of tergites 3 and 4 metallic purple. Posterior corners of tergite 2 and anterior corners of tergite 3 pale yellow. Tergite 3 with a distinct median tubercle. Abdomen white pilose. Sternites 1 and 2 pinkish red, sternites 3 and 4 purple. Genitalia: Epandrium elongate, about 1.5 times as long as tall. Cerci elongate, approximately 5 times as long as wide. Outer lobe of surstylus inserted amove mid-height of inner lobe, longer than inner lobe, and curved slightly downwards on apical third. Inner lobe of surstylus reduced, hook shaped, slightly shorter than outer lobe, and tapering smoothly to a downwards-facing point. Phallapodeme smooth. Gonostylus elongate.

FEMALE: Identical except for normal sexual dimorphism.

Etymology: The specific epithet purpurea  derives from the Latin “purpureus”, which means “purple”. This is in reference to the distinctive purple colour of this syrphid.

Specimens examined: HOLOTYPE: AUSTRALIA: New South Wales: Mount Tomah, Blue Mountains , - 33.546688 150.424108, 6.ii.1986, N.W. Rodd, N.W. Rodd Collection, AustralianMuseumK410301 (1♂, AM)GoogleMaps  ; PARATYPES: New South Wales: Dorrigo Nat. Park, -30.365542 152.738950, 15.x.1966, E. Britton, USNM_ ENT_00249820 (1♀, USNM)GoogleMaps  ; Mount Tomah, Blue Mountains, -33.546688 150.424108, 1994, N.W. Rodd, N.W. Rodd Collection, AustralianMuseumK410363 (1♀, AM)GoogleMaps  ; Mount Tomah, Blue Mountains, -33.546688 150.424108, 2.xi.1988, N.W. Rodd, N.W. Rodd Collection, AustralianMuseumK410300 (1♀, AM)GoogleMaps  ; Mount Tomah, Blue Mountains, -33.546688 150.424108, 2.xii.1999, N.W. Rodd, N.W. Rodd Collection, AustralianMuseumK410360; AustralianMuseumK410358 (2♀, AM)GoogleMaps  ; Mount Tomah, Blue Mountains, -33.546688 150.424108, 5.xii.1990, N.W. Rodd, N.W. Rodd Collection, AustralianMuseumK410302 (1♂, AM)GoogleMaps  ; AUSTRALIA. Victoria: Otway NP nature walk, -38.790836 143.543058, 2.ii.2006, W. van Steenis, CNC_ Diptera  255041 (1♂, WVSPC)GoogleMaps  ; Tarra Bulga N.P. near T.B. Visitor Centre, -38.429742 146.566047, 27.i.2006, W. van Steenis, CNC_ Diptera  253729 (2♀, WVSPC)GoogleMaps  ; Gippold(??), ii.1896, USNM_ENT249819 (1♂, USNM). 

Discussion: This species possesses several characters unusual for Psilota  , including the hook-shaped inner lobe of the male surstylus, the tubercle on tergite 3, and the bare face. Preliminary evidence based on COI suggests that it is simply a highly apomorphic species of Psilota  . This can be tested in future using multiple genes if fresh material is obtained.