Mesochila (Mesochila) moraveci, Roza & Mermudes, 2019

Roza, André Silva & Mermudes, José Ricardo Miras, 2019, A new species of Mesochila Rivalier, 1969 (Coleoptera: Cicindelidae) from the Brazilian Caatinga, Zootaxa 4688 (2), pp. 295-300: 296-298

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Mesochila (Mesochila) moraveci

sp. nov.

Mesochila (Mesochila) moraveci   sp. nov.

( Figs 1 View FIGURES 1–5 –7)

Type material. Holotype male: Brasil. Piauí. Caracol. Parque Nacional / da Serra das Confusões. Ao lado da estrada. / Rio seco, Malaise G, Terra 05. / 09° 12’ 53.7” S, 43° 30’ 13.5” W, 477 m, / 11–15.XII.2018, Gonçalves, C.C., Prando, J.S., / Carrenho, R., Rodrigues, J.M.S. & Magalhães, O.M. col. // Holótipo / Mesochila moraveci   sp. nov. / Roza det. 2019 // DZRJ. GoogleMaps  

Type locality. Brazil: Caracol, state of Píauí, Parque Nacional da Serra das Confusões, Rio seco, 09°12´53.7´´S, 43°30´13.5´´W, 477m. GoogleMaps  

Differential diagnosis. Mesochila moraveci   sp. nov. is similar to M. (M.) brevipennis   , M. (M.) drechseli   and M. (M.) prepusula   by its comparatively short and narrow aedeagus, with a thick, moderately hooked apex (Figs 6 and 7), and the internal sac with three distinct sclerites characteristic of the species-complex: a ventral spur with double-wing “stingray-like” base, an oval upper sclerite with a echinulate surface and a dorso-basal semitriangular piece (Fig. 7). Externally, it is most easily distinguished from these three species by the distinct humeral band ( Fig. 1 and 5 View FIGURES 1–5 ). Mesochila   (M,) brasiliensis (Dejean, 1825) and Mesochila (Paramesochila) horni (Schilder, 1953)   possesses similar humeral band, but can be distinguished by their very different aedeagi; moreover, the former also by its different pronotal surface, the latter by its more elongate pronotum and more uneven elytral surface. In addition, none of these externally similar species have the whitish lateromedian macula prolonged along the outer margin in form of a thin stripe as it is in the new species ( Fig.5 View FIGURES 1–5 ).

Description of the male holotype. Body ( Fig. 1 View FIGURES 1–5 ) small, 9.2 mm long, 2.9 mm wide.

Head ( Fig. 2 View FIGURES 1–5 ) moderately large with wide eyes, 2.6 mm wide, almost as wide as body and markedly wider than pronotum, metallic purple with green-blue luster; all head portions glabrous.

Frons distinctly convex in middle and anteriad slopes towards clearly separated clypeus, confluent with vertex over rounded fold, metallic purple with faint green-blue luster; almost smooth in apical portion, middle with rather distinctly longitudinally parallel-striate, the striae become transversely parallel and arcuate when passing onto convex vertex-frons median area forming there arcuate-transverse striae; supra-antennal plates rather wide, irregularly triangular, longitudinally parallel-striate and shiny-purple, their apex forming short and distinct lateral frons-vertex edge.

Vertex metallic purple with green luster particularly on posterior and juxtaorbital areas, convex in middle with small shallow anteromedian impressions; anteromedian and median area oblique-parallel striate, striae on posterior become more transverse along with longitudinal striae running along sublateral and lateral areas passing onto temples, and juxtaorbital areas, posteromedian and occipital areas covered with irregularly transverse-wavy to vermicular rugae.

Genae shiny metallic green, with parallel longitudinal striae running across it.

Clypeus metallic-purple with green anterior and posterior margins, and small portion of median area, slightly bulged in middle, finely irregularly wrinkled with vermicular rugae.

Labrum ( Fig. 3 View FIGURES 1–5 ) 4-setose, ochraceous, with several darker patches, 1.5x longer than wide, 0.8 mm long, 1.2 mm wide, lateral margins moderately arcuate with slightly distinct lateral indentation; anterolateral teeth distinct, right-angled, rounded; anterior lobe moderately prolonged anteriad, lateral margins forming indistinct and rounded anterior teeth, anterior margin raised in middle in form of triangular median tooth.

Mandibles ( Fig. 3 View FIGURES 1–5 ) normally shaped with arcuate lateral margins, rather long, almost symmetrical (except for the typically longer terminal teeth in right mandible), each mandible with four teeth (and basal molar), two inner teeth gradually smaller towards basal molar, ivory-yellow except for black-brownish teeth with black margins.

Palpi ( Fig. 3 View FIGURES 1–5 ). Maxillary palpi normally shaped with terminal palpomeres gradually dilated towards apex, ivory ochraceous with gradually brown to black-brownish terminal palpomeres; labial palpi ochraceous with blackbrownish terminal palpomeres; penultimate (longest) palpomere of labial palpi elongate and slightly flat, not enlarged towards apex.

Antennae ( Fig. 1 View FIGURES 1–5 ) short, reaching back a fourth of the elytra length; scape dark green with only one apical seta, pedicel brownish-ochraceous with a dark green ring in middle, antennomere 3–4 with sparse and indistinct setae, ochraceous, slightly clavate-dilated towards apex, but antennomere 4 much shorter; antennomeres 5–11 with typical micropubescence, ochraceous and gradually darkened.

Thorax. Pronotum ( Fig. 4 View FIGURES 1–5 ) glabrous, metallic purple with faint green luster throughout and more intensively within anterior sulcus and on posterior lobe, slightly longer than wide, length 1.85 mm, width 1.75 mm, sulci well pronounced; anterior lobe slightly wider than posterior lobe, surface of anterior lobe indefinitely rugose with arcuate wrinkled striae; disc almost quadrangular with distinctly convex lateral margins (including clearly visible proepisterna), notopleural sutures thin but distinct in dorsal view; medial line distinct in middle of the disc length; discal surface rather coarsely striate, with parallel-wavy striae becoming obliquely-parallel near medial line; narrow juxtanotopleural area smooth and shiny-green; posterior lobe with scattered, irregular rugae of indefinite shape, with distinct posterior rim; all ventral and lateral sterna glabrous and almost smooth, metallic dark green with almost no luster.

Elytra ( Figs 1 and 5 View FIGURES 1–5 ) elongate, 5.8 mm long, 2.9 mm wide, slightly dilated posteriad after the anterior third, with rounded humeri, anteapical angles arcuate and running obliquely towards apices which are rounded towards almost indistinct sutural spine; microserrulation indistinct, partly absent; elytral dorsal surface moderately convex, humeral impressions long and deep, basodiscal convexity distinct, clearly delineated by rather deep discal impression; additional, rather deep impression present mesad of whitish lateromedian macula; anteapical-apical impressions distinct; elytral coloration uniformly purple with faint purple and green luster; surface coarsely punctate, punctures isolated, some of them anastomosing in chains, slightly larger on elytral base, iridescent green, punctures becoming slightly smaller and shallower on posterior declivity and lateral areas, nearly effaced on bulged area of anteapical angles; elytral surface glabrous except for the usual, indistinct, only occasional and easily abraded hair like sensory setae; whitish elytral maculation consisting of three maculae: large humeral-lateral band which is visible from above that almost reaches lateromedian macula; lateromedian subtriangular macula, distinctly mesad-prolonged; anteapical triangular macula dilated in middle and then narrowed distinctly distant from apex.

Legs. Coxae dark-green with faint purple luster, anterior and lateral posterior area of pro- and mesocoxae whitish setose; metacoxae with faint green luster, with one central seta and lateral margin fringed with dense setae; trochanters glabrous, ochre; femora basely purple, apically ochraceous with apex testaceous; femoral surface covered with rather sparse, short, whitish semierect setae; tibiae concolored with femora apex, and becoming darker towards apex, covered with scattered, semierected, whitish setae that are scattered and somewhat thicker on metatibiae; apical-ventral area of protibiae and mesotibiae with usual, dense whitish to rusty setose pad; tarsi black with brown-darkened apex of first tarsomere, first three dilated protarsomeres in male with dense greyish-white pad; claws black-brown.

Abdomen. Ventrites metallic dark green with green luster, surface of ventrites smooth and glabrous (except for typical, long hair like sensory seta (easily abraded) on each side at posterior margin of last three ventrites).

Aedeagus (Figs 6 and 7) short and narrow, 7.25 times longer than wide, 2.90 mm long, 0.4 mm wide, apical portion rather short and parallel, with slight apical constriction forming thick slightly hooked apex; internal sac formed by three distinct sclerites: a ventral spur with double-wing “stingray-like” base, an oval upper sclerite with a echinulate surface and a dorso-basal semitriangular piece.

Biology and distribution. The male Holotype of Mesochila moraveci   sp. nov. was collected during the summer of the Southern Hemisphere , in December. It inhabits low altitude areas, around 480 m, of the Parque Nacional da Serra das Confusões, Piauí State, northeastern Brazil.  

Etymology. The name is in honor to Jiří Moravec, a fellow entomologist, who develops research with Tiger beetles, currently working on the thorough revision of the subtribe Odontocheilina in the Neotropics. Singular genitive, masculine.

Remarks. The last three abdominal segments and the aedeagus of the Holotype of this new species were somewhat fragile, breaking during the dissection. Fortunately, as obvious from Fig. 7, the aedeagus was broken before the internal sac and did not damage the sclerites integrity.