Paratischeria boehmerica Diškus & Stonis, 2021

Stonis, Jonas R., Diškus, Arūnas, Monro, Alexandre K., Dai, Xiaohua & Xu, Jiasheng, 2021, Most trumpet moths don’t feed on plants of the nettle family but Paratischeria does: the first discovery of Tischeriidae (Lepidoptera) on Urticaceae in Asia, Zootaxa 5040 (2), pp. 247-264 : 248-256

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Paratischeria boehmerica Diškus & Stonis

sp. nov.

Paratischeria boehmerica Diškus & Stonis , sp. nov.

( Figs. 1–43 View FIGURE 1 View FIGURES 2–9 View FIGURES 10–21 View FIGURES 22–26 View FIGURES 27–32 View FIGURES 33–39 View FIGURES 40–43 )

Type material. Holotype: ♂, LAOS: Luang Prabang Province, 30 km SW Luang Prabang, 19°44’58”N, 101°59’22”E, elevation ca. 560 m, mining larva on Urticaceae , 7.ii.2020, ex pupa ii.2020, field card no. 5319, leg. A. Diškus & M. Jocius, genitalia slide no. AD1055 ♂ ( ZIN) GoogleMaps . Paratypes: 4 ♀, same label data as holotype, genitalia slide no. AD1062 GoogleMaps ♀ ( ZIN) ; 2 ♂, 1 ♀, 30 km SW Luang Prabang, 19°44’57”N, 101°59’35”E, elevation ca. 460 m, mining larvae on Urticaceae , 7.ii.2020, ex pupa ii.2020, field card no. 5318, leg. A. Diškus & M. Jocius, genitalia slide nos. AD1063 GoogleMaps ♂, AD1064 ♀ ( ZIN) ; 1 ♂, 1 ♀, Vientiane Province, Vang Vieng , 18°56’03”N, 102°25’32”E, elevation ca. 250 m, mining larvae on Boehmeria sp. ( Urticaceae ), 3.ii.2020, ex pupa ii.2020, field card no. 5309, leg. A. Diškus & M. Jocius, genitalia slide no. AD1036 GoogleMaps ♂ ( ZIN) ; 1 ♂, same label data ( NRC) ; 1 ♂, same label data ( GNU) .

Diagnosis. Paratischeria boehmerica sp. nov. belongs to the P. ferruginea group designated and described by Stonis et al. (2017a). Externally, this new species differs from South American and African members of the group in the yellow-ochre colour of the forewing speckled with dark brown scales; from the most similar South East Asian P. grossa sp. nov. (described below) it differs in the smaller size and paler colour of the forewing. In the male genitalia, P. boehmerica differs from P. grossa in the unique, caudally rounded dorsal sclerite ( Fig. 31 View FIGURES 27–32 ), absence of lobe-like anterior processes of the tegumen, and the truncated basal lobe of the valva ( Fig. 30 View FIGURES 27–32 ); from the resembling African P. urticolella (Ghesquière) , the new species differs in the presence of a basal lobe of the valva and significantly less deep apical bifurcation of the phallus. In the female genitalia, the smaller size (about 1045–1330 µm) and the short corpus bursae without distinctive coils distinguish P. boehmerica from P. grossa (female of P. urticolella is unknown).

The new species is also distinctive because no other species in this genus is known to feed on Boehmeria Jacq. ( Urticaceae ) in Asia.

Male ( Figs. 22, 23 View FIGURES 22–26 ). Forewing length 2.3–2.8 mm; wingspan 5.1–6.2 mm (n = 4).

Head. Frons, palpus, and pecten cream to yellowish brown; frontal tuft and collar pale brownish grey to ochrebrown, sometimes with purple iridescence; antenna slightly longer than one half the length of forewing; flagellum grey-brown to ochre-brown; sensilla very fine, relatively short, inconspicuous.

Thorax. Tegula blackish grey with some purple and blue iridescence, distally pale brown to ochre-brown. Thorax and forewing pale brownish yellow to pale ochre-yellow, occasionally ochre. Along costal margin and apically, forewing densely speckled with dark brown or blackish brown scales with purple and blue iridescence; dark brown scales also sparsely irrorate the rest of forewing and form a small, irregular spot on tornus; fringe dark grey on costal margin, yellow-ochre apically, pale grey on tornus; fringe line distinctive, comprised of dark brown scales or inconspicuous, incomplete; forewing underside dark brown, without spots or androconia. Hindwing grey to pale grey on upper side and underside, without androconia; fringe pale grey. Legs glossy brownish cream, dark grey-brown to blackish brown on upper side.

Abdomen. Metallic glossy, grey to dark brown on upper side and underside, sometimes with purple iridescence and ochre or pale brown scales on underside; anal tufts short, indistinctive, grey to greyish cream; genital segments cream to grey or golden ochre. Genitalia ( Figs. 27–39 View FIGURES 27–32 View FIGURES 33–39 ) with capsule 290–390 µm long (or 460 µm long if measured from valval tips to vinculum), 220–250 µm wide. Uncus ( Figs. 28 View FIGURES 27–32 , 34 View FIGURES 33–39 ) with two long and slender lobes. Valva ( Figs. 30 View FIGURES 27–32 , 35 View FIGURES 33–39 ) about 320 µm long, basally with a short lobe ( Fig. 30 View FIGURES 27–32 ). Anellus ( Figs. 32 View FIGURES 27–32 , 38, 39 View FIGURES 33–39 ) strongly thickened laterally and caudally. Dorsal sclerite well-developed ( Fig. 34 View FIGURES 33–39 ), rounded caudally ( Fig. 33 View FIGURES 33–39 ). Vinculum rounded ( Fig. 30 View FIGURES 27–32 ). Phallus 230–240 µm long, apically deeply bifurcated, weakly thickened, without spines, basally very wide ( Figs. 30–32 View FIGURES 27–32 , 37 View FIGURES 33–39 ).

Female ( Figs. 24–26 View FIGURES 22–26 ). Forewing length 2.3–3.6 mm; wingspan 7.1–7.9 mm (n = 4) (also see Remarks). Similar to male.

Genitalia ( Figs. 40–43 View FIGURES 40–43 ) 1045–1330 µm long. Ovipositor lobes large, rounded, densely clothed with short, modified setae (‘peg setae’); area between ovipositor lobes wide, with tiny papillae and some short setae. Second pair of lobes, lateral and anterior to the ovipositor lobes, 3–4 times smaller than ovipositor lobes, but bearing very long, slender lamellar setae. Anterior and posterior apophyses almost equal in length; prela ( Fig. 42 View FIGURES 40–43 ) comprised of three pairs of projections. Corpus bursae long and slender, basally oval, without pectinations or signum. Accessory sac absent. Ductus spermathecae slender, relatively short, without distinctive coils but with an irregular, slender vesicle.

Bionomics ( Figs. 1–21 View FIGURE 1 View FIGURES 2–9 View FIGURES 10–21 ). Host plants are Boehmeria Jacq. including B. clidemioides var. diffusa (Wedd.) Han- del-Mazzetti and plants from the species complex represented by Boehmeria japonica (L.f.) Miq. and B. zollingeriana Wedd. ( Figs. 3–7, 9 View FIGURES 2–9 ) (see also Remarks). Larvae mine leaves in February and produce irregular blotch-like leaf mines, with little or no frass ( Figs. 10–21 View FIGURES 10–21 ). Pupation in the leaf mine, in an inconspicuous nidus ( Fig. 15 View FIGURES 10–21 ). Adults occur in late February–March. Otherwise, the biology is unknown.

Distribution. Paratischeria boehmerica is known from three sites in Luang Prabang and Vientiane provinces of Laos, at an elevation of about 250– 560 m.

Etymology. The species is named after the host plant, Boehmeria Jacq. ( Urticaceae ).

Remarks. One paratype female specimen seems to be aberrant, being unusually small, with forewing 1.9 mm long and wingspan 4.2 mm (it was reared indoors; deposited at NRC) ( Fig. 25 View FIGURES 22–26 ).

P. boehmerica sp. nov. was found mining several species of Boehmeria ( Figs. 2–9 View FIGURES 2–9 ): sample no. 5309 was collected from Boehmeria clidemioides var. diffusa (Wedd.) Handel-Mazzetti ; nos. 5318 and 5319 were collected from plants of the species complex comprising Boehmeria sp. , similar with B. japonica (L.f.) Miq. and B. zollingeriana Wedd. , and the leaf mines of each differed slightly in their shape ( Figs. 10–21 View FIGURES 10–21 ). Despite this, the dissected genitalia of insects feeding on different host plants did not display any variation. We therefore conclude that P. boehmerica is an oligophagous species feeding on different but related host plants.


Russian Academy of Sciences, Zoological Institute, Zoological Museum


Division of Biological Sciences, National Research Council of Canada


Guangxi Normal University