Druon alexandri Melika, Nicholls & Stone, 2022

Cuesta-Porta, Victor, Melika, George, Nicholls, James A., Stone, Graham N. & Pujade-Villar, Juli, 2022, Re-establishment of the Nearctic oak cynipid gall wasp genus Druon Kinsey, 1937 (Hymenoptera: Cynipidae: Cynipini), with description of five new species, Zootaxa 5132 (1), pp. 1-92 : 10-14

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Druon alexandri Melika, Nicholls & Stone

sp. nov.

Druon alexandri Melika, Nicholls & Stone , sp. nov.

Figs. 1–12 View FIGURES 1–5 View FIGURES 6–9 View FIGURES 10–12

http://zoobank.org/ urn:lsid:zoobank.org:act:C9E6C49B-A911-458D-B63D-9BF0236F48A4

Type material. Holotype female: “ USA, Arizona, 5km N of Payson , gall type 40a, ex Q. turbinella, AZ 325, coll. 2007.x.29. leg. J.A. Nicholls ”; 12 paratype females: 9 paratype females “ USA, Arizona, 5km N of Payson, gall type 40b, ex Q. turbinella, AZ 325, AZ327 , AZ328 , AZ329 , coll. 2007.x.29. leg. J.A. Nicholls ”; 3 paratype females “ USA, Arizona, 25miles S of Flagstaff on I17, ex Q. turbinella, AZ 396, AZ397 , AZ398 , coll. 2007.x.31., leg. J.A. Nicholls ” . Holotype female and 9 female paratypes are deposited in the USNM, 3 female paratypes in the PHD- NRL .

Additional material examined. Three females “ USA, AZ, 25miles S Flagstaff on I17, gall type 40a, ex Q. turbinella, AZ 373, AZ381 , AZ390 ; coll. 2007.x.31., leg. J.A. Nicholls ” .

Etymology. Named after Alexander Melika, grandson of G. Melika.

Diagnosis. The new species belongs to the group of dark coloured Druon species (along with D. gregori , D. serretae and D. flocculentum ). It is the only species with an alutaceous notaulus furrow ( Fig. 7 View FIGURES 6–9 ) (smooth in all other species in this group ( Fig. 27 View FIGURES 26–29 )). Also differs from D. gregori in having small ocelli, OOL 1.3× the diameter of lateral ocellus ( Fig. 2 View FIGURES 1–5 ) (OOL at most as long as diameter of lateral ocellus in D. gregori ( Fig. 47 View FIGURES 46–49 )). Differs from D. serretae in shape of head (see the key) and in having the notaulus incomplete (complete in D. serretae ( Fig. 229 View FIGURES 228–231 )). It is closely related to D. flocculentum but differs in the transfacial distance being subequal to height of compound eye in D. alexandri ( Fig. 1 View FIGURES 1–5 ) (shorter than height of eye in D. flocculentum ( Fig. 15 View FIGURES 13–15 )), toruli below mid height of face (at mid height of face in D. flocculentum ), notaulus furrow alutaceous (smooth in D. flocculentum ) and propodeal carinae fragmented and incomplete ( Fig. 9 View FIGURES 6–9 ) (complete in D. flocculentum ( Fig. 19 View FIGURES 16–19 )).

Description. Asexual female ( Figs. 1–11 View FIGURES 1–5 View FIGURES 6–9 View FIGURES 10–12 ). Head, antenna, mesosoma dark brown to black; metasoma slightly paler; mouthparts, legs light brown to yellowish, with darker coxae.

Head alutaceous, with sparse setae, denser on lower face, rounded, 1.2× as broad as high and slightly broader than mesosoma in frontal view; 2.1× as broad as long in dorsal view. Gena alutaceous, not broadened behind eye in frontal view, narrower than transverse diameter of eye in lateral view. Malar space alutaceous, with striae radiating from clypeus and nearly reaching eye; eye 3.75× as high as length of malar space. Eyes slightly converging ventrally. POL 2.4× as long as OOL, OOL 1.3× as long as diameter of lateral ocellus and equal to LOL, all ocelli ovate, of same size. Transfacial distance slightly shorter than height of eye; torulus at the mid height of face, lower face as high as frons, diameter of antennal torulus 1.3× as long as distance between them, distance between torulus and eye 1.4× as long as diameter of torulus; lower face smooth glabrous, with white setae, with short delicate striae; slightly elevated median area delicately coriaceous, glabrous, with few setae. Clypeus rectangular, nearly 2.0× as broad as high, smooth, glabrous, with long setae along ventral edge; ventrally rounded, not emarginate and without median incision; anterior tentorial pit large, rounded, distinct, epistomal sulcus distinct, clypeo-pleurostomal line well impressed. Frons uniformly alutaceous, without striae and setae, interocellar area alutaceous. Vertex, occiput and postocciput alutaceous; postgena smooth, without setae; posterior tentorial pit large, elongated, area below impressed; occipital foramen as high as height of postgenal bridge; hypostomal carina emarginate, continuing into postgenal sulci which strongly diverge toward occipital foramen, postgenal bridge anteriorly slightly broader than occipital foramen. Antenna longer than head+mesosoma, with 11 flagellomeres (in some specimens 12 flagellomeres, suture between F12 and F11 hardly visible), pedicel longer than broad; flagellomeres consequently broader towards apical end of antenna; F1 1.6× as long as pedicel and 1.3× as long as F2; F2 1.1× as long as F3; F3=F4=F5, F5 1.1× as long as F6, F6 to F10 nearly equal in length; F11 2.1× as long as F10; placodeal sensilla on F6–F11.

Mesosoma 1.2× as long as high, with a few white setae, setae denser along propleuron, mesopleural triangle and on lateral propodeal area. Pronotum smooth, glabrous, with delicate parallel striae and sparse setae laterally; propleuron smooth, glabrous. Mesoscutum uniformly and entirely reticulate, with a few white setae along notauli, slightly broader than long (greatest width measured across mesoscutum level with base of tegulae). Notaulus complete but weakly impressed in anterior 1/3, strongly impressed in posterior 2/3 of mesoscutum length, notaulus furrows alutaceous and converging strongly posteriorly; in most posterior part distance between notauli shorter than distance between notaulus and side of mesoscutum; anterior parallel line invisible; parapsidal line marked with broad impressed area; median mesoscutal line absent; parascutal carina broad, reaching notaulus. Mesoscutellum ovate, slightly longer than broad; disk of mesoscutellum smooth, glabrous, dull rugose laterally and posteriorly, overhanging metanotum, with sparse long setae; circumscutellar carina distinct laterally, absent or indistinct posteriorly. Mesoscutellar foveae transverse, about 2.0× as broad as high, smooth, glabrous, divided by narrow rugose elevated central carina, not delimited posteriorly. Mesopleuron including speculum entirely with delicate interrupted parallel striae, without setae; mesopleural triangle smooth, glabrous, with a few strong irregular striae and long white setae; dorsal and lateral axillar areas smooth, shining, and glabrous; axillula with delicate parallel longitudinal striae; subaxillular bar smooth, glabrous, triangular, posteriorly as high as height of metanotal trough; metapleural sulcus reaching mesopleuron slightly above half of its height, upper part of sulcus also distinct, sulcus separating smooth, glabrous area, with some setae in lower part. Metascutellum smooth, glabrous, as high as height of smooth, glabrous ventral impressed area; metanotal trough smooth, glabrous; central propodeal area smooth, glabrous; several parallel indistinct interrupted lateral propodeal carinae present, bent outwards in posterior 1/3; in some cases, lateral carinae absent; lateral propodeal area smooth, glabrous, with long white setae, with rounded bump at the base of each seta. Nucha with numerous sulci dorsally and laterally. Tarsal claws with basal lobe.

Fore wing longer than body, hyaline, with distinct dense cilia on margin, veins dark brown, radial cell open, 4.5× as long as broad; Rs nearly reaching wing margin, R1 less pigmented, not reaching wing margin; areolet triangular, closed and distinct; Rs+M inconspicuous, its projection reaching basalis in the lower 1/3 of its height.

Metasoma as long as head+mesosoma, slightly longer than high in lateral view; second metasomal tergum extending to half-length of metasoma in dorsal view, with a few white setae anterolaterally, without micropunctures; terga 3 and 4 smooth, glabrous, without micropunctures; subsequent terga with sparse delicate micropunctures. Hypopygium with micropunctures, prominent part of ventral spine of hypopygium 5.1× as long as broad in ventral view, with a few short white setae ventrally. Body length 1.5–1.8 mm (n = 10).

Gall ( Fig. 12 View FIGURES 10–12 ). Reddish-yellow furry gall mass (gregarious, multilocular) on underside of leaf, to 20 mm long, projecting from leaf by up to 15 mm. Extremely hard to distinguish externally from the asexual generation galls of D. protagion , D. receptum or Andricus tecturnarum Kinsey, 1920 .

Biology. Only the asexual generation is known, which induces furry leaf galls on Q. turbinella (Section Quercus , Series Leucomexicanae). Galls mature in October–November; adults start to emerge in January, peak emergence in in March.

Distribution. USA: Arizona.


Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History


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Museu Carlos Machado