Sporadothrix gracilis Hermann, 1907

Londt, Jason G. H., 2010, A review of Afrotropical Acnephalum Macquart, 1838, including the reinstatement of Sporadothrix Hermann, 1907 and descriptions of two new genera (Diptera: Asilidae: Stenopogoninae), African Invertebrates 51 (2), pp. 431-431 : 461-464

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https://doi.org/ 10.5733/afin.051.0212

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Sporadothrix gracilis Hermann, 1907


Sporadothrix gracilis Hermann, 1907 View in CoL View at ENA comb. rev.

Figs 3 View Figs 1–5 , 9 View Figs 6–11 , 16, 21 View Figs 12–23 , 55–57 View Figs 52–63 , 68 View Fig

Sporadothrix gracilis: Hermann 1907: 10 View in CoL ; Hull 1062: 347; Oldroyd 1974: 83; 1981: 370 (catalogue).

Acnephalum cylindricum Oldroyd, 1974: 26 View in CoL ; 1981: 359 (catalogue). Syn. n.

Acnephalum gracilis: Londt 1994: 76 .

Redescription (Based on unique holotype. Condition: Fair; both eyes deformed through contractions (may have been mounted from alcohol); tips of antennal styles broken (terminal spines missing); wings badly damaged (right wing broken off beyond where Sc meets C, left wing broken off beyond where R 1 meets C), posterior margins mostly missing.):

Head: Dark red-brown, pale yellowish white setose, slightly greasy (pruinescence not evident). Antenna: Uniformly red-brown. Segmental ratios 1.0:1.3:3.3:1.0:2.5 (tip missing) – scape slightly shorter than pedicel, both segments with short whitish macrosetae (far shorter than postpedicel); postpedicel less than twice length of scape and pedicel combined; proximal element of 2-segmented style as long as scape; distal element of style as long or longer than scape and pedicel combined. Face red-brown, entirely silver pruinose. Mystax whitish, covering entire face. Frons, vertex and postocular region red-brown, whitish setose; angle subtended by eye margins at level of frons/vertex c. 12°. Proboscis orange-brown to dark red-brown, whitish setose. Palpus 2-segmented, whitish setose.

Thorax: Uniformly dark red-brown. Pronotum white setose. Mesonotum whitish setose. Lateral macrosetae moderately developed, pale yellowish white. Pleura largely asetose except for some long, straight, white katatergals and dorsally situated anepisternals. Katepisternum long white setose. Scutellum dark red-brown, gold-silver pruinose, with poorly developed transverse, subapical groove. Eight well developed pale yellowish apical macrosetae, unaccompanied by shorter setae; disc asetose.Legs: Dark red brown, distal ends of femora and proximal parts of femora and tib yellowish. Setae yellowish white. Ventral parts of tar and terminal end of tib with short, black setae. Claws black, long (about as long as tarsomere 5); empodia slender, yellowish, less than half length of claws; pulvilli absent. Haltere pale yellow-white, base slightly darker. Wing (damaged, usual measurements impossible): Distance between humeral crossvein and tip of R 1 3.9 mm. Veins brown-yellow, membrane entirely lacking microtrichiae. Membrane entirely transparent and unstained. Vein R 4 with shortish basal stump-vein.

Abdomen: Uniformly dark red-brown to black; pale yellow-white. Eight terga clearly discernable, T2–6 longer than wide. Terga apruinose, sterna finely goldish pruinose.

Genitalia exposed (not withdrawn between terminal terga and sterna) ( Figs 55–57 View Figs 52–63 ): Epand medially incised to form two clearly defined lobes; lobes project to a similar extent as external parts of goncx. Proc juts out to about same level achieved by hypd (lateral view). External lobe of goncx suboval in lateral view, interior lobe slender, slightly down-curved distally. Hypd broadly rounded basally, tapering distally to narrowly rounded apex which has a small medial lobe.

Note: As the antennae and wings of the holotype are damaged, the following measurements are those of the cylindricum holotype, which is larger than the gracilis type (distance between humeral crossvein and tip of R 1 being 7.4 mm). Antennal ratios: 1:1.2:3.5:1.1:2.2. Wing: 8.6× 3.4 mm. Illustrations of an entire specimen ( Fig. 3 View Figs 1–5 ), antenna ( Fig. 16 View Figs 12–23 ), wing ( Fig. 9 View Figs 6–11 ) and tar 5 ( Fig. 21 View Figs 12–23 ) are those of other specimens.

Variation: Previously known only from the two type specimens listed below, I can now list further 31 specimens. This is a remarkably consistent species showing no variation of significance. There is a little variation in size, males (wing length 6.2–8.8 mm) being slightly smaller than females (wing length 6.3–10.9 mm).

Type specimens examined: Holotype ( Sporadothrix gracilis ): NAMIBIA: ♂ ‘Brit. S.W: Afrika / Kalahari [19°05'S: 14°35'E] / L. Schultze S.’, ‘Holotypus’ [red], ‘ Sporadothrix / gracilis / Type Hr / Kalahari / Nr 968.2 / Det. / Dr. F. Hermann [last 2 lines sideways]’ (ZMHB). Holotype ( Acnephalum cylindricum ): ♀ ‘80 mls S. of / Gobabis [22°27'S: 18°58'E] S.W.A. / 1 Jan. 1961 / W. D. Haacke.’, ‘Collection. Transvaal / Museum’ [pale green], ‘ Acnephalum ♀ / cylindricum sp. n. / det. H. Oldroyd 1971 / Holotype’ [white] (NMSA).

Type locality: The precise provenance of the gracilis type specimen is not known. I therefore designate the type locality as 80 km S of Gobabis, where the cylindricum holotype was collected.

Other specimens studied: BOTSWANA: 1♂ ‘nr. [illegible] / Bechuanaland / 20 xii.57’ (BMNH). NAMIBIA: 1♂ ‘S W Africa: / Satansplatz [24°51'S: 17°31'E] / 1300m / 17­18 xii.1933 / K Jordan’ (BMNH); 2♀ ‘Swartbaas West 276 / Keetmanshoop / SE 2619Dc / 19­22 Apr. 1972 ’, ‘H7800’ (NMNW). SOUTH AFRICA: 4♂ 3♀ ‘Sth Africa Cape Prov / ca. 65km SE Noenieput / 2720DC 20.iii.1982 / J. Londt & L. Schoeman / Kloof/ green shrubs’ (NMSA); 1♂ 1♀ ‘South Africa:N Cape / 39km WNW of Upington / 28°21.219'S: 020°54.319'E / 955m J Londt & T Dikow / 2.ii.2004 Dry road verge / Stipogrostis Eragrostis area’ (NMSA); 1♂ ‘South Africa: N Cape / Witsand Nature Reserve / ca. 28°32'15"S: 22°30'30"E / 1200m 6.iii.2001 / J.G.H. Londt Red sand. / Acacia / Grewia grassland’ (NMSA); 1♀ ‘South Africa: N Cape / Witsand Nature Reserve / 28°33'37"S: 22°29'05"E / 1200m 5–8.iii.2001 / J.G.H. Londt White sand. / Low vegetation, few trees’ (NMSA); 2♂ 3♀ ‘South Africa: N Cape / Witsand Nature Reserve / 28°33.615'S: 022°29.105'E / 1160m J Londt & T Dikow / 31.i.–1.ii.2004 Acacia / savannah & white dune area’ (NMSA, 1♀ Coll TD); 3♂ 5♀ ‘South Africa: N Cape / Witsand Nature Reserve / 28°33.673'S: 022°29.656'E / 1200m J Londt & T Dikow / 30.i.–2.ii.2004 Acacia / savannah. Red sandy ridge’ (NMSA, 2♂ 1♀ Coll TD); 1♂ ‘S. Afr. Cape Prov. / Boksputs Farm / 28°35'S: 20°54'E. / Ca. 20km N. Keimoes / 5.ii.1979 / B. Lamoral’ (NMSA); 8♂ 6♀ ‘South Africa: N Cape / Ca. 22km E Keimoes 635m / 28°44.910'S: 020°46.191'E / 4.ii.2004 J Londt T Dikow / Vegetated red Kalahari sand / dune. Acacia savannah’ (NMSA, 3♂ 3♀ Coll TD); 1♀ 4 km NW Hotazel, 29°13'44"S: 22°55'24"E, Almeida, 17.i.2004, 1030 m (Coll TD).

Note: I have not personally studied a few of the specimens currently housed in Dr Torsten Dikow’s collection (listed as Coll TD above) but had input into their identification.

Distribution, phenology (Table 3) and biology: The species appears to be fairly widely distributed being recorded from four places in Namibia and eight in the Northern Cape Province of South Africa (four being within the Witsand Nature Reserve) ( Fig. 68 View Fig ), as well as from one unknown locality in Botswana. Adults are active in summer and have been collected in December–April. Specimens have been taken from grass in dry, sandy, Acacia savannah habitats.

Remarks: Oldroyd (1974: 83), who had not seen the holotype, records, for gracilis , ‘Type in? Munich. Type-locality: Kalahari Desert. Distribution. I have seen one male that I assign to this species, from S.W. AFRICA: Noachabeb, 43 km N.N.E. Grunan [Grünau], 10–12.i.1972 (B. M. S Afr. Exped., 1972).’ Firstly, the type is not in Munich, but in the ZMHB collection. Secondly, I have studied the Noachabeb male (identified as gracilis by Oldroyd (1974) and commented upon by Londt (1994)) and, as suspected, it has proved to be a new species of Ammodaimon Londt, 1985 , which is described below.

Oldroyd (1974: 26) characterised cylindricum in a key, providing a description of fewer than forty words and no illustrations. His statement regarding the material used is equally brief: ‘ Holotype ♂ in Pretoria. Type locality: S. W. AFRICA, 128 km S. of Gobabis , January (W. D. Haacke).’ The unique holotype, is actually a female, now in the NMSA, and is labelled 80 miles S of Gobabis, in present day Namibia.














Sporadothrix gracilis Hermann, 1907

Londt, Jason G. H. 2010

Acnephalum cylindricum

OLDROYD, H. 1974: 26

Sporadothrix gracilis: Hermann 1907: 10

OLDROYD, H. 1974: 83
HERMANN, F. 1907: 10
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