Phyllophaga (Phyllophaga) sechi Cano, 2020

Cano, Enio B., 2020, Two new species of Phyllophaga of the Schizorhina species group from cloud forests of Chiapas, México and Guatemala (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae: Melolonthinae), Insecta Mundi 2020 (827), pp. 1-14 : 8-12

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Phyllophaga (Phyllophaga) sechi Cano

new species

Phyllophaga (Phyllophaga) sechi Cano   , new species

( Fig. 4–6 View Figure 4 View Figure 5 View Figure 6 )

Type material. Holotype male. GUATEMALA: Huehuetenango, San José Maxbal , 1–5 VIII 2008, 1300m. 15.965805, −91.31645. Bosque nuboso. Trampa Metal Arc 400 + UV. Col. F. Camposeco ( USAC) GoogleMaps   . Paratypes (2 ♂, USAC), same data as holotype except 23-junio-2008, 1396m, 15.95805, -91.31645, luz UV, Col. Juan Tapia Tadero.

Type locality. Low altitude cloud forest near Laguna Maxbal, at the northern slopes of Sierra de los Cuchumatanes in Guatemala.

Diagnosis. Phyllophaga sechi   new species ( Fig. 5–6 View Figure 5 View Figure 6 ) is similar to Phyllophaga acacoyahuana   ( Fig. 7A View Figure 7 ) from which it can be easily separated by lack of a strong impression at anterior sides of pronotum, wider and shorter base of parameres, the notably laminated, finger-like dorsal projections of phallobase, and presence of a pair of ventral sclerotized plates of genital capsule. Phyllophaga sechi   new species is probably the sister species of P. acacoyahuana   .

Description. Dorsal coloration shiny reddish-brown to almost black, with some bluish reflections; epipleuron, elytral border and apex of elytra reddish-brown; ventral coloration of abdomen and metasternum dark reddishbrown; legs reddish-brown. Total length of body: 24.47 mm. Humeral wide: 10.14 mm.

Head. Clypeus short, 3.8 times wider than long, anterior border deeply and widely emarginate, anterior angles markedly rounded and moderately elevated; clypeal disc slightly rugose, concave towards lateral sides and slightly convex centrally, with circular shallow punctures mostly separated by at least one diameter, each puncture with a very minute, erect, whitish seta. Frontoclypeal suture marked and bisinuate, well-marked medially and projecting posteriorly occupying half of frons length. Frons 4.41 times wider than long, uniformly convex (except medially), with shallow and moderate circular punctures giving a slightly rugose aspect, each puncture with a very minute whitish, decumbent seta, except at sides with 2 (left) and 1 (right) small whitish setae; disc with 7 long, yellowish setae, on strong and deeper punctures; vertex smooth. Antennae 10 segmented; segments 3 and 4 subcylindrical of equal length; segments 5 and 6 shorter and wide, with a rounded projection; segment 7 slightly shorter than 6 and very wide, with an acute projection; wide (length in most authors) of antennal club as the length of segments 3–5 combined, with segment 8 wider than 9 or 10. Interocular distance 11.25 mm, wide of each eye 1.95 mm. Ocular canthus short and narrow with 7–9 erect setae. Labrum bilobate, with anterior bor- der deeply emarginated, with numerous erect setae on lateral borders. Labium longitudinally widely and deeply excavated, disc bare, with sparse long setae towards sides, anterior border emarginate.

Prothorax. Pronotum convex, 1.7 times wider than long. Anterior angles almost straight, slightly acute; posterior angles slightly obtuse. Lateral borders rounded, not angulate; marginal border very narrow and strongly crenulated with scarce sparse setae; posterior border barely marked and evanescent at middle in front of scutellum and punctured-setose at sides. Disc with circular and deep punctures, irregularly distributed giving a rugose aspect, each puncture with a decumbent whitish-setae; punctures, denser and deeper towards antero-lateral bor- der and near posterior border.

Pterothorax. Scutellum wider than long (1.4:1) with deep, irregular, punctures towards sides, each puncture with a decumbent, whitish seta; middle line marked only at posterior 1⁄6; anterior border declivous. Elytra almost parallel and almost same wide than posterior margin of pronotum (at the level of humeri), slightly wider from anterior 1/3 to apex; moderately rugose-punctured; punctures rounded an each with a minute, decumbent seta, only visible at great magnification; each elytron 2.7 times longer than wide. Elytral epipleura with scattered short yellow-whitish setae; epipleural keel progressively effacing from middle of the third abdominal segment to apex. Sutural costa elevated and well-marked, with scarce and disperse minute punctures, each puncture with a whitish decumbent minute seta; two marked, transversal, elevated and polished discal costae, arising near humeral callus, less marked at posterior 1/4 where fuse with the apical callus; lateral costae behind humeral callus, polished and unmarked at anterior 1/4. Humeral callus prominent and rounded; apical callus wide, rounded moderately prominent. Pterosternum densely punturated-rugose, each puncture with a long, yellowish setae, giving a hairy aspect.

Abdomen. Prepygidium with a small excavation continued with fifth abdominal segment of venter, at the level of posterior spiracle. Pygidium 1.6 times wider than long, convex and shiny, puncturated-rugose, punctures wider at disc, each puncture with a whitish minute seta; disc with a longitudinal and smooth keel; apical border with punctures with long, yellowish setae. Abdominal segments 2–4 widely convex; segment 2 with moderately abundant small and shallow punctures, each containing a short decumbent yellowish seta; segments 3–4 similar to preceding but with a longitudinal lateral impression excavated anteriorly and punctures with minute setae (except medially with scarce, small setae). Abdominal segment 5 widely convex, except by posterior transversal, almost smooth concavity, and densely setose-puncturated posterolateral shallow and rounded concavity; posterolateral concavity with whitish and minute setae together with some scattered short setae; anterior border of posterolateral concavity excavated at level of impression of fourth segment. Medial portion of fifth segment with small rugose-punctures, denser posteriorly before transverse concavity. Anal plate narrow, medially concave and with minute and shallow rugose-punctures, surface with some long and short setae.

Legs. Protibiae tridentate, shorter than protarsus (1:1.16); protibial spur straight, with acute and slightly curved downward apex; longer than second segment of protarsus (1.3:1). Middle of external face of mesotibiae with a well-marked, crenulated, oblique, transversal keel, with 8-9 thorny setae arising from base in each crenulation. Proximal 1/3 of mesotibiae with a small and incomplete keel, with 3 thorny setae. Mesotibial spurs articulate, almost straight and with acute and slightly curved, apex; both spurs almost with the same length. Metatibiae shorter than metatarsus (1:1.26); middle of external face with a well-marked, crenulate, oblique, transversal keel, with 6–7 thorny setae arising from the base in each crenulation. Proximal 1/3 with 2–3 thorny setae and 2–3 crenulations marked. Metatibial spurs articulated; superior elongated and slender, slightly curved and with acute apex, longer than first segment of metatarsus; inferior spur at least 1/2 the length of superior, markedly curved and with apex acute, shorter than first segment of metatarsus. Pro- and meso-tarsal segments 1–4 with a small spine on distal border, shorter in fourth; second protarsal segment shorter than first and same length as third; first mesotarsal segment longer and wider than second. Second metatarsal segment longer than first and the segments 3–5; meta-tarsal segments 1–4 with a row of ventral thorny setae, forming a comb. All tarsal claws divided and equal; basal tooth ventrally reaching same level of apical tooth; basal tooth closer to basal process than to apical tooth.

Genital capsule. Parameres in lateral view narrow, elongated and free at apex; angulate before clavate, apical 1/4; basally fused and phallobase with a pair of superior finger-like laminated and convergent projections ( Fig. 6A–B View Figure 6 ). Ventral membrane of genital capsule with sclerotized plates connected to parameres ( Fig 6C View Figure 6 ). Tectum prominent and separated from basal piece by a constriction. Aedeagus sclerotized, asymmetrical and long, dorsally membranous.

Variation. Frons of male paratypes with 10 long, yellowish setae and lacking small whitish setae at sides. One reddish-brown specimen with soft genital capsule (teneral). Total length 24.5–25.92 mm, humeral width 10.75– 10.91 mm.

Female. Unknown.

Etymology. Named after the Panamanian urban singer and composer Carlos Isaias Morales, known as “Sech”. The new species was detected during the livestream concert #coronavibras, during the first week of quarantine of my laboratory, to protect from SARS-CoV-2.

Ecology and distribution. This species is known only from two close sites at the lowland cloud forest near the Laguna Maxbal in Huehuetenango ( Fig. 4 View Figure 4 ). Other species of the Schizorhina group collected at the same site were Phyllophaga javepacuana Morón   and P. mentalis Saylor.  

Key to the species of subgroup 2 of the Schizorhina species group of Phyllophaga   s.str. known from Chiapas, México and Guatemala

1. Finger-like dorsal projections of phallobase turned downward at apical 1/3 or 1/2 ( Fig. 7C–D View Figure 7 )........ 2

— Finger-like dorsal projections of phallobase turned upward at apical 1/3 or 1/2 ( Fig. 1A View Figure 1 , 6A–B View Figure 6 , 7A–B View Figure 7 ).. 3

2. Sides of segments 1–5 of abdomen with a row of strong short setae; prepygidium with a deep strong sulcus running between the posterior spiracles. Lowland cloud forest........................................................................... Phyllophaga javepacuana Morón, 2003  

— Sides of segments 1–5 of abdomen bare; prepygidium with a shallow sulcus running between the posterior spiracles. Tropical rain forest........................... Phyllophaga ginigra Saylor, 1940  

3. Ventral membrane of genital capsule with sclerotized plates connected to the parameres ( Fig. 6C View Figure 6 ); finger-like dorsal projections of phallobase laminated ( Fig. 6A–B View Figure 6 ). Disc of frons with several long setae.......................................................... Phyllophaga sechi Cano   , n. sp.

— Ventral membrane of genital capsule without sclerotized plates; finger-like dorsal projections of phallobase thin or expanded at most at apical 1/2. Disc of frons rarely with long setae.............. 4

4. Tectum of genital capsule projected over the phallobase ( Fig. 7B View Figure 7 )........................................................................... Phyllophaga alvareztoroi Morón and Blas, 2006  

— Tectum of genital capsule not projected over the phallobase.................................... 5

5. Anterolateral sides of pronotum with an impression. Phallobase ( Fig. 7A View Figure 7 ) in dorsal view elongated and deeply intruding into tectum, forming a marked “V”; finger-like dorsal projections of phallobase almost clavate at apical 1/3.................. Phyllophaga acacoyahuana Morón and Blas, 2006  

— Anterolateral sides of pronotum without an impression. Phallobase ( Fig. 2A–B View Figure 2 ) in dorsal view short, slightly intruding into tectum forming a very wide “V”; finger-like dorsal projections of phallobase widely expanded at apical 1/3............................ Phyllophaga badbunnyi Cano   , n. sp.


Departamento de Biologia de la Universidad del Valle


University of Western Australia