Ophion splendens Johansson,

Johansson, Niklas & Cederberg, Björn, 2019, Review of the Swedish species of Ophion (Hymenoptera: Ichneumonidae: Ophioninae), with the description of 18 new species and an illustrated key to Swedish species, European Journal of Taxonomy 550, pp. 1-136: 97-99

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Ophion splendens Johansson

sp. nov.

Ophion splendens Johansson  sp. nov.


Figs 9AView Fig, 13FView Fig, 15AView Fig, 41View Fig


The result of the barcoding indicates that this species is closely related to Ophion confusus  ( Fig. 1View Fig), but morphologically distinguishable from that species by the following: body size larger (fore wing 15–17 mm); usually a higher number of flagellomeres; epicnemial carina between the tip of the pleurosternal angles and the sternal part almost straight; pleurosternal angles obtuse; nervellus broken at or above the middle and the mesopleuron polished with very scarce and weak punctures.


The species is large, often exhibits beautiful variations in brown and yellow colours and has a strongly polished and shining mesosoma.

Material examined

49 ♀♀, 21 ♂♂ ( Sweden); 6 ♀♀, 6 ♂♂ ( Great Britain); 2 ♀♀ ( Croatia).

Type material


SWEDEN • ♀; Öland , Mörbylånga , Gamla skogsby, Diversitetsängen; 56.619° N, 16.497° E; 15–29 Jun. 2005; SMTP leg.; Malaise trap in alvar meadow with bushes (Trap id 22, coll ev. id. 1314); STI- NJBC45; NHRS-HEVA000008705.GoogleMaps 


SWEDEN • 5 ♀♀; Skåne, Ystad, Kåseberga ; 55.385° N, 14.066° E; 24 May–28 Jul. 2016; N. Ryrholm and C. Källander leg.; MV-light trap in warm coastal sandslopes; STI-NJBC42, STI-NJBC44 (barcodes for two of the five females); NHRS-HEVA000008706 to NHRS-HEVA000008710GoogleMaps  1 ♂; Öland, Borgholm, Borgehage ; 56.852° N, 16.626° E; 12 Jun. 2017; N. Johansson leg.; MV-light in garden close to alvar and deciduous forest; NHRS-HEVA000008711GoogleMaps  1 ♀; Skåne, Simrishamn, Örnahusen ; 55.451° N, 14.253° E; 2–28 Aug. 1996; N. Ryrholm and C. Källander leg.; MV-light trap in sandy meadow; NHRS-HEVA000008712GoogleMaps  1 ♂; Blekinge, Karlskrona, Tullaretorpet ; 56.227° N, 15.647° E; 7–8 Jun. 2016; C. Philipsson leg.; MV-light in oak dominated deciduous forest; NHRS-HEVA000008713GoogleMaps  1 ♂; Skåne, Simrishamn, Spraggehusen ; 55.442° N, 14.246° E; 27 May–28 Jul. 2016; N. Ryrholm and C. Källander leg.; MV-light trap in coastal sanddunes; NHRS-HEVA000008714GoogleMaps  1 ♀; Gotland, Sundre, Suders ; 56.945° N, 18.303° E; 29 Jul.–18 Sep. 2017; N. Ryrholm and C. Källander leg.; MV-light trap in deciduous woodland; NHRS-HEVA000008716GoogleMaps  1 ♀; Skåne, Simrishamn, Spraggehusen ; 55.442° N, 14.246° E; 27 May–28 Jul. 1997; N. Ryrholm and C. Källander leg.; MV-light trap in coastal sanddunes; NHRS-HEVA000008715GoogleMaps  .


Fore wing length 15–17 mm. Antenna in both sexes with 59–63 flagellomeres. First flagellomere about 3.0 times as long as wide. Central flagellomeres about 1.2–1.3 times as long as wide. Subapical flagellomeres approximately 1.5 times as long as wide. Temple in female and male weakly buccate. Temple in lateral view 0.4–0.6 as long as compound eye. Lateral ocellus often touching inner margin of compound eye ( Fig. 15AView Fig). Malar space about 0.1 times as long as mandibular base in female and about 0.2–0.3 times in male. Mandibular gape right-angled, with internal angles. Wing membrane usually distinctly yellowish. Ramellus distinct 0.3–0,5 times the width of the discosubmarginal cell. Radius sinuous. Nervellus broken at or above the middle by the discoidella ( Fig. 13FView Fig). Mesopleuron in most cases polished, sometime very weakly shagreened, with very weak and scattered punctures. Interstices between punctures about 3.0–5.0 times their diameter. Epicnemial carina between tip of pleurosternal angles and sternal angles almost straight. Pleurosternal angles obtuse ( Fig. 9AView Fig). Scutellum without distinct lateral carinae (as in Fig. 6AView Fig). Structure of propodeum quite shiny and slightly rugose, basally and laterally with distinct punctures. Anterior transverse carina often absent laterally and posterior transverse carina interrupted centrally. Longitudinal carinae delimiting area superomedia and area petiolaris often weak. Sclerotised part of first sternite ending level to spiracle. Hind trochantellus shorter than wide in dorsal view. Legs normal with hind femur 6.0–7.0 times as long as wide. First sternite ending in level to spiracle. Inner spur of hind tibia as long as 0.4 times metatarsus.


Body testaceous. Head with inner and outer eye margins yellow. Mandibular teeth black. Mesosoma often with slightly infuscate areas in front of central ocellus, on mesopleuron and in the form of three brownish stripes on mesoscutum. Ovipositor sheath black or dark brown, contrasting in colour with posterior metasomal segments.

DNA barcode

The DNA barcode sequences of three Swedish specimens of Ophion splendens Johansson  sp. nov. are available at the BOLD systems database (www.boldsystems.org, BIN. BOLD: ABV8262. Specimen codes: STI-NJBC: 42, 44–45).


This species has been reared from Noctua interjecta Hübner, 1803  (Mark Shaw, NMS, pers. com., see also Brock 1982). It has primarily been collected from open or semi-open areas adjacent to deciduous forests during early summer, May–early July.

Distribution in Sweden

This seems to be a quite rare and local species in Southern Sweden where it primarily occurs in areas with favourable climate in the vicinity of mature deciduous forests. One male from Uppland (Central Sweden) in NHRS was collected indoors and according to the label it was probably rearded from an unregistered host. The collector (Håkan Elmqvist) frequently visits and collects in Southern Sweden including Gotland.


According to British material studied by the first author this species is, together with Ophion brocki Johansson  sp. nov., the O. costatus  auct. sensu Brock (1982)  .