Ethmia billalleni Phillips

Phillips-Rodriguez, Eugenie, Powell, Jerry A., Hallwachs, Winnie & Janzen, Daniel H., 2014, A synopsis of the genus Ethmia Huebner in Costa Rica: biology, distribution, and description of 22 new species (Lepidoptera, Gelechioidea, Depressariidae, Ethmiinae), with emphasis on the 42 s, ZooKeys 461, pp. 1-86: 26-27

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scientific name

Ethmia billalleni Phillips

sp. n.

Taxon classification Animalia Lepidoptera Depressariidae

Ethmia billalleni Phillips  sp. n. Figures 23, 68, 113, 159


Ethmia billalleni  its most similar externally to Ethmia ehakernae  and Ethmia duckworthi  and can be distinguished by its narrower FW and absence of sclerotized patches in the lateral antrum enlargement in female genitalia.


Male: FW length 9.4-10.3 mm (n = 2). Head: Labial palpus curved, long, exceeding base of antenna, white with irregular black banding subapical at II segment, basal and apical at III segment; proboscis whitish, frons and crown mainly black with scatter white scaling; occipital black tuft at mid-dorsum, with lateral white tufts. Thorax: Dorsal scaling whitish, pronotum with three lateral pairs of large black spots: near tegula at collar, at tegula apices and at sides of scutellum, a median spot preceding scutellum; base of tegula with narrow dark band, collar whitish. FW ground color whitish, covered by irregular, dark brownish longitudinal streaks and spots except by dorsal area before middle. Area bellow apex paler crossed by an elongate blotch. HW ground color whitish basally, becoming light brown at apical area and along dorsal margin; costal area simple, without hair pencil. Abdomen: Dorsal scaling light brown, ventral whitish, genital scaling pale ochreous. Genitalia (Fig. 68): Uncus and gnathos absent, basal processes thin, long reaching anterior part of fultura; valva with straight spines at apex of valva.

Female: FW length 11.3 to 11.8 mm (n = 2). Head and thorax: As described for male. Abdomen: Genitalia (Fig. 113) with posterior apophyses long; sterigma narrow, slightly sclerotized; antrum sclerotized at base with lateral enlargement; signum narrow and short reaching 0.3 × diameter of corpus bursae, with medium size teeth uniformly distributed in two groups.


Male: 10-SRNP-101359, DNA Barcoded. Costa Rica: Alajuela: ACG: Albergue Oscar, Tunel, 708 m, 1M 13.i.2010, F. Quesada & R. Franco. Deposited in INBio. Paratypes: Costa Rica: Alajuela: ACG: Albergue Oscar, Casa, 725 m, 1M 15.ii.2010 R. Franco & H.Cambronero; Termales 694 m, 1F, R. Franco & F. Quesada. Tunel, 708 m, 1F 13.i.2010, F. Quesada & R. Franco; La Paz Waterfall gardens, Río La Paz 1500 m, 1F 7.viii.2007, E. Phillips, B. Espinoza, A. Barrientos. Guanacaste: ACG: Sector Cacao, Derrumbe 1310 m, 1F 13.v.2010, F. Quesada & S. Ríos, Estación Cacao, 1150 m, 1F 21.vii.2009, R. Franco & S. Ríos (INBio, EME, USNM).

Distribution and biology.

Ethmia billalleni  has been found in Costa Rica (Fig. 159) in middle elevations of Cordillera Volcánica de Guanacaste in ACG rain forest. The food plant and immature stages are unknown.


Ethmia billalleni  is named in honor of Bill Allen of St. Louis, Missouri, for his accurate, detailed and continual documentation and on-site reporting on the germination and growth of ACG for almost three decades.