Heteracris hemiptera (Uvarov, 1935)

Massa, Bruno, 2017, New and interesting Orthoptera from the Arabian Peninsula and Socotra, ZooKeys 679, pp. 37-46: 40

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Heteracris hemiptera (Uvarov, 1935)


Heteracris hemiptera (Uvarov, 1935)   Figs 5-6

Material examined.

Oman, Dhofar, Wadi Mugshail (light trap) 18.XI.2016, A. Carapezza (1♀) (BMPC).


Popov (1981b) proposed considering the genus Cyclopternacris   Ramme, 1928 as a subgenus of Heteracris   Walker, 1870, but Grunshaw (1991), on the basis of male genitalia, decided to synonymize the former. Heteracris hemiptera aja  was described by Popov (1981b) from a male collected from north-central Saudi Arabia (Shammar). It is different from the typical subspecies, described from Yemen, due to its smaller size, shorter antennae (scarcely longer than head and pronotum together), more rounded hind margin of pronotum, more slender hind femur, shorter and broader supra-anal plate and a more attenuate cercus. In addition, the dark transverse fasciae on the hind femora are well expressed on the upper and inner median areas, while the coloration of the lower sulcus is slate-blue instead of red (Figs 5-6). The female of this taxon was previously unknown. Measurements of the specimen collected from Dhofar lie within the range of females reported by Popov (1981b) for the subspecies hemiptera, the antennae are longer than the head and pronotum combined, the hind femur is not as slender as recorded by Popov (1981b) for the subspecies aja, and fasciae on hind femora are inappreciable. However, the typical subspecies has the base of the hind femur red, while in the specimen from Dhofar here discussed the color is blue, tibiae are red and hind tarsus is brown (not purple as in aja or red as in hemiptera   ). Taking into consideration the geographical position of Yemen, Shammar region, and Dhofar, it seems possible that the female from Dhofar belongs to an unknown taxon, but due to the lack of a male specimens, it is not being described as yet.

Measurements (in mm). Female. Body length: 30.3; length of pronotum: 7.0; height of pronotum: 6.0; length of tegmina: 16.2; length of hind femur: 18.9; height of hind femur: 4.6.