Melaloncha torquata, Brown, 2006

Brown, Brian V., 2006, Revision of the untreated taxa of Melaloncha s. s. bee-killing flies (Diptera: Phoridae), Zootaxa 1280 (1), pp. 1-68: 64-65

publication ID 10.11646/zootaxa.1280.1.1

publication LSID


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scientific name

Melaloncha torquata

new species

Melaloncha torquata   new species

Fig. 52 View FIGURES 43–53

Recognition. In overall appearance this species is similar to M. maculata   , but differs by the forked apex of the sclerite of intersegment 7–8. It differs from the other species with a broadly forked apex, M. forficata   , by the straight ovipositor, the white ring between the yellow and black color of the ovipositor, and the shape of the forked apex.

Description. Female (male unknown). Body length 2.1 mm. Frons yellow, bare of setulae except few along eye margin; ocellar triangle black. Frons 0.48 head width. Medial furrow absent. Ocular setae brown dorsally, yellow laterally and ventrally; genal setae yellow. Flagellomere 1 basally white, apically yellow; aristomeres 1–2 and base of 3 yellow, rest of 3 brown. Palpus white; palpal setulae yellow. Scutum yellowish­brown. Scutellum yellowish­brown, with anterolateral dark round spot. Pleuron yellow, except basalare black. Legs whitish­yellow. Combined length of foretarsomeres 1.3 length of foretibia. Foretarsal claws recurved, with large basal lobe. Costa 0.52 wing length. Halter yellow. Abdominal tergites yellow anteriorly, black posteriorly and in segments 3–5 black medially. Venter of abdomen yellow. Ovipositor yellow basally, with small band of white more apically, then mostly black apically; tubular, straight; with scattered short setae; apex of sclerite of intersegment 7–8 with short medial apex and longer, divergently curving lateral arms.

Host. We collected this species attacking Oxytrigona mellicolor   on flowers of Syagrus coronata   in Costa Rica.

Geographical distribution. Costa Rica.

Derivation of specific epithet. Latin torquatus for adorned with a collar, referring to the white ring on the ovipositor.

Holotype. ♀, COSTA RICA: Puntarenas: Wilson Botanical Garden, Las Cruces , 8.79°N, 82.95°W,, B. Brown, V. Berezovskiy, flowers of Syagrus coronata   [ LACM ENT 116541 View Materials ] ( LACM). GoogleMaps  

Paratypes. COSTA RICA: 1♀, same data as holotype (ovipositor only; rest of body used for molecular analysis] ( LACM). GoogleMaps  


Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County