Pauropsalta accola, Owen & Moulds, 2016

Owen, Christopher L. & Moulds, Max S., 2016, Systematics and Phylogeny of the Australian Cicada Genus Pauropsalta Goding and Froggatt, 1904 and Allied Genera (Hemiptera: Cicadidae: Cicadettini), Records of the Australian Museum 68 (4), pp. 117-200: 132-134

publication ID 10.3853/j.2201-4349.68.2016.1598

persistent identifier

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scientific name

Pauropsalta accola


Pauropsalta accola   n.sp.

Fig. 11 View Figure 11 , Pl. 2

Pauropsalta accola Owen et al., 2015: 260   , nomen nudum.

Types. Holotype male (molecular voucher 03.AU.WAU.PAU.03), S of Balladonia Station , Western Australia, 143 m, 33°14'S 123°26'E, 13.i.2003, Moulds, Hill, Marshall & Vanderpool ( WAM) GoogleMaps   . Paratypes: WESTERN AUSTRALIA: 1♂, Madura, Nullarbor Plain , 6.xii.1978, M.S. & B.J. Moulds ( AE)   . 1♂ (genitalia prep. PAU 323 and molecular voucher 09.AU.WAU.MAE.01), Moodini Bluff , 26 km E of Madura, 31°54.671'S 127°17.125'E, 6.ii.2009, K. Hill & D. Marshall GoogleMaps   ; 1♂ (genitalia prep. PAU 263 and molecular voucher 03.AU.WAU.PAU.02; GenBank accessions: KM377172, KM377384, KM377409, KM377554, KM668355), S of Balladonia Station, 143 m, 33°14'S 123°26'E, 13.i.2003, Moulds, Hill, Marshall & Vanderpool ( AM) GoogleMaps   . 1♂, Madura, Nullarbor Plain , 6.xii.1978, M.S. & B.J. Moulds ( LP)   . 2♂♂ (genitalia preps. PAU 369 & PAU 470), Madura , 26.xii.1990, M.S. & B.J. Moulds   ; 3♂♂ (genitalia preps. PAU 271 & PAU 288), Madura, Nullarbor Plain , 6.xii.1978, M.S. & B.J. Moulds   ; 1♂, Madura roadhouse, 31°54'S 127°10'E, 15.xii.1995, M.S. & B.J Moulds & K.A. Kopestonsky GoogleMaps   ; 1♂ (genitalia prep. PAU 327), 1♀ (in cop. with PAU 327), S of Balladonia Station , 143 m, 33°14'S 123°26'E, 13.i.2003, Moulds, Hill, Marshall & Vanderpool GoogleMaps   ; 2♂♂ (genitalia preps. PAU 368 & PAU 469), 10 km S of Pine Hill near Mt Ragged , 33°24.85'S 123°25.06'E, 17.xii.1995, M.S. & B.J. Moulds GoogleMaps   ; 2♂♂ (genitalia preps PAU 365 & 466), Lake King , 31.xii.1990, M.S. & B.J. Moulds   ; 1♂ (genitalia prep.PAU 376), L. Carmody, 37.0 km N of L. Varley, 21.i.2002, P. Hutchinson ( MSM)   . 1♂, 26.5 km N of Mt. Ragged Rd turnoff, 13.i.2003, Vanderpool, Marshall, Hill, M.S. & B.J. Moulds   ; 1♂, Moodini Bluff , 26 km E of Madura, 31°54.671'S 127°17.125'E, 6.ii.2009, K. Hill & D. Marshall ( WAM) GoogleMaps   .

Distribution ( Fig. 11 View Figure 11 ). Western Australia where it is confined to the southern, dry, subcoastal fringe between Hyden and Lake King in the west and Moodini Bluff near Madura in the east. In most years adults are present around Madura roadhouse. It is a common species but adults tend to be wary. There are records from early December to early February.

Habitat. This species has only been seen calling from mallee stems.


Male (Pl. 2). Head narrower than lateral angles of pronotal collar; dominantly black with muddy yellow spot at posterior midline. Postclypeus jet black with pale yellow or pale reddish brown markings; a muddy yellow or pale reddish brown mark on midline around most anterior portion; lateral and posterior margins muddy yellow or pale reddish brown; transverse ridges and central groove distinct. Anteclypeus jet black. Rostrum black, occasionally tending brown proximally, reaching to or just beyond apices of mid coxae. Antennae black tending white distally. Supra-antennal plates black, sometimes edged reddish brown along anterior margin.

Thorax. Pronotum black, usually with reddish brown and pale yellow markings; center of pronotum with reddish brown patches; fascia along midline pale yellow, usually extending from near head and pronotal collar; sometimes a small, muddy yellow marking near midline of pronotal collar; pronotal collar between lateral angles black with posterior margin edged muddy yellow or reddish brown; lateral margin of pronotal collar not, or barely, ampliate. Mesonotum primarily black with reddish brown markings; usually a reddish brown marking on either side from, or near, anterior arms or the cruciform elevation to, or almost to, pronotum between lateral and submedian sigilla, this marking projecting inwards to varying degrees around its mid length and sometimes meeting and sometimes thereafter extending anteriorly on midline; sometimes a reddish brown blotch between anterior arms of cruciform elevation; lower lateral area usually with a reddish brown streak; scutal depressions occasionally visible as black dots surrounded by reddish brown; cruciform elevation black and reddish brown, sometimes partly muddy yellow; anterior arms usually reddish brown or muddy yellow with distal ends black, posterior arms usually black but sometimes yellow or brown, often a black fascia down midline. Metanotum black at hind wing base, remainder reddish brown, sometimes black near dorsal midline.

Legs. Fore legs mostly black usually with two reddish brown fascia to varying degrees along anterior length of femora, sometimes a brownish fascia along lateral interior and exterior of femora; femora with spines usually black, sometimes reddish brown distally; pretarsal claws black with pale yellow apices. Mid and hind legs mostly black or brown tending dark brown; coxae with proximal margin edged pale reddish brown or dull yellow; reddish brown along anterior length of femora; tibiae and tarsi brown tending dark brown. Meracanthus black with outer lateral margin and apex pale yellow.

Wings. Hyaline. Fore wing with stems of veins M and CuA either completely fused as one or abutted on meeting the basal cell, sometimes a combination of both on a single individual; venation brown; costa curving inward near arculus; infuscation distally on clavus; basal membrane grey to black. Hind wing with 5 apical cells; venation brown except for pale yellowish brown 2A and 3A; plaga muddy white to grey and pale brown; black infuscation on wing margin at distal end of vein 2A.

Opercula. For the most part reaching or almost reaching distal margin of tympanal cavity; widely separated; flat other than a low rounded swelling of epimeron 3; black, sometimes yellowish brown on distal half.

Timbals with four long ribs spanning the width of timbal membrane and one anterior long rib terminating before lower end of adjacent intercalary rib.

Abdomen. Tending triangular in cross section with epipleurites reflexed inwards from junction with tergites. Tergites black with reddish brown and yellow markings. Tergite 1 black; tergite 2 black with posterior margin narrowly edged reddish brown to muddy yellow, sometimes with a reddish brown to muddy yellow spot adjacent to posterior margin on midline; tergites 3–7 with posterior margin edged reddish brown laterally, extreme margin usually outlined dull yellow; tergite 8 black with dull yellow and/or reddish brown posterior margin, widest around midline. Sternite I black; sternites II–VII black with posterior margin reddish brown to dull yellow to varying degrees; sternite VIII black tending yellowish brown distally.

Genitalia ( Fig. 11 View Figure 11 ). Pygofer upper lobe long, in lateral view tapering to a rounded apex. Basal pygofer lobe a triangular flap-like lobe pointed inwards; secondary basal lobe small and rounded. Median lobe of uncus wider than long, duck-billed. Claspers claw-like, flattened in dorsal view, concave below. Aedeagus with pseudoparameres as long as or slightly longer than endotheca, slender, flattened in cross section, lying immediately adjacent to endotheca in lateral view, in dorsal view parallel to each other but slightly diverging at distal ends. Endotheca nearly straight, parallel sided, circular in cross-section, apex sloping backwards ventrally, without ornamentation.

Female (Pl. 2). Similar to male. Abdominal segment 9 black with margins pale muddy yellow, the yellow widest ventrally but the extent of this yellow may be considerably variable between individuals. Ovipositor sheath extending approximately 1.0 mm beyond apex of abdomen, coloured black.

Measurements. Range and mean (in mm) for 10♂♂ and 1♀; includes smallest and largest of available specimens. Length of body: male 15.5–18.2 (17.1); female 20.0. Length of fore wing: male 19.5–22.2 (20.5); female 23.2. Width of fore wing: male 6.6–7.6 (7.0); female 8.0. Ratio length/ width of fore wing: male 2.7–3.1 (2.9); female 2.9. Width of head (including eyes): male 5.1–6.1 (5.4); female 5.8. Width of pronotum (across lateral angles): male 5.4–6.1 (5.8); female 6.4.

Distinguishing features

Very similar in outward appearance to Pauropsalta conflua   , Pau. contigua   , Pau. confinis   , Pau. juncta   and Atrapsalta dolens   , all of which occur in the southwest of Western Australia.

Those individuals of Pau. accola   with the stems of fore wing veins M and CuA closely abutted rather than fused (even abutted only in one wing) are similar in this regard to Pau. infuscata   , Pau. contigua   and Pau. confinis   . Distinguished from Pau. infuscata   in having 5 apical cells in the hind wing instead of 6 (in both wings). Males are distinguished from Pau. confinis   by having abdominal tergite 1 clearly visible dorsally; that of Pau. confinis   is not visible dorsally. To separate males of Pau. accola   having the stems of fore wing veins M and CuA abutted from Pau. contigua   examination of the male aedeagus is necessary; the pseudoparameres of Pau. accola   are adjacent to the endotheca whereas in Pau. contigua   they rise very high above the endotheca. However, any specimens with a fore wing length of 19.4 mm or below are most likely to be Pau. contigua   as no specimens of Pau. accola   are known to have a fore wing that short. Females of Pau. accola   are indistinguishable from those of Pau. confinis   and Pau. contigua   .

Those individuals with the stems of fore wing veins M and CuA completely fused as one are very similar in outward appearance to Atrapsalta dolens   , Pauropsalta conflua   and Pau. juncta   . Pauropsalta accola   differs from Atrapsalta dolens   in its larger size, the fore wing length being 19.5 mm or longer while the fore wing of A. dolens   never reaches 19.5 mm. Males can be distinguished from Pau. conflua   and Pau. juncta   by their substantially yellow upper pygofer lobes; these structures in Pau. conflua   and Pau. juncta   are almost all black or dark brown. Females of Pau. accola   are indistinguishable from females of Pau. conflua   (females of juncta   are unknown).

The male genitalia are unique in having the following combination of characters: a large upper pygofer lobe that gradually tapers to a blunt point, an endotheca lacking a ventral support and a pair of pseudoparameres that lie immediately adjacent to the endotheca in lateral view with their distal ends extending to or a little beyond the apex of the endotheca.

Etymology. From the Latin accola   meaning neighbor, and referring to the closely abutted but independent stems of veins M and CuA of the fore wing, an unusual feature amongst small black cicadas where the stems of these veins are usually fused as one.

Song ( Fig. 11 View Figure 11 ). The body of the song consists of a series of echemes with a rate of about 1 echeme every 3 s. The echemes range in length from c. 3 to 4–5 s. The frequency of echemes is contained between 4 kHz and 13 kHz.


Western Australian Museum


Australian Museum


Laboratory of Palaeontology


Marine Science Museum, Tokai Univ.














Pauropsalta accola

Owen, Christopher L. & Moulds, Max S. 2016

Pauropsalta accola

Owen, C & Marshall, K 2015: 260