Myopsalta umbra, Popple, 2017

Popple, Lindsay W., 2017, A revision of the Myopsalta crucifera (Ashton) species group (Hemiptera: Cicadidae: Cicadettini) with 14 new species from mainland Australia, Zootaxa 4340 (1), pp. 1-98 : 82-87

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Myopsalta umbra

n. sp.

Myopsalta umbra n. sp.

( Figs 1O View FIGURE 1 , 21G View FIGURE 21 , 22M, 22N View FIGURE 22 , 28 View FIGURE 28 , 32 View FIGURE 32 , 33 View FIGURE 33 ; Plate 15 View PLATE 15 )

Types. Holotype: ♂ SEQ: Binjour Plateau , Swains Rd, 25°32'S 152°30'E, 21.xii. 1997, 340m, C.J. Burwell, S. Evans, softwood scrub, QM Reg. No. T239572 (QM) GoogleMaps ; Paratypes: QUEENSLAND: 1♂ 3♀ same data as holotype GoogleMaps ; 2♀ Hurdle Gully , 13.3 km WSW Mon to, 24°55'S 150°59'E, 390 m, 20.xii.1997, mv lamp, Burwell, Evans, Ewart GoogleMaps ; 1♀ SEQ: 25°42'S 151°26'E, Nipping Gully, Site 6, 18–19.xii. 1998, 200 m, G. Monteith, C. Gough & G. Maywald; 1♀ The Bluff ( Keysland ), 26°15'S 151°43'S, 530 m, 24.xi.1995 – 3.ii.1996, G. Monteith, flight intercept, vine scrub; 3♀ Fairlie’s Knob , 0.5 km S., 25°31'S 152°17'E, 300 m, 20.xii.2000 GoogleMaps – 23.iii.2001, Cook & Monteith, hoop pine scrub, 9975 (QM); 1♂ The Amphitheatre, NW. Robinson National Park , 25°12.67'S 148°59.25'E, 19.xii.1997, vine scrub GoogleMaps ; 2♂ Hurdle Gully , W. of Mon to, near 24°54.43'S 151°00.26'E, half way down gully road, 20.xii.1997, vine scrub (AE) GoogleMaps ; 1♂ Kalbar ( Hancock Road ), 18.i.2001, L. Popple, J. Moss, 280-0001 (LWP).

Etymology. The Latin umbra (singular, a noun in apposition) means ‘shadow’ or ‘shade’. This refers to the heavily shaded habitat with which this cicada is associated.

Description. Male. ( Figs 1O View FIGURE 1 , 21G View FIGURE 21 , 22M, 22N View FIGURE 22 ; Plates 15A, 15B View PLATE 15 ).

Head: Postclypeus predominantly reddish brown, dark brown to black anterio-laterally and ventro-medially; supra-antennal plates and genae brown to reddish-brown, darker adjacent to postclypeus; mandibular plates brown, brown along lateral margins, with silver pubescence; vertex and frons brown to reddish brown, with dark brown areas surrounding ocelli and along margins adjacent to postclypeus, sometimes also extending to lateral margins adjacent to compound eyes; ocelli pink; compound eyes brown; anteclypeus brown to orange-brown; rostrum brown, dark brown apically, clearly extending beyond posterior margins of mid coxae; antennae brown to dark brown.

Thorax: Pronotum predominantly brown to olive brown, with irregular black patches near paramedian and lateral fissures; central fascia brown, surrounded with black colouration, which broadens along anterior and posterior pronotal margins; pronotal collar mostly reddish brown, dark brown on anterio-lateral margins; metanotum dark brown to black; mesonotum brown to reddish-brown; submedian sigilla black; lateral sigilla black with diffuse dark reddish-brown areas; cruciform elevation and posterior half of wing grooves orange-brown; posterior third of mesonotum with dense fine and sparse long silver pubescence.

Wings: Fore wings hyaline; basal membranes orange to pale orange-brown; pterostigmata orange to reddish brown; vein CuP+1A pale brown; other veins, including costal vein, brown to dark brown, darker distally. Hind wing plagas white at base, grading to grey-brown along basal two thirds, this colour extending broadly along jugal folds and terminating before apex, hyaline over remainder; veins pale brown basally, brown medially, dark brown on distal third.

Legs: Coxae brown, becoming darker apically; meracantha spikes dark brown, becoming pale brown apically, overlapping opercula; fore femora dark brown with pale brown longitudinal areas on outer anterior and posterior sides, pale brown at apices; mid femora brown to dark brown with pale brown apices; hind femora dark brown to brown with pale brown apices; fore tibiae dark brown; mid tibiae dark brown, each with a pale brown band above base and another smaller band near apex; hind tibiae pale brown, with a dark brown band centrally; fore and mid tarsi mottled dark brown to pale brown; hind tarsi pale brown; pretarsi brown with dark brown apical areas; claws dark brown.

Opercula ( Fig. 1O View FIGURE 1 ): Broadly rounded; dark brown basally grading to brown or pale brown at crest; plates undulating, each with a clearly defined ridge, medial areas depressed.

Timbals ( Fig. 21G View FIGURE 21 ): Anterior rib 5 abbreviated; rib 4 also abbreviated, with a prominent isolated remnant extension ventrally; ribs 1 and 2 joined ventrally and fused dorsally to basal spur; anterior termination of basal spur fused with ribs 3–4, with rib unattached; prominent intercalary short ribs in medial areas between ribs 1 and 2, 2 and 3, and 3 and 4 (three in total).

Abdomen: Tergite 1 black; tergite 2 wider along dorsal midline than tergites 3 to 7; tergites 2 to 8 dark brown to black, typically with broad reddish-brown areas dorso-laterally, diffuse anteriorly and extending to posterior margins, all with dense short silver pubescence on dorso-lateral sides and with extensive long and short silver pubescence on lateral sides; intersegmental membranes brown; epipleurites coloured like adjacent tergites, with sparse silver pubescence; sternite II black laterally, pale brown ventro-laterally, with a dark brown area medially; sternites III to VI pale brown laterally, with dark brown areas medially, which broaden posteriorly, gradually increasing in size distally in each successive sternite; sternite VII dark brown, sometimes with diffuse pale brown areas at extreme anterio-lateral margins; sternite VIII dark brown basally, grading to brown apically; anterior sternites visible in lateral view.

Genitalia ( Figs 22M, N View FIGURE 22 ): Pygofer reddish brown to dark brown; upper lobes in ventral view relatively linear, with terminals directed dorsally and apically acute; basal lobes in ventral view relatively linear, in lateral view slightly curved in the vertical plane, subtly expressed; median lobe of uncus rounded, protruding gradually; claspers in ventral view conspicuous, abutting or weakly diverging, with sharply developed apices; pseudoparameres projecting further (ventrally) than endotheca and ventral support; ventral support acute, projecting slightly beyond endotheca; endotheca fleshy.

Female ( Plate 15C View PLATE 15 ): Head, thorax, wings and legs match description of male.

Abdomen: Tergite 1 black; tergites 2 to 7 brown to reddish- or olive-brown, with dark brown to black areas along anterior margins, each extending posteriorly along centre and narrowing towards posterior margins; tergite 8 brown to orange-brown or olive-brown; auditory capsules dark brown, diffuse; abdominal segment 9 brown to orange-brown dorsally, dark brown laterally and ventrally, with black longitudinal markings on dorso-lateral sides; dorsal beak dark brown, sharply defined; sternite II black laterally and medially, otherwise pale to medium brown; epipleurites dark brown anteriorly, grading to pale brown over posterior half; sternite III pale brown with minor dark brown spot medially; sternites IV to VI pale brown with dark brown to black areas medially, broadening slightly posteriorly, typically similar in width, though often widest on sternite V; sternite VII pale brown; ovipositor sheath extends approximately 1.0 mm beyond termination of abdominal segment 9.

Measurements. N= 6♂ 8♀. Ranges and means (in parentheses), mm; BL: ♂ 13.8–15.6 (14.5); ♀ 15.0–18.3 (16.5). FWL: ♂ 15.6–18.0 (16.9); ♀ 16.8–20.1 (18.9). HW: ♂ 4.1–4.7 (4.3); ♀ 4.2–4.7 (4.5). PW: ♂ 3.9–4.4 (4.2); ♀ 4.2–5.1 (4.6). AW: ♂ 4.1–4.7 (4.5); ♀ 4.2–4.9 (4.6). FWL/W: ♂ 2.64–2.89 (2.76); ♀ 2.69–3.00 (2.85). OL: ♀ 4.5–5.6 (5.2).

Morphological distinguishing features. Myopsalta umbra n. sp. can be distinguished from M. atrata , M. binotata , M. coolahensis , M. gordoni n. sp., M. lactea , M. libritor , M. waterhousei and M. xerograsidia n. sp. by the colour of the basal membranes of the fore wings, which is pale brown or pale orange rather than white to pale grey. It can be separated from the closely similar M. melanobasis n. sp. and M. platyptera n. sp. through examination of the fore wing basal cells, which are entirely hyaline rather than partially opaque. Males and females can be separated from M. albiventris n. sp. and M. wollomombii by the colouration of the sternites, which is predominantly dark brown (cf. almost entirely pale brown). They can be differentiated from M. bassiana n. sp., M. chrysopedia n. sp., M. crucifera , M. mackinlayi n. sp., M. leona n. sp., M. longicauda n. sp. M. majura n. sp., M. parvula n. sp., M. riverina n. sp. and M. septa n. sp. by the colour of the costa and dorso-lateral sides of the tergites, which in each of these structures is predominantly reddish-brown, rather than brown or black.

Distribution, habitat and behaviour ( Fig. 28 View FIGURE 28 ). Myopsalta umbra is restricted to south-east Queensland from Expedition Range, Isla Gorge and near Monto (Hurdle Gully) east to Lake Lenthall near Maryborough and south to Mt French near Boonah. Populations typically inhabit remnant patches of semi-evergreen vine thicket. Adults occur in the middle stratum, typically on woody vegetation. They have been found from October to January, apart from the Cracow specimens, which were collected in mid-February. This is the only species of Myopsalta known to occupy the interior of a dry rainforest habitat, specifically in a microhabitat that is almost continuously shielded from direct sunlight. Another species, M. mackinlayi , may be found on the margins of this habitat, and in disturbed or ecotonal areas (e.g. vine thicket with eucalypt canopy), but generally not in the vine thicket interior.

Calling song ( Figs 32 View FIGURE 32 , 33 View FIGURE 33 ). The song contains a set of repeated phrases. At the onset of calling, each phrase begins with a long echeme (0.509–1.199 s duration), followed by a 0.035–0.046 s gap, a short echeme or macrosyllable (0.034–0.060 s duration) and a 0.376–2.701 s gap (all statistics, n =9 recordings). Close inspection of the beginning of the long echemes in each phrase reveals a series of discrete syllables that coalesce and increase of at least 4x in amplitude during production of the echeme. After production of several successive echemes, males typically start to lengthen the introduction of each phrase with the addition of a long sequence of syllables (each 0.007–0.011 s duration), separated by gaps of 0.030–0.080 s duration. These introductory sequences range in duration between 1.12 and 1.59 s, with the longest examples typically coinciding with particularly short gaps at the end of the preceding phrase. Field observations indicate that the female responds during the gap following the short echeme or macrosyllable at the end of each phrase.

This species calls during the day and it is not known whether it also calls at dusk. The calling song maintains an even pitch throughout, with a highest amplitude frequency plateau of 10.3–16.0 kHz and a dominant frequency between 12.2 and 15.1 kHz. It is near identical to the call of M. bassiana , but differs in the greater degree of amplitude modulation in the production of each long echeme.