Proteacoccus Łagowska & Hodgson,

Łagowska, Bożena & Hodgson, Chris J., 2019, On some new and old soft scale insects (Hemiptera: Coccomorpha: Coccidae) from Africa, with description of a new Coccus species and introduction of a new genus, Zootaxa 4612 (3), pp. 373-386: 379-380

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Proteacoccus Łagowska & Hodgson

gen. n.

Proteacoccus Łagowska & Hodgson  , gen. n.

Type species: Lecanium proteae Brain 1920  ( Fig. 3View FIGURE 3)

Generic diagnosis. Slide-mounted adult female: body broadly oval, moderately convex; stigmatic clefts distinct, each with or without a sclerotized inner margin; anal cleft rather short, about 1/6 th body length. Dorsum becoming sclerotized at maturity, with obscure areolations. Dorsal microducts not noted. Preopercular pores possibly absent, replaced by obscure minute pores anterior to and on either side of anal plates. Submarginal tubercles few or absent. Dorsal setae minute, bluntly pointed and sparse. Dorsal tubular ducts absent. Anal plates slightly longer than wide, each plate with 3 apical setae plus a subdiscal seta near inner margin. Marginal setae very short, cylindrical to slightly pointed, few, set far apart. Each stigmatic cleft with 2 spinose setae, each stout and slightly swollen apically, placed at the base of each cleft. Venter with multilocular disc-pores, mostly each with 10 loculi, present anterior to genital opening and across most other abdominal segments. Spiracular disc-pores, mostly each with 5 loculi, few, in narrow bands between stigmatic clefts and spiracles. Long setae anterior to genital opening reduced to 1 pair on segment VII. Ventral tubular ducts absent. Antennae 7 or 8 segmented. Legs reduced, without a tibio-tarsal articulatory sclerosis; tarsal digitules similar, both with a broadly expanded apex. Claw with a minute denticle; claw digitules both narrow.

Etymology. The generic name Proteacoccus is formed from Protea  sp. ( Proteaceae  ), the genus of the host plant of the type species, and Coccus  , a name used frequently for scale insects. The name is masculine.

Comments. In addition to the type species, P. proteae Brain, Proteacoccu  s also includes P. durbanensis Brain  , comb. n. Both species are illustrated in De Lotto (1967) and his illustration of P. proteae (Brain)  is reproduced here ( Fig. 3View FIGURE 3). These 2 species differ from Marsipococcus  as follows (character-states for Marsipococcus  species in brackets): (i) dorsum without radial lines extending medially from margin (radial lines present); (ii) ventral tubular ducts absent (a group of ventral tubular ducts present on either side of the genital opening); (iii) each stigmatic cleft with the 2 stigmatic spines placed at base of the cleft (with 1 spine on the anterior and other on the posterior margin of each cleft); (iv) dorsum with minute pores anterior to or on either side of anal plates, preopercular pores absent (minute pores absent from this position, preopercular pores present ( M. marsupialis  ) or absent ( M. ulubendulensis  )); (v) each anal plate with a subdiscal seta (subdiscal setae absent); (vi) multilocular disc-pores mostly with 10 loculi (multilocular disc-pores, when present (in M. marsupialis  ), each with 5 or 6 loculi); (vii) anal sclerotization absent (anal sclerotization present, extending around anterior margin of anal cleft); (viii) marginal setae short, cylindrical or bluntly pointed, shorter than stigmatic setae (marginal setae strongly spinose and pointed, subequal to or longer than stigmatic setae), and (ix) tibia and tarsus showing distinct segmentation (tibia and tarsus fused, without segmentation). Marsipococcus proteae  and M. durbanensis  are therefore removed from Marsipococcus  and placed in the new genus Proteacoccus Łagowska & Hodgson  . Currently, this genus is restricted to South Africa and probably belongs to the Paralecaniini rather than the Coccini.

2). Neoplatylecanium adersi (Newstead)  . The species currently referred to as Neoplatylecanium adersi  was originally placed in the genus Lecanium  by Newstead (1917) but was transferred to Coccus  by De Lotto (1959). Later, Tang (1991) transferred it to Neoplatylecanium Takahashi 1929  , and then Avasthi (1993) redescribed it and made it the type species of his new genus Varshneococcus Avasthi. Since  then, it has been transferred back to Neo- platylecanium ( García Morales et al. 2019). Avasthi (1993) stated that preopercular pores are absent from the dorsum, whereas De Lotto (1959), based on the type specimens of L. adersi  from Maharubi, Tanzania, clearly describes and illustrates these pores as being present in several submedial groups on the abdomen. It is possible, therefore, that Avasthi (1993) was looking at a closely similar but different species. However, it is clear from the key below that, apart from having many (about 20) stigmatic spines in each stigmatic cleft, N. adersi  closely resembles Maacoccus bicruciatus (Green)  , the type species of the genus Maacoccus Tao & Wong  ( Tao et al. 1983). Both Neoplatylecani- um cinnamomi Takahashi  , the type species of Neoplatylecanium  , and M. bicruciatus  were redescribed by Hodgson (1994); it is here considered that L. adersi Newstead  is much more similar to M. bicruciatus  than to N. cinnamomi Takahashi  and is therefore here transferred to Maacoccus Tao & Wong  as Maacoccus adersi (Newstead)  , comb. n.

3). Coccus asiaticus Lindinger. The  species Lecanium caudatum Green 1896  was originally described from Sri Lanka on coffee. It was later transferred to Coccus  by Fernald (1903, 168). Thus, Coccus caudatum Green  became a secondary homonym of Coccus caudatus Walker 1852  , currently only known from Colombia. The name Coccus caudatus Green  was replaced by Lindinger (1932, 201) with a new specific name, Coccus asiaticus Lindinger. Since  then, Lecanium caudatum Green  was synonymized with Parasassetia nigra (Nietner)  by Tao et al. (1983, 76) and it is under this name that it is included in ScaleNet ( García Morales et al. 2019). However, De Lotto (1957) redescribed C. asiaticus Lindinger  (as C. caudatum Green  ), mainly based on specimens collected in Kenya and Uganda on coffee, although he also compared these specimens with Green’s type material from Sri Lanka in the BMNH, and concluded that they were conspecific. It is clear that the species redescribed and illustrated by De Lotto (1957) is not a synonym of P. nigra  and falls within Coccus Linnaeus  as currently understood, as was also suggested by Ben-Dov (1993). Unlike P. nigra  , C. asiaticus  (i) completely lacks a submarginal band of ventral tubular ducts; it also differs by having (ii) ventral tubular ducts present medially on the thorax (absent in P. nigra  ); (iii) 7-segmented antennae (rather than 8-segmented antennae); (iv) lacks dorsal polygonal areas throughout the dorsum (present in P. nigra  ); (v) it lacks submarginal tubercles and pocket-like invaginations (present in P. nigra  ), and (vi) has a tibio-tarsal articulatory sclerosis (absent in P. nigra  ). Type material of L. caudatum Green  has not been seen as part of this study but, based on De Lotto’s redescription and investigation, it is clear that C. asiaticus Lindinger  is not a synonym of P. nigra  , so L. caudatum Green  is here resurrected as Coccus asiaticus Lindinger (1932)  , revised status, and is included as such in the key below. Coccus asiaticus  was included under this name by Williams & Ben-Dov (2009) in their catalogue, but without comment.