Afroracotis (Zebracotis) milesi, László & Hausmann & Karisch, 2023

László, Gyula M., Hausmann, Axel & Karisch, Timm, 2023, Integrative taxonomic revision of the African taxa of the Racotis Moore, 1887 generic complex (Lepidoptera, Geometridae, Ennominae, Boarmiini), Zootaxa 5308 (1), pp. 1-109 : 65-68

publication ID 10.11646/zootaxa.5308.1.1

publication LSID


persistent identifier

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scientific name

Afroracotis (Zebracotis) milesi

sp. nov.

Afroracotis (Zebracotis) milesi sp. n.

( Figs 105–108 View FIGURES 101–120 , 191–194 View FIGURES 191–210 , 272–274 View FIGURES 268–273 View FIGURES 274–279 , 333–334 View FIGURES 328–335 )

Holotype. Male , “ GABON 430m, Mikongo(Rougier), Monts de Cristal (Secondary Forest), 0°29’47”N, 11°10’42”E, 28.vii.–12.viii.2019, MV, Actinic and LepiLED Light Trap, Albert, J-L., Aristophanous, M., Bie Mba, J., Dérozier, V., Moretto, P. Leg., ANHRT:2019.17”, unique id.: ANHRTUK 00204675, gen. slide No.: LG 5619 ( ANHRT). GoogleMaps

Paratypes. Burundi. 1 female, Urundi, Usumbura , 900m, 8.I.1962, leg. Dr M. Fontaine, gen. slide No.: LG 5856 ( RMCA) . Cameroon. 2 males, 2 females, North Region, Wack (La Falaise), 900m, 07°40’16.5”N, 13°33’18.4”E, 2–21.x.2018 General Coll., Sáfián, Sz., Simonics, G. Leg., ANHRT:2018.36, unique ids: ANHRTUK 00058439, 00058437, 00058438, 00115867, gen. slide Nos: LG 4973, 4974 (males), LG 4975, LG 5437 (females), DNA barcode/BOLD process ids: BC ZSM Lep 109613/GWOUE402-20, BC ZSM Lep 109614/GWOUE403-20, ANHRTUK00115867/ANLMN3676-21 GoogleMaps ; 1 male, Bokwaongo, Mt. Cameroon (farmland-secondary forest), 950m, 04°09’14”N, 09°14’36”E, 3–6.iii.2018, MV Light Trap, Ishmael, K., Miles, W., Sáfián, Sz. leg., ANHRT:2018.3, unique id.: ANHRTUK 00099334, gen. slide No.: LG 5012 ( ANHRT) GoogleMaps ; 3 males, Mt Cameroon ( SW slope), Planty camp, 4.117500°N, 9.070944°E, 1100m, 9–14.iv.2015, leg. V. Maicher, Sz. Sáfián, S. Janecek, R. Tropek, gen. slide Nos: LG 4414, LG 4716 GoogleMaps ; 3 males, same site and collectors, but 11–18.xii.2014, gen. slide Nos: LG 4419, LG 4707, LG 4713, DNA barcode/BOLD process id.: BC ZSM Lep 96651/GWOTT600-17 ; 1 male, Mt Cameroon ( SW slope), Bamboo camp, 4.0879152°N, 9.0505144°E 350m, 21.iv.2015, leg. V. Maicher, Sz. Sáfián, S. Janecek, R. Tropek, gen. slide No.: LG 4418 GoogleMaps ; 1 male, same site and collectors, but 15.xii.2014, gen. slide No.: LG 4717; 1 female, Ayos , 3°33’N, 11°38’E, 660m, galerie forestière du Nyong, 12–20.v.1974, Ph. Darge leg., gen. slide No.: GU TK 3217 ( SDEI) GoogleMaps ; 1 male, Southwestern Province, Mount Kupe , 1 km SE of Nyasoso, water tank, 901m, light trap, 4°49’34.8”N, 9°41’15.3”E, 4.xii.2008, leg. M. Ochse, gen. slide No.: LG 5078, DNA barcode/BOLD process id.: BC ZSM Lep 38699/GWOSH363-10 GoogleMaps ; 1 male, 1 female, Southwestern Province, Mount Kupe, 2 km SE of Nyasoso, Zin Camp , 1214m, light trap, 4°49’28.2”N, 9°41’57.8”E, 1.xii.2008, leg. M. Ochse, gen. slide Nos: LG 5077 (male), LG 5087 (female), DNA barcode/BOLD process ids: BC ZSM Lep 44209/GWOSO363-11, BC ZSM GoogleMaps Lep 38702/GWOSH366-10 ; 1 male, Central Province, Obout District, 3 km NW of Nkolmetet (near Mbalmayo ), 668m, light trap, 3°29’00.6”N, 11°42’40.6”E, 21.xi.2008, leg. M. Ochse, gen. slide No.: LG 5097, DNA barcode/ BOLD process id.: BC ZSM Lep 36901/GWOSA940-10 ( RCMO) GoogleMaps . DRC. 1 female, Semliki, Beni , 1932, leg. Dr. Van Hoof; 1 female, Sankuru, Lusambo , 5.ix.1950, leg. Dr. Fontaine, gen. slide No.: LG 5873 ( RMCA) . Gabon. 2 males, with the same data as in the holotype, unique ids: ANHRTUK 00131590, 00131999 (both dissected) ; 1 male, 2 females, with the same data, but collected by MV, Actinic and LepiLED Light Trap, unique ids: ANHRTUK 00137691, 00137693, 00137860, gen. slide Nos: LG 5420 (male), LG 5411, LG 5422 (females), DNA barcode/ BOLD process ids: ANHRTUK137860/ANLMN3675-21, BC ZSM Lep 112985/GWOUH069-21 ; 1 male, Ogooue Ivindo P.N. Ivindo, Station de Recherche, d’Ipassa 450m, 0°30’43”N, 12°48’12”E, 14–, Light Trap, Ruzzier, E., Tasane, T. leg., ANHRT:2017.19, unique id.: ANHRTUK 00045307, gen. slide No.: LG 4821, DNA barcode/BOLD process id.: BC ZSM Lep 109609/GWOUE398-20 GoogleMaps ; 2 males, 1 fermale, Nyonie ( Lowland Forest ), 10m, 0°2’22”S, 9°20’25”E, 23–28.viii.2019, LepiLED Light Trap, Albert, J-L., Aristophanous, M., Bie Mba, J., Dérozier, V., Moretto, P. leg., ANHRT GoogleMaps :2019.17, unique ids: ANHRTUK 00168397, 00172785, 00215782 (all dissected) ( ANHRT). Republic of the Congo. 3 males, 1 female, Odzala National Park , 400–500m, 0°23’N, 14°50’E, 29.i.–03.iii.1997, leg. S. Murzin & V. Siniaev, gen. slide Nos: GU TK 3629, GU TK 3632 (males), GU TK 3215 (female) ( SDEI, MNVD) GoogleMaps . Uganda. 1 male, Bwindi Forest, Cuckooland Lodge , 1700m, 1°0.083’S, 29°42.448’E, 27–30.iii.2013, LT, leg. R. Fiebig & D. Stadie, gen. slide No.: DS 228/2019 (prepared by László) ( RCDS) GoogleMaps . Zambia. 1 male, Hillwood, Ikelenge , 1400m, 11°16’02”S, 24°18’59”E, 21–28.x.2013, Light Trap, leg. Smith, R., Takano, H., Chmurova, L. & Smith, L., ANHRT:2017.10, unique id.: ANHRTUK 00073431, gen. slide No.: LG 4061, DNA barcode/BOLD process id.: BC ZSM Lep 109633/GWOUE422-20 GoogleMaps ; 4 males, same site, 23–30.xi.2019, Actinic and LepiLED Light Trap, Fish Bait, leg. Bashford, M., Miles, W., Mulvaney, L., Smith, R. leg. ANHRT:2019.25, unique ids: ANHRTUK 00122947, 00122972, 00132360 (dissected), 00132433, gen. slide No.: LG 5429 ; 2 males, Nyangombe Falls, (Miombo / Riverine forest mosaic), 1300m, 11°48’25”S, 24°32’12”E, 17–23.xi.2019, MV Light Trap, Bashford, M., Miles, W., Mulvaney, L., Smith, R. leg., ANHRT:2019.25, unique ids: ANHRTUK 00132620, 00197477 (dissected), gen. slide No.: LG 5409 ( ANHRT) GoogleMaps .

Diagnosis. Forewing length 18–22 mm. Afroracotis milesi sp. n. and the following three new species, A. ochsei sp. n., A. helicalis sp. n. and A. takanoi sp. n. form a morphological sub-group distinguished from all other members of the Zebracotis subgenus by the presence of a group of slightly curved cornuti arising distally from the base of the vesica ejaculatorius and by the absence of a large cornutus erected at the apex of a medial diverticulum. Afroracotis milesi and its sympatric siblings A. ochsei and A. helicalis are distinguished in the configuration of the vesica. Afroracotis milesi has a rugose, protractile main chamber of the vesica similar to A. ochsei , but it bears a well-developed, short conical, rugose, expandable diverticulum medially, while the vesica of A. ochsei lacks a diverticulum. The distinction between A. milesi and A. helicalis is especially straightforward based on the conspicuously coiled vesica of the latter species. As the shape and arrangement of the cornuti is similar in the three species, only examination of the everted vesica can provide reliable identification. In the female genitalia, A. milesi is distinguished from the sympatric A. chaineyi by its considerably shorter conical distal portion of the ductus bursae connected to the corpus bursae in a straight line, while the anterior section of the ductus bursae is always flexed in A. chaineyi . Compared to A. lydiae , the new species shows a shorter and broader, more conical ductus bursae and a narrower, cylindrical corpus bursae (ovoid in A. lydiae ) with a more heavily sclerotised distal section. In comparison to A. ochsei , A. milesi has a slightly shorter antrum and a considerably shorter posterior section of the cervix/corpus bursae complex, with a short, conical distal and an abruptly dilated proximal portion, which is gradually dilated to a lesser extent in A. ochsei . The heavily sclerotised medial section of the corpus bursae is markedly shorter and broader and the membranous anterior part of the bursa is somewhat larger in A. milesi than in its congener. Compared to A. helicalis , the sclerotised medial part of the corpus bursae is abruptly dilated and orderly cylindrical in A. milesi , whereas the corpus bursae is gradually dilated, somewhat asymmetrical and more globular in the allied species.

Genetic information. Part of the series of sequenced specimens has been recovered in the BIN URI: BOLD: AAF9530, BIN—sharing with A. zebrina , A. chaineyi , A. smithi and A. lydiae orientalis , whereas other specimens of A. milesi have been assigned the distinct BIN URI: BOLD:ADA9361. The species is clearly separated from the BIN—sharing relatives by the markedly different configuration of the vesica of the male and the ductus-cervixcorpus bursae complex of the female genitalia. The genetic heterogeneity of the morphologically uniform A. milesi does not coincide with any geographically isolated distribution, therefore the species is considered here as a single, genetically highly divergent taxon with the intraspecific distance ranging between 0.00–2.88%.

Etymology. Afroracotis milesi is dedicated to William Miles (ANHRT), keen and talented entomologist, Mantodea specialist and one of the collectors of the new species.

Distribution ( Map 6 View MAP 6 ). This species shows a predominantly Central African distribution with confirmed records from Burundi, Cameroon, DRC, Gabon, Republic of the Congo, Uganda, and Zambia.


Royal Museum for Central Africa


Bavarian State Collection of Zoology













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