Melanocryptus violaceipennis Cameron, 1902

Aguiar, Alexandre P. & Santos, Bernardo F., 2015, Revision of Melanocryptus Cameron (Ichneumonidae, Cryptinae), with description of seven new species, American Museum Novitates 2015 (3836), pp. 1-56: 49-51

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Melanocryptus violaceipennis Cameron, 1902


Melanocryptus violaceipennis Cameron, 1902  

Figures 21 View FIGURES 10–21 , 39 View FIGURES 31–41 , 59 View FIGURES 55–60 , 110–114, 123

Melanocryptus violaceipennis Cameron, 1902: 371   . ♀. Original description. Type in BMNH, examined (original pictures). Schmiedeknecht 1908: 13, listed. Townes and Townes, 1966: 68, catalog. Yu and Horstmann, 1997: 269, catalog.

DESCRIPTION: Female (type and new specimen). Forewing 11.37 mm. Body matte (figs. 110–111), except T1 smooth, polished (fig. 113). Supraclypeal area just below toruli with short, narrow midlongitudinal elevation near toruli (fig. 112); supraantennal area somewhat shiny but with fine sculpturing, coronal suture well developed. Antennae with 28 flagellomeres. Malar space 0.78 mandible basal width. Occipital carina laterocentrally without emargination; apically fusing with hypostomal carina far from base of mandible. Pronotum dorsomedial margin not raised, aligned with anterior margin mesoscutum; epomia well developed, conspicuous; sculpturing fine but well marked, entire pronotum matte, laterocentrally to ventroposteriorly with stouter, somewhat parallel, longitudinal strigation. Mesoscutum matte, covered with fine sculpturing. Notaulus quite narrow, linear, but distinctly impressed, straight, slightly converging posteriorly, ending at center of mesoscutum. Axillary trough of mesonotum with indistinct basal channel, entirely transversely sculptured, from basally rugose to apically rugulose (fig. 39). Scutellar carina not distinctly advancing over scutellum, which is triangular in dorsal view, its apex rounded (fig. 39). Subalar ridge large, rounded, low. Epicnemial carina reaching about 0.8 of distance to subalar ridge, quite sinuous (fig. 111). Sternaulus deep, closely crenulate, almost straight, not continued posteriorly by shallow depression; mesepisternum tranversely rugulose, matte. Forewing (fig. 21) crossvein 1cu-a distinctly basad 1M+Rs, its posterior apex distinctly curved toward wing base; 2Cua 0.82 length of crossvein 2cu-a. Hind wing (fig. 21) vein Cua 1.96× length of crossvein cu-a.

Transverse furrow at base of propodeum sunken, wide, crenulate, narrowing moderately toward the sides (fig. 59). Propodeum area anterior to anterior transverse carina allutaceous, matte; area posterior to it finely rugose; anterior transverse carina complete, bow shaped; posterior transverse carina marked by one central, more advanced, and two lateral, low, scaleshaped apophyses (fig. 59). Propodeal spiracle elongate, 2.43× longer than wide. Pleural carina distinct, receiving several perpendicular rugosities throughout its length. Metapleuron densely rugulose, matte. T1 spiracle slightly beyond middle (apical 0.45; fig. 114); dorsolateral and ventrolateral carinae conspicuous from base of petiole to apex of postpetiole; sternite ending distinctly basad of level of spiracle (fig. 114). T1 entirely shiny (fig. 113), but delicately allutaceous at close inspection; T2–8 coarsely alutaceus. Ovipositor somewhat blade shaped, 1.64× taller than wide at midlength, length 1.41× length of hind tibia, straight; ventral valve ridges with subapical irregularity (similar to fig. 61B).

Pilosity. All body pilosity yellowish brown (as in fig. 58). Supraclypeal area sparsely pilose (fig. 112). Mesosoma with short, moderately visible pilosity, except hypoepimeron glabrous. T1 glabrous (fig. 113); remaining tergites with conspicuous and somewhat abundant pilosity.

Color. Entirely black to dark brown (figs. 110–111), except small whitish marks along eye margin just above and below level of antennal foramen (fig. 112), forefemur apex and foretibia ventrally yellowish. Forewing dark amber infuscate, darkest centrally and subapically (fig. 21). Hind wing nearly uniformly amber infuscate (fig. 21).

MALE: Unknown.

VARIATION: No significant variation observed between the examined specimen and the holotype pictures.

BIOLOGY: Unknown.

COMMENTS: Most similar to M. dnopheros   , with which it shares body nearly entirely black, infuscated wings, etc. Differs, in particular, by having forewing centrally, and hind wing entirely lightly infuscated (vs. wing entirely dark infuscate in M. dnopheros   ; fig. 20 vs. 21), petiole laterally with distinctly more delicate sculpturing (fig. 114 vs. 96), and S1 ending distinctly basad of petiolar spiracle (vs. distinctly apicad; fig. 114 vs. 96).

Also similar to M. tupan   , from which it can be differentiated by the wing color pattern (fig. 20 vs. 12), pilosity, and several other features (see Comments for M. tupan   ).

There is some indirect evidence that the original description of M. violaceipennis   is based on a singleton: no variation is described, measurements and overall description fit well the studied specimen from BMNH, the species is rare, and no other type specimens were found. Thus, the BMNH specimen might be the holotype (ICZN, art. 73.1.2), but since Cameron (1902) does not provide data about specimens, that information is, strictly speaking, in doubt. Because of this, a lectotype is not designated here, and the BMNH specimen is treated simply as “type.” Furthermore, it also differs a little from the original description, as follows: wings more opaque and black than “bluish purple,” and definitely not uniformly colored, but patterned; areolet rather pentagonal, with sides distinctly converging toward anterior margin, instead of “areolet square, the transverse cubital nervures not converging above”; and metasoma entirely black, not with tergites “narrowly white at apex” (although this is probably simply a reference to the whitish intersegmental membranes, as seen in fig. 111).

DISTRIBUTION: Brazil (Manaus?); Suriname (first record) (fig. 123).

MATERIAL EXAMINED: Two females. Holotype ♀ (pictures) from Amazons (Prof. I. W. H. Trail), according to Cameron (1902: 371); cited to “ Brazil ” in Yu and Horstmann (1997). Pinned, dusty but in regular condition (figs. 110–111) ( BMNH). Other specimens: SURI-

NAME: ♀ Paramaribo, Kwatta, Vangkooi [= trapped] half febr by Geyskes   ( RMNH).


National Museum of Natural History, Naturalis














Melanocryptus violaceipennis Cameron, 1902

Aguiar, Alexandre P. & Santos, Bernardo F. 2015

Melanocryptus violaceipennis

Yu, D. S. & K. Horstmann 1997: 269
Townes, H. K. & M. Townes 1966: 68
Cameron, P. 1902: 371