Howickia trivittata (Richards)

Kuwahara, Gregory K. & Marshall, Stephen A., 2022, A revision of the Australian species of Howickia Richards (Diptera: Sphaeroceridae: Limosininae), Zootaxa 5192 (1), pp. 1-152 : 80-83

publication ID 10.11646/zootaxa.5192.1.1

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Howickia trivittata (Richards)


Howickia trivittata (Richards) View in CoL

( Figs. 3.18 View FIGURES 3.1–3.22 , 21.1–21.9 View FIGURES 21.1–21.5 )

Leptocera (Biroina) trivittata Richards, 1973: 340 View in CoL .

Biroina trivittata (Richards) View in CoL , Marshall, 1989: 602; Roháček et al., 2001: 126.

Howickia trivittata (Richards) View in CoL , Marshall et al., 2014.

Description. Body length: Males 1.7–1.9 mm, females 1.7–2.6 mm.

Head: Dark brown, paler brown along lateral edges of orbital plates; frontal vitta and area just beside interfrontal plates with golden microtomentose stripes (3 total), microtomentum from frontal vitta extending around ocellar triangle; orbital plates with yellow-brown microtomentose stripes expanded to surround vertical bristles; gena golden; antenna brownish-yellow. Frontal width 1.9x interfrontal height. Two pairs of large interfrontal bristles, preceded by a smaller pair (0.5x length of posterior pairs); 2 lateroclinate orbital bristles, anterior bristle 0.7x length of posterior bristle. Gena with strong upcurved bristle and 3–4 smaller setae, finely and densely striate, shiny, lower half microtrichose; vibrissal angle with 2 subvibrissal setae. Face with a small flattened triangle along ventromedial margin; palpus clavate with 1 large apical and 1 larger preapical seta. Eye height 2.8x genal height.

Thorax: Dark brown; scutum shiny despite microtrichia, posterolateral edge lighter and with pale spot on posterior notopleural lobe; katepisternum with lighter posterior spot, anepimeron with lighter ventral spot. Two pairs of dorsocentral bristles (anterior pair 0.6x length of posterior pair); 7–8 rows of long, fine acrostichal setulae. Prosternum broadened, triangular. Scutellum microtrichose, semicircular, its length 0.7x its width; 4 scutellar bristles long, apical pair 1.5x length of basal pair.

Legs: Brown, tibiae proximally and distally pale brown; tarsi yellow-brown. Male mid tibia with a large apicoventral bristle and 2 rows of stout ventral setae, mid femur with 2 corresponding rows of strong proximoventral setae. Basal half of mid tibia with 4 dorsal bristles (2 anterodorsal and 2 posterodorsal), distal half with 3 dorsal bristles (2 anterodorsal and 1 posterodorsal).

Wing/halter: Moderately infuscate. CS2 0.3x length of CS3. R 2+3 sinuate, curving strongly towards costa at base then continuing parallel to costa to above crossvein i-m, distal curve meeting costa at an angle of 30˚; R 4+5 rather strongly upcurved, meeting costa well before wing tip; costa extending slightly past R 4+5 (2x costal width). Halter pale; knob brown and apically pale; stem pale brown.

Male abdomen: Dark brown with reddish synsternite 6+7 and S8, heavily sclerotized and microtrichose. T2–5 and S2–4 uniformly long-setose in posterior half with large posterolateral setae. S5 broad (width 2.5x length), microtrichose, especially so medially, largely desclerotized posteromedially with many small lateral setulae and 6 stout setae above a row of 14 short, flat teeth flanked by large patches of dense setulae. Epandrium small, wedgeshaped, and sparsely long-setose; cercus large, bulging and out-curved posteriorly with few long setae and dense setulae along flange. Hypandrium medially upcurved and flattened apically with a small apicoventral hook; ventral lobe largely membranous; posterodorsal lobe sinuate at base, straight posteriorly and originating from the posterior edge of the medial part. Surstylus bilobed: anterior lobe small, subrectangular with a single apical seta; posterior lobe large, curved, triangular with a small rounded inner tab posteriorly, 1 very large apical thorn-like seta, several large apical setae and 1 large seta along anteroventral margin. Postgonite elongate, slightly constricted about proximal third, apically tapered, apex rounded into a slight club. Phallapodeme gently sinuate, apex curved downwards into a slight hook with small dorsal fin along anterior third; basiphallus short, triangular with a slight dorsoapical lobe. Distiphallus simple, tubular, tapered apically with 2 triangular, highly membranous apicolateral flaps.

Female abdomen: Dark brown, heavily sclerotized, shiny despite microtrichia. T2–5 uniformly long-setose in posterior two-thirds with large posterolateral setae, S2–5 uniformly long-setose along entire surface with large posterolateral setae. Preabdomen subequal in length to head + thorax. Postabdomen elongate, stout, 1.8x length of T5. T6 and T7 reduced to stout, lateral L-shaped plates, each bearing 3 apical setae. Epiproct rounded with a small posteromedial emargination, anteromedially desclerotized and bearing a dorsomedial pair of setae. Cercus subtriangular with 3 long sinuate setae (2 apical and 1 dorsal) and several smaller setulae. S6 a broad plate bearing a posterior row of 8 setulae; S7 reduced to a bell-shaped plate, anteriorly bare and shining, posteriorly microtrichose and bearing a row of 8 setae. S8 reduced to a stout subtriangular plate, its anterior half bare, its posterior half microtrichose and bearing a row of 4 setae. Hypoproct broadly emarginated anteromedially, posteriorly microtrichose with a row of setae. Spermathecae stout, somewhat compressed at midpoint of each side resulting in a slight Xshape, entirely lightly grooved; stem elongate (2.0x length of spermatheca) and cylindrical.

Type material. Holotype: AUSTRALIA: New South Wales: Otford , 34˚12’29”S 151˚00’10”E, 3.iii.1962, D.K. McAlpine, K.70463 (♂, AMSA) . Holotype photos provided by Natalie Tees, AMSA .

Paratypes: New South Wales: Blue Mountains, below Govett’s Leap, 7.xii.1956, D.K. McAlpine (headless) (1 ♀); Blue Mountains , Springwood, 30.i.1956, D.K. McAlpine (1 ♀); Katoomba, 27.ix.1959, G.H. Hardy (1 ♀) ; Queensland: Lamington National Park, Binna Burra , 31.i.1961, D.K. McAlpine (headless) (1 ♂, AMSA). All paratypes in AMSA except one female in BMNH.

Material examined: AUSTRALIA: New South Wales: Crescent Head, Delicate Knobby, ForRest Cottage , 31˚15’53”S 152˚57’43”E, lower forest, dung, 25.iii.2019, S.A. Marshall (6 ♂, DEBU) ; Crescent Head, Delicate Knobby, ForRest Cottage , 31˚15’53”S 152˚57’43”E, upper forest, dung, 25.iii.2019, S.A. Marshall (2 ♂, DEBU) ; Limpinwood Gardens , 28˚18’23”S 153˚12’22”E, 1.iv.2019, S.A. Marshall (3 ♂, DEBU) ; lower Gibraltar Range , 29˚31’S 152˚22’E, 800 m, rainforest, pitfall trap, 23.ix.1999, J. Holt (13 ♂, 11 ♀, DEBU) ; Quorrobolong, Cessnock Farm study site, 32˚55’38”S 151˚23’35”E, ex. large carrion, 10.i.2010, S.A. Marshall (1 ♂, DEBU) ; Quorrobolong, Cessnock Farm study site, Heaton Road , 32˚55’38”S 151˚23’35”E, ex. large carrion, 11–14.i.2010, S.A. Marshall (1 ♂, DEBU) ; Quorrobolong, Cessnock Farm study site, Heaton Road , 32˚55’38”S 151˚23’35”E, small carrion, 11–14.i.2010, S.A. Marshall (2 ♀, DEBU) ; Sydney, Royal National Park , rainforest, carrion trap, 5–, S. & J. Peck (6 ♂, 4 ♀, DEBU) ; Ulong, Ashton’s Eco Retreat , 30˚13’47”S 152˚55’12”E, dung, 22.iii.2019, S.A. Marshall (3 ♂, 3 ♀, DEBU) ; Queensland: Brisbane Forest Park, Scrub Creek Road, 27˚25’41”S 152˚50’15”E, yellow pans, 29.ix.2002, C.R. Nelson (2 ♀, DEBU) ; Kjellberg Road, Malaan National Park (formerly Dirran State Forest ) boundary, 17˚32’S 145˚35’E, 920 m, rainforest, fungus pitfall, 6–9.ii.1999, Monteith & Cook (1 ♂, 1 ♀, QMBA) ; Longlands Gap , three-ways road junction, 17˚28’S 145˚29’E, 1060 m, wet sclerophyll, fungus pitfall, 3– 6.ii.1999, Monteith & Cook (3 ♂, QMBA) ; Longlands Gap , three-ways road junction, 17˚28’S 145˚29’E, 1060 m, wet sclerophyll, rotten bait, 3–6.ii.1999, Monteith & Cook (4 ♀, QMBA) ; Ravenshoe , 3 km SE, 17˚38’S 145˚30’E, 960 m, open forest, fungus trap, 15–18.iv.1999, G.B. & S.R. Monteith (1 ♂, QMBA) .

Comments. Howickia trivittata is externally similar to H. subsinuata , from which it differs by its smaller body size (1.7–2.6 mm vs. 2.3–3.7 mm), very short CS2 and very short R 2+3. Male terminalia of H. trivittata are similar to H. vernalis (Richards) , with enlarged cerci and similar S5 morphology, but these species are dissimilar externally. Howickia trivittata and H. vernalis are known from some of the same localities in NSW and QLD.


Albany Museum


Ontario Insect Collection, University of Guelph














Howickia trivittata (Richards)

Kuwahara, Gregory K. & Marshall, Stephen A. 2022

Biroina trivittata (Richards)

Rohacek, J. & Marshall, S. A. & Norrbom, A. L. & Buck, M. & Quiros, D. I. & Smith, I. 2001: 126
Marshall, S. A. 1989: 602

Leptocera (Biroina) trivittata

Richards, O. W. 1973: 340
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