Howickia loligo, Kuwahara & Marshall, 2022

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 : 127-129

publication ID 10.11646/zootaxa.5192.1.1

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Howickia loligo

sp. nov.

Howickia loligo View in CoL sp. nov.

( Figs. 39.1–39.5 View FIGURES 39.1–39.5 )

Description. Body length: Males 2.1–3.5 mm.

Head: Orange-yellow, dark brown at level of ocelli and behind, extending onto orbital plates and bases of posterior interfrontal bristles; gena dirty yellow; antenna yellow. Frontal width 1.7x interfrontal height, frontal vitta normal. Three pairs of large interfrontal bristles, middle pair largest with tips crossing; 2 lateroclinate orbital bristles plus anterior row of 6–7 small setulae, anterior bristle 0.6x length of posterior bristle. Gena with large upcurved bristle and 5 smaller upcurved setae, rather coarsely striate, dull, lower third microtrichose; vibrissal angle with 2 subvibrissal setae. Face normal; palpus clavate with 1 large apical and 1 smaller preapical seta. Eye height 3.5x genal height.

Thorax: Orange-brown, darkest medially and along posterior edge of postpronotal lobe; scutum shiny despite microtrichia; posterior edge of mesepisternum dark brown, katatergite dark brown. One pair of dorsocentral bristles; 8 rows of short, fine acrostichal setulae. Prosternum narrow, linear, posteriorly expanded. Scutellum heavily microtrichose, darker brown, semicircular, its length 0.4x its width; 4 scutellar bristles long, anterior pair 1.1x length of anterior pair.

Legs: Yellow-brown, tibiae proximally darkened; tarsi slightly darker. Male mid trochanter with a ventral patch of very stout setae; mid tibia with 2 short rows of stout ventral setae, mid femur with 2 short corresponding rows of proximoventral setae. Basal half of mid tibia with 2 dorsal bristles (1 anterodorsal and 1 posterodorsal), distal half with 2 dorsal bristles (1 anterodorsal and 1 posterodorsal).

Wing/halter: Halter present, small, brown.

Male abdomen: Reddish-brown, heavily sclerotized, shiny despite microtrichia. T2–5 and S2–4 densely longsetose along entire surface. S5 large, broad but short (width 5.0x length), asymmetrical (right side 1.2x longer than left), uniformly long-setose, posteromedially desclerotized with a dense patch of short setae becoming longer laterally.Epandrium very large, elongate, densely long-setose; cercus bulging, subrectangular with a very large (about equal in length to surstylus), elongate, sinuate ventral extension with 3 posterior preapical setae, apex curved up into hook. Hypandrium medially sinuate; ventral lobe short, triangular; posterodorsal lobe elongate, posteriorly tapered with a kink about posterior third. Surstylus bilobed: anterior lobe short, triangular, curved posteriorly with several long, fine, sinuate posteromedial setae; posterior lobe very large, elongate, sinuate, setulose with 3 large preapical setae and a stout apical thorn-like seta. Postgonite large, elongate, sinuate, tapered gradually around midlength, apex truncate. Phallapodeme elongate, broadly curved with a large dorsal fin along anterior half; basiphallus short, arms slightly constricted basally and projecting ventrally. Distiphallus divided into two distinct sections: basal half with a large, curved, triangular dorsal sclerite posteriorly connected to a flattened ventral sclerite via a pair of thin lateral sclerites; distal half with a V-shaped dorsal sclerite supporting a large, tubular membranous apex with anterodorsal surface reticulate.

Female abdomen: Female unknown.

Material examined. Holotype: AUSTRALIA: Tasmania: Frodshams Pass , 2 km S, 42˚30’00”S 146˚13’48”E, ex yellow tray, 24.i.1983, I.D. Naumann & J.C. Cardale (♂, ANIC).

Paratypes: AUSTRALIA: Tasmania: Mount Field National Park, near Lake Fenton, 42˚41’S 146˚37’E, 1000 m, ANIC Berlesate No. 667, litter under Nothofagus gunnii & Athrotaxis selaginoides , 31.i.1980, Lawrence & Weir (2 ♂, ANIC, DEBU).

Etymology. This name refers to the six tentacle-like extensions on the cerci, surstyli and postgonites which resemble the tentacles of a squid (Latin ‘loligo’: squid).

Comments. H. loligo is the only species of Howickia to have such enlarged male genitalia and is readily distinguished from all other wingless Tasmanian Howickia . No female specimens are known.


Australian National Insect Collection


Ontario Insect Collection, University of Guelph













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