Epirhyssa brianfisheri, Rousse & Noort, 2014

Rousse, Pascal & Noort, Simon Van, 2014, A review of the Afrotropical Rhyssinae (Hymenoptera: Ichneumonidae) with the descriptions of five new species, European Journal of Taxonomy 91, pp. 1-42 : 12-14

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scientific name

Epirhyssa brianfisheri

sp. nov.

Epirhyssa brianfisheri   sp. nov.


Fig. 1 View Fig


Overall color mottled, pale yellow and dark brown to black; wings hyaline, apically infuscate; face rugulose-punctate, strongly protruding medially; clypeus sparsely punctate, with median subapical tubercle strong and lateral subapical tubercle weak, ventral margin strongly produced laterally; frons rugulose with a blunt Y-shaped mid-longitudinal carina; antenna with 33 flagellomeres; mesopleuron with shallow transverse striations; epicnemial carina hardly reaching level of mesopleural pit; subtegular ridge convex; fore wing with 2m–cu opposite rs–m; tergite 1 slender; sternite 1 with an additional pair of basal tubercles; tergites 1–2 smooth, following tergites densely and finely punctate; apical margins of tergites 3–5 moderately concave. CT 3.3; ML 0.7; POL 2.0; OOL 1.5; Fl 1 4.2; Fl 15 1.8; Fl 32 1.2; T1 1.7; OT 3.9.

Differential diagnosis

Species characterized by the exceptional mottled coloration and the presence of antero-basal tubercles on sternite 1 (cf. taxonomic remarks). All other species of Epirhyssa   lack the antero-basal tubercles.


Dedicated to Brian Fisher, friend and expert organizer of expeditions into central Africa, including the CAR expedition that discovered this species.

Type material


CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC: ♀, Préfecture Sangha-Mbaéré, Réserve Spéciale de Forêt Dense de Dzanga-Sangha , 12.7 km, 326° NW of Bayanga, 3°00.27’ N 16°11.55’ E, 420 m, 13 May 2001, S. van Noort, Sweep CAR 01– S 158, Lowland Rainforest, SAM–HYM–P048018 ( SAMC). GoogleMaps  


Female (holotype)

B 18.6; A11.0; F 12.8.

COLOR. Head pale yellow with black to dark brown parts: mandible, malar space, median tubercle of clypeus, a thin mid-longitudinal line on upper face, frons, vertex, and most of occiput; mesosoma pale yellow with most of mesoscutum black, and testaceous to brown parts: anterior margin of pronotum, propleuron, most of mesopleuron but subtegular ridge and two lateral patches, mesosternum, ventral margin of metapleuron and anterior third of propodeum; metasoma dark brown with pale yellow markings: tergites 1–2 medially, tergite 3–4 posteriorly; sternites pale yellow, more or less extensively testaceous anteriorly; antenna dark brown with scape somewhat pale maculated; ovipositor sheath brown; fore and mid legs testaceous with coxae and tibiae mostly pale yellow, hind leg testaceous with coxa partly pale yellow and femur with an outer longitudinal pale yellow stripe; wings hyaline, fore wing anteriorly infuscate from pterostigma to apex.

HEAD. Densely setose with long hairs, hairs shorter on upper back head; face rugulose punctate, strongly protruding medially; clypeus sparsely punctate, subapical ridge with median tubercle strong and lateral tubercle weak, ventral margin strongly produced laterally; mandible stout; frons transversely rugose with a blunt Y-shaped mid-longitudinal carina below median ocellus, inner margins of toruli not expanded backwards; vertex and temple sparsely punctate but inter-ocellar area rugose; ocellar triangle wide; occipital carina mid-dorsally interrupted; antenna with 33 flagellomeres.

MESOSOMA. Entirely covered with dense and long hairs; mesosoma moderately densely punctate, but mesonotum deeply transversely striate, anterior half of pronotum smooth and mesopleuron somewhat transversely strigose medially; epomia moderate; epicnemial carina hardly reaching level of mesopleural pit; apex of subtegular ridge convex, not flanged laterally; submetapleural carina strong, slightly and evenly narrowed toward apex.

WINGS. Fore wing with 2m–cu opposite rs–m, cu–a almost opposite Rs&M, and Rs strongly bowed forwards; hind wing with distal abscissa of Cu joining Cu&cu–a close to junction with M, with a basal group of two hamuli on distal abscissa of R1.

METASOMA. Tergite 1 moderately slender; sternite 1 with a basal pair of submedian tubercles, additional to usual ones on sternites 2–4; tergites 1–2 mostly smooth, following tergites densely and finely punctate with fine transverse striations medially; apical margins of tergites 3–5 moderately concave.




Central African Republic.

Taxonomic remarks

The presence of tubercles on sternite 1 is quite unexpected in Epirhyssa   , while it is one of the features defining the Oriental genus Triancyra Baltazar, 1961   . However, we refrain from placing this new species in Triancyra   for the following reasons. Besides the geographical separation from the known distribution area of Triancyra   , the majority of morphological characters exhibited by this new species do not fit the current generic definition for Triancyra   . For example, E. brianfisheri   sp. nov. exhibits subequal mandibular teeth (vs. upper tooth narrower in Triancyra   ), a pterostigma that is long and slender (vs. up to 5x longer than high), hind wing with a basal group of two hamuli (vs. usually three), tergite 1 long and slender (vs. stout, 1.3x longer than wide) ( Townes, 1969). Hence, we are of the opinion that the species fits more comfortably within Epirhyssa   than in Triancyra   , but the possession of additional tubercles in Epirhyssa   species underlines the need for a global phylogenetic revision of the whole subfamily. Epirhyssa   is indeed poorly defined and probably not monophyletic (G. Broad, pers. comm.).


Nanjing University


Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh


Department of Botany, Swedish Museum of Natural History


Museo de Historia Natural La Salle


Iziko Museums of Cape Town