Howickia nigriventer Marshall

Marshall, S. A., Luk, S. P. L. & Dong, H., 2014, A revision of the New Zealand species of Howickia Richards, Zootaxa 3887 (1), pp. 1-36: 17-19

publication ID

publication LSID

persistent identifier

taxon LSID

treatment provided by


scientific name

Howickia nigriventer Marshall

sp. nov.

Howickia nigriventer Marshall   sp. nov.

( Figs. 13, 14 View FIGURES 9 – 14 , 40–43)

Description. Colour: Brown to pale brown, lower frons reddish; scutum, scutellum, male postabdomen, femora, basal halves of mid and hind tibiae, and upper pleuron pale brown; preabdomen dark brown; lower half of thorax brown. Tarsi pale yellow to white, fore and hind tarsi paler than mid tarsi. Apical fifth of hind tibia black at least dorsally. Face entirely microtrichose.

Head: Interfrontal bristles in 3 strong equal pairs. Two orbital bristles, lower less than half as long as upper, upper slightly shorter than outer vertical bristle and much shorter than inner vertical and ocellar bristles. Ocelli small but distinct. Eye 3.0X genal height. Anterior genal bristle strong. Arista with short hairs, hairs shorter than width of first aristomere.

Thorax: Scutellum microtrichose, 3.0X as wide as long; basal and apical marginal bristles subequal in length or basal slightly longer than apical. Anterior dorsal katepisternal bristle minute, posterior dorsal bristle large, reaching more than halfway to wing base. Wing and halter absent.

Male abdomen: Sternite 5 subequal to sternite 4, slightly paler medially and with medial area flanked by 6 or 7 stout bristles; sternite 4 with the same pattern but medial bristles of sternite 4 conspicuously stouter than those of sternite 5. Subanal plate extremely narrow at middle, with halves barely touching; lower/outer part of cercus broadly rounded. Surstylus without stout spurs but with one long ventral bristle; main body of surstylus subquadrate with a very prominent, narrow posterior lobe as long as main body of surstylus. Hypandrium broadly but asymmetrically fused with anteroventral corners of epandrium, fused area of right side shorter and twice as wide as fused area on left. Ventral lobe of hypandrium prominent, U-shaped. Posterodorsal apodeme of hypandrium strongly developed, reaching anterior surface of distiphallus near base. Distiphallus narrow, tubular. Postgonites broad on basal part, gradually tapering distally with anterior surface serrate on distal half. Basiphallus frame-like, projecting posteriorly at right angle to distiphallus base for a distance equal to distiphallus base.

Female abdomen: Tergite 8 divided into 3 parts, dorsal part bare and shining on anterior half, setulose on posterior half, lateral parts setose and setulose along posterior margin. Epiproct bare except for two small bristles, posteromedially pale, dark posterolaterally. Cercus very short, as wide as long, setose. Sternite 8 quadrate, setulose except along anterior margin, with 2 bristles along posterior margin.

Type material. Holotype (male, NZAC, debu00134856) and 6 paratypes (1 male, 5 females, NZAC, DEBU): North Island, Coromandel Peninsula, 10 km E Thames, pan traps, 22–29.Jan. 1999, S.A. Marshall. Other paratypes: Coromandel Peninsula, Kopu Rd., 17.Mar. 1997, leaf litter, R.A. Cumber (1 male, NZAC); Wattle Bay, Lynfield, Auckland, 2.Jul. 1978, fish bait pit trap, C. Butcher (2 females, NZAC); Coromandel Forest Park, Hwy 25 A, 10 kmEThames, Kaitarakihi Trail, under fallen epiphyte, 29.Jan. 1999, S.A. Marshall (1 male, DEBU); Northland, Waimatenui, leaf mould, R.A. Cumber, 8.Mar. 1962 (1 female, NZAC).

Etymology. The species name refers to the ventral part of the thorax, which is much darker than the pale upper part.

Comments. One of the paratypes comes from the same locality as most of the known specimens of H. trilineata   but differs from that species in the absence of halteres, the presence of a microtrichose face, and its distinctive colours. Another paratype was collected along with H. nigrilegula   , a species that lacks halteres and orbital bristles and also differs from H. nigriventer   in having wing rudiments. Other types are all from the Coromandel Peninsula.


New Zealand Arthropod Collection


Ontario Insect Collection, University of Guelph