Signiphora ehleri Woolley & Dal Molin, 2017

Woolley, J. B. & Dal Molin, A., 2017, Taxonomic revision of the flavopalliata species group of Signiphora (Hymenoptera: Signiphoridae), Zootaxa 4315 (1), pp. 1-150 : 43-46

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Signiphora ehleri Woolley & Dal Molin

n. sp.

Signiphora ehleri Woolley & Dal Molin , n. sp. Figures 137–152 View FIGURES 137 – 140 View FIGURES 141 – 146 View FIGURES 147 – 152

Description. Female. Length, anterior margin of pronotum to epiproct apex, 0.69–0.79 mm (n=8). Head and antenna brown. Pronotum and mesoscutum brown, scutellum and metanotum lighter, propodeum to apex of metasoma dark brown. All femora and tibiae brown, tarsi white. Fore wing infuscated to apex of stigma vein, with two hyaline areas at base.

Head. Sculpture and punctation vertex and frons minutely but transversely imbricate, with approximately 30 scattered punctations. Mandible with two teeth, mandibular ducts enlarged apically. Pedicel length:scape length 0.73–0.78; 3 anelli, second anellus 1.5–2.0× length of first, third anellus 2.0–2.8× length of first, clava length:scape length 1.60–1.66.

Mesosoma. Mesoscutum and medial sclerite of propodeum transversely imbricate. Scutellum with 4–7 setae and 2 campaniform sensilla; medial propodeal sclerite rounded, process on medial sclerite narrowly rounded. Fore wing with discal seta, length:width 2.8–3.0; fore wing LMS:width 0.97–1.17; marginal vein length:stigmal vein length 2.9–4.2; marginal vein with 6 dorsal and 0–2 ventral setae; seta M3 length:marginal vein length 0.48–0.75; apical end of costal cell at M3 or between M2 and M3. Hind wing margins parallel; hind wing length:width 5.3– 7.1; hind wing width:fore wing width 0.38–0.52; hind wing LMS:hind wing width 1.6–2.3. Mesofemur with one long spine and a second one approximately ¼–1/5 as long on posteroapical margin; mesotibial spur with 5–9 teeth (usually 6 or more); mesotibial spur length:basitarsus length 0.75–1.0; basitarsus length:mesotibia length 0.52– 0.62.

Metasoma. Mt1 rounded medially; Mt1 length:Mt2 length 0.48–0.65; ovipositor with anterior-most portion lying under Mt3, sometimes Mt2; ovipositor length:metasoma length 0.64–0.75; ovipositor sheath length:ovipositor length 0.19–0.35; Ms3–Ms6 with anterior projections medium in length; Ms 6 in posterior 1/3–1/ 4 of metasoma and with 6–8 setae; Mt8 with anterodorsal margin with rounded, medial incision.

Male. Length, anterior margin of pronotum to epiproct apex, 0.45–0.48 mm (n=12). As described for females except medial portion of propodeum distinctly lighter than lateral portions; clava length:scape length 1.46–1.49; mesotibial spur with 4 or 5 teeth. Genitalia normal for flavopalliata group, length:width of digitus 2.6–3.3; digitus with one small denticle at apex and no setae; Ms8 transverse but with pointed, anteromedial margin.

Discussion. Most of the known specimens were reared by Les Ehler from Melanaspis obscura on pecan twigs in Austin, TX, either in the field or in quarantine at Texas A&M University. Two specimens were reared by Fred Bennett from Caenohomolopoda shikokuensis (Tachikawa) ( Hymenoptera : Encyrtidae ) in Froggattiella penicillata (Green) ( Diaspididae ) on Bambusa multiplex, Mariana , FL. A single female specimen from Nova Teutonia, Brazil is far outside the range of the other specimens, but clearly fits the diagnosis for this species.

Type material. HOLOTYPE ♀: in balsam (TAMU-ENTO X0828077); “TX: Travis Co., Austin , 31.v.1987, L.E. Ehler, UCD 87-4 View Materials , ex: pecan twigs infested with Melanaspis obscura . Holotype deposited at TAMU. PARATYPES: 13 ♀ and two ♂, data as holotype or as follows: “College Stn. Tex. June 1983, LEE, UCD 83-3, ex: pecan twigs infested with Melanaspis obscura (in quarantine)”, TAMU-ENTO X0828068–X0828078 and UC BME 0092781–0092785. Paratypes deposited at UCD, USNM, BMNH; TAMU.

Other material examined. BRAZIL: Santa Catarina : 1 ♀, BMNH (E) 990319 ( BMNH) . USA: Florida: 1 ♀, TAMU-ENTO X0852833 ( FSCA) .

Biology. The rearing by Fred Bennett in Florida clearly indicates this species as a secondary parasitoid of armored scales, and the rearings by Ehler are possibly consistent with that, as the record is “reared from pecan twigs infested with Melanaspis obscura ”.

Etymology. The species is named after the late Prof. Les Ehler, UC Davis professor of entomology and biocontrol specialist, who collected the type series and most of the available material as part of a study on parasitoids of Melanaspis obscura .


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Florida State Collection of Arthropods, The Museum of Entomology