Psilota metallica Thompson and Young, 2020

Young, Andrew D., Skevington, Jeffrey H. & Steenis, Wouter Van, 2020, Revision of the Psilota Meigen, 1822 flower flies (Diptera: Syrphidae) of Australia, Zootaxa 4737 (1), pp. 1-127 : 60

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Psilota metallica Thompson and Young

sp. nov.

Psilota metallica Thompson and Young sp. nov.

(Species plate: Fig. 25 View FIGURE 25 ; Genitalia: Fig. 44 View FIGURE 44 C–D; Map: Fig. 59B View FIGURE 59 )

Psilota sp. 88–38 Thompson, unpublished

Diagnosis: Strongly iridescent over entire body, blue and green thorax and red and green abdomen. Hind leg simple. Body length: 10.4–12.3 mm.

Description: MALE: Head: Frons and face shining metallic blue and green, bare of pollinosity. Face, frons, and vertex with long white pile. Antenna orange. Eye densely pilose, pile entirely white. Thorax: Thorax entirely iridescent blue and green, shining, pollinosity free. Legs dark blue, orange at extreme apex of femora and base of tibiae. Hind femur unmodified, with only a few weak, black setulae apicoventrally. Pleuron white pilose. Scutum mostly white pilose, with some black pile laterally ventrad of transverse suture. Scutellum white pilose, with distinct marginal sulcus. Wing colourless, entirely bare. Abdomen: Tergites entirely iridescent green and red. Tergites 2–3 with some short dark pile on disc, all tergites white pilose laterally. Tergite 4 entirely white pilose. All sternites iridescent blue and red. Genitalia: Epandrium compact, about as long as tall. Cercus approximately triangular. Outer lobe of surstylus inserted at about mid-height of inner lobe, abruptly curved downwards at base. Inner lobe of surstylus broad, approximately 3 times as long as wide, swollen at base, slightly constricted, and smoothly rounded at apex. Phallapodeme smooth, postgonite not darkened.

FEMALE: Identical except for normal sexual dimorphism.

Etymology: The specific epithet metallica derives from the Latin “metallicum”, meaning “metal”. This is in reference to the strongly iridescent cuticle of Psilota metallica sp. nov.

Specimens examined: HOLOTYPE: AUSTRALIA: New South Wales: 99 km North of Wentworth ; - 33.027339 150.952214; Hakea leucoptera ; 30.XI.1992; coll. N.W. Rodd; AustralianMuseumK410178; (1♂, AM) GoogleMaps . PARATYPES: New South Wales: same data as holotype, AustralianMuseumK410160 (1♂, AM) GoogleMaps ; Pooncarie , - 33.383350 142.566942, 30.xi.1993, N.W. Rodd, AustralianMuseumK410169 (1♀, AM) GoogleMaps ; Tibbooburra, Cobham Lake , -29.426133 142.001994, 17.x.1949, S.J.K. Paramonov, USNM _ENT_00249839 (1♀, USNM) GoogleMaps ; Queensland: Durham Downs, Nokandra , -26.116933 149.076992, 13.xi.1949, S.J. Paramonov, ”leg”, USNM _ENT_00249840 (1♂, USNM) GoogleMaps ; Talawanta, 80 ml. S.E. of Burketown , -29.601372 147.060083, 24.v.1972, G.B. & S.R. Monteith, UQIC_ Reg 94706 (1♂, QM). USNM _ENT_00249839 GoogleMaps ; USNM_ENT_00249840; UQIC_ Reg 94706, (2♂♂, 2♀♀, AM; USNM; CNC; QM) .

Discussion: This species has been collected from flowers of Hakea leucoptera ( Proteaceae ). Otherwise nothing is known of its biology.


Australian Museum


Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History


Queensland Museum


Canadian National Collection of Insects, Arachnids, and Nematodes