Hoplopleura melomydis Weaver

Weaver, Haylee J., 2017, Three new species of the sucking louse genus Hoplopleura (Phthiraptera: Anoplura: Hoplopleuridae) from rodents (Mammalia: Rodentia: Muridae) in northern Australia, Zootaxa 4247 (1), pp. 31-44: 32-33

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Hoplopleura melomydis Weaver

new species

Hoplopleura melomydis Weaver   new species

Figs 1–8 View FIGURES 1 – 4 View FIGURES 5 – 8

Type host. Melomys burtoni (Ramsay, 1887)   —grassland melomys   ( Muridae   ).

Type locality. Queensland (26°23’S, 153°07’E), Australia.

Other host. Melomys capensis Tate, 1951   —Cape York melomys   ( Muridae   ).

Diagnosis. The paratergal plates II of Hoplopleura melomydis   have a small central seta, in addition to the two large posterior setae, which immediately differentiates it from H. zyzomydis Weaver & Barton, 2008   , H. bidentata ( Neumann, 1909)   , H. cornata Kim, 1972   , and H. notomydis   new species (described below). Hoplopleura melomydis   can be differentiated from H. calabyi Johnson, 1960   by the size of the small seta in the middle of paratergal plate II, which is large in H. calabyi   and small in H. melomydis   . Further, H. melomydis   has a sternal plate that is more clavate than the cube-shaped sternal plate of H. calabyi   . The setae of paratergal plates IV –VI of H. melomydis   are diagnostic, as they comprise one large stout seta and one tiny seta, which differentiates it from H. uromydis Kuhn & Ludwig, 1967   , which has setae of more equal lengths on paratergal plates IV –VI. Hoplopleura melomydis   can be further differentiated from H. uromydis   by the presence of dorsal lateral abdominal setae ( DLAS) and ventral lateral abdominal setae ( VLAS) on the abdomen, and by having male genitalia with smooth-sided parameres, which are notched in H. uromydis   . Both H. gyomydis Kuhn & Ludwig, 1967   and H. irritans Kuhn & Ludwig, 1967   lack a dorsal lobe on paratergal plate VII, which differentiates them from H. melomydis   , which has a dorsal lobe on paratergal plate VII. In addition, H. gyomydis   only has 8 tergites, and H. irritans   lacks tergites on abdominal segments 1 and 2, thus further differentiating these 2 species from H. melomydis   . The lack of a dorsal lobe on paratergal plate VII of H. setosa   new species (described below) differentiates it from H. melomydis   , as does the presence of VLAS on small plates, and the small plates next to tergites. The sexually dimorphic morphology of paratergal plates VII and VIII of H. mastacomydis Kuhn & Ludwig, 1967   differentiate it from H. melomydis   because those of female H. mastacomydis   have dorsal and ventral posterior lobes on paratergal plate VII and a dorsal lobe on paratergal plate VIII. Male H. melomydis   can be differentiated from male H. mastacomydis   by having a sternal plate with a longer and more pointed posterior process, no fused posterior sternites and no dorsal preantennal lateral head setae.

Description. Male (n = 4). Figs 1–4 View FIGURES 1 – 4 . Body length 983–1109 (1035). Head slightly longer than wide, 4 apical head setae (ApHS), 4 anterior marginal head setae (AnMHS). Dorsally, 4 sutural head setae (SuHS), 8 dorsal marginal head setae ( DMHS), 2 small dorsal accessory head setae (DAcHS), 2 large dorsal principal head setae ( DPHS). Ventrally, 2 ventral principal head setae ( VPHS). Thorax wider than long, with 1 dorsal principal thoracic seta ( DPTS) per side. DPTS length 103–118 (112). Mesothoracic spiracle diameter 26–29 (28). Sternal plate clavate, elongated posteriorly and with anterior process. Abdomen wider than thorax. Dorsally, 1 tergite per segment except for segment 3 with 2 tergites. Tergite of segment 1 with 1 pair of small tergal abdominal setae (TeAS) posterolaterally. Tergite of segment 2 with 2 pairs of long TeAS posterolaterally. Segment 3 anterior tergite with 2 pairs of TeAS, posterior tergite with 3 pairs of TeAS. Tergites of segment 4 and 5 each with 4 pairs of TeAS. Tergite of segment 6 with 5 pairs of TeAS. Segment 7 with 3 pairs of TeAS on tergite and 1 pair of DLAS lateral to tergite. Tergite of segment 8 without setae. Ventrally, no sternite on segment 1. Segment 2 with 1 sternite elongated laterally to articulate with paratergal plate and with 5 pairs sternal abdominal setae (StAS). Segment 3 with large anterior sternite, articulating with paratergal plate and with 5 pairs of StAS, lateral pairs large and stouter than others. Posterior sternite of segment 3 with 4 pairs of StAS. Segment 4 with 3 sternites—anterior and posterior sternites each with 3 pairs of StAS, middle sternite with 4 pairs of StAS. 1 pair of ventral lateral abdominal setae ( VLAS) lateral to edge of posterior sternite. Segment 5 with 2 sternites, anterior sternite with 4 pairs of StAS, posterior sternite with 3 pairs of StAS and 1 pair of VLAS. Segment 6 with 2 sternites, each with with 3 pairs of StAS. 1 pair of VLAS lateral to posterior sternite. Segment 7 with 1 sternite with 2 pairs of StAS. Genital basal apodeme longer than parameres. Parameres uniformly sclerotized, with pseudopenis biconvex tapering to a point extended beyond apices of the parameres. Paratergal plates present on abdominal segments 1–8. All plates differentially sclerotized. Paratergal plate I small and offset medially. Paratergal plate II with 1 small medial seta, 2 large posterior setae and pointed posterior lobes. Paratergal plate III with 2 large setae and posterior lobes. Paratergal plates IV, V and VI each with 1 large and 1 minute seta and serrated posterior lobes. 5th segment spiracle diameter 24–26 (25). Paratergal plate VII with 2 long setae and pointed posterior lobe on dorsal surface only. Paratergal plate VIII with small spiracle and 2 long setae.

Female (n = 10). Figs 5–8 View FIGURES 5 – 8 . Body length 1241–1426 (1336). Head longer than wide, with 4 ApHS and 4 AnMHS. Dorsally, 2 DPaLHS, 4 SuHS, 8 DMHS, 2 DPHS and 2 DAcHS, and ventrally 2 VPHS. Thorax wider than long. DPTS length 108–129 (116). Thoracic sternal plate clavate with stout, rounded anterior process, elongated posterior process. Mesothoracic spiracle diameter 18–29 (24). Abdomen wider than thorax. Dorsally, 18 tergites present. Tergite 1 narrow, with 2 TeAS (1 pair) on posterolateral margin. Tergite 2 broad with 4 TeAS (2 pairs) on posterolateral margin. Tergites 3, 4 and 5 on segment 3, 1 broad with 4 (2 pairs) TeAS, others narrow with 7 (3 pairs and 1) TeAS, and 3 pairs TeAS. Tergites 6, 7 and 8 on segment 4, with 6 TeAS on tergite 6, 7 TeAS on tergite 7, and 5 TeAS on tergite 8. Tergites 9, 10 and 11 on segment 5 with 6 TeAS and 1 DLAS on each side of tergites 9 and 10. Tergites 12, 13 and 14 on segment 6, with 7 TeAS on tergite 11, and 6 TeAS on tergites 12, 13 and 14. Tergite 12 with 1 DLAS on each side. Tergite 15 with 5 TeAS and 1 DLAS on each side, tergite 16 with 5 TeAS on segment 7. Segment 8 with tergite 17 narrow with 4 TeAS, tergite 18 broad with 4 TeAS. Ventrally, no sternite on segment 1. Segment 2 with 1 sternite with 4 pairs of StAS and articulating with paratergal plate II. Segment 3 with 2 sternites. Anterior sternite broad with 3 pairs plus 1 StAS, lateral pair very large and stout. Posterior sternite narrow, with 3 pairs plus 1 StAS. Segments 4–5 each with 3 narrow sternites with 4 pairs of StAS. Segment 5 also with 2 VLAS per side lateral to posterior sternite. Segment 6 with 4 narrow sternites, each with 3 pairs or 3 pairs plus 1 StAS and 3 VLAS per side. Segment 7 with 2 narrow sternites with 3 pairs of StAS on anterior sternite, 4 pairs of StAS on posterior sternite and 1 VLAS per side. Subgenital plate triangular with 4 setae evenly spaced. Gonopods VIII with 3 small setae, gonopod IX with 3 long setae. Genital setae very stout. Paratergal plates as in male, 5th segment spiracle diameter 21.0–28.9 (25.8).

Etymology: The species epithet is a noun in apposition referring to the generic name of the host species, Melomys   .

Type material. Ex Melomys burtoni (Ramsay, 1887)   : Holotype ♂, QM JM11175, Sunshine Motorway near Noosa-Eumundi Road, Queensland, Australia (26°23’S, 153°07’E), 1 Dec. 1995, unknown collector ( QMBA T207311) GoogleMaps   . Paratypes: 1♂, same data as for the holotype ( ANIC 19 View Materials 0000723) GoogleMaps   ; 3♀, same data as for the holotype ( QMBA T207312–14). GoogleMaps  

Additional material examined (non-types). Ex Melomys burtoni (Ramsay, 1887)   : 1 slide of nymphs, same data as for the holotype ( QMBA T207315)   ; 1♀, QM JM11390, Jenners Rd , near Sarina, Queensland, Australia (21°28’S, 149°09’E), 2 Apr. 1994, unknown collector ( QMBA T207316) GoogleMaps   ; 1♀, QM JM8869, Cape Tribulation , Queensland, Australia (16°08’S, 145°26’E), Feb. 1989, unknown collector, ( QMBA T207317) GoogleMaps   ; 2♀, AWC277/90 & AWC336/90, East MacIlwraith Range , Queensland, Australia, 9 Aug.1990, P. Catling & P. Haycock ( ANIC 19 View Materials 000057–58)   ; 1♀, AWC103/95, “ Koolpinya ” near Darwin, Northern Territory, Australia, 27 Jul. 1995, P. Haycock ( ANIC 19 View Materials 000059).  

Ex Melomys capensis Tate, 1951: 2   ♂, 3♀, QM JM17132, Pine River, 5.5 km SW of Betteridge Landing, Andoom, Queensland, Australia (12°30’11”S, 141°45’14”E), 20 Sep. 1993, unknown collector (1♂, 1♀ (one slide), 1♂, 2♀ (3 slides) QMBA T207318–21) GoogleMaps   ; 1♂, QM JM17133, Pine River , 5.5km SW of Betteridge Landing, Andoom, Queensland, Australia (12°29’34”S, 141°45’41”E), 20 Sep. 1993, unknown collector ( QMBA T207322). GoogleMaps  


Australian National Insect Collection














Hoplopleura melomydis Weaver

Weaver, Haylee J. 2017

Melomys capensis

Tate 1951: 2