Merodon multifasciatus Curran, 1939

Vujić, Ante, Radenković, Snežana, Zorić, Ljiljana Šašić, Likov, Laura, Tot, Tamara, Veselić, Sanja & Djan, Mihajla, 2021, Revision of the Merodon bombiformis group (Diptera: Syrphidae) - rare and endemic African hoverflies, European Journal of Taxonomy 755 (1), pp. 88-135: 103-110

publication ID

https://doi.org/10.5852/ejt.2021.755.1401

publication LSID

lsid:zoobank.org:pub:F8C5C34F-CCBB-420B-9319-1DA224A5D783

DOI

http://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.5013396

persistent identifier

http://treatment.plazi.org/id/E07B6D1E-FFEA-2B55-DA55-FE6DFD12FDC6

treatment provided by

Felipe

scientific name

Merodon multifasciatus Curran, 1939
status

 

Merodon multifasciatus Curran, 1939  

Figs 1 View Fig , 4B View Fig , 5B View Fig , 6B View Fig , 9B View Fig , 10B View Fig , 11B View Fig , 12B View Fig , 13D–F View Fig , 14B View Fig , 15B View Fig , 16B View Fig , 18B View Fig , 21F–H View Fig , 25 View Fig

Merodon multifasciatus Curran, 1939: 8   (type locality: Johannesburg, Republic of South Africa). Merodon apimima Hull, 1944: 40–42   (type locality: Mulanje, Nyasaland, Republic of Malawi).

Diagnosis

Large (10–12 mm) and dark, striped species, with golden-yellow pile on the tip of the abdomen ( Figs 5B View Fig , 14B View Fig ). Scutum with conspicuous pollinose vittae ( Figs 10B View Fig , 14B View Fig ); metafemur with distinct apical dens on triangular lamina ( Figs 6B View Fig , 16B View Fig ); terga 3 and 4 with broad medial pollinose fasciae ( Figs 5B View Fig , 14B View Fig ). Similar to M. vittatus Vujić & Likov   sp. nov. from which differs in male genitalia with wider posterior lobe of surstyle, slightly curved, almost parallel sided, with rounded apex ( Fig. 13D View Fig : pl), while male genitalia in M. vittatus   sp. nov. with longer and narrower, S-shaped posterior lobe of surstyle, gradually narrowing toward tip ( Fig. 7D View Fig : pl).

Material examined

Holotype REPUBLIC OF SOUTH AFRICA • 1 ♀; Johannesburg ; 26.284° S, 27.982° E; 6000 ft; Mar. 1899; J.P. Cregoe leg.; AMNH. GoogleMaps  

Additional material

REPUBLIC OF MALAWI • 1 ♂, holotype of Merodon apimima   ; Mulanje, Nyasaland ; 16.015° S, 35.521° E; 22 Apr. 1913; S.A. Neave leg.; BMNH GoogleMaps   1 ♀, paratype of Merodon apimima   ; same collection data as for preceding; 21 Oct. 1913; labelled as allotype; BMNH GoogleMaps   2 ♂♂, paratypes of Merodon apimima   ; same collection data as for preceding; 18–30 Apr. 1913; BMNH GoogleMaps   1 ♂, paratype of Merodon apimima   ; same collection data as for preceding; FSUNS ID 04086; NBCN GoogleMaps   2 ♂♂, paratypes of Merodon apimima   ; same collection data as for preceding; 2 Jun. 1913; BMNH GoogleMaps   1 ♀, paratype of Merodon apimima   ; same collection data as for preceding; FSUNS ID 04355; BMNH GoogleMaps   .

Additional non type material

DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF THE CONGO • 1 ♂; Lualaba River ; 7.023° S, 27.046° E; 2500– 4000 ft; 21 Apr. 1907; S.A. Neave leg.; FSUNS ID 03909; NBCN LML-05-3 GoogleMaps   .

REPUBLIC OF SOUTH AFRICA • 1 ♂; Modimolle (former Nylstroom); 24.683° S, 28.416° E; 17 Feb. 1908; unknown leg.; reared from Gladiolus   bulb; USNM GoogleMaps   1 ♂; Transvaal , 5 mi (8 km) W of Warmbad; 24–25 Feb. 1968; K.V. Krombein leg.; FSUNS ID 04512; USNM ENT 00036564, USNM 2052372 View Materials   1 ♂; Transvaal, Fortuna Trail , S of Barberton, N slope; 26.009° S, 31.048° E; 8 Apr. 1985; J.G.H. Londt leg.; bushveld; FSUNS ID 04284; NMSA GoogleMaps   1 ♀; Mpumalanga, Emgwenya (Waterval Boven), near Elandsrivier ; 25.634° S, 30.326° E; 6 Apr. 2018; Sanja Vujić leg.; FSUNS ZA5_242; FSUNS GoogleMaps   1 ♀; same collection data as for preceding; L,S. Forcada leg.; FSUNS ZA5_243; FSUNS GoogleMaps   .

Redescription

Original descriptions are insufficient, without any illustrations and based on a single female from South Africa ( Curran 1939) and male and female types ( Hull 1944).

Length: large species, body 10–12 mm, wing 8–9 mm (n = 5).

Male

HEAD ( Figs 4B View Fig , 9B View Fig , 11B View Fig , 12B View Fig ). Antenna ( Fig. 4B View Fig ) reddish-brown; pedicel elongated, approximately as long as basoflagellomere (relation scape:pedicel: basoflagellomere =1.0: 2.5: 2.5); basoflagellomere concave dorsally, with acute apex; arista light brown to dark brown, thickened basally, 1.6 times as long as basoflagellomere. Face from black to dark brown, covered with gray pollinosity and whitish pile, except on bare medial vitta that occupies ¼ width of face. Oral margin protruded ( Fig. 9B View Fig ). Frons from black to reddish, inflated, covered with gray pollinosity and whitish pile. Vertical triangle and isosceles ( Fig. 12B View Fig ), usually dark brown, predominantly covered with a long, yellow pile. Ocellar triangle equilateral. Eye pile dense, gray, slightly longer than scape. Eye contiguity about 15–18 ommatidia long. Occiput reddish, pollinose, covered with yellow pile.

THORAX ( Figs 6B View Fig , 10B View Fig ). Mesonotum black, except postpronotum and posterior margin of scutellum brown-reddish, covered with reddish-yellow pile; scutum with five pollinose longitudinal vittae (as on Fig. 10B View Fig ). Pleuron black to dark brown, covered with gray pollinosity and the following parts with whitish to yellow pile: anterior part of proepimeron, posterior part of anterior anepisternum, most of the posterior anepisternum except anterior end, antero-ventral and postero-dorsal part of katepisternum, anepimeron, and metasternum. Wing hyaline, with dense microtrichia and yellow to brown veins. Calypter pale yellow. Halter with yellow pedicel and capitulum. All three femora dark brown to black; tibiae mostly reddish, medially black to dark brown; tarsi reddish ( Fig. 6B View Fig ). Metatrochanter without calcar. Metafemur moderately thickened, with less developed apicoventral triangular lamina, more or less dentate, the apical dens is distinct ( Fig. 6B View Fig ). Pile on legs predominantly whitish to yellow.

ABDOMEN ( Fig. 5B View Fig ). Black to dark brown. Tergum 1 black, usually pollinosed, covered with short whitish to yellow pile; tergum 2 with pollinose posterior margin and narrow medial fascia (in some specimens interrupted in the middle) covered with whitish pile except posterior half of tergum (between pollinose fasciae) covered with short black pilosity; terga 3 and 4 with pollinose posterior margin and broad medial pollinose fasciae ( Fig. 5B View Fig ); anterior half of tergum 3 covered with short black pile; tergum 4 covered with long golden-yellow pilosity ( Fig. 5B View Fig ). Sterna reddish-brown, covered with white or yellow pile.

GENITALIA ( Figs 13D–F View Fig , 18B View Fig ). Posterior lobe of surstyle broad, slightly curved, almost parallel sided, with rounded apex ( Fig. 13D View Fig : pl); anterior lobe of surstyle undeveloped ( Fig. 13D View Fig ); anterior margin of surstyle angular in lateral view ( Fig. 13D View Fig : ams); cercus square like ( Fig. 13D View Fig : c). Hypandrium with theca medially distinctly narrowed ( Fig. 13F View Fig ). Lateral sclerite of aedeagus small ( Fig. 18B View Fig : s).

Female ( Figs 10B View Fig , 14B View Fig , 15B View Fig , 16B View Fig )

Similar to the male except for normal sexual dimorphism: metafemur usually with small apical dens on triangular lamina ( Fig. 16B View Fig ); frons with non pollinose medial vitta ( Fig. 15B View Fig ); vertex predominantly covered with black pile.

Remarks

Hull (1944) described Merodon apimima   “related to multifasciatus Curran   in type of femoral armament and abdominal fascia; distinct in the black front, yellow pilose vertex and, brown humeri, absence of red on second abdominal segment, beside other details of pattern” based on six males and one female. All these characters mentioned in original description can be regarded as intraspecific variability of M. multifasciatus   . Based on our study of the type material of both species, we regard M. apimima   as a junior synonym of M. multifasciatus   .

In the original description of species, Hull (1944) did not state the etymology of the species name, so we cannot conclude whether he treated “ apimima   ” as a noun or an adjective. According to the International Code of Zoological Nomenclature (Article 31.2.2) ( International Commission on Zoological Nomenclature 1999) if the author does not indicate whether the species name is a noun or an adjective, as in this case, it has to be treated as a noun. When the species name is a noun simple or compound, in apposition, it does not need to agree in gender with the generic name, therefore the original spelling has to be retained (Article 34.2.1). In some references ( Smith & Vockeroth 1980; Dirickx 1988) M. apimimus   is used because authors considered “ apimima   ” to be an adjective. But in Systema Dipterorum ( Evenhuis & Pape 2020), which is the most comprehensive database related to the Syrphidae   , the original spelling of M. apimima   is applied.

Period of flight and distribution ( Fig. 1 View Fig )

This species occurs in Malawi, the Republic of South Africa and the Democratic Republic of Congo. On the basis of our data, the flight period was found to be throughout the whole year. Merodon multifasciatus   was found in deciduous forest-woodland savanna and brush-grass savanna.

Larval biology

The material from Nylstroom (17 Feb. 1908) was bred from bulbs of Gladiolus   (immature stages undescribed). Specimens collected in Emgwenya (Waterval Boven) (6 Apr. 2018) were found on flowers of different plant species inside a small spot (20 × 40 m) with the natural population of Gladiolus sericeovillosus Hook.   , along a small periodical spring. It is a strong indication that this plant is the primary host for larvae of M. multifasciatus   .

Flower visited

During our fileldwork, adults of M. multifasciatus   were observed visiting flowers of Nidorella auriculata DC.   in Emgwenya (Waterval Boven) ( Fig. 26 View Fig ).

NBCN

NBCN

NMSA

South Africa, Kwa-Zulu Natal, Pietermaritzburg, Natal Museum

AMNH

American Museum of Natural History

USNM

Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History

NMSA

KwaZulu-Natal Museum

FSUNS

Faculty of Science, The University of Novi Sad

Kingdom

Animalia

Phylum

Arthropoda

Class

Insecta

Order

Diptera

Family

Syrphidae

Genus

Merodon

Loc

Merodon multifasciatus Curran, 1939

Vujić, Ante, Radenković, Snežana, Zorić, Ljiljana Šašić, Likov, Laura, Tot, Tamara, Veselić, Sanja & Djan, Mihajla 2021
2021
Loc

Merodon multifasciatus

Hull F. M. 1944: 42
Curran C. H. 1939: 8
1939