Medeopteryx fulminea (Ballantyne) Ballantyne & Lambkin, 2013

Ballantyne, Lesley A. & Lambkin, Christine L., 2013, Systematics and Phylogenetics of Indo-Pacific Luciolinae Fireflies (Coleoptera: Lampyridae) and the Description of new Genera, Zootaxa 3653 (1), pp. 1-162 : 89-90

publication ID

publication LSID

persistent identifier

treatment provided by


scientific name

Medeopteryx fulminea (Ballantyne)

comb. nov.

Medeopteryx fulminea (Ballantyne) comb. nov.

[ Figs 145 View FIGURES 139–146 , 159 View FIGURES 154–159 ]

Pteroptyx fulminea Ballantyne, 1987a:153 .

Holotype. Male. NEW GUINEA: Morobe District , 2,800' ( ANIC).

Other specimens examined. Collector is J. Sedlacek unless indicated otherwise, and specimens are in BPBM. Listings extend Ballantyne (1987a). Ball’s tubes from Kar Kar Island (in ANIC) are identified by tube number and annotation as KK followed by a number; these can be related to field data records kept by Ball. Specimens * have lateral pronotal margins finely dark.

NEW GUINEA: 146.00E, 4.40S, Kar Kar Island , Namau, 0–200m, 9.viii.1968, NK, 11 males GoogleMaps ; 145.52E, 4.42S, Kurum , 0–100m, viii.1968, NK, male. Kar Kar Island, Eldon Ball, 22.xi.1973 3 males, 6 females (tube 11 KK2) GoogleMaps ; 20.xi.1973 5 females (tube 13 KK1) GoogleMaps ; 22.xi.1973 2 males, 5 females (tube 9 KK2); 23 Nov 1973 9 males, 1 female (Tube 20, KK2); 22 Nov 1973 5 males, 4 females (tube 25 KK5); 22 Nov 1973 5 males 4 females (tube 28 KK4)( ANIC) . 147.51E, 6.35S, Finschhafen , 14.iv.1944 male, 21.iv.1944 male*, E. Ross; iv.1944, F. Skinner, male GoogleMaps *. 146.53E, 6.43S, Bubia , near Lae, vii.22.1959, Freycinetia , male GoogleMaps . 146.35E, 7.13S, Bulolo , 700m,, male, 6.xi.1969, male, 26.xi.1969, 4 males (2 males *) GoogleMaps , 31.xii.1969, male. Bulolo River , 680m, 2.ii.1969, male*, 23.iv.1969, male*, 8.v.1969, male*,, male*; 26.xi.1969, 2 males *; 1130m, 17.ix.1969, male*. Bulolo-Vatut, 7–800m, 1–, male*. 146.40E, 7.22S, Wau , Morobe District, 1080m, 15.viii.1964, light trap, male*; 1100m, 2.ix. 1961, male*; 1150m, 11.vii.1971, ( Mallotus ), male; 1200m, 19–, light trap, 2 males GoogleMaps ; 30.vii.1961, malaise trap, male; 10.vii.1961, male; 7.viii.1961, male; 14.viii.1961, light trap, male; 17.viii.1961, light trap, male*; 26–29.ix.1961, M-V light trap, male; 27.x.1961, 2 males; 15–22.xi.1961, 3 males GoogleMaps ; 19.xi.1961, 2 males (1 male *); 2.xii.1961, male; 15.xii.1961, male*; 18.xii.1961, 2 males *; 25.xii.1961, male; 28–, light trap, male*; 23.i.1968, male; 22.iii.1969, on coffee, male*; 19.vii.1971, ( Mallotus ), 2 males; 6.vii.1973, on Ficus sp. , male; 1200–1300m, 4.ii.1962, male, G. Monteith; 14–17.i.1963, male; 1600–1700m, 28.xii.1961, male. Wau, Hospital Creek , 1200m, 6.iv.1965, male. Wau, Mt Missim, 900m, 22.ii.1965, male *. 147.10E, 7.53S, Garaina , 800m, 15.i.1968, male*, 4.i.1968, male*, 830m, 13–15.i.1968, male GoogleMaps *. 147.44E, 8.52S, Kokoda , 400m, 15–20.xi.1965, light trap. 4 males GoogleMaps ; 18.xi.1966, male; 380m, iii.20.1956, light trap, JLG, 2 males. 147.07E, 9.30S, east of Port Moresby , Bisianumu, 500m,, primary forest, JLG, male. Daradae Plantation, 500m, 80 km N to Port Moresby, ix.4.1959, T. Maa, 21 males (1 male sweeping) GoogleMaps . Mamai Plantation , near Port Glasgow, i.1965, 30– 60m, P. Shanahan, male .

INDONESIA, West Irian (as New Guinea, Netherlands): 139.00E, 2.00S, River Tor , mouth, 4 km E of Hol Maffen, 2–5.vii.1959, light trap, T. Maa, male*. 140.39E, 2.37S, Hollandia area, W Sentani, Cyclops Mts, 50– 100m, 22–, light trap, JLG and T. Maa, male. Hollandia, 13.iii.1960, T. Maa, male GoogleMaps .

Diagnosis. 5.5–6.8 mm long; pronotum yellow with narrowly dark lateral margins; MP yellow, MS dark brown; head between eyes brown; deflexed elytral apex pointed ( Fig. 145 View FIGURES 139–146 ; Ballantyne 1987a Fig. 9 View FIGURES 9–17 ); LOs entire in V7 ( Fig. 145 View FIGURES 139–146 ); most similar to M. amilae and M. effulgens , distinguished from the former by its patterns of light production and distribution in eastern New Guinea, and from the latter by light patterns, head colour, and occurrence in mainland New Guinea.

Female ( Fig. 159 View FIGURES 154–159 ; Kar Kar Island specimens). 6.3–7.2 mm long. Colour: as for male with dark MS; pale LO in V6; V7, 8 not as dark as preceding ventrites, V7 may have pale markings irregularly scattered in anterior section. Bursa plates like those of M. cribellata : (e.g. Fig. 163 View FIGURES 160–167 ).

Remarks. Ballantyne (1987a) chose the specific name to emphasize the pattern of light production, and the common name of "flasher" given by Buck and others. M. effulgens and M. fulminea may be restricted in distribution i.e. effulgens to New Britain and fulminea to mainland New Guinea. Ballantyne's (1987a) decision to erect 2 species was a purely taxonomic one. Ballantyne (1987a) described two exceptions in the New Britain population of M. effulgens without orange heads; of specimens recorded here the dark headed Lindenhafen male has MS dusky and T8 dark; the Keravat male has MS and T8 pale. Ballantyne (1987a) recorded two elytral apex types for specimens assigned to fulminea– viz. elytral apices pointed ( Fig. 9g View FIGURES 9–17 ) and rounded ( Fig. 9j View FIGURES 9–17 ), but keyed the species with elytral apices pointed. Specimens from Kar Kar Island have elytral apices more broadly rounded, and their assignment here without any information on flashing patterns is thus tentative only.

Lloyd (1973a) recorded this species from "Bulolo River near Wau....near Lae at the Markham River Bridge...and at Alexishafen at the Biges River Bridge". It occurred alongside M. pupilla and M. antennata at Alexishafen, and M. elucens at Wau ( Ballantyne 1987a, p. 156); it emits "single short flashes at periods of 1 to 1.9 sec " ( Lloyd 1973a). At similar temperatures the interval is 1.2–1.3 seconds for both fulminea and effulgens . The single male in "Species F" ( Ballantyne & McLean, 1970) is assigned to M. fulminea .

Medeopteryx fulminea was erroneously recorded as "P. sp. 3" under "P. 19. Pteroptyx antennata " by Lloyd (1973a:1001) ( Ballantyne, 1987a).


Australian National Insect Collection














Medeopteryx fulminea (Ballantyne)

Ballantyne, Lesley A. & Lambkin, Christine L. 2013

Pteroptyx fulminea

Ballantyne, L. A. 1987: 153

Medeopteryx fulminea

Lloyd, J. E. 1973: 1001