Hycleus dicinctus (Bertoloni, 1849)

Bologna, Marco A., Amore, Valentina & Pitzalis, Monica, 2018, Meloidae of Namibia (Coleoptera): taxonomy and faunistics with biogeographic and ecological notes, Zootaxa 4373 (1), pp. 1-141 : 74-78

publication ID


publication LSID




persistent identifier


treatment provided by


scientific name

Hycleus dicinctus


Cf) Hycleus dicinctus species group

We grouped here tentatively some large-sized Afrotropical species with a Mesoscutatus - type mesosternum, probably belonging to distinct lineages, usually confused in the literature because of the great elytral pattern variability. Males of these species are easy to distinguish because of the morphology of maxillary stipe and palpi, while female are more difficult to recognize. The colour of antennomeres also can help in the separation of species. Information on some species of these lineages was published by Pardo Alcaide (1963).

Hycleus scalaris ( Marseul, 1872) ( Fig. 4V View FIGURE4 )

Mylabris (Mylabris) scalaris Marseul, 1872

Distribution. Namibia (endemic).

Material examined and literature records. [Kunene] Epupa: Okakatuwo, Kaokoland, 17.4500°S 12.7000°E (SMWN). Opuwo: Opuwo town, 18.0500°S 13.8333°E (CB); Kaokoveld, Anabib (Orupembe), 100 miles W Ohopoho, 18.1833°S 12.5167°E ( Kaszab, 1956) ( Kaszab 1956, as ab. pseudovulgaris, holotype); 4 km E Orumana, Kaokoland, 18.2333°S 13.8333°E (SMWN); Kaokoveld, 11 miles E Omutati, 60 miles WSW Ohopoho, 18.2500°S 13.0833°E ( Kaszab, 1956) ( Kaszab 1956, as ab. nigrobasipennis, holotype); Orumana, Kaokoveld, 18.2500°S 13.9000°E (SMWN); Orumana, Kaokoland, 18.2667°S 13.8833°E (SMWN); Kunene distr., C43, 18.6788°S 13.7135°E (CB); Kunene distr., C43, 18.7599°S 13.7489°E (CB); Kunene distr., C43, 18.9962°S 13.7581°E (CB). Sesfontein: Khovarib River, Kaokoland, 19.3167°S 13.9667°E (SMWN); Hunkab-Hoanib Rivers, Skeleton Coast Park, 19.6333°S 13.0167°E (SMWN); Humor 704, Damaraland, 19.8439°S 14.1231°E (SMWN). Kamanjab: Kamanjab, 19.6333°S 14.8333°E (SMWN); Hoas 273, Outjo, 19.9200°S 14.7500°E (SMWN). Outjo: Ike 346, Outjo, 19.7533°S 16.6244°E (SMWN); C39, 10 km W Outjo, 20.0100°S 16.0100°E (CB); Outjo-Kalkfeld, 16–20 km S Outjo, 20.3333°S 16.1500°E (CB). Khorixas: Bethanis 514, 20.4000°S 14.4000°E (SMWN); Damaraland, Duineveld 529, 20.7833°S 14.6333°E (SMWN). [Oshikoto] Guinas: Leeudrink, Etosha N.P., 18.8833°S 17.0667°E (SMWN). [Otjozondjupa] Otavi: Dakota 424, 19.4941°S 17.1287°E (SMWN). Omatako: Waterberg Plateau Park, 20.4167°S 17.2500°E (SMWN); D2414, Etjo-Kalkfeld, 38 km SE of Kalkfeld, 21.1288°S 16.3883°E (CB); Kalkfeld, Omukandi (MCZR). Okahandja: 30 km W Okahandja, 21.9260°S 16.5768°E (CP); Okahandja, 21.9833°S 16.9167°E ( Pic, 1908; SMWN). [Erongo] Dâures: Okonyenye Mt. Otjihorongo Reserve, Damaraland, 21.1500°S 15.3167°E (SMWN); Brandberg Hungorob Valley, 21.1900°S 14.5282°E ( Bologna, 2000a; SMWN).

Omaruru: Otjikoko S 61, 21.2833°S 16.3667°E (SMWN); Okakongo farm, Omaruru, 21.3167°S 15.9833°E (SMWN). Karibib: D1935, 30 km NNW Usakos, 21.7833°S 15.5000°E (CB); Karibib, 21.9333°S 15.8333°E (as ab. nigrobasipennis: Kaszab, 1956, paratypus); 20 km W Boshua Pass , 22.6640°S 15.8780°E (CB). Arandis: Rossing Mine, 22.4667°S 15.0333°E ( SMWN). [Omaheke] Steinhausen: Kohoro Noord 185, 21.9667°S 18.7167°E ( SMWN). [Khomas] Windhoek Rural: Daan Park, 22.5333°S 16.9667°E (CP); Portsmut 33, Windhoek, 23.1000°S 16.4167°E ( SMWN). Windhoek East: Windhoek, 22.5667°S 17.0833°E ( SMWN); Windhuk, 22.5700°S 17.0836°E ( Bologna, 1978; CB). [Hardap] Mariental Urban: C19, 11 km W Mariental, 24.6167°S 17.8500°E (CB). [Karas] Berseba: Mukorob 14, Namaland, 25.4833°S 18.1667°E ( SMWN). Keetmanshoop Rural: Khabus 146, 26.3000°S 18.2167°E ( SMWN); Keetmanshoop, 26.9169°S 18.6746°E (CB) GoogleMaps ; Karas distr., 27.1352°S 19.4941°E (CB). Karasburg: Grunau, 27.7333°S 18.3833°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps ; 11 km NW Karasburg , 28.0167°S 18.7500°E ( SMWN). GoogleMaps

Other records: Northern Damaraland ( Péringuey 1909); Swakop ( Marseul 1872); Swakop River (CB); Otjiuve (SMWN); Namib Sand Sea desert ( Seely 2012); Namibia ( Bologna 2000a; Pitzalis et al. 2014).

Remarks. Types of this species were examined at MNHN.

Hycleus sp. complex tricolor [? = Hycleus kakamas ( Péringuey, 1909) ] ( Fig. 4W View FIGURE4 )

? Mylabris oculata var. kakamas Péringuey, 1909 ? Mylabris buqueti Péringuey, 1909 nec Marseul, 1872 Hycleus buqueti, Pitzalis et al. 2014

Distribution. Southern Namibia (new species record for this country) and western South Africa.

Material examined and literature records. [Karas] Keetmanshoop Rural : M29, 4 km S jct. D3919, 25.6205°S 18.6135°E (CB). Bersheba: C14, 51 km N Bethanien, 26.2919°S 17.0535°E (CB) GoogleMaps . Karas distr., 27.1352°S 19.4941°E (CB). GoogleMaps

Other records: Damaraland ( Péringuey 1909, as buqueti ); Ovampoland ( Péringuey 1909, as buqueti ); Namibia ( Bologna 2000a, as buqueti ; Pitzalis et al. 2014, as buqueti ). Kaszab (1956) cited from Damaraland oculata ab. kakamas , and this citation could be referable to this taxon.

Remarks. The identification of specimens from the localities listed above is still uncertain, being all females. They clearly belong to the group of species here considered as dicinctus group, and in particular to the complex of H. tricolor (Gerstäcker, 1854) or to that of H. dicinctus (Bertoloni, 1849) , which were variously confused in the literature. Males of these last two species have maxillary palpi greatly distinct (see Pardo Alcaide 1958a, 1966), but the variation of elytral pattern is partially overlapping and this produced several erroneous records. Some infraspecific forms of these species were described (see Péringuey 1909) and referred to tricolor (as oculatus) or to dicinctus . For example: (i) hottentottus Fåhraeus, 1870, from South Africa, which probably refers to tricolor , with its synonym trasversalis Marseul, 1872 (see Pardo Alcaide 1966, note 1); (ii) myops Fåhraeus, 1870, erroneously referred to tricolor , or considered distinct (as caffrarius Pic 1908; see Kaszab 1956), but probably belonging to dicinctus (see Pardo Alcaide 1966, note 2).

Only the comparative examination of types of all described forms of this complex could clarify this taxonomic problem and could define if our southern Namibian specimens belong to a distinct species or to another described taxon. In Figs. 14 A –E View FIGURE 14 are illustrated: tegmen in ventral ( Fig. 14 A View FIGURE 14 ) and lateral view with the aedeagus ( Fig. 14B View FIGURE 14 ); mesosternum ( Fig. 14C View FIGURE 14 ); male maxillary palpi ( Fig. 14D View FIGURE 14 ) and stypes ( Fig. 14E View FIGURE 14 ).

We suspect that the examined specimens belong to the form described by Péringuey (1909) as “ oculata var. kakamas ”, from the arid regions of western South Africa, or to the taxon erroneously recorded by the same Author as buqueti . The description of kakamas greatly corresponds to our specimens as concerns the head and pronotum punctures. The shape of pronotum, which is very distinct from that of tricolor and dicinctus , due to its strangling and extended fore depression, clearly distinguishes this form from both species. Moreover, in our opinion, buqueti Marseul, 1872 (described from S Angola) represents simply an infraspecific form of H. dicinctus : we examined specimens from R.D. Congo identified as buqueti by Kaszab ( RMCA), and they have the typical male maxillary stipes of H. dicinctus .

Hycleus tricolor (Gerstäcker, 1854) comb. n. ( Fig. 4X View FIGURE4 )

Mylabris tricolor Gerstäcker, 1854

Mylabris oculata Thunberg, 1791

Mylabris oculata ssp. ovamboensis Kaszab, 1956

Types. Types of the taxa discussed here were not examined, but they were deeply studied by Pardo Alcaide (1966), who sent us specimens compared with types.

Distribution. Angola, Botswana, Mozambique, Namibia , South Africa, Tanzania, Zaire, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.

Material examined and literature records. [Ohangwena] Engela: Ovamboland : Ochikango , 17.4000°S 15.8833°E ( ssp. ovamboensis: Kaszab, 1956 , type locality). [Kavango] Rundu Rural GoogleMaps : West Caprivi, Region Okavango, Ostufer near Rundu , 17.9333°S 19.7667°E (CP). Mukwe : Shadikongoro , 18.0500°S 21.3667°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps ; Popa Falls , 18.1167°S 21.0667°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps . [Kunene] Opuwo : Orumana, Kaokoveld, 18.2500°S 13.9000°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps ; Orumana, Kaokoland, 18.2667°S 13.8833°E (SMWN). [Oshikoto] Omuthiyagwiipundi: Namutoni, 18.8000°S 16.9833°E (CP); Okaukuejo , 19.1833°S 15.9333°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps . Tsumeb: Tsumeb, 19.2333°S 17.7167°E (CP); Tsumeb , 19.2333°S 17.7167°E (CB). [Oshana] Uuvudhiya : Okaukuejo-Leeubron, Etosha, 19.0667°S 15.8167°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps . [Otjozondjupa] Otavi: Dakota 424, 19.4941°S 17.1287°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps . Grootfontein: Grootfontein, 19.5667°S 18.1167°E (CB). Tsumkwe : Kremetartkop, Boesmanland, 19.8667°S 20.9167°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps . Otjiwarongo: Otjiwarongo, 20.4500°S 16.6500°E (CB). Omatako : Waterberg Rest Camp, Waterberg Plateau Park, 20.5167°S 17.2333°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps ; Rodenstein 307, 20.5626°S 17.2418°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps ; Okonjima 128, 20.8650°S 16.6670°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps ; Sukses, 62 km S Otjiwarongo, 21.0000°S 16.8000°E (CB); D2414, Etjo-Kalkfeld, Dinosaurus Tracks, 21.1156°S 16.4161°E (CB); Kalidoua , 21.2833°S 18.0667°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps .

Okahandja: Okahandja , 21.9833°S 16.9167°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps . [Erongo] Dâures: Pager se gat: Brandberg, Damaraland, 21.1333°S 14.5833°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps ; Brandberg, Wasserfallflache, 21.1795°S 14.5478°E (SMWN); Brandberg, Hungorob Valley , 21.1900°S 14.5282°E ( Bologna 2000a, as oculatus; SMWN) GoogleMaps ; Brandberg, Messum Valley , 21.2215°S 14.5163°E ( Bologna, 2000a as oculatus; SMWN) GoogleMaps . Omaruru: Otjikoko-Sud 61, 21.2833°S 16.3667°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps . Karibib: Karibib, 21.9333°S 15.8333°E (CB). Walvis Bay Rural: Kuiseb Canyon , 23.3667°S 15.6667°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps . [Omaheke] Steinhausen: Owingi 246, Gobabis , 21.9000°S 18.8667°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps ; Kehoro S 939, Gobabis , 22.0833°S 18.6167°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps . Kalahari: C22, near Gobabis, 12 km N jct. B6, 22.3613°S 19.0034°E (CB). Gobabis : Swart Nossob R. Gobabis , 23.1333°S 18.7000°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps ; 15 km E Gobabis, Welkom Farm, 22.3923°S 19.1129°E (CP). [Khomas] Windhoek Rural : Onganja Ost 190, 22.1000°S 17.5667°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps ; Khomas-Hochland, Bushmanland, 75 km NE Windhoek, Karivo, 22.2000°S 17.5500°E (CP); Windhoek , 22.3400°S 17.0500°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps ; D1525, Windhoek-Gobabis, to Bodenhausen, 1 km N jct. B6, 22.3968°S 17.6600°E (CB); Neudamm 63, 22.5°S 17.35°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps ; Daan Park, 22.5333°S 16.9667°E (CP); Windhoek Airport , 22.5333°S 17.2500°E (CB); Richthofen 126 GoogleMaps . 22.5667°S 17.7500°E (SMWN); Regenstein 32, 22.7178°S 17.0317°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps ; Lichtenstein , 22.7667°S 16.9833°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps ; Haris 367, 22.7833°S 16.8667°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps ; Claratal 18, 22.8000°S 16.8333°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps ; Wasservallei 382, 22.9167°S 16.3667°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps ; Portsmut 33, 23.1000°S 16.4167°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps ; Guisés 180, 23.8000°S 16.2333°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps . Windhoek East: Windhoek , 22.5667°S 17.0833°E (CB; SMWN) GoogleMaps ; Avis Dam , 22.5728°S 17.1314°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps . [Hardap] Rehoboth Rural: Tsumis Park , 23.7333°S 17.4500°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps ; Mariental Rural: Twilight , 24.1667°S 17.9833°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps ; Haruchas 156, 24.9500°S 18.8500°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps ; Mariental Urban: Hardap Dam, 24.4833°S 17.8333°E (CP). Gibeon: Ubussis 3, Namib-Naukluft Park , 24.3667°S 16.0667°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps . [Karas] Berseba: Aruab , 25.7000°S 16.5500°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps ; C14, 1 km N Helmeringhausen, 25.8771°S 16.8233°E (CB). Keetmanshoop Rural: Koes 202, Keetmanshoop , 25.9500°S 19.1167°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps ; Karasburg-Koes , 25.9500°S 19.1167°E (CP); Aroab, Keetmanshoop, 26.8000°S 19.6500°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps ; Keetmanshoop, 26.8611°S 18.3864°E (CB); Swartbaas West 276, Keetmanshoop , 27.0167°S 19.7000°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps ; Pleterskloof 370, Keetmanshoop , 27.2031°S 18.7681°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps ; Rotegab 95, Keetmanshoop , 27.3333°S 18.4167°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps ; Noachabeb 97, Keetmanshoop , 27.3833°S 18.4667°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps . Lüderitz: Plateau 38/ Aar 16.26.6667°S 16.5333°E ( SMWN) . Karasburg: Nukois 269, Warmbad , 27.3833°S 18.9667°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps ; Groenrivier, Warmbad, 27.5000°S 18.8000°E (SMWN); near Klein- Karas, Kuduberg 9, 27.6000°S 18.000°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps ; 50 km E of Karasburg , bridge Oab River, 28.0500°S 19.2333°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps ; Richthersveld, 55 km E Ariamsvlei-Velloorsdrift , 28.3333°S 19.4333°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps . Oranjemund: Boom River Canyon, 19 km N of Orange River (ENE of Rosh Pinah ), 27.8500°S 17.0667°E ( SMWN) GoogleMaps .

Other records: Namib Sand Sea desert (Seeely 2012); Namibia ( Bologna 2000a; Pitzalis et al. 2014).

Remarks. The taxonomy of this southern and eastern African species is still greatly confused (see above) and it probably represents a complex of species and subspecies. In the literature it was usually cited as Mylabris oculata Thunberg, 1791 , but, according to Pardo Alcaide (1958a note 21) the type of Mylabris oculata refers to Meloe bifasciatus De Geer, 1778 , an unavailable name, substituted by Zonabris senegalensis Voigts, 1902 , which is a distinct Western African species of Hycleus . Consequently, the valid name available for this species, well characterized by the shape of male stypes, remains tricolor Gerstäcker, 1854 . Waiting for the revision of this complex based on types, we did not consider its infraspecific taxonomy.

Hycleus versutus ( Péringuey, 1909) ( Fig. 4Y View FIGURE4 )

Mylabris versuta Péringuey, 1909

Distribution. Namibia (endemic).

Material examined and literature records. [Kunene] Opuwo: Opuwo town , 18.0500°S 13.8333°E (CB); D3710, near Opuwo,, 18.2011°S 13.8994°E (CB) GoogleMaps ; Kunene distr., C43, 18.6788°S 13.7135°E (CB) GoogleMaps ; Kunene distr. , C43, 18.7599°S 13.7489°E (CB). Kamanjab: C40, 26 km E Kamanjab, 19.6957°S 15.1046°E (CB). [Erongo] Omaruru: C33, 6 km S Omaruru, 21.4824°S 15.9508°E (CB). Karibib: Karibib, D 1953 45 km jct. C32, 22.2963°S 16.0658°E (CB). [Hardap] Mariental Urban: C19, 11 km W Mariental, 24.6167°S- 17.8500°E (CB). Gibeon: C14, 1 km W Maltahöhe, 24.8589°S 16.9751°E (CB). GoogleMaps

Other records: Damaraland ( Péringuey 1909); Namibia ( Bologna 2000a) .

Remarks. Type of this species was briefly examined at SAMC.

This species was never studied or recorded in the literature after its description, except by Pardo Alcaide (1958a) who compared it to H. descarpentriesi (Pardo Alcaide, 1958) , a scarcely known species from Guinea-Bissau. The specimens we examined agree with the description of versutus and the male maxillary shape is similar to that described by Pardo Alcaide (1958a). The deep examination of the type could confirm our identification.


State Museum


Museum National d'Histoire Naturelle


Royal Museum for Central Africa


Iziko Museums of Cape Town














Hycleus dicinctus

Bologna, Marco A., Amore, Valentina & Pitzalis, Monica 2018


Bologna & Amore & Pitzalis 2018

Hycleus buqueti

Pitzalis et al. 2014

Mylabris oculata ssp. ovamboensis Kaszab, 1956

: Kaszab 1956

Mylabris oculata var. kakamas Péringuey, 1909

Peringuey 1909

Mylabris buqueti Péringuey, 1909

Peringuey 1909

Mylabris versuta Péringuey, 1909

Peringuey 1909

Mylabris (Mylabris) scalaris

Marseul 1872


Latreille 1817