Nealeurodicus altissimus (Quaintance),

John H. Martin, 2004, Whiteflies of Belize (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae). Part 1 — introduction and account of the subfamily Aleurodicinae Quaintance & Baker, Zootaxa 681, pp. 1-86: 55-56

publication ID 10.5281/zenodo.158856

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Nealeurodicus altissimus (Quaintance)

comb. nov.

Nealeurodicus altissimus (Quaintance)  comb. nov.

( Figs 33, 99–101, 128)

Aleurodes altissima Quaintance, 1900: 20  –21. Syntypes, Mexico [examined]. Aleurodicus altissimus (Quaintance) Cockerell, 1902: 280 

Aleurodicus (Metaleurodicus) altissimus ( Quaintance) Quaintance & Baker, 1913: 73  Metaleurodicus altissimus (Quaintance) Bondar, 1923 a: 81 

Radialeurodicus altissimus (Quaintance) Baker, 1937: 608  .

Ceraleurodicus altissimus (Quaintance) Mound & Halsey, 1978: 238  .

DISTRIBUTION. Neotropical Region — Belize, Colombia, Costa Rica, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panamá, Venezuela.

COMMENTS. N. altissimus  is principally defined by the following suite of puparial characters: a row of typically 15 pairs of long outer submarginal setae present ( Fig. 33); the cephalic and third abdominal pairs of compound pores are of unique structure (Figs 100, 101), the small main pore (12–20 µ m diameter) featuring a 3 ­spoked central opening, surrounded by an array of wide­rimmed bright simple pores; each of abdominal segments IV –VII bearing a pair of elongate compound pores that present laterally to the viewer (Fig. 99), each about 12–16 µ m in diameter; abdominal segment VIII with a pair of compound pores similar in diameter to those on segments IV –VII, but not elongate, presenting axially to the viewer; more mature puparia are rendered highly visible by secretions of characteristic spiky form (Fig. 128) which can become opaquely white but younger, actively feeding, individuals are often extremely cryptic.

There is evidence to suggest that N. altissimus  comprises a complex of very closelyrelated species. The axial processes of the compound pores on abdominal segments IV – VII differ substantially between populations. In some samples, each process is truncate, hardly extending beyond the pore mouth (Fig. 99 b); in others, the process is simply somewhat longer, but sometimes (notably on Inga  species) the axial process of each compound pore is acute and sword­like, more than doubling the overall length of the structure (Fig. 99 a). There is substantial variation in the degree and nature of puparial cuticular pigmentation, affecting the appearance of many of the simple pores, but pigmentation alone is unlikely to be a useful character (see generic discussion, above). The density of distribution of the dorsal disc simple pores, the degree of tubercle development in the outer submargin, and the position of the compound pores on abdominal segment VIII, relative to those on segment VII, also vary. Puparia­associated adults are only available for two samples, and yet one significant difference is apparent between them: females of a population from Inga  possess a distinct cluster of bright pores on each side of the vasiform orifice, but such pores are entirely wanting in females from Canavalia cf. oxyphylla  . Once again, investigation of puparia and associated adults from a wider variety of populations is desirable.

N. altissimus  sensu lato is one of the most abundant members of the Aleurodicinae  in the CFR, and is common elsewhere in Central America. Baker (1937) proposed a new species, N. ingae  , for a member of the altissimus  ­group that has much broader compound pores on abdominal segments IV –VII, but specimens matching this nominal species have not been found amongst several samples taken from Inga  in Belize. The limited available material, collected elsewhere in Central America and identified as N. ingae  , also reveals variation in compound pore size.

To judge from the BMNH collection and the results of this study, N. altissimus  sensu lato displays a clear preference for fabaceous [legume] hosts although, curiously, host plant data available to Mound & Halsey (1978) did not include any legumes at all. Indeed, material present in BMNH has all been collected from Fabaceae  — in the genera Canavalia  , Cassia  , Erythrina  , Inga, Loncohcarpus  , Machaerium  , and from one unidentified legume.














Nealeurodicus altissimus (Quaintance)

John H. Martin 2004

Ceraleurodicus altissimus (Quaintance) Mound & Halsey, 1978 : 238

Mound 1978: 238

Radialeurodicus altissimus (Quaintance) Baker , 1937 : 608

Baker 1937: 608

Aleurodicus (Metaleurodicus) altissimus ( Quaintance) Quaintance & Baker , 1913 : 73

Bondar 1923: 81
Quaintance 1913: 73

Aleurodes altissima

Cockerell 1902: 280
Quaintance 1900: 20