Aleurodicus rugioperculatus, John H. Martin, 2004

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: 29-30

publication ID 10.5281/zenodo.158856

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scientific name

Aleurodicus rugioperculatus

sp. nov.

Aleurodicus rugioperculatus  sp. nov.

( Figs 12, 56–58, 78)

PUPARIUM. Habitus. Colonies seen by the author were in generally poor condition, with groups of woolly­wax puparia untidily grouped under the leaves of the host. Margin. Outline oval, 0.97–1.22 mm long, 0.66–0.88 mm wide, generally widest at abdominal segment III (n= 35). Margin smooth, often down­curved in slide­mounted specimens. Dorsum. Cuticle pale or with variably developed dusky coloration, especially submedially. Longitudinal and transverse moulting sutures reaching puparial margin; transverse moulting sutures apically curving slightly anteriorly, terminating opposite median part of metathorax. Dorsal disc with subtle reticulate patterning often visible across the cephalothorax (Fig. 56) and in abdominal subdorsum, and extremely fine spinulosity present along median line of abdomen (Fig. 57). Abdominal segment VII medially reduced to less than half length of segment VI. Vasiform orifice ( Figs 12, 58) broadly cordate, slightly emarginate to either side of lingula; operculum broadly elliptical except for its anterior edge, ventro­basally spinulose and dorsally characteristically rugose (Fig. 58), with a pair of ventro­median fine setae; lingula head protruding beyond vasiform orifice, finely spinulose, apically acute, its four stout setae situated close to apex, which almost reaches puparial margin. Chaetotaxy. Anterior marginal setae not evident. Posterior marginal, and 12 pairs of outer submarginal setae present (including nominal caudal pair), each long and hair­like. Single submedian pairs of pro­, meso­ and metathoracic and eighth abdominal setae present, finer and shorter than submarginal setae (Fig. 78); eighth abdominal setae situated fully anterior to vasiform orifice, opposite anterior corners of operculum. Pores. Cephalic and anterior 4 pairs of abdominal compound pores 30–40 µ m in maximum diameter, each with a dagger­shaped axial process protruding by about one pore­diameter beyond the pore rim (Fig. 78); 2 pairs of much smaller compound pores, 10–12 µ m diameter, present on abdominal segments VII & VIII. Immediately lining puparial margin is a narrow band of minute cellular structures (Fig. 78), ranked 2–3 deep, but their structure / function not certain. Submargin defined by a zone of crowded, wide­rimmed pores that stand proud from puparial surface, inner boundary of zone forming mesally­directed lobes, the pore band interrupted immediately posterior to lingular apex, and the zone not encompassing the compound pores ( Figs 12, 78). Remainder of dorsal disc with sparsely distributed septate and tiny bright pores. Ve nt e r. Ventral abdominal setae situated mesal and slightly anterior to posterior abdominal spiracles, the setae similar to dorsal submarginal setae. Legs typically robust and two­segmented, smooth, each with a pronounced apical claw ( Fig. 12), and with the distal segment bearing one or two small lateral setae. Antennae extending to basal segment of hind legs, their bases situated anterolateral to fore legs, the basal one­third smooth­sided but remainder subtly corrugate­sided, pointed apically. Tracheal folds absent.

MATERIAL EXAMINED. Holotype puparium, BELIZE, Belize City, on Cocos nucifera  ( Arecaceae  ), 11.iii. 1996 (J. H. Martin # 6770) ( BMNH). Paratypes: 12 puparia, 1 adult male, 1 adult female, same data as holotype ( BMNH); 19 puparia, 8 third­instar larva, 9 adult females, same locality and host, 01.vii. 2002 (Martin) ( BMNH, USNM); 6 puparia, 5 adult females, CFR, Las Cuevas – Millionario road, on undetermined broadleaved woody host, 2004 (Martin) ( BMNH); MEXICO, Tamaulipas, “CD: Victoria, UAT ”, on Psidium guajava  , 08.xii. 1995 (E. Chouvakhina) ( BMNH); 2 slide­mounted, 11 dry puparia, same host and locality, 25.x. 2002 (S. N. Myartseva K# 392) ( BMNH, ZISP).

ETYMOLOGY. The specific name describes the characteristically rugose (i.e. fluted / irregularly corrugate) appearance of the puparial operculum.

COMMENTS. The lingula apex of this species is atypically narrowly acute, its 4 setae situated very close to the apex. The lingula protrudes beyond the boundary of the vasiform orifice, as is usual in Aleurodicus  , but otherwise is more reminiscent of species in other aleurodicine genera. The subtle reticulate patterning of the cuticle in the cephalothorax and abdominal subdorsum, seen in many specimens, is also unusual as is the sometimes extensive dark, cloudy cuticular pigmentation seen in some individuals. A. rugioperculatus  is similar to A. niveus  , described above, and may be distinguished by use of the key to Belize species of Aleurodicus  , p. 19.


Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History


Universidad Aut�noma de Tamaulipas


Zoological Institute, Russian Academy of Sciences