24 de octubre de 2023

Southern african selenopids. How to distinguish between genera Anyphops and Selenops

Complicated a bit by two authors seemingly using different notations for the eyes, but I think I can figure out what they mean.

Selenops: wider than long
Anyphops: barely wider than long or barely longer than wide

Selenops: AER straight or slightly recurved, the median eyes about the same size as the lateral ones in the row of 4.
Anyphops: AER recurved, the median eyes smaller than lateral eyes in the row of 4.

Tibiae I and II
Selenops: 3 pairs of ventral spines
Anyphops: 4-7 pairs of ventral spines

Metatarsi I and II:
Selenops: 2 pairs of ventral spines
Anyphops: 3 pairs of ventral spines.

Leg ratios:
Selenops: Leg formula by Benoit (1968) 4 : 3 = 2 : 1. Corronca (2005) says Leg II usually > Leg IV (echoed in ADS 2014)
Anyphops: Leg formula in ADS 2014 notation: 4-3-2-1
(The relative leg lengths are difficult to judge from most photographs anyway)

More on the eyes:
Redrawn from Benoit (1968)
The differences are sometimes quite subtle.

My interpretation:
In the frontal view, if you connect the centres of the PME's and the line does not cut through any part of the AME's, you got yourself an Anyphops!

With Selenops, the AER is really made op of 6 eyes, but we are interested in the row of 4, bigger eyes directly above the clypeus. They are almost the same size.

With Anyphops, the middle pair is normally smaller than the pair flanking them. In Benoit (1968) notation it is stated as AME < ALE
"les yeux antérieurs médians normalement plus petits que les antérieurs latéraux".
In Corronca (2002) notation (that I used in the image above) it would be stated as AME < PME">

Benoit, P. L. G. (1968). The African Selenopidae north of the 17th parallel South and the reclassification of the African species of the family (Araneae). Journal of African Zoology and Botany 77(1-2): 113-141.

Corronca, J. A. (2005). Re-description of the lycosiformis species group of Anyphops Benoit and description of two new species (Araneae, Selenopidae). Journal of Natural History 39(17): 1381-1393

Publicado el octubre 24, 2023 10:51 MAÑANA por wynand_uys wynand_uys | 1 comentario | Deja un comentario

09 de abril de 2023

The southern African syntomines with fewer than five forewing patches and a golden-yellow dorsal patch on the first abdominal segment.

There are three Handmaiden Moths in southern Africa that are often confused. The ones that I have in mind are those with glossy dark wings with fewer than 5 forewing (FW) patches, a golden-yellow dorsal patch on abdominal segment 1 and with variously placed golden-yellow markings on the abdomen. In some photographs the golden-yellow patches appear more orange.

1. Amata pseudosimplex de Freina, 2013

Four, sometimes three FW spots, no FW basal spot
Never with white wingtips
Without exception a row of 3 conspicuous golden-yellow lateral spots on abdominal segments 3 – 5.
Dark legs
Single HW spot

2. Amata simplex (Walker, 1854)

Photo credit: @ricky_taylor This specimen has reduced and absent wing patches and not even a FW basal spot but it does have the white wingtips.

It usually has five FW patches, but I include it here because sometimes the patches are reduced and may appear to be fewer than five. Of importance here is that the FW has a basal spot that is always absent in the others.
Most have white FW tips.
The lateral spots on abdominal segments 3-5 are dull yellow, not conspicuous.
Dark legs
Single HW spot

3. Hampsonata phoenicia natalithala de Freyna, 2008

Photo credit: @dianastuder

Four, small FW patches.
No FW basal spot.
No white wingtips.
Lateral golden-yellow spots only on abdominal segment 5
Golden-yellow transverse bar on top of abdominal segment 5. (Or, one could say, a golden-yellow, broken ring on segment 5).
Tibiae and first tarsal segments of all legs white.
Single HW spot

Then there's a fourth species that has so far not been confused with the aforementioned three species but because it is so similar I include it here.

4. Hampsonata xaixaia de Freyna, 2013

Photo credit @andrewdeacon

Four FW patches. Patches 1 and 3 distinctly larger.
No FW basal spot
No white wingtips
Abdominal segments 3 and 4 with sparse golden-yellow scaling and small lateral spots.
Segment 5 with broken, golden-yellow ring
Tarsi 1–3 of all legs dirty white.
Two HW spots

I have to mention Amata bifasciata (Hopffer, 1857):
The original description of, Syntomis bifasciata, Hopffer, 1857 from Mozambique goes like this:
"Wings bright reddish purple. Four spots on FW, one on HW.
Abdomen with two golden bands" (Google translation from Latin).
See (at present, April 2013) second image at https://www.afromoths.net/species/show/29776 which is from Hopffer (1862). The image only shows three FW spots in spite of Hopffler’s (1857) text stating four FW spots, but let’s disregard that and say we’re actually talking of what we know as Hampsonata today.
The first image on the same Afromoths-page is wildly different and is from de Freyna (2017), who examined the genitalia of Syntomis bifasciata specimen(s) from the DRC (concluding that they belong to Amata). The de Freyna photos of Amata bifasciata make me think that there is a mix-up between Syntomis bifasciata sensu Hopffer (1857) and the specimens used by de Freyna to study the genital morphology.
Hence, I don’t really know what is meant by Amata bifasciata. Either it’s something akin to Hampsonata from Mozambique or it is a somewhat atypical species of Amata (by de Freyna’s admission). De Freyna (2017) also states: “This species, described in the genus Syntomis from Mozambique, is part of the large number of Syntomini species about which little is known beyond the original description.” (Translated from German).
I’m revising my ID suggestions on iNat of A. bifasciata to Hampsonata.


The one-stop reference that deals with species 1- 4 is:
de Freyna, 2013. Hampsonata xaixaia sp. n., ein neue Syntomine aus dem südlichen Mozambique (Lepidoptera: Erebidae, Arctiinae, Syntomini). Nachr. entomol. Ver. Apollo, N.F. 34 (1/2): 65–68.
Photos on p. 67

Regarding A. pseudosimplex vs. A. simplex
de Freyna, 2013. Amata pseudosimplex sp. n. aus KwaZulu-Natal, Südafrika, ihre Biologie, Morphologie und Phänologie sowie Anmerkungen zu Amata simplex (Walker, 1854) (Lepidoptera: Erebidae, Arctiinae, Syntomini). Nachr. entomol. Ver. Apollo, N.F. 33 (4): 151–158.

Regarding Syntomis bifacsiata sensu Hopffer:

Regarding Amata bifasciata sensu de Freyna
de Freyna, 2017. Über afrotropische Syntomini — zwei neuen Arten aus Kamerun und Uganda sowie Anmerkungen zur Taxonomie einiger wenig bekannter Arten (Lepidoptera: Erebidae, Arctiinae, Syntomini). Nachr. entomol. Ver. Apollo, N.F. 38 (4): 205–211.

Regarding Hampsonata phoenicia (Hampson, 1898)

Regarding Hampsonata gen. n. and Hampsonata natalithala sp. N.
de Freyna, 2008. Bemerkungen zu südafrikanischen Syntominae mit Beschreibung der
Gattung Hampsonata gen. n. und H. natalithala sp. n. Mitt. Münch. Ent. Ges. 98 13-20
(Sorry, can’t find an online link)

Publicado el abril 9, 2023 01:09 TARDE por wynand_uys wynand_uys | 5 comentarios | Deja un comentario