N A T U R K U N D L I C H E S I N F O R M A T I O N S S Y S T E M

Agrionympha capensis Whalley, 1978

(zoological nomenclature: valid name, available)

General information:

Agrionympha capensis Whalley, 1978: 76.
Type locality: South Africa, Knysna, Garden of Eden
Type: Holotype : South Africa, Knysna, Garden of Eden, 16-20.1.1955, A.J.T. Janse, in coll. Transvaal Museum

Synonyms, misspellings, wrong determinations, etc.:
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Habit:

     
: South Africa, Southwest Cape, Dui Toits Kloof, 1989.03.06, coll. Smithsonian Institution National Museum of Natural History      
Picture from: Barcode of Life Datasystems: CC-BY-4.0
Detailed view
     

Description of adults: Examined: Description by Gibbs & Kristensen 2011. Forewing length: 2.6-3.0 mm, 2.9-3.4 mm. Vestitue of hair-like scales on head yellow-brown; antennae with 40-42 flagellomeres in , respectively, 26 in , gradually darkening from basally yellowish-brown to apically dark grey; base of antennae scaled; tegulae creamy-white; mesonotum black-scaled; forewing ground colour blackish-brown, markings distinct, with very broad silvery-white bands: a prominent L-shaped figure resulting from confluence of claval mark with costal part of median band; median band broken in middle with posterior part distally displaced on dorsum; postmedian band very broad in anterior half, interrupted by a line of dark scales across M2, not reaching to dorsum; apical band subterminal, also interrupted by lines of dark scales; hind wings grey-brown; legs with forecoxae black, mid- and hindcoxae ochreous; femora all with glistening white scales; tibiae black; tarsi black but with whitish bands at proximal end of all tarsomeres except hindtarsomere 1.

Distribution:

The species is the most widespread one of the genus, ranging throughout the Western and Eastern Cape provinves of South Africa. Vertically, records have been documented from near sea-level to at least 1500 m a.s.l. (Kurz & Kurz 2020).

Biology:

The species inhabits damp, woody places with with ferns, grasses or shrubs exposed to full sunlight. It also occurs around forest margins (Gibbs & Kristensen 2011). The imagines are on the wing between November and March (Kurz & Kurz 2020).

Anatomy:

Wing shape and venation (Gibbs & Kristensen 2011). Wings markedly elongate (FW ratio length:width 3.6, HW 4.64.9), with apex attenuated, wing shape most extreme in male. Forewing and hindwing with Rs3 and Rs4 stalked; in some specimens M1 anastomosing with stem, and hence eventually issuing from Rs3+Rs4.

genitalia. "Sternum VIII remnants irregularly triangular, bearing about 5 small setae. Anteroventral margin of IX sclerotisation broadly rounded, unthickened. Median plate narrow, keeled but unpigmented. Valvae of moderate length, curved upward (length:width ratio 4.0). Hair-sensilla absent. Phallus elongate and nearly straight, ratio length:height 5.6; aedeagus with very constricted "neck" region in dorsal view; gonopore egg-shaped, widest distally, less than half (0.37) width of aedeagus between the lappets; ventral bulb very reduced" (Gibbs & Kristensen 2011).

pregenital abdomen and genitalia. "Abdomen elongate; segment V gland 0.4 mm diam., with about 10 long fluted scales; segment VIII unmodified. Segment X elongate, the sclerites longer than high (about 1.6 x) with darkening often emarginated along anterior edge. Papilla small (0.07 mm deep), approximately equidimensional with complex walls reflexed back from the anterior opening on either side. Thick-walled proximal section of spermatheca with its bulbous end about 0.8 x diameter of ductus length and with a small lateral bulb adjacent to large bulb; thin-walled mid section of utriculus about half the length of the thick-walled ductus, anterior sac of utriculus 0.1 mm diameter" (Gibbs & Kristensen 2011).

Diagnosis:

The L-shaped patch on the forewing base is distinctive. The species is also structurally unique by extremely slender and pointed wings with stalked Rs3/Rs4 and absence of male hair-sensilla (Gibbs & Kristensen 2011).

Worth knowing:

Sources:

Gibbs, G. W. & N. P. Kristensen 2011. Agrionympha, the long-known South African jaw moths: a revision with descriptions of new species (Lepidoptera, Micropterigidae). Zootaxa 2764: 121 [accessed via http://plazi.org on 2020.07.01].
Kurz, M. A. & M. E. Kurz 20002020. Naturkundliches Informationssystem. URL: http://www.nkis.info [online 2020.07.02.].
Whalley, P., 1978. New taxa of fossil and recent Micropterigidae with a discussion of their evolution and a comment on the evolution of Lepidoptera (Insecta). Annals of the Transvaal Museum 31 (8): 71-86.

Publication data:

history:
Kurz Michael: 2020.06.30
Kurz Michael: 2020.07.01
Kurz Michael: 2020.07.03
Kurz Michael: 2020.07.06
Kurz Michael: 2020.07.08
not reviewed

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