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

Micropterix completella Staudinger, 1871

(zoological nomenclature: valid name, available)

General information:

Micropteryx completella Staudinger, 1871: 289 - 290
Type locality: Italy, Sardinia
Type: Holotype : Sardinia m.; Origin Typus; completella Stgr. Type; Zool. Mus. Berlin; in coll. ZMB

Synonyms, misspellings, wrong determinations, etc.:
Micropteryx limbarella Amsel, 1936: 364 - 365, pl. 15, fig. 8, 9. Type locality: Italy, Sardinia. Junior subjective synonym.

Habit:

   
: Sardinia, near Tempio Pausania, between Telti and Calangianus, 1996.05.10, leg. Kurz & Kurz, coll. Michael Kurz : Sardinia, near Tempio Pausania, between Telti and Calangianus, 1996.05.10, leg. Kurz & Kurz, coll. Michael Kurz    
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
   

Scheme of wing pattern:

Description of adults: Examined: 8 , 2 . Forewing length: 2.8 - 3.1 mm, 3.2 - 3.6 mm. Head black-brown; vestiture of hair-like scales on the head rusty yellow to dirty greyish brown; antennae dark brown, bronzy golden to coppery at base, otherwise golden shining, 3/4 (), respectively, 3/5 () of forewing length; thorax bronzy golden, tegulae proximally bronzy golden, the outermost 2/3 purple to purple violet; forewings purple violet with golden, delicately bronzy golden bordered markings: At base of costa and radius, sometimes also of inner margin, indistinct bronzy golden spots; at about 1/5 a very broad fascia across the whole wing width, towards costa slightly constricted and somewhat inwardly oblique; at 1/2 a very broad fascia across the whole wing width, medially slightly bent distad and also slightly inwardly oblique towards costa; sometimes the medial bend is a distinct kink; this fascia may be enlarged proximad along costa and can even be confluent with the inner fascia; at 3/4 an extremely broad fascia across the whole wing width, leaving only the outermost tip of apex purple, proximally with a triangle-shaped bulge in the middle, which is, in males, often confluent at its tip with the medial fascia; fringe light golden at costa, bronzy golden with purple lustre at apex and along outer margin; hindwings bronzy golden, especially apically tinged purple; fringe bronzy golden; abdomen and legs brown, bronzy golden shining.

Distribution:

M. completella is an endemite of Sardinia (Karsholt 2004, Kurz & Kurz 2011). The investigated specimens have been caught in the northeastern part of the island, near Monte Limbara, in a height of approx. 450 m a.s.l. (Kurz & Kurz 2011).

Biology:

The animals have been found swarming in full sunshine around blossoms of Cistus at the edge of a dense maquis of Quercus suber at noon. In pure populations of Cistus, which cover large areas near the northeastern coast of Sardinia, the species couldn´t be found. The imagines are on the wing in May (Kurz & Kurz 2011).
At noon, two pairs habe been observed during mating. The male approaches the female from the rear end with forewardly directed antennae and catches the female at the rear end with its mandibles. In doing so, the male trembles with its wings, which are held in tectiform position. This makes the female sit still. After a few seconds, the male turns around in a flash and copulates. The copula lasts at least a few minutes. Meanwhile, the female takes the leading role in movement. Mating takes place in full sunshine.

Stages in development:

The early stages are unknown.

Anatomy:

, scheme of cuticle -genitalia, prep.-no. 687, M. Kurz: Sardinia, near Tempio Pausania, between Telti and Calangianus, 1996.05.10, leg. Kurz & Kurz, coll. Michael Kurz -genitalia, prep.-no. 695, M. Kurz: Sardinia, near Tempio Pausania, between Telti and Calangianus, 1996.05.10, leg. Kurz & Kurz, coll. Michael Kurz -genitalia, prep.-no. 695, M. Kurz: Sardinia, near Tempio Pausania, between Telti and Calagianus, leg. Kurz & Kurz, coll. Michael Kurz
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
 
, scheme of cuticle -genitalia, prep.-no. 696, M. Kurz: Sardinia, near Tempio Pausania, between Telti and Calangianus, 1996.05.10, leg. Kurz & Kurz, coll. Michael Kurz -genitalia, prep.-no. 696, M. Kurz: Sardinia, near Tempio Pausania, between Telti and Calagianus, leg. Kurz & Kurz, coll. Michael Kurz  
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
 

Genitalia. Uncus moderately long, slender, with rounded tip; tegumen slim; accessory claspers narrow and trapezoid; at margin, which is nearest to uncus, a small bulge with an indistinct group of quite long setae; at distal margin 2 - 4 short stout and thickened setae, with spoonlike, downwardly bent tips; accessory claspers at inner surface near distal margin with numerous, proximally directed, short setae; base of gonopode at both sides with a heavily sclerotized, distally directed, digit-like appendix; central plate membraneous, pouch-like hanging between these appendices; valves basally strongly inflated and grown together at their base and therefore natively forced apart in an angle of approximately 90°; beyond basal third, valves very slender, bent downwards and slightly spatulate at their tips; postbasally at inner surface, near lower margin, 3 long, stout and thickened setae as well as a row of short and normal setae; 5 stout and thickened, inwardly directed setae at tips of valves; the outermost of them very short, followed by two pairs of increasingly longer setae; tips of valves also with some normal setae.

Genitalia. Tergite IX missing; sternite IX reduced, of no diagnostic value; papillae anales with band-like sclerotization, not characteristic; receptaculum seminis extremely long and thin with almost completely missing striation.

Diagnosis:

M. completella : Sardinia, near Tempio Pausania, between Telti and Calangianus, 1996.05.10, leg. Kurz & Kurz, coll. Michael Kurz M. klimeschi rhodiensis, : Greece, Aegean islands, Rhodos, Funtukli, 1983.04.19, leg. Klimesch, coll. Zoologische Sammlung des Bayrischen Staates, Munich M. completella -genitalia, prep.-no. 695, M. Kurz: Sardinia, near Tempio Pausania, between Telti and Calangianus, 1996.05.10, leg. Kurz & Kurz, coll. Michael Kurz M. klimeschi rhodiensis -genitalia, prep.-no. 504, M. Kurz, PARATYPE: Greece, Aegean islands, Rhodos, Faliraki, 1983.04.15, leg. J.Klimesch, coll. Michael Kurz
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
   
M. completella -genitalia, prep.-no. 696, M. Kurz: Sardinia, near Tempio Pausania, between Telti and Calangianus, 1996.05.10, leg. Kurz & Kurz, coll. Michael Kurz M. klimeschi rhodiensis -genitalia, prep.-no. 516, M. Kurz, PARATYPE: Greece, Aegean islands, Rhodos, city of Rhodos, Mount Smith, 1987.05.13, leg. J.Klimesch, coll. Michael Kurz    
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
Picture from: Kurz Michael
Detailed view
   

The species is very well characterized externally by its extreme broad fasciae, as well as in the male and female genitalia too. Besides, there are no other similar species in Sardinia.

Phylogeny: The male and female genitalia show a strong resemblance to Micropterix klimeschi Heath, 1973, suggesting a common ancestor of both. Male genitalia of similar appearance are also found in some north African species.

Worth knowing:

Sources:

Amsel, H. G. 1936. Zur Kenntnis der Kleinschmetterlingsfauna Sardiniens; Veröffentlichungen des Deutschen Kolonial- und Übersee Museums 1 (3): 364-365, 368, pl. 15.
Karsholt, O. 2004. Families Acanthopteroctetidae, Axiidae, Castniidae, Cossidae, Drepanidae, Eriocottidae, Eriocraniidae, Gelechiidae, Heterogynidae, Limacodidae, Lypusidae, Micropterigidae, Roeslerstammiidae, Somabrachyidae, Uraniidae. In: Karsholt, O. & E. J. van Nieukerken (eds.). Lepidoptera, Moths. – Fauna Europaea version 1.1, http://www.faunaeur.org [online 18 December 2009].
Kurz, M. A. & M. E. Kurz 2000–2011. Naturkundliches Informationssystem. – URL: http://www.nkis.info [online 31 December 2011].
Staudinger, O. 1870–1871. Beschreibung neuer Lepidopteren des europäischen Faunengebiets. – Berliner Entomologische Zeitschrift 14: 97-132, 193–208 (1870); 273–330 (1871).

Publication data:

history:
Kurz Michael: 2008.12.04
Kurz Michael: 2009.12.18
Kurz Michael: 2011.12.31
Kurz Michael: 2012.11.07
Kurz Michael: 2013.01.25
Document reviewed by:
not reviewed: 2013.01.25
Document released by:
Kurz Michael: 2013.01.25

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