Thursday, April 16, 2020

[Entomology • 2020] Pseudoathyreus zianii • Species Delimitation by A Geometric Morphometric Analysis within the Genus Pseudoathyreus (Coleoptera: Scarabaeoidea: Bolboceratidae) and Description of A New Species

Pseudoathyreus zianii 
Carpaneto & Romiti, 2020

A geometric morphometric analysis, conducted as part of a taxonomic review of the genus Pseudoathyreus (Coleoptera: Bolboceratidae), allowed us to highlight the differences within a group of closely related species spread from the Sahel region to India, supporting the traditional morphological approach and confirming the presence of a newly discovered species (Pseudoathyreus zianii n. sp.).

Keywords: Morphology, biometry, taxonomy, biogeography, arid environments.

 Fig. 4 – Holotype specimen of Pseudoathyreus zianii n. sp.:
a-c, body from dorsal, frontal and lateral view with 5 mm scale bars; d-e, aedeagus from frontal and lateral view with 0.5 mm scale bars. Longitudinal axis of frontal view of the body (b) has been slightly tilted left side to allow a visual inspection of the external mar-gin of the left fore tibia, with five teeth rather than four teeth as on right tibia. 

Fig. 3 – Anterior pronotal border (APB) of two specimens for each investigated taxonomic unit:
a-b, P. flavohirtus complex from Fare (SA) and Massawa (ER); c-d, Pseudoathyreus zianii n. sp. from Riyadh (SA) and Kerman (IR); e-f, P. orientalis from Jaisalmer (IN) and Pilani (IN). See Table 2 for country codes.

Pseudoathyreus zianii n. sp. 

Diagnosis: The new species is easily distinguished from the other two species of the same group by the anterior border of pronotum with a wide-based and a more or less stout conic horn. On the contrary, P. orientalis and P. flavohirtus share a low transverse carina in the middle of APB with the profile of a narrow curly bracket, with either a small and pointed mid-dle horn in the former species or a small and smoothed one in the latter. The central horn of the widespread African species P. porcatus (Laporte de Castelnau, 1840) looks a little like that of P. zianii but is larger, sharkfin-shaped, with a laterally compressed apex.

Geographical distribution. Eastern part of the Arabian peninsula (i.e. Kuwait, Saudi Arabian coast on the Persian Gulf, UAE, Oman), southern Iran, southern Pakistan.

Name derivation. Named for our colleague and friend Stefano Ziani, renowned specialist of Coleoptera Scarabaeidae, who sent us the material of his collection, including the first specimen that turned out to belong to the new species.

Giuseppe Maria Carpaneto and Federico Romiti. 2020. Species Delimitation by A Geometric Morphometric Analysis within the Genus Pseudoathyreus and Description of A New Species (Coleoptera: Scarabaeoidea: Bolboceratidae). Fragmenta entomologica. 52(1); 11–18. DOI: 10.4081/fe.2020.399