Description of Microvelia urucara sp. nov. and new distributional data on veliids (Insecta: Heteroptera: Veliidae): from the Amazon River floodplain, Brazil

Resumo

Based on material collected on streams and lakes from the Amazon River floodplain, Brazil, Microvelia urucara sp. nov. is described, illustrated and compared with similar species. The new species, like many other Neotropical Microvelia Westwood, 1834, does not present striking modifications on the body or appendages, but can be separated from its congeners by features of the male genitalia. Distributional data is presented for other veliids collected along the Amazon River, and Paravelia capixaba Moreira, Nessimian & Rúdio, 2010 and Microvelia summersi Drake & Harris, 1928 are recorded for the first time from the Brazilian Amazon. Rhagovelia jubata Bacon, 1948 is newly recorded from the state of Amazonas, and Microvelia mimula White, 1879, M. pulchella Westwood, 1834 and M. venustatis Drake & Harris, 1933 are recorded for the first time from the state of Pará.

Aquatic insects; Hemiptera; morphology; Neotropics; taxonomy


Aquatic insects; Hemiptera; morphology; Neotropics; taxonomy

TAXONOMY AND NOMENCLATURE

Description of Microvelia urucara sp. nov. and new distributional data on veliids (Insecta: Heteroptera: Veliidae) from the Amazon River floodplain, Brazil

Felipe F. F. Moreira1 1 Corresponding author. E-mail: felipento@hotmail.com ; Julianna F. Barbosa; Jorge L. Nessimian

Laboratório de Entomologia, Departamento de Zoologia, Instituto de Biologia, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro. Avenida Carlos Chagas Filho 373, CCS, bloco A, sala 107, Cidade universitária, Caixa Postal 68044, 21941-971 Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brazil

ABSTRACT

Based on material collected on streams and lakes from the Amazon River floodplain, Brazil, Microvelia urucara sp. nov. is described, illustrated and compared with similar species. The new species, like many other Neotropical Microvelia Westwood, 1834, does not present striking modifications on the body or appendages, but can be separated from its congeners by features of the male genitalia. Distributional data is presented for other veliids collected along the Amazon River, and Paravelia capixaba Moreira, Nessimian & Rúdio, 2010 and Microvelia summersi Drake & Harris, 1928 are recorded for the first time from the Brazilian Amazon. Rhagovelia jubata Bacon, 1948 is newly recorded from the state of Amazonas, and Microvelia mimula White, 1879, M. pulchella Westwood, 1834 and M. venustatis Drake & Harris, 1933 are recorded for the first time from the state of Pará.

Key words: Aquatic insects; Hemiptera; morphology; Neotropics; taxonomy.

In the Brazilian Amazon, floodplains of white rivers (locally called várzeas) cover an area of more than 100,000 km2, including lakes, meanders, small tributaries, floating meadows and seasonally flooded forests. These environments are amongst the most important Amazonian ecosystems in terms of biodiversity. Due to the high nutrient concentration in white waters, this ecosystem is the most productive in the Amazon Basin (GOULDING et al. 2003, ALBERNAZ 2008).

Gerromorpha is a diverse group of semi-aquatic bugs, nowadays divided into eight families, five of which occur in Brazil: Gerridae, Hebridae, Hydrometridae, Mesoveliidae and Veliidae (SCHUH & SLATER 1995, NIESER & MELO 1997). Most of the extant representatives of Gerromorpha have the ability to walk or skate above the water film, and representatives of the families Gerridae and Veliidae spend most of their active life on the water surface (ANDERSEN 1982, SCHUH & SLATER 1995).

The Gerromorpha from the Amazon River floodplain have recently been the target of taxonomic and faunistic studies, including the families Mesoveliidae, Hydrometridae and Gerridae (MOREIRA et al. 2008, 2009, 2011). The present contribution is the last study of this series, and includes the description of a new species of Microvelia Westwood, 1834 and distributional data for veliids collected along the Amazon River floodplain in Brazilian territory.

MATERIAL AND METHODS

This study includes 26 localities in the floodplain of the Amazon River in the Brazilian territory, between the municipalities of Tabatinga, state of Amazonas, and Afuá, state of Pará (MOREIRA et al. 2011: fig. 1; this work: Tab. I). The examined material was collected on floating plants of Eichhornia Kunth (Commelinales: Pontederiaceae) or on U.V. light traps positioned near the water, and additional qualitative collections were conducted in streams (igarapés) and lakes near the sampling sites. Jorge L. Nessimian and Neusa Hamada collected samples from stations 1-13, and Nelson Ferreira-Jr. and Paulo de Marco-Jr. collected samples from stations 14-26. Even with the additional collections, no Veliidae specimens have been found in some of the localities.

Specimens have been fixed, preserved and examined in 80% ethanol, and belong to the collections of the Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas da Amazônia (INPA) and Coleção Entomológica Professor José Alfredo Pinheiro Dutra, Departamento de Zoologia, Instituto de Biologia, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro (DZRJ). Identification of specimens was based mainly on DRAKE & HARRIS (1928), DRAKE & HUSSEY (1951), NIESER & ALKINS-KOO (1991), POLHEMUS & SPANGLER (1995), POLHEMUS (1997), NIESER & MELO (1997), and MOREIRA et al. (2010).

Abbreviations used for measurements are as follows: body length (BL), head length (HL), head width through eyes (HW), length of antennomeres I-IV (ANT I, ANT II, ANT III, ANT IV), minimum interocular distance (INT), maximum eye width (EYE), pronotum length on midline (PL), pronotum width (PW), length of fore leg segments (FORELEG), length of middle leg segments (MIDLEG), length of hind leg segments (HINDLEG), femoral length (FEM), tibial length (TIB), length of tarsomeres I-II (TAR I, TAR II).

Microvelia urucara sp. nov.

Figs 1-4

Macropterous male. BL 1.61-1.64; HL 0.31-0.35; HW 0.410.44; ANT I 0.19-0.21, ANT II 0.11-0.14, ANT III 0.19-0.23, ANT IV 0.40-0.44; INT 0.23-0.24; EYE 0.11-0.13; PL 0.50-0.51; PW 0.58-0.63; FORELEG: FEM 0.40-0.46, TIB 0.28-0.31, TAR I 0.150.18; MIDLEG: FEM 0.41-0.44, TIB 0.34-0.38, TAR I 0.09-0.10, TAR II 0.11-0.13; HINDLEG: FEM 0.46-0.48, TIB 0.53-0.55, TAR I 0.10-0.11, TAR II 0.13-0.14.

Head dorsally dark yellow to brown with longitudinal median line darker; ventrally dark yellow to orange. Antennomere I yellow, darker at apex; II-IV pale brown. Eyes dark brown. Rostrum yellowish-brown, except article IV dark brown. Pronotum pale brown to brown with transverse yellow to orange yellow band on anterior lobe, extending from one eye to the other, and longitudinal median carina of posterior lobe yellow to pale brown. Humeri slightly paler than rest of pronotum. Margins of pronotal punctuations dark brown to black. Sides of thorax brown to dark brown with area between prothorax and mesothorax (near pronotal humeri) marked by yellow to orange yellow. Venter of thorax brown, darker laterally and on intersegmental areas. Dorsum of abdomen orange brown to dark brown with outer portion of connectives contrasting in yellow or orange brown. Abdominal sternites orange brown to dark brown, paler posteriorly. Genital segments yellow to pale brown. Fore wings pale brown with one irregular whitish macula inside each closed cell and two near apex. Coxae and trochanters pale. Fore femur pale yellow. Mid and hind femora with base yellow, becoming pale brown or yellowish-brown apically. Tibiae pale brown. Tarsi pale brown to brown. Head well inserted into pronotum, sparsely covered by short brown setae. Antenna reaching well beyond humeri, almost to apex of pronotum. Antennomere I covered by thick dark setae; II-III covered by thinner longer setae. Antennomere I thickest, curved outward; II widening to apex, at apex thicker than III-IV; III cylindrical, slightly thinner than IV; IV fusiform. Rostrum slightly surpassing anterior margin of mesonotum.

Pronotum subpentagonal, divided into anterior and posterior lobe. Anterior lobe with transverse row of punctuations adjacent to anterior margin, interrupted centrally. Another row between anterior and posterior lobes, interrupted on longitudinal median carina. Posterior lobe with several scattered punctuations and weak longitudinal median carina, fainting posteriorly. Humeri slightly elevated. Posterior angle of pronotum broadly rounded. Side of prothorax with two circular punctuations anteriorly and row on posterior intersegmental area. Rows of punctuations on intersegmental area between pro- and mesosternum, meso- and metasternum, and anterior and posterior margin of abdominal sternite I.

Abdominal connectives slightly elevated, densely covered by thick dark setae on outer margins, with apex rounded. Last abdominal tergite subquadrate, about as long as two preceding tergites. Abdominal sternite I broadly carinated medially. Remaining abdominal sternites unmodified. Posterior margin of last abdominal sternite broadly concave. Genital segment I wide dorsally, lateral margins slightly tapering, posterior margin concave (Fig. 2). Venter of genital segment I with posterior margin well exposed, broadly roundly excavated (Fig. 3). Genital segment II broad ventrally, flattened, slightly projected on posterolateral angles (Figs 3 and 4). Parameres greatly reduced, concealed inside genital segments.

Wings surpassing genital segments. Fore wings with four closed cells, two proximal and two distal. Legs relatively thin, without spines, tubercles, or modified groups of setae. Fore tibia widened distally. Mid femur at most as thick as hind femur.

Type-material. BRAZIL, Amazonas: Urucará, Lírio do Vale, Lago do Albano, U.V. light trap [-2.41418/-57.49993], 24.IX.2003, (P. de Marco & N. Ferreira-Jr.): 1 macropterous male [Holotype] (INPA), 1 macropterous male [Paratype] (DZRJ). Fonte Boa, Lago Ressaca Grande, U.V. light trap [-2.47399/-66.15474], 08.IX.2003, (N. Hamada & J. L. Nessimian): 2 macropterous males (DZRJ) [Paratypes]. Tefé, São João do Catuaí, Igarapé Jutaí, U.V. light trap [-3.69800/-64.15500], 15.IX.2003, (N. Hamada & J. L. Nessimian): 1 macropterous male (DZRJ) [Paratype]. Pará – Almeirim, Paraná do Tauaçui, Paraná, U.V. light trap [-1.17995/-51.79561], 08.X.2003, (P. de Marco & N. Ferreira-Jr.): 1 macropterous male (DZRJ).

Distribution. Microvelia urucara sp. nov. has been collected exclusively with light traps, near lakes and a stream from the Amazon River floodplain; no specimens have been collected in association with the hydrophytes sampled. The distributional range of this species along the Amazon River is of more than 1,500 km.

Etymology. This species is named after the municipality of Urucará, state of Amazonas, where the holotype was collected.

Remarks. The flattened ventral side of the relatively long second genital segment (Fig. 3) separates M. urucara sp. nov. from other Neotropical Microvelia, except for Microvelia costaiana Drake & Hussey, 1951 from Rio de Janeiro. The second genital segment is ventrally convex on the vast majority of species occurring in Tropical America, a feature that can be easily observed by placing the genital segments in lateral view. Besides being flattened, the second genital segment of M. urucara sp. nov. is projected on the posterolateral angles, a condition that is not common among Neotropical Microvelia. Both M. urucara sp. nov. and M. costaiana lack any conspicuous modification of the body and legs; tubercles and spines are absent. Based on the original description, both species can be separated by the color pattern, the head with a pair of broad yellowish stripes, legs dark fuscous-brown and venter of abdomen bluish-black in M. costaiana, whereas the head is entirely yellow or brown, legs are mostly yellow and abdomen brown in M. urucara sp. nov. They can also be separated by the shapes of the posterior margin of last abdominal sternite and of the dorsum of abdominal segment I, which are both truncate in M. costaiana, and concave in M. urucara sp. nov. Finally, specimens of M. urucara sp. nov. are distinctly shorter than those of M. costaiana, macropterous individuals of the first species are about 1.6 mm long, whereas apterous of the second are 2.0 mm long. Based on the drawing provided in the original description, M. cavernula Polhemus, 1972, from Venezuela, might have a flattened second genital segment, but this characteristic has not been mentioned in the description itself, or in the diagnosis of the species. The second genital segment is also relatively long, but lacking the posterolateral projections seen in M. urucara sp. nov. The shape of the last abdominal sternite also separates the two species, only M. cavernula bearing a deep posterior excavation.

Species collected and their distributions

The distributions of all specimens examined for the present study along the Amazon River floodplain are displayed on table II. Besides M. urucara sp. nov., representatives of nine other veliid species have been collected and examined: Microvelia mimula White, 1879, M. pulchella Westwood, 1834, M. summersi Drake & Harris, 1928, M. venustatis Drake & Harris, 1933, Paravelia capixaba Moreira, Nessimian & Rúdio, 2010, Rhagovelia jubata Bacon, 1948, Steinovelia virgata (White, 1879), Stridulivelia alia (Drake, 1957), and Stridulivelia raspa (Hungerford, 1929).

Among the species cited above, only two had not yet been recorded from the Brazilian Amazon: P. capixaba and M. summersi. Paravelia capixaba was reported in 2010 from the state of Espírito Santo, Brazil, and no other records have been published then since. We acknowledge that the records presented here are very far from the type-locality. However, after comparing our exemplars with the types, including detailed analysis of the male proctiger and parameres, we are confident that they represent the same species. Microvelia summersi had been recorded from "Brazil" by DRAKE & HUSSEY (1955), but the record did not include further details. The species is also known from Grenada, Trinidad & Tobago, Panama and Guyana, and its occurrence in Northern Brazil was not unexpected.

In addition to these new records, R. jubata is recorded for the first time from the state of Amazonas, and M. mimula, M. pulchella and M. venustatis are recorded for the first time from the state of Pará.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

This study was partially supported by the Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico (CNPq), Fundação de Amparo e Desenvolvimento da Pesquisa (FADESP) and Pró-Várzea/IBAMA Project: Bases Científicas para a Conservação da Várzea – Identificação e Caracterização de Regiões Biogeográficas (coordinated by Ana L. Albernaz).

LITERATURE CITED

Submitted: 16.VII.2011; Accepted: 28.VIII.2011.

Editorial responsibility: Gabriel L.F. Mejdalani

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Datas de Publicação

  • Publicação nesta coleção
    11 Nov 2011
  • Data do Fascículo
    Out 2011

Histórico

  • Recebido
    16 Jul 2011
  • Aceito
    28 Ago 2011
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