Genus Hemideina, Walker. (1869.)
Form large and robust, not less than an inch in length. Head smooth, often very large in the male. Fastigium rounded between the antennæ, flattened and foveate in the region of the ocellus which is obsolete. Antennæ short, separated at their bases; first joint long and thick; the second shorter, cylindrical; the third longer than the second but shorter than the first; the rest small. Eyes pyriform. Usually a ridge (frontal ridge) between the front and the gena, running from the eye to the base of the mandible (not well marked in the female). Pronotum smooth, otherwise as in Deinacrida. Pro-sternum unarmed; lobes of the meso-and meta-sterna short and rounded. Legs stout, the hind tibiæ two or three times as long as the pronotum. Coxæ widely separated from each other, those of the first pair spined. Femora of fore legs-without any apical spines, those of the middle legs with one, and those of the hind legs with two small apical spines, or with none. Fore and mid femora convex below, hind femora only slightly dilated, angled above near the insertion. Fore tibiæ usually with two pairs of apical spines. Mid tibiæ with an inferior pair and a single superior apical spine. Hind tibiæ flattened above, and with a few spines on each side, as well as some below; the apical spurs are three pairs, all of which are fixed; the superior pair is much longer than the others. Second joint of the hind tarsi with a single blunt spine above; the fourth joint shorter than the other three together. Genitalia: Subgenital plate of male nearly square, the posterior
margin straight or hollowed, the lobes carrying the styles slightly prominent. Supra-anal plate rounded. Cerci moderate. Subgenital plate in the female triangular, with, the apex truncated or notched. Ovipositor as in Deinacrida
The head of the male is variable in size. In the young the hind tibiæ are proportionally much thicker than in the adult. The colourless ante-clypeus is membranous and can be partly folded inwards, carrying the, labrum with, it; this alters much the appearance of the face.
Localities.—New Zealand, Eastern Australia, and, Lord Howe's-Island.
|a. Middle tibiæ without spines above; hind tibiæ, above, with 4.spines in the inner row.|
|b. Hind tibiæ, above, with 3 spines in the outer row.|
|c. Fore tibiæ, below, with 4 spines in each row||H. armiger.|
|cc. Fore tibiæ, below, with 3 spines in each row||H. thoracica.|
|bb. Hind tibiæ, above, with 4 spines in the outer row.|
|c. Fore tibiæ, below, with 3 spines in each row||H. producta.|
|cc. Fore tibiæ, below, with 3 in outer and 4 in inner row||H. abbreviata.|
|ccc. Fore tibiæ, below, with 4 spines in each row.|
|d. Pronotum dark, coloured||H. megacephala.|
|dd. Pronotum pale with dark markings||H. figurata.|
|aa. Middle tibiæ with a spine above; hind tibiæ, above, with 5 spines in the inner row.|
|b. Middle femora with spines below||H. femorata.|
|bb. Middle femora unarmed, below.|
|c. Middle femora with a single apical spine H. ricta.|
|cc. Middle femora without any apical spines.|
|d. Pronotum blackish, margined with tawny||H. maori.|
|dd. Pronotum tawny, margined with blackish||H. broughi.|
Deinacrida megacephala, Buller, Zoologist, 1867, p. 850; Trans. N.Z. Inst., vol. iii., p. 36, pi. vb. fig. 2; Hudson, Man. N.Z. Entomology, pl. 17, fig, 8, and pl. 18, fig. 2. Hemideina capitolina, Walker, Cat. Dermaptera Saltatoria in the British Museum, part i., p. 161 (1869). Deinacrida ligata, Brunner, Monog. d. Stenop. and Gryll. in Verh. k. k. Zool. and Bot. Gesellsch., Wien, 1888, 24.
Head in the adult male very, large. Front of epicranium smooth; frontal ridges curved outwards, rugose; a deep, depression under each, antenna; post-clypeus transversely wrinkled, separated from the ante-clypeus by a distinct ridge; labrum ovate; mandibles very long, not conspicuously keeled in front. Legs: Fore and middle femora without, any spines
below; hind femora, below, on the outer edge, with three strong spines, followed by two or three small ones, and several minute spines on the inner edge; above there are from seven to ten minute spines, more or less rudimentary. Fore and middle tibiæ without any spines above, and the posterior superior apical spine of the fore tibiæ is sometimes missing. Below the fore tibiæ have four spines in each row, while the middle tibiæ have four in the outer (anterior) and two or three in the inner (posterior) row. Hind tibiæ, above, with four spines in each row, below there is a subapical pair, followed by two single spines. The subgenital plate in the male is longer than broad, and the apex, between the insertions of the styles, is straight. In the female the apex of the subgenital plate is retuse, or notched. In the female the head is smoother, there are no depressions under the antennae, and no transverse ridge on the clypeus.
Colours.—The pronotum is brown, almost black in the young, with a thin, pale, longitudinal line, which is continued on the other thoracic nota and on the occiput. The meso-notum is generally paler than the rest of the body. The abdominal segments, above, are banded anteriorly and posteriorly with dark-brown, and usually there is a broad dorsal longitudinal stripe of the same colour in both sexes.
Length, 40mm.; of head, 28mm. ♂ 15mm. ♀; of pronotum, 9mm.; of thorax, 18mm.; of abdomen, 20mm.; of ovipositor, 21mm.; of fore tibia, 17mm.; of hind tibia, 21mm. ♂, 26mm. ♀; of hind femur, 22mm. ♂, 25mm. ♀. Width of the head, 13mm. ♂, 9mm. ♀; of pronotum, 12mm.
Localities.—Wellington; Stephens Island, in Gook Strait; Pelorus Valley; Westland; Lord. Howe's Island (Brunner).
A common species, generally found among dead wood or in the hollow stems of old trees. Mr. Hudson says that Melicytus ramiflorus is a favourite tree, whose stems may often be seen pierced with large holes, out of which the insects emerge at night to feed on the leaves. They are strictly arboreal in their habits, exhibit great skill in walking along branches, and will climb up a thin stick with wonderful rapidity.*
[Footnote] * “Manual of New Zealand Entomology,” London, 1892, p. 113.