Genotype: Antennacyrtus insolitus sp. nov.
I have to propose this new genus for the reception of a most peculiar insect found in the Arthur's Pass region. The insect bears a superficial resemblance to a Lepidophorella, but although the scales are Lepidophorella-Like in structure, they are almost completely hyaline as in Lepidocyrtus. The antennae have retractile sensory organs at their tips; but the most peculiar aspect of this insect is that both antennae appear to be only three-segmented. Between the last two segments there is a very small joint, rather like a coupling, which may represent a fourth segment. The fact that both terminal segments have complete sensory organs disposes of any suggestion that the fourth segments have been lost by accident. In addition, there are on the dens peculiar spine-like scales as sometimes occur in Lepidophorella; and the empodial appendage is complicated in structure. To sum up, the characteristics of the genus are:—Antennae apprently three-segmented; scales Lepidophorella-like but hyaline;
mucro falciform; sensory knobs at tips of antennae; dens with elongate spine-like scales; Abd. III longer than Abd. IV; empodial appendage four-winged and bearing prominent teeth.
Antennacyrtus insolitus sp. nov. Plate 55, figs. 260–268.
Colour: In life, yellowish to creamy-brown. Mounted and viewed in transmitted light, yellow heavily mottled with black, but in reflected light yellow heavily mottled with white. Legs and furcula greyish-brown. Ant. I and II brown, III dark violet-brown. Ocelli on black fields.
Clothing: Heavy clothing of hyaline scales in which ribs are only just visible, and occasional short setae both ciliated and plain. At apex of mesotergum a tuft of setae which are ciliated and divided at their tips into from 2–4 short finger-like processes. A dense clothing of short ciliated setae around mouth. Along ventral edge of manubrium at least six straight, stiff, ciliated bristles.
Body: Length 3 mm. Antennae twice as long as head, the three segments related as 10: 18: 27. Each antenna with two sensory knobs at its apex and three sensory setae. Ocelli, eight to each side, all large and equal, and arranged in two rows of five and three respectively. Tergum of mesothorax longer than head and slightly overlying its hinder portion. Abd. III longer than Abd. IV and segments of body related as follows:—Th. I and II: III: Abd. I: II: III: IV: V: VI: as 27: 12: 8: 13: 22: 18: 10: 5. Ventral tube short and cylindrical. Anus ventral and protected by a large dorsal lobe, two large lateral lobes and two small latero-ventral lobes.
Legs: Claw with two long lateral external basal teeth and three prominent inner teeth equally spaced along basal half of inner edge. Empodial appendage lanceolate, three-quarters as long as claw and with four wings. On outer wing three prominent basal teeth. On inner wing two prominent teeth at about one-quarter from base. Also a large lateral basal tooth on each side of empodial appendage, and a smaller blunt tooth at base of each lateral wing. A short, slender, non-clavate tenent hair, half as long as claw, to each foot.
Furcula: Reaching beyond ventral tube, manubrium to the mucrodens as 20: 46. Dens very prominently annulated and corrugated. Uncorrugated portion six times length of mucro. Ventral edge of uncorrugated portion of dens finely-toothed, giving a saw edge. Mucro falciform with a peculiar basal open, hook-like lamella. Dens also heavily scaled both dorsally and ventrally and near its base on ventral side numerous long, narrow, sharply-pointed scales which at first sight might be mistaken for spines. Some of these scales are very long, others much shorter; they differ from the body scales in that instead of being longitudinally ribbed they are finely striated and resemble the scales of the genus Lepidobrya Wom. The dens also with several short spines near base.
Localities: Arthur's Pass, on the east side of the ranges amongst leaf debris in the beech forest at 2,000 ft.
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Type: Slide 3/629, Dominion Museum Collection.