Go to National Library of New Zealand Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa
Volume 78, 1950
This text is also available in PDF
(88 KB) Opens in new window
– 69 –

A New Species of Acridiidae (Insecta: Orthoptera) from New Zealand

[Read before the Wellington Branch, May 25, 1948; received by the Editor August 10, 1948,; issued separately, February, 1950.]

Several specimens of a most interesting mountain grasshopper were collected by the author during a museum expedition sonie years ago to the Torlesse Range in Canterbury. These fall clearly into the genus Brachaspis Hutton 1898, and, on account of the hairy nature of the integument, are described under the specific name of villosa.

Brachaspis villosa n.sp. Plate 11, Figs. 1–4

General facies: Length of body up to 30 mm.; grey to greyish-brown in colour with the inner surfaces of the hind femora yellowish-orange; the legs and body well clothed with rather long, delicate hairs, the legs being much more heavily clothed than the body; cuticle of the body very finely granulate all over; pronotum deeply emarginated behind, faintly keeled posteriorly, sulci distinct; abdomen strongly keeled; tegmina reaching to posterior border of first abdominal segment; fastigium broadly margined, opening out towards frontal costa; antennae stout, flattened and distinctly punctate towards apex, rugose proximally, sparsely clothed with minute hairs; the first and second antennal segments somewhat dilated and longer than any of the others, the first being about half as long again as the second, the fourth the shortest, the total number of segments varying from twenty-four to twenty-six; sternal shield approximately as wide as long, metasternal lobes closer together than prosternal lobes. Supra-anal plate of male slightly dished (raised around edges), nearly twice as long as broad and slightly wider at middle than at base; posterior half triangulate with small triangular plate at apex fringed with about six short, stiff hairs along each edge; subgenital plate broadly triangulate above, distended and bulbous below; subgenital plate of female rectangular, as wide as long, the posterior margin crenulate and produced into a fine point.

Legs: All the femora unarmed above and below, but the hind femora prominently carinate above, grooved and carinate below; fore and middle tibia each with two pairs of apical inferior spines, one pair being more lateral in position; fore tibia below, with outer row of 3–4 and inner row of 2–3 sharp spines; middle tibia similar, except that the outer or anterior row may have four spines; hind tibia with two pairs of apical spines, one inferior, the other lateral, otherwise unarmed below, but bearing on the upper surface an inner row of 8–9 and an outer row of six strongly curved spines, of which the distal spines are longer than the proximal; first tarsal segment broad and flattened, shorter than third segment.

Locality: Mount Torlesse, 5,000–5,600 ft. altitude, amongst stones and shingle slides. Coll. J. T. S.

Types: Type, female, and Allotype, male, in the Dominion Museum Collection.