Genus Oopterus Guerin
Oopterus Guerin. 1841, Rev. Zool., p. 123, Zolus Sharp, 1886, Trans. Roy. Dublin Soc., p. 371. Pseudoopterus Csiki. 1928. Junk Col. Cat., pt. 97, p. 225 (n. syn.).
The conspicuous point which emerges when examining the original descriptions of the genus Oopterus and of its two first described species, O. clivinoides Guer. and O. plicaticollis Blanch., is the lack of detailed information concerning essential characters. These have been extended by Kirsch and Broun, who did not acknowledge their
omission in the genus and in the Guerin and Blanchard species, to such an extent that Kirsch created two new species and Broun one. while Csiki, without indicating any distinguishing characters, erected a new genus Pseudoopterus, based on the Kirsch species O. guerinii and O. laticollis, and O. plicaticollis Blanch. Even then, the descriptions of the species complex is a record of the varying values placed by the authors on characters in their species; their methods of describing like features is often characterised by different terminology. The present tentative synonymy of these species is based on as complete an analysis as is possible of all characters present in the descriptions, but may be varied should examination become possible of the material under review. In the circumstances, a key to the species is not attempted.*
Oopterus clivinoides Guerin
Oopterus clivinoides Guerin, Rev. Zool., p. 123, 1841; Dieffenbach, Travels in N.Z., p. 273, 1843; White, Voy. Ereb. and Terr., pt. 2, p. 5, 1846; Chenu, Encyc. Hist. Nat., 1, p. 187, 1850–61; Blanchard, Voy. au Pole Sud., 4, p. 43, 1853; Hombron and Jacquinot, Ibid., pl. 2, fig. 16; Lacordaire, Hist. nat. de Ins., 1, p. 243, 1854, Atlas, pl. 10, fig. l; Gemminger and Harold, Cat. Col., 1, p. 241, 1868; Krone, Deutsch. Ent. Zeit., 21, p. 154, 1877; Kirsch, Ibid., p. 158, 1877; Hutton, Trans. N.Z. Inst., 34, p. 176, 1902; Hutton, Index Faunae Nov. Zeal., p. 149, 1904; Enderlein, Deutsch. Sudpol. Exped., Zool., 2, pt. 4, p. 501, 1909; Broun, Subant. Ids. N.Z., 1, p. 86, 1909; Hudson, Trans. N.Z. Inst., 54, p. 358, 1923; Jeannel, L'Abeille, 30, p. 246, 1926; Csiki, Junk Col. Cat., pt. 126, p. 1678, 1933; Hudson, N.Z. Beetles and Larvae, p. 177, 1934.
Oopterus guerinii Kirsch, Deutsch. Ent. Zeit., 21, p. 158, 1877 (n. syn.); Krone, Ibid., p. 154, 1877; Csiki, Junk Col. Cat., pt. 97, p. 225, 1928 (Pseudoopterus).
Oopterus tripunctatus Broun, Subant. Ids. N.Z., 1, pp. 81, 87, 1909 (n. syn.); Hudson, Ibid., p. 60, 1909; Hudson, Trans. N.Z. Inst., 54, p. 358, 1923; Hudson, N.Z. Beetles and Larvae, p. 177, 1934.
Data relating to habitus and location are given by Krone and Hudson, whose references are respectively, “From the densely covered moss, lichen and Hymenophyllum swamp humus in the virgin forest of the main island, northern part and about 600 feet above sea level, at the foot of the basalt rocks on the Hooker Hills. End of November.” “This smart-looking little beetle was very common under logs and amongst moss at Carnley Harbour. Seven specimens were also taken at Enderby Island.” Five specimens of O. clivinoides are lodged in the Hudson collection in the Dominion Museum.
Oopterus plicaticollis Blanchard
Oopterus plicaticollis Blanchard, Voy. au Pole Sud, 4, p. 44, 1853; Hombron and Jacquinot, Ibid., pl. 2, fig. 15; Chenu, Encyc. Hist. Nat., 1, p. 187, 1850–61; Lacordaire, Hist. nat. des Ins., 1, p. 244, 1854; Gemminger and Harold, Cat. Col., 1, p. 241, 1868; Hutton. Trans. N.Z. Inst., 34, p. 176, 1902; Hutton, Index Faun. Nov. Zeal., p. 149, 1904; Enderlein, Deutsch. Sudpol. Exped., Zool., 2, pt. 4, p. 501, 1909; Broun, Subant, Ids. N.Z., 1, pp. 81, 87, 1909; Hudson, Trans. N.Z. Inst., 54, p. 358, 1923; Csiki, Junk Col. Cat., pt. 97, p. 225 (Pseudoopterus); Hudson, N.Z. Bectles and Larvae, p. 177, 1934.
Oopterus laticollis Kirsch, Deutsch. Ent. Zeit., 2, p. 159, 1877 (n. syn.); Krone, Ibid., p. 154, 1877; Csiki, Junk Col. Cat., pt. 97, p. 225, 1928 (Pseudoopterus).
The description of O. laticollis is given, for comparison with the more accessible descriptions of the other members in Oopterus.
[Footnote] * Jeannel (L'Abeille, 30, p. 246, 1926) states that the New Zealand species of Oopterus belong to a new genus in the Merizodini and are not congeneric with O. clivinoides Guer. in the Harpalinae.
Oopterus laticollis Kirsch n.sp.: Obovate, shining, black, anterior tibiae and tarsi ferrugineous, femora yellow; head longitudinally impressed on both sides, close to the eyes barely sulcate; thorax one and a half times as wide as long, towards the base less narrow, hind angles projecting slightly outwards, smooth above, base impressed on both sides; elytra oval, at the apex obtusely pointed, striate, the striae sometimes punctate, the first stria recurved to form a fold at the apex, on the third three punctures.
Long. 4, lat. 1 ¾ mill.
Somewhat smaller than Trechus latus Putz., but very similar to the latter, black, sometimes the lateral margins of the elytra, and the back part of the suture reddish, the antennae, tibiac and feet rust red, the recurved margin of the thorax and of the elytra and the femora yellowish. The head on each side with a longitudinal impression and between that and the eye a little short furrow. Thorax 1 ½ times wider than long, broadest in front of the middle, towards the back narrowing less than towards the front, curved at the sides in front of the tapering back corners which project somewhat towards the outside, on top flatter than Trechus latus, smooth, at the base on each side broadly and flatly impressed, close by the back corners with a short impressed line which is bordered at the outside by a slightly raised little fold. The elytra oval, more than 1 ½ times wider than the thorax, crenate at the base, at the apex jointly bluntly elongated, on top as in Trechus latus flatly convex, more distinctly striate than in the former, the striae more or less distinctly punctate, the first one at the apex recurved and pointing towards the front in the shape of a sharply raised longitudinal fold, the third one with three impressed points.
Of this species Krone remarks, “In the neighbourhood of the basaltic foothills, Deas Head on the steeply sloping woody coast under dense shrubs broken by seal tracks and at the foot of arborescent Aspidium venustum, Beginning of December.”