E. Russell Anderson and Shawn Clark, Department of Biology
The beetle family Chrysomelidae contains many species and genera which are of agricultural importance, which can cause millions of dollars of damage. While studying Triarius, a genus largely overlooked among Chrysomelidae because of its low agricultural impact, we have recognized that Triarius vittipennis (Horn, 1893) differs markedly from other species in several characters that we regard as key. Accordingly, we propose a new genus to accommodate T. vittipennis, as well as a new Mexican species which we are describing and naming now. Additionally, we are describing a second new species, which we place in the genus Triarius.
All specimens examined in this study were adults. Immature stages for these taxa are entirely unknown.
Specimens were examined using Wild M5A and Olympus SZ61 stereomicroscopes. Microphotography employed an Olympus SZX12 dissecting microscope equipped with an MTI 3CCD camera and an Olympus MVX10 dissecting microscope equipped with an Olympus DP70 camera. Olympus MicroSuite montage hardware was used with Olympus MicroSuite or Olympus cellSens software. Images were later cleaned up with Adobe Photoshop. Genitalia preparations were done following methods similar to those described by Smith (1979). [XXXX Is the preceding microscope and camera information correct? XXXXX]
Specimens were examined from the following collections (acronyms following the collection names are used in text below): Monte L. Bean Life Science Museum, Brigham Young University, Provo, UT (BYU); California Academy of Sciences, San Francisco, CA (CAS); Carnegie Museum of Natural History, Pittsburgh, PA (CMNH); Canadian National Collection of Insects, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada (CNC); Cornell University, Ithaca, NY (CUIC); Edward G. Riley (personal collection), College Station, TX (EGRC); Field Museum of Natural History, Chicago, IL (FMNH); Florida State Collection of Arthropods, Gainesville, FL (FSCA); Illinois Natural History Survey, Champaign, IL (INHS); Museum of Comparative Zoology, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA (MCZ); North Dakota State University, Fargo, ND (NDSU); The Natural History Museum, London, United Kingdom (NHMUK); Triplehorn Insect Collection, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH (OSUC); Robert H. Turnbow (personal collection), Enterprise, AL (RHTC); Snow Entomological Museum, University of Kansas, Lawrence, KS (SEMC); Entomology Research Museum, University of California, Riverside, CA (UCRC); Museum of Zoology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI (UMMZ); W. R. Enns Entomology Museum, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO (UMRM); National Museum of Natural History, Washington, DC (USNM); W. F. Barr Entomological Museum, University of Idaho, Moscow, ID (WFBM).
Results and Discussion
Morphological examination and comparisons showed that the species formerly known as Triarius vittipennis does not in fact belong to the genus Triarius, but is much more similar to an
undescribed Mexican species. Neither of these fit into any currently accepted genera of Chrysomelidae, validating our belief in the need for an additional genus.
These examinations also showed that the Texan species which we believed to be undescribed was unlisted in any literature. However, this species does appear to belong to the Triarius genus, and in our upcoming manuscript we describe it and place it within Triarius. An appropriate name has not yet been devised for this species, but will be included in our publication.
The Mexican species which we hypothesized as also unknown was not listed in the literature and is not described. It does not belong to the genus Triarius and, as we hypothesized, exhibits several of the characteristics which make T. vittipennis impossible to include in the Triarius genus. This supports our claim that these two species belong in the same genus. Since no current genus can accommodate these two, we propose a new genus to do so. The name for this genus is as yet undecided, but will be published along with a description shortly.