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Sclerodermas hirsutus

Comprehensive Description

provided by Smithsonian Contributions to Zoology
Sclerodermas hirsutus

ETYMOLOGY.—From the Latin hirsutus, hairy.

This unusual species is characterized by being relatively quite hairy compared to other Sclerodermus. The holotype is fully colored, but apparently it died as a teneral specimen because the body and legs are flattened.

FEMALE.—Length 3.1 mm, forewing 1.4 mm. Body castaneous, mandible, except tip, and tibiae lighter, apex of scape, pedicel and tarsi testaceous. Wings whitish, veins testaceous. Vestiture sparse, cinereous; eyes with short setae slightly longer than width of 1 facet, front with most setae twice as long as ocular setae, pair of setae in front of posterior ocelli two-thirds as long as scape, few setae of equal length along side of head beneath, abdomen with scattered long setae, some along posterior sides as long as the scape.

Head shining, delicately alutaceous; mandible tridentate; clypeus with shallow median emargination; WH 0.71 × LH; WF 1.48 × HE; EV 2.04 × HE; LH 3.22 × HE; ocelli small, OOL 3.57 × WOT.

Thorax shining, delicately alutaceous; parapsidal furrows weak, incomplete; FL 1.74 × FW.

Abdomen shining, delicately alutaceous, slightly wider than head or thorax, and slightly longer than both combined.

MALE.—Unknown.

SPECIMENS EXAMINED.—Holotype: , Sri Lanka, SOUTHERN PROVINCE, Hambantota District: Palatupana, WLNPS Bungalow, 20–22 Jun 1978, in Malaise trap, KVK, PBK, TW, U, NK (USNM).

Discleroderma Kieffer, 1904

Kieffer (1904:372) proposed this genus for Scleroderma tuberculata Magretti. Magretti's species was based on a unique male from Burma, and no additional specimens of the genus have been reported until now. Kieffer separated Discleroderma from Scleroderma by the presence of acute lateral tubercles on the third through fifth abdominal terga, parapsidal furrows on the scutum, and a complete submedialis (i.e., anal vein).

I assign a Ceylonese female to Discleroderma because it has parapsidal furrows and a complete anal vein. It lacks acute lateral tubercles on the middle abdominal terga, but this feature possibly is present only in males. The apices of the second to fifth terga and third to fifth sterna of the female are modified, however, being abruptly and narrowly depressed across their median three-fourths. The anterior margin of the depressed area is undulate with 3 scallops, the intersections between median and lateral scallops broadly but distinctly angulate. It appears that the tergal angulations are homologous with the acute tubercles on the male abdomen, because they occur in the same position on the segment. The narrow apical margins of these abdominal segments of male D. tuberculatum are not abruptly depressed.

DIAGNOSIS.—Small wasps, 4.1–4.5 mm long, black, appendages varying shades of brown or red, fully winged. Head longer than wide, subequal in width to thorax; maxillary palpi 5-segmented, labial palpi 3-segmented; female mandible with 4 teeth decreasing in size from the apical tooth, the fourth tooth tiny; male mandible with only 1 small tooth visible next to large apical tooth; clypeus with short median lobe, apex shallowly, broadly emarginate; antennae 13-segmented, inserted just above clypeus and below base of eyes, scape long, stout at apex; malar space one-fourth as long as eye height in female, one-fifth as long in male; eyes with very short, sparse setae, height of eyes almost one-half width of head; ocelli small.

Dorsum of thorax as in Figures 23, 27; pronotum with smooth contours, sloping gradually to collar; parapsidal furrows well developed, extending to posterior margin of scutum (present but did not register on SEM of female thorax); scutellum with transverse arcuate groove anteriorly, slightly widened laterally; metanotum complete, a narrow sclerite, female metanotum with small median pit adjacent to scutellum, male metanotum, if present, concealed by apex medially of scutellum; female propodeum with dorsal surface smooth, margined laterally by weak groove, male propodeum with strong median, lateral, and posterior carinae; mesopleuron moderately prominent, without dorsal surface, forming widest part of thorax; femora moderately swollen; midtibia not spinose; tarsal claws dentate; forewing with costa and radial vein absent, subcosta, median, anal, basal, and transverse median veins present, basal vein meeting subcosta basad of stigma by about one-half its length.

Abdomen broader than head and thorax, about as long as both combined; apices of terga 2–5 and sterna 3–5 of female narrowly and abruptly depressed across median three-fourths, anterior margin of depressed area undulate with 3 scallops, intersections between median and lateral scallops broadly angulate (Figure 28); terga 3–5 of male with pair of subapical, acute lateral tubercles (Figure 25), small on third tergum and increasing gradually in size posteriorly, tubercles posteriorly diminishing abruptly to low carinae that curve inward toward narrow depressed apices of terga 3–5 (Figure 24).
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bibliographic citation
Krombein, Karl V. 1996. "Biosystematic Studies of Ceylonese Wasps, XXI: A Revision of the Bethylinae and Epyrinae (Cephalonomiini and Sclerodermini) (Hymenoptera: Bethylidae)." Smithsonian Contributions to Zoology. 1-29. https://doi.org/10.5479/si.00810282.579