Elateriformia (Coleoptera)

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J. F. Lawrence, A. M. Hastings, M. J. Dallwitz, T. A. Paine and E. J. Zurcher

Byrrhinae BYRRHIDAE

Classification. Polyphaga: Elateriformia.

Distribution. Byrrhines occur in the cooler, temperate parts of the Northern and Southern Hemispheres, and do not occur in tropical regions.

Biogeographic regions: Nearctic, Palearctic, Neotropical, Afrotropical, Oriental, Australian.

Biology. Most Byrrhinae feed on the leaves and rhizoids of mosses and liverworts (Bryophyta) and a few have been associated with lichens or higher plants. Some European Byrrhus have been found in soil with seedlings in nurseries. An undescribed Australian byrrhine is known to feed on the rosettes of Cardamine (Cruciferae) and has been implicated in the spread of a plant virus (Guy and Gibbs 1985).

Notes. Data at least partly checked by S. A. Slipinski.

References

Broun, T. 1910. Revision of the New Zealand Byrrhidae, with descriptions of new species. New Zealand Institute Bulletin 2: 1–25, 1 pl.

Dalla Torre, E. von 1911. Pars 33. Nosodendridae, Byrrhidae, Dermestidae. IN: S. Schenkling (ed.), Coleopterorum Catalogus. W. Junk, Berlin, 96 pp.

Guy, P. L. and A. J. Gibbs 1985. Further studies on turnip yellow mosaic tymovirus isolates from the endemic Australian Cardamine. Plant Pathology 34: 532–544.

Johnson, P. J. 1987. Larval Taxonomy, Biology, and Biogeography of the Genera of North American Byrrhidae (Insecta: Coleoptera). University of Idaho (MSc thesis), Moscow, Idaho, x + 253 pp.

Johnson, P. J. 1991. Taxonomic notes, new records and a key to the adults of North American Byrrhidae (Coleoptera). Proceedings of the Entomological Society of Washington 93: 322–332.

Johnson, P. J. 2000. 46. Byrrhidae. IN: R. H. Arnett, Jr., Jr. and M. C. Thomas (eds.), American Beetles. CRC Press, Gainesville, Florida (in press).

Lawrence, J. F. 1991. Byrrhidae (Byrrhoidea), pp. 384–386. IN: F. W. Stehr (ed.), Immature Insects. Vol. 2. Kendall/Hunt Publishing Co., Dubuque, Iowa.

Paulus, H. 1972. Der Stand unserer Kenntnis über die Familie Byrrhidae (Col.). Folia Entomologica Hungarica (Ser. Nov.) 25: 335–348.

Paulus, H. F. 1979. 47. Familie: Byrrhidae, pp. 328–350. IN: H. Freude, K. W. Harde and G. A. Lohse (eds.), Die Käfer Mitteleuropas. Band 6. Diversicornia. Goecke & Evers, Krefeld.

Watt, J. C. 1971. Entomology of the Aucklands and other islands south of New Zealand: Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae, Byrrhidae, Ptinidae, Tenebrionidae. Pacific Insects Monograph 27: 1293–224.

General appearance. Total length 1.5–15 mm. Ratio of body length to greatest body width 1.35–1.8. Body strongly convex. Sides of body not evenly curved, or evenly curved. Body not capable of conglobation (rolling into a ball). Upper surfaces of body glabrous or subglabrous, or clothed with distinct hairs, setae or scales. Vestiture of upper surfaces not including stiff, erect, dark bristles, or including stiff, erect, dark bristles; not including scales or scale-like setae. Upper surfaces of body without deep foveae. Prothorax, metathorax and-or abdomen without extrusible glands. Underside of body without hydrofuge surface(s).

Head. Ratio of head length to its greatest width (excluding eyes) 1 or less. Head width just behind eyes not distinctly greater than prothoracic width. Head moderately to strongly declined; not entirely concealed from above by pronotum; without elongate rostrum; not abruptly constricted posteriorly. Temples absent or not closely adpressed to prothorax; absent. Transverse occipital ridge or carina absent, or present. Occiput without stridulatory file. Longitudinal axis of head (from occipital foramen to mouth cavity) inclined at an angle of less than 45 degrees. Frontal region not to moderately, gradually declined. Occipital region with median longitudinal groove or line (endocarina). Frontal region without median groove or line (endocarina). Head without ocelli.

Compound eyes present. Eyes not or only slightly protuberant. Vertical diameter of eye less than 2 times horizontal diameter. Eyes finely facetted; without interfacetal setae. Ommatidium of the exocone type. Eye entire. Anterior or mesal edge of eye not or only barely emarginate. Posterior edge of eye not or barely emarginate.

Antennal insertions exposed from above, or concealed from above; moderately to widely separated. Antennae not borne on raised tubercles. Antennal insertions flush with head capsule or raised, not in fossae. Subantennal groove or cavity on head absent or very weakly developed, or well developed. Frontoclypeal suture absent or incomplete. Clypeus not laterally emarginate. Anterior edge of clypeus or clypeolabrum straight to convex, or concave to shallowly emarginate. Mouth cavity anteriorly or anteroventrally oriented. Pregular area without laterally opening cavities. Head ventrally without paired subgenal ridges. Head without anteriorly-projecting genal processes. Gular sutures widely separated or absent. Corporotentorium broad; without median process. Cervical sclerites present.

Antennae. Number of antennomeres 10 (rare), or 11. Antennae when posteriorly extended reaching beyond middle of prothorax but not middle of elytra. Antennae incrassate or clavate, or capitate. Antennomeres 3, 4 or 5 to 10 without or with single rami (uniramose). Antennae at least partly pubescent or with obvious modifications. Antennal modifications beginning on antennomere 5 or beyond. First antennomere (scape) less than 3 times as long as 2nd (pedicel). Antenna not geniculate; with weak apical club, or with strong apical club. Antennal club 4-segmented, or 5-segmented, or with 6 or more segments; not 5-segmented or with 2nd segment subequal to or larger than 1st; loose; not lamellate; not or slightly serrate; not or slightly flattened, or distinctly flattened; not preceded by a cupule.

Mouthparts. Labrum at least partly visible; free, membranous or separated by suture. Major portion of labrum strongly transverse, or slightly transverse or subquadrate. Apex of labrum subtruncate to slightly convex, or strongly convex, narrowly rounded or acute, or slightly concave or emarginate. Labrum moderately to heavily sclerotized, except at base and-or apex. Mouthparts not forming a piercing or sucking tube. Mandibles present. Mandible short and broad. Mandibular apex moderately to strongly, gradually curved mesally; bidentate or bilobed, or multidentate or multilobed; subacute, bidentate or multidentate. Dorsal part of mandible without tubercle; without setose cavity. Mandible moderately to strongly, more or less evenly sclerotized or pigmented; visible in lateral view. Incisor edge of mandible simple, or with single tooth. Mandible with well developed mola, or with reduced mola, or without mola; with well developed prostheca, or with reduced prostheca, or without prostheca. Prostheca absent or without articulated, sclerotized process. Inner basal angle of mandible with pubescent process. Maxilla with distinct galea and lacinia. Maxillary lobe(s) not stylet-like. Apex of galea or maxillary lobe densely setose or spinose; without heavily sclerotized teeth or hooks. Lacinia without hook(s) or spine(s). Apical maxillary palpomere cylindrical to fusiform, or slightly expanded and truncate to subtriangular; at least as wide as or longer than preapical one. Maxillary palp without complex palp organ. Apical labial palpomere cylindrical to fusiform. Ligula undivided or finely cleft, or deeply emarginate or bilobed.

Prothorax. Ratio of pronotal length to greatest pronotal width 0.4–0.65. Prothorax widest posteriorly. Sides of prothorax more or less straight, or moderately to strongly curved. Prothorax not laterally compressed to form cavities for legs. Sides of prothorax not or slightly explanate. Base of prothorax not or slightly narrower than elytral bases. Greatest prothoracic width not or slightly narrower than greatest elytral width, or distinctly narrower than greatest elytral width. Lateral pronotal carinae complete; simple; visible for their entire lengths from above, or not visible for their entire length from above; with a raised margin or narrow bead. Lateral portion of prothorax without deep pit. Pronotum without anterolateral callosities. Anterior angles of pronotum absent or not produced forward; absent, right or rounded, not produced. Posterior angles of pronotum obtuse or right, or moderately to strongly acute; not produced and acute. Posterior edge of pronotum more or less straight or evenly rounded; simple; not or vaguely margined. Discal carinae of pronotum absent. Pronotal disc without paired basal impressions. Pronotum without median longitudinal groove or line. Anterior edge of pronotum simple, without margin. Hypomeron without pit.

Anterior portion of prosternum at midline shorter than prosternal process. Lateral portion of prosternum in front of coxae shorter than mid length of procoxal cavity. Anterior edge of prosternum not produced anteriorly, or distinctly produced forming chin piece. Prosternum in front of coxae flat to moderately convex, or strongly convex without carina. Prosternum in front of coxae without paired lines or carinae. Anterior edge of prosternum without margin; without mesal excavation. Anterolateral or ventrolateral portions of prothorax with broad cavities, or with narrow grooves, or with broad cavities and with narrow grooves. Prothoracic cavities absent, or external, not open anteriorly. Prothoracic grooves longitudinal or oblique, elsewhere on hypomera or prosternum. Prosternal process complete; parallel-sided; slightly to strongly elevated but not curved behind; moderately to strongly overlapping mesoventrite. Apex of prosternal process broadly rounded, angulate or truncate. Prosternal process without transverse groove. Accessory (mesal) procoxal articulation absent. Ventral portion of prothorax on each side with notosternal suture only. Propleuron not extending to anterior edge of prothorax. Propleuron or pleurotrochantin not extending behind coxa. Procoxae not or slightly projecting below prosternum. Procoxa without or with short concealed lateral extension. Procoxal cavity strongly transverse. Procoxal cavities at middle moderately to widely separated. Procoxal cavities externally open; broadly open. Postcoxal projection absent or very short. Procoxal cavities without narrow lateral extensions. Procoxal cavities internally open. Prothoracic trochantin or pleurotrochantin at least partly exposed. Promesothoracic clicking mechanism absent.

Elytra. Elytra present. Ratio of elytral length to greatest elytral width 0.9–1.43. Ratio of elytral length to pronotal length 1.9–3.7. Elytra apunctate, irregularly punctate, or with 5 or fewer distinct puncture rows or striae, or with more than 5 distinct impressed striae; without scutellary striole. Number elytral puncture rows or striae 11, or 10. Sutural stria absent or not deeply impressed near apex. Abdominal tergites exposed by elytra none or apex of 1. Elytral apices meeting or almost meeting at the suture. Elytral suture not deflected near apex. Elytral apex without internal interlocking tongue, or with internal interlocking tongue. Epipleuron absent or incomplete; abruptly narrowed or excavated. Lateral edge of elytron straight or weakly sinuate.

Pterothorax. Scutellum well developed, or highly reduced, or absent or not visible; abruptly elevated; anteriorly simple; posteriorly narrowly rounded or acute. Mesoscutum without stridulatory file. Mesoventrite with paired procoxal rests. Paired mesoventral procoxal rests moderately to strongly oblique, or vertical. Anterior edge of mesoventrite without prosternal rest. Mesoventrite not divided by longitudinal groove or discrimen, or at least partly divided by longitudinal groove or discrimen. Anterior edge of mesoventrite at midline on same plane as metaventrite. Mesoventral cavity moderately large and shallow, or moderately to very large and deep. Mesocoxa not conical and projecting. Mesocoxal cavities at middle moderately to widely separated. Mesocoxae separated by more than shortest diameter of coxal cavity. Mesocoxal cavities circular to slightly transverse; not or slightly oblique. Mesoventrite separated by complete sutures from mesepisterna. Mesepisterna distinctly separated at midline; without deep pockets. Mesepimeron not visible from above. Mesocoxal cavities open laterally; not partly closed by metepisterna. Mesoventral process extending at least to middle of mesocoxal cavity. Mesometaventral junction a straight line, or a complex fitting. Mesoventral and metaventral processes at midline separated by gap, groove, or suture. Accessory (mesal) mesocoxal articulation absent.

Metaventral discrimen or median line moderately to very long, or short, or absent. Paired postcoxal lines of metaventrite absent, or present. Postcoxal lines of metaventrite absent, or arched but not or slightly recurved. Metaventrite longer than first abdominal ventrite, or not longer than first abdominal ventrite. Postcoxal pits of metaventrite absent. Metaventrite flat to slightly convex, or moderately to strongly convex. Transverse groove of metaventrite absent, or present. Anterior edge of metaventrite without transverse carina between mesocoxal cavities. Exposed portion of metepisternum very long and narrow or absent. Metacoxae contiguous or narrowly separated, or widely separated; separated by less than longest coxal diameter; extending laterally to meet elytra or sides of body; completely separated from metaventrite by suture. Metacoxal plates well developed, more or less uniform, or well developed mesally, weak laterally, or absent; not concealing most of basal abdominal ventrite. Metacoxae not greatly enlarged; horizontally oriented. Lateral arms of metendosternite short or absent, or moderately to very long. Metendosternal laminae absent. Ventrolateral processes of metendosternite absent or weakly developed. Anterior process of metendosternite short or absent. Anterior tendons of metendosternite widely separated but not on lateral arms. Apical portion of metendosternite not or only slightly emarginate.

Hind wing. Hind wing well developed, or highly reduced or absent; with normal transverse folds. Radial cell of hind wing well developed; shorter and broader. Inner posterior angle formed at base of radial cell acute. Radial cell not forming equilateral triangle. Ratio of length of apical area to total wing length 0.36–0.5. Apical area of hind wing without veins or sclerotizations, or with one or more vague sclerotizations or pigment patches. Medial bar of hind wing not crossed by fold. Free veins in medial area of hind wing 4. Oblongum cell of hind wing absent. Medial fleck of hind wing absent; absent or not partly bisected by a vein. Wedge cell of hind wing absent. Anal lobe of hind wing absent. Posterior edge of hind wing without fringe of long hairs.

Legs. Femoral attachment of mid trochanter transverse or slightly oblique, or strongly oblique with base of femur separate from coxa. Mesotrochanter not reduced or concealed from below. Metafemur not much wider than mesofemur. Mesotibia not strongly widened, or strongly widened, widest well before apex. Outer edge of mesotibia simple, crenulate or denticulate, or with distinct teeth or long spines. Outer subapical edge of mesotibia without antenna cleaner. Preapical surfaces of mesotibia without ridges or combs. Outer apical angle of mesotibia simple or slightly produced, without lobe, teeth or spines. Inner apical angle of mesotibia not or slightly produced, without tooth. Mesotibial spurs glabrous or absent; double. Mesotarsus with 5 distinct tarsomeres (pentamerous), or with 4 distinct tarsomeres and reduced penultimate one (pseudotetramerous). Tarsomeres on hind leg at least as many as on mid leg. Tarsomeres on fore leg at least as many as on mid leg. Mesotarsomere 1 well developed and visible. Preapical mesotarsomeres together longer than apical one. Penultimate mesotarsomere not distinctly shorter than antepenultimate, or distinctly shorter than antepenultimate. Ventral mesotarsal lobes absent, or on antepenultimate tarsomere only. Mesotarsal claws paired; subequal in length and similar in form and angle of inclination; simple. Appendage on each tarsal claw absent. Mesotarsal claws without setae near base. Mesotarsal empodium present and exposed; absent or with 2 or fewer setae. Outer edge of protibia simple and rounded to carinate but without lobes or teeth, except at apex. Outer apical angle of protibia simple or slightly produced, without lobe, teeth or spines. Inner subapical edge of protibia without antenna cleaner. Protibial spurs double. Articulations of protibial spurs located in same plane. Hind legs without swimming hairs. Preapical surfaces of metatibia without ridges or combs. Metatibial articular area not to only moderately expanded, narrowly oval or oblique. Metatibial spurs double; subequal in length and form.

Abdomen. Number of abdominal ventrites 5. Number of basal ventrites connate two, or three (rare). Abdominal sternite 2 apparently absent. First ventrite not completely divided by metacoxae. Suture between ventrites 1 and 2 distinct. Suture between ventrites 2 and 3 distinct. Ventrite 4 articulated with or connate with both 3 and 5. Postcoxal lines on ventrite 1 absent, or 1 pair, strongly curved or recurved. Ventrite 1 not much longer than 2. Abdominal process acute or narrowly rounded, or broadly rounded or angulate, or truncate or slightly emarginate. Ventrite 5 in female without circular depression. Posterior edge of ventrite 5 not crenulate. Last visible tergite and-or sternite (7 or 8) not forming terminal spine. Tergite and sternite 7 separated by membrane or distinct suture. Subapical abdominal luminous organ absent. Ventrites without setose patches or foveae. Functional spiracles on abdominal segment 8 present. Functional spiracles on abdominal segment 7 present. Functional spiracles on abdominal segment 6 present. Functional spiracles on abdominal segment 5 present. 7th abdominal spiracles located in pleural membrane. 6th abdominal spiracles located in pleural membrane. 5th abdominal spiracles located in pleural membrane. Anterior edge of sternite 8 in male without median strut. Pygidium (sclerotized tergite 7 or 8) more or less horizontal. Anterior edge of sternite 9 in male without median strut. Tergite 9 in male slightly to moderately emarginate. Tergite 10 in male well developed and free.

Aedeagus trilobate; symmetrical, or asymmetrical. Anterior edge of tegmen or phallobase without struts. Parameres individually articulated to phallobase or base of penis; not outwardly hooked. Penis without dorsal and ventral lobes. Anterior edge of penis with paired struts.

Illustrations. • Byrrhus. Byrrhus pilula (Linnaeus). Locality: Denmark. Artist: Victor Hansen. Courtesy of Danmarks Fauna and Zoological Museum, University of Copenhagen. Reference: Hansen 1973. • Pedilophorus. Pedilophorus gemmatus Lea. Locality: Australia. Artist: F. Nanninga. Copyright CSIRO. Reference: Britton 1970.


The interactive key provides access to the character list, illustrations, full and partial descriptions, diagnostic descriptions, differences and similarities between taxa, lists of taxa exhibiting specified attributes, and summaries of attributes within groups of taxa.

Cite this publication as: ‘Lawrence, J.F., Hastings, A.M., Dallwitz, M.J., Paine, T.A., and Zurcher, E.J. 2000 onwards. Elateriformia (Coleoptera): descriptions, illustrations, identification, and information retrieval for families and subfamilies. Version: 9th October 2005. http://delta-intkey.com’.

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