return to: Eul 1 Eul 4 ent 1 eud 1 cir1 eul 1
eul 5 eul 10
eul 14 eul 17
eul 20 eul 24
Förster, 1856 comparative info return to: prev home
Flagellum usually with 4, rarely 5 funicular segments in both sexes; basal 3
funicular segments usually branched in males. Clypeal margin truncate or slightly concave.
Notauli incomplete or ending in anterior half of axillae; setae on mesoscutal
midlobe usually arranged in regular longitudinal rows (if not, then propodeum
without median carina or plicae); scutellum without sublateral grooves (but rarely with
visible traces of these grooves), reticulate; sculpture of mesoscutum, scutellum, and
axillae nearly uniform. Postmarginal vein 2x stigmal vein length or longer; disc sometimes
fuscate near stigma and/or parastigma; speculum present, basal cell bare; basal and
cubital veins setose. Propodeum without costula, plicae usually
incomplete or absent, extending as straight diagonal lines from
spiracle to nucha if present; median carina present or absent; median panels shiny to dull
and reticulate. Compare with: Dahlbominus, Pnigalio,
Necremnus, Notanisomorphella, Hemiptarsenus.
1a-b: Sympiesis mesosoma (left), and forewing venation (right)
2a-d: Sympiesis female and male antennae: typical (left), and S.
sericeicornis (Nees) (right, atypical of genus)
3a-b: Sympiesis ancylae Girault propodeum (left), and S.
sericeicornis propodeum (right)
4a: S. marylandensis Girault propodeum
of leaf-mining Lepidoptera.
Comments: Large and
vaguely defined genus. Distinction from many other Eulophus-group genera is
tenuous and ultimately uncertain. There is a weak division in the Eulophus-group
between genera related to Eulophus (ie: Necremnus, Microlycus, Dicladocerus,
etc.) and those related to Sympiesis (ie: Pnigalio, Hemiptarsenus,
Notanisomorphella, etc.) based mostly on postmarginal vein length and number of
funicular segments in females, but this division is not supported by strong evidence at
this time and the limits of these groups are far from obvious. Sympiesis contains
many distinct species groups, some of which are very similar to certain species groups in
genera such as Hemiptarsenus, which make precise definition of the genus
impossible. Gestalt identification in particular of Sympiesis is likely to be
mistaken for these reasons.
Dahlbominus: Postmarginal vein 1.7x stigmal vein length
or less. Forewing almost always with vague fuscate cloud posterior to marginal and
postmarginal veins. Propodeum with complete median carina, without plicae. Some Sympiesis
have a similar dark cloud on the forewing, but most that do have dark spots on have
them isolated near the stigma and/or parastigma. In Dahlbominus, there is either
a large, uniform dark cloud or no fuscation at all. A few Sympiesis approach Dahlbominus
in coloration but differ in the propodeal features (reticulate sculpture,
lacking a median carina) and in that the postmarginal vein is about 2x stigmal vein
length. It should also be noted that the only absolute difference between the two genera
is the postmarginal vein length. These differences are very minor, but no taxonomic
changes should be made until the phylogeny of Sympiesis and its relatives,
including Necremnus, is better understood, to insure that the resulting changes
produce monophyletic groupings.
Pnigalio: Usually with costula connecting plicae
with median carina. Some species and small specimens of others do not have a costula, and
are more difficult to separate: median panels of propodeum shiny and smooth, without
reticulate sculpture (but transverse rugae present instead of costula in some forms),
always with at least nearly complete plicae; mesoscutal midlobe with many dorsal setae
arranged irregularly. Sympiesis usually do not have plicae, and median panels of
propodeum are often distinctly reticulate, although some Sympiesis have plicae
extending diagonally laterad anteriorly. The shape of the plicae is especially valuable
when distinguishing these two genera, as they arise between the median carina and the
spiracles in Pnigalio and proceed more or less straight posteriad until they meet
the costula, at which point they begin converging strongly, such that there is a corner
where the plicae meet the costula (in rare exceptional species without a costula, they may
be straight and divergent posteriorly). In Sympiesis, the plicae, when present,
arise nearly adjacent to the spiracles and proceed as essentially straight diagonal lines
to the nucha (convergent posteriorly). Sympiesis usually have mesoscutal midlobe
setae arranged in longitudinal rows, but this character fails in some forms, which are
distinguished by propodeal features: median carina and plicae absent, median panels
uniformly reticulate, propodeum distinctly convex along transverse axis (but sunken along
median axis). The mesoscutal character is essential, however, in recognizing some
specimens of true Pnigalio that have lost the costula. Another, less reliable,
character is that Pnigalio usually has a more strongly sculpted and shiny
mesoscutum than in Sympiesis.
Necremnus: Females with 3 funicular segments (male
antenna essentially identical with that of most Sympiesis). Postmarginal vein
less than 1.7x stigmal vein length, usually 1-1.5x stigmal vein length. Dahlbominus
may represent a transitional form between these two genera.
always with distinct plicae, enclosing sharply raised median panels. Median carina always
distinctly complete. Plicae in Sympiesis are typically less distinct, extending
diagonally when present (ie: S. marylandensis), and the median panels are not
sharply raised relative to areas lateral to the plicae. A few Sympiesis,
especially S. bimaculatipennis (Girault) and S. fragariae Miller, have
slightly raised median panels, thus the difference between these two genera is one of
continuous variation, and ultimately slight.
from Sympiesis using quantitative continuous characters: Toruli very high on
face, far above lower eye margin; scape distinctly exceeding vertex; forewing and costal
cell unusually long and narrow: forewing at least 2.6x longer than broad and costal cell
7-15x longer than broad. In some species of Sympiesis, the scape slightly exceeds
the vertex. Many Sympiesis have one or more body parts elongate, but not all in
combination. Hemiptarsenus has two fairly distinct species groups. In one of
these groups, easily distinguished from Sympiesis, the scape is elongate and
narrow, exceeding the vertex by 2x of more scape width; these forms also have a short
propodeum, it being 2x or more broader than long. In the other, more problematic, group,
the scape only slightly exceeds the vertex and the propodeal length is subequal
(<1.75x) its width. This group seems to overlap some species of Sympiesis, but
no Sympiesis that I am aware of have a long propodeum and scape exceeding vertex
at the same time. Distinction between these two genera is situational and ultimately
difficult for some forms.
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Boucek, Z. 1988. Australasian Chalcidoidea (Hymenoptera). A
biosystematic revision of genera of fourteen families, with a reclassification of species.
CAB International, Wallingford, UK.
Miller, C.D.F. 1970. The Nearctic species of Pnigalio and Sympiesis
(Hymenoptera: Eulophidae). Memoirs of the Entomological Society of Canada 68.
Image credits: 1a-b: Boucek (1988). 2a-d, 3a-b, 4a: Miller (1970).