Moth Resources - schinia

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A new species of Schinia Hübner, 1818 (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) from southern Oregon.

Jim T. Troubridge

Pacific Agri-Food Research Centre, AAFC,
6947 #7 Hwy., P.O. Box 1000, Agassiz, BC, Canada V0M 1A0;

Fabreries 27 : 101-104, December, 2002

Abstract. A new species of Schinia, S. lynda, is described from Oregon. The adults and male and female genitalia are illustrated and compared to those of S. felicitata (Smith).

Résumé. L'auteur décrit une nouvelle espèce de Schinia, S. lynda, de l'Oregon et en illustre l'adulte et les génitalia mâles et femelles, qu'il compare à S. felicitata (Smith).

Due to recent improvements in trap design and a renewed interest in biodiversity inventories by professional and amateur collectors, new species of noctuid moths are now collected faster than they are being described. The noctuid fauna of western North America is particularly rich and in need of study. One of these western noctuids is a striking species of Schinia Hübner, 1818, which is described below. Dissection of genitalia and terms for genital structures and wing markings follow that of Lafontaine (1987).

Schinia lynda sp. n.

Type locality. Alkali Lake, Lake County, Oregon.

Type material. Holotype male: USA, Oregon, Lake Co., Alkali Lk., 43°00'N 120°01'W, 4,100' [1,250m], 24 May 2001, J. Troubridge, in the Canadian National Collection of Insects (CNCI), Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. Paratypes: (80 males, 61 females): United States, Oregon: same data as holotype (72 males, 55 females); Lake Co., Alkali Lake, 43°00'N 120°01'W, 4,100' [1,250m], 21 May 2001, J. Troubridge (8 males, 5 females). Paratypes deposited in the CNCI, United States National Museum, and the personal collection of the author.

Description. Males and females externally similar. Forewing length 11-13mm, mean 12.2mm (N=30). Antenna filiform; head, palpi, and prothoracic collar pink; thorax, tegulae, and abdomen light yellowish beige. Dorsal forewing ground colour pink; ordinary spots and lines absent except postmedial line, which is absent in most specimens, but faintly visible in occasional specimens; subterminal area yellowish beige and postmedian dusting of yellowish beige scales in cells R5, M1, and M2; fringe yellowish beige. Dorsal hindwing dark gray brown; discal lunule faintly visible; fringe cream coloured.

Male genitalia (Figure 3). Uncus long and curved, parallel-sided, with small spine at apex. Valve very long and narrow. Sacculus less than 1/3 length of valve. Clasper digitate, about as long as width of adjacent valve, rounded at apex. Digitus absent. Vesica unarmed - corkscrew portion usually with three complete revolutions, pointing ventrally at tip.

Female genitalia (Figure 2). Ovipositor lobes rounded, setose. Ductus bursae about as long as the corpus bursae plus appendix bursae, membranous. Ostium bursae sclerotized on ventral rim. Corpus bursae globular, with anterior bulge on left and four elongate signa -one dorsal, one ventral, one left and one right. Appendix bursae spirals around central sclerotized spline, usually completing three revolutions, terminating at ductus seminalis and pointing towards ductus bursae.

Derivation of the name. I take pleasure in naming this species in honour of my wife, Lynda, whose patience and support for my Lepidoptera-related activities always amazes me. It is a noun in apposition.

Diagnosis. The most similar species to S. lynda is S. felicitata (Smith), 1894. Externally, S. lynda can resemble the very pinkest forms of S. felicitata; however, the forewing of S. lynda is bright pink, whereas that of S. felicitata is usually yellow beige with only a scattering of pink scales. The hindwing of S. lynda darkens gradually across the breadth of the wing and isonly slightly paler basally -that of S. felicitata has a strong fuscus border, contrasting with a paler base. Internally, the spiral portion of the vesica of S. lynda usually completes three revolutions (Figure 3b) -that of S. felicitata usually completes three and one half revolutions. These genital differences are reflected in the appendix bursae of the females. The corkscrew-like appendix bursae of S. lynda usually completes three revolutions (Figure 2), but that of S. felicitata usually completes three and one half revolutions. The ductus bursae of S. lynda is consistently proportionally shorter than that of S. feliciata (relative to the apophyses, the corpus bursae or the appendix bursae). In S. lynda, the distance from the ostium bursae to the posterior end of the bulbous portion of the corpus bursae (Figure 2: length L2) is about one and one half times the distance from the ostium bursae to the tip of the ovipositor lobes (Figure 2: length L1), but about twice this distance in S. felicitata. The corpus bursae of S. lynda is globular with an anterior bulge on the left, that of S. felicitata is oval.

Distribution and habitat. Schinia lynda was collected in unstable dunes in the high desert of south-central Oregon. It is nocturnal and flies in late May and early June. Schinia felicitata occurs from northern Mexico, north to southern California and southwest Utah (Hardwick, 1996), in association with its larval foodplant, Oenothera deltoides deltoides Torrey & Frémont. At the type locality of S. lynda, Oenothera deltoides var. piperi Munz, a low, prostrate variety, less shrubby than O. deltoides deltoides occurs on the dunes and had feeding damage when examined in July that I attribute to Schinia. This may be the larval host plant for S. lynda.


I thank J. Donald Lafontaine for reading the manuscript and offering helpful suggestions, Jean-François Landry for translating the article into French, and two anonymous reviewers.

References cited

Hardwick, D. F. 1996. A monograph to the North American Heliothentinae. Privately published. 281 pp.

Lafontaine, J. D. 1987. The moths of America north of Mexico including Greenland. Fascicle 27.2. Noctuoidea (part) Noctuinae (part-Euxoa). The Wedge Entomological Research Foundation. Washington, D.C. 236 pages.

Description of this image follows.

Schinia lynda. Figure 1, adult male, Alkali Lake, Oregon. Figure 2, female genitalia (L2 = environ 1.5 L1) (J. Troubridge preparation 95872). Figure 3a, male genitalia with aedoeagus removed (J. Troubridge preparation 95860). Figure 3b, aedoeagus with vesica everted (J. Troubridge preparation 95860).

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