January 3, 2013

Canadian Microgastrinae described by L. A. Provancher. Part II

This is the second part of a work about Canadian species of Microgastrinae described by Provancher in the XIX century. In all cases, the photos shown are the first ever to be taken to those holotypes, and are now available for anyone interested and/or working with the group. More information on the Provancher species will be soon made available through this blog and other websites.

Microplitis quadridentatus (Provancher, 1886). The original name given to the species was Microgaster 4-dentatus. Its known distribution is mostly Northeastern United States and Ontario, although it has also been recorded from South Dakota -suggesting a likely wider distribution in North America. It has been reared from two species of the Noctuid genus Simyra

Microplitis crenulatus (Provancher, 1888). Based on the recorded data, this species is restricted to Quebec and Northeastern United States (Massachusetts and Michigan). Nothing is known of its biology or ecology. As a matter of fact, after the original description of the species, the other references available that cite M. crenulatus are mostly catalogs or annotated checklists. It is clear that we know next to nothing about this species and much needs to be done.

Hygroplitis melligaster (Provancher, 1886). This is a rather widely distributed species, with known records comprising many states of Northeastern United States and most provinces of Central and Eastern Canada. However, nothing is known of its biology and ecology. Other species of the genus Hygroplitis have been reared from Noctuidae, Pyralidae and Tortricidae.

It should be noted that León Provancher actually described 13 species of Microgastrinae from Canada, but unfortunately I could only study the types of six of those species. Hopefully in the near future the remaining types can be photographed and presented here.

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