First records of the psyllid Heteropsylla intermedia in the USA

Several years ago I found an unusual psyllid on Catclaw Mimosa (Mimosa aculeaticarpa var. biuncifera) in the Santa Catalina Mountains:

At the time I tried to attribute this psyllid to a possibly undescribed species of Cacopsylla (what would be considered Purshivora today), but this was clearly not quite right. An option I had not considered at all was Heteropsylla, a genus whose US representation includes a number of species recognizable by their lack of genal cones, such as the common mesquite psyllid Heteropsylla texana:

However, not all Heteropsylla lack genal cones, and several species in Mexico do have quite prominent genal cones. The Heteropsylla distincta group in particular includes a number of species with both prominent genal cones and maculated forewings.

Muddiman, Hodkinson & Hollis 1992 describe and illustrate Heteropsylla intermedia. The wing maculation is fairly distinct, lacking both the dark streak on the apex of Rs and the dark spot on Cu1b that is present in Heteropsylla texana. The dark marking that extends from M1+2 to Cu1a is similar to that in the Mexican species Heteropsylla nebulosa and H. muricata, but the overall wing maculation is much less extensive than in those species.

Previously, this species had only been known from Mexico, where it was collected on Mimosa ?albida.

In October 2022, iNaturalist user Joe Girgente (joseph92) made another observation of this psyllid in Lubbock, Texas:

© Joe Girgente, some rights reserved (CC-BY-NC)

With these two records, the known range of Heteropsylla intermedia is expanded to include the southern USA in addition to Mexico. This claim is made with the caveat that as neither of the two recorded specimens were collected, there is a nonzero possibility that the USA records could represent an undescribed species similar to but geographically distinct from Heteropsylla intermedia. Future collecting of psyllids on Mimosa in the southern USA will undoubtedly resolve this uncertainty.

Posted on 21 de novembro de 2022, 01:50 PM by psyllidhipster psyllidhipster


If I come across more, I will collect them for you.

Publicado por joseph92 mais de 1 ano antes

Will keep an eye out! Have a couple of projects planned in southern Arizona.

Publicado por ameeds mais de 1 ano antes

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