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Key to species in Scelio howardi group

(Life: Kingdom: Metazoa (animals); Phylum: Arthropoda; Class: Hexapoda; Order: Hymenoptera;  Superfamily: Platygastroidea; Family Scelionidae; Subfamily: Scelioninae; Genus: Scelio)

ClassificationIdentification keys

1. Brachypterous (Fig. 229); metasoma with robust rugulose sculpture laterally (Fig. 234) ... Scelio memorabilis

─ Macropterous (Fig. 145); metasoma with moderately developed striate to reticulate-rugulose sculpture laterally (Fig. 150) ... 2

2. Base of metasoma yellow to light brown, then darkening to brown toward apex (Fig. 145); coxae yellow; ventral margin of villus straight (Fig. 148); (pilosity of gena sparse to moderate; smaller individuals, Kenya) ... Scelio ululo

─ Metasoma uniformly colored throughout, never yellow (Fig. 115); coxae light brown to brown, {never?} yellow; ventral margin of villus variously formed, but more commonly concave, bent, or angled (Fig. 160) ... 3

3. Metasoma elongate, wings not reaching T5 (Figs 115, 157) (large individuals) ... 4

─ Metasoma not elongate, wings typically meeting or surpassing anterior margin of T5 (Figs. 217, 235) ... 5

4. Ventral margin of villus straight (Fig. 118); frons below anterior ocellus with pilosity white (Fig. 119); gena with dense white pilosity (Fig. 118) (Gabon) ... Scelio fremo

─ Ventral margin of villus bent medially (Fig. 160); frons below anterior ocellus with some brown pilosity (Fig. 161); gena moderately setose with off-white to golden brown pilosity (D.R. Congo) ... Scelio balo

5. Propodeal nucha with sparse setae throughout anterior portion (Fig. 237); netrion setose (Fig. 238) ... 6

─ Propodeal nucha glabrous (Fig. 219); netrion glabrous (Fig. 220)  ... 7

6. Mesoscutum predominantly sculptured with rounded foveae, pilosity arising from foveae long, extending into other cells (Fig. 240); axillular carina moderately developed, not forming lobed projection posterolaterally ... Scelio philippinensis

─ Mesoscutum predominantly coarsely rugulose to reticulate, pilosity very short (Fig. 165); axillular carina very well developed, extended posterolaterally into lobed projection (Fig. 168) (gena in lateral view narrow, with genal carina irregularly developed; mandibles narrow, Fig. 167) ... Scelio bubulo

7. Mesoscutal sculpture consisting predominantly of rounded punctures on an otherwise smooth surface, pilosity arising from punctures very short (Fig. 222); felt fields present on S2, S3 and S4 (Fig. 218); laterotergites minutely aciculate (Madagascar) ... Scelio effervesco

─ Mesoscutal sculpture consisting predominantly of reticulate angular cells, rugulae, or longitudinal strigae, cells not particularly rounded, setae generally longer and more prominent (Fig. 153); felt fields present on S2 and S3, absent on S4 (Fig. 152); laterotergites smooth or sculptured ... 8

8. Pilosity of frons below anterior ocellus white (Fig. 155); pronotal shoulder predominantly covered with white setae, with at most several brown setae adjacent margin with mesoscutum, setae often slightly lighter than that of mesoscutum (Fig. 29); pilosity of pronotal shoulder usually thick, white, and somewhat truncate at at tips (Fig. 29) ... 9

─ Pilosity of frons below anterior ocellus golden brown to brown (Fig. 209); pronotal shoulder with some, often all, setae brown (Fig. 30), setae usually concolorous with those of mesoscutum; thickness and length of pronotal shoulder pilosity variable but sometimes narrower and shorter (Fig. 30) ... 14

9. Villus somewhat compact, with ventral margin straight and dorsal margin parallel (Figs 14, 154); pilosity of dorsal head white to very light yellow; gena with dense pilosity at narrowest point in lateral view (Fig. 156); scape and legs usually yellow, in some with slight light brown infuscation ... Scelio zolotarevskyi

─ Villus variously formed, in most with ventral margin curved or angled, if straight or nearly so then scape brown to dark brown throughout; pilosity of the dorsal head variously colored, but usually golden to light brown; gena with pilosity more or less uniformly distributed throughout, without denser patches; color of scape and legs variable, but hind femur often with brown infuscation medially ... 10

10. Robust, large (5.045.91 mm); dark-brown to nearly black individuals (Figs 139, 140); pilosity of head and mesoscutum completely white, on mesoscutellum off-white, yellowish; T2 laterally with dense white patch of thickened setae (Fig. 144); upper anterior margin of metapleuron with two rows or a slightly broader patch of white setae (Fig. 142); scape dark brown; mesopleural depression with a small smooth patch near mid coxa (Fig. 142) (Madagascar) ... Scelio scomma

─ Size varying, but typically smaller than 5 mm; color varying, but often with metasoma brown and slightly lighter in color than mesosoma; color of pilosity of head and mesonotum varying, but for those in continental Africa usually golden brown on dorsal surfaces; pilosity of T2 sparse to dense; pilosity of upper anterior edge of metapleuron variable, but often only a single row of setae present; scape variously colored but usually not dark brown; mesopleural depression variously sculptured, with or without smooth patches ... 11

11. Villus with ventral margin in posterior half bent downwards forming a medial angle (Fig. 16); gena appearing sparsely setose due to somewhat shortened setae that only slightly overlap adjacent cells; pilosity of lateral T2 sparse (Fig. 132); scape brown (lateral T2 usually with reticulate cells surrounding setae; smaller individuals (Madagascar) ... Scelio igland

─ Shape of villus variable, ventral margin typically not as sharply bent medially, but rather slightly concave (Fig. 17); pilosity of gena in lateral view varying in density and length; scape color varying, yellow to brown; pilosity of lateral T2 varying (Fig. 246) (continental Africa) ... 12

12. Pilosity of lateral T3T5 predominantly brown; scape completely brown to dark brown, more or less concolorous with flagellum (Fig. 228); S3 felt field narrow to absent; sculpture of the frons robustly reticulate (Fig. 227), reticulations nearly meeting malar sulcus (i.e. facial striae very short to absent) (mesonotum somewhat flattened; eye bulging towards anterodorsal corner (Fig. 226); clava somewhat elongate in most (Fig. 228) ... 13

─ Pilosity of lateral T3T5 predominantly white (Fig. 126); scape lighter at base (yellow to light brown) to brown at apex, lighter in color than flagellum; S3 felt field well developed; sculpture of frons variable, though almost never uniformly strongly reticulate throughout, facial striae generally longer (Fig. 125); mesonotum rounder (Fig. 124) ... Scelio howardi

13. Gena narrow, with genal carina weakly developed but discernible (Fig. 226); T3T5 with a sparse row of white setae along ventrolateral margin; S3 felt field extremely reduced to absent; villus relatively long and narrow, with concave lower margin, usually with slight elevation in posterodorsal corner (Fig. 17); size 3.754.34 mm (frons slightly concave to flat) ... Scelio destico

─ Gena broad, genal carina not discernible (Fig. 244); T3T5 with at most 12 white setae along ventrolateral margin (Fig. 246); S3 felt field reduced, but never absent; villus with ventral margin straight or extremely slightly curved; size 4.645.52 mm ... Scelio pipilo

14. Pilosity of lateral metasoma more dense towards posterior of each tergite (Fig. 210); frequently with both brown and white setae on a single tergite (Fig. 205) ... Scelio susurro

─ Pilosity of lateral metasoma evenly distributed throughout each tergite, all setae on a given tergite uniform, brown, short and narrow (Figs. 134, 182) (one exceptional specimen from Madagascar with white setae on lateral T2 but otherwise similar) ... 15

15. Sculpture of mesonotum somewhat flat and thick, irregularly obliterated in humeral area (Fig. 135); course of notauli clearly indicated, medial margin thick and in larger individuals with scattered micropunctures (Fig. 138, nt); pronotal nucha predominantly smooth excluding setigerous punctures; mesopleural depression predominantly smooth (Fig. 136) (Madagascar) ... Scelio ructo

─ Sculpture of mesoscutum varying, but typically not flat and thick, sculpture of humeral area uniform without obliterated patches (Fig. 183); notauli variously indicated, but generally without inner course of notaulus thickened, micropunctures very sparse if present at all; pronotal nuchal smooth or sculptured; mesopleural depression with at most a very small smooth patch (Fig. 184) ... 16

16. Interantennal process with a well-developed carina medially (Fig. 186, iapc); course of notauli clearly visible, divided more or less evenly into broad cells (Fig. 183); sculpture of mesoscutum thick, reticulate (Uganda) ... Scelio gemo

─ Interantennal process with surface uninterrupted medially, smooth (Fig. 173); course of notauli indicated or not; sculpture of the mesoscutum variously formed (fig. 174) ... 17

17. Posteromedial head rounded such that occipital carina obliterated or obscured by similar sized rugae, in most cases a single carina not traceable throughout (Fig. 195); T6 sculpture fine parallel longitudinal striae with few reticulations immediately adjacent to apical margin (Fig. 193); hind tibia yellow; pilosity of pronotal shoulder slightly lighter colored than that of mesoscutum (Fig. 26); laterotergites with at least some aciculate sculpture (Tanzania, Malawi, D.R. Congo) ... Scelio latro

─ Posteromedial head relatively abruptly sloped beyond occipital carina, occipital carina percurrent or at most minutely interrupted medially (Fig. 177); T6 sculpture variable, rugulose to reticulate, rarely with finer longitudinal elements (Fig. 175); hind tibia yellow or yellow and brown; pilosity of pronotal shoulder usually concolorous with that of mesoscutum (Fig. 30); laterotergites smooth or aciculately sculptured ... 18

18. Hind tibia completely yellow, without trace of infuscation or brown bands (Fig. 176); notauli clearly visible posteriorly, a smooth channel without divisions, anteriorly irregularly confused (Fig. 177); sculpture of mesoscutum fine, somewhat more longitudinal than reticulate (Fig. 177); T6 with transverse rugae that are only sparsely reticulate (Fig. 180) (Tanzania) ... Scelio crepo

─ Hind tibia with at least some brown coloration (Fig. 188); notauli variously formed; sculpture of mesoscutum variable, but generally more robust (Fig. 189); T6 rugulose reticulate (Fig. 192) ... 19

19. Hind tibia yellow with a short brown band at apex (Fig. 188), or light brown throughout; scape color a gradient, yellow to light brown at base, brown at apex (Fig. 191) ... 20

─ Hind tibia with basal half yellow, apical half brown (Fig. 170); scape evenly brown to dark brown throughout (Fig. 173) (axillula well developed) ... 21

20. Hind tibia light brown throughout, without darker apex; mesoscutum and propodeum with reticulate sculpture (Fig. 201) laterotergites smooth or nearly so; margin of metasomal sternites sculptured throughout with fine reticulate microsculpture; size 3.203.93 mm (South Africa) ... Scelio mutio

─ Hind tibia yellow with a short brown band at apex (see Comments); mesoscutum and propodeum with thick percurrent longitudinal carinae that form more or less smooth channels with few interrupting transverse elements (Fig. 189); laterotergites with aciculate sculpture, usually throughout; margin of metasomal sternites smooth to very slightly irregular; size 4.695.16 mm (Ghana, Guinea, D.R.C) ... Scelio grunnio

21. Notaulus not clearly indicated, sculpture of mesoscutum confused reticulate (Fig. 174); sculpture of mesonotum and frons (Fig. 173) narrow, somewhat fine; longitudinal carina at base of T2 truncated near base by smooth patches, not continuing more or less throughout length of T2; axillula developed, but not strongly elevated above dorsal surface of mesoscutellum posterolaterally (anterodorsal oblique view) (Uganda) ... Scelio cano

─ Notaulus indicated posteriorly as smooth strip, sometimes with few irregular carina interrupting its course, not clearly indicated anteriorly (Fig. 213); sculpture of mesoscutum with distinct percurrent longitudinal carinae (Fig. 213); frons with thick, raised sculpture (Fig. 215); anteriormost longitudinal carinae of T2 not truncated by smooth patches near base of T2, more or less percurrent throughout T2; axillula well developed, elevated above dorsal surface of mesoscutellum posterolaterally (Cameroon, Central African Republic) ... Scelio tono

Web author Simon van Noort (Iziko South African Museum)


Citation: van Noort, S. 2024. WaspWeb: Hymenoptera of the World. URL: www.waspweb.org (accessed on <day/month/year>).

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