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Key to species in Scelio pulchripennis group

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

ClassificationIdentification keys

1. Body massive (size range), body black throughout, without metallic coloration; mesoscutum robustly sculptured medially, with two smooth patches in humeral area; apical fascia of fore wing absent (Mongolia) ... Scelio nisa Kozlov

- Body typically sized (size range), body variously colored, if metasoma dark brown to black and concolorous with mesosoma then with a distinct metallic sheen; mesoscutum variously sculptured, with or without smooth patches; apical fascia of fore wing absent or (more commonly) present ... 2

2. Mesoscutum with three, sometimes paired, straight longitudinal carinae that correspond roughly to the notauli and the medial mesoscutal line, length of medial pair reduced in some; sculpture of lateral mesoscutum more or less absent; body without metallic coloration (Sri Lanka, India) ... 3

- Mesoscutum variously sculptured, sometimes with notauli indicated, but never with three carinae as above, scutellum variously sculptured or smooth; lateral mesoscutum with or without sculpture; body with or without metallic coloration ... 4

3. Scutellum sculptured with more or less parallel carinae throughout; notauli typically indicated as a pair of carinae at posterior margin of mesoscutum (India) ... Scelio tria Yoder

- Scutellum with sculpture obliterated medially, otherwise rugulose with very slight longitudinal trend; notauli indicated by single irregular carina with many short transverse extensions (Sri Lanka) ... Scelio ememeye Yoder

4. Head and mesosoma black with green metallic sheen; posterodorsal head with well defined transverse striae; base of upper frons with band of ventrally oriented setae; fore wing with fuscate patches reduced in size, without a clearly defined apical fascia, margin with more or less transparent band throughout; pilosity of anterior metapleuron very sparse (Sri Lanka) ... Scelio clarkei Yoder

- Head and mesosoma variously colored, if head metallic then without transverse striae, smooth or densely reticulate; setae of upper frons typically oriented laterally or dorsally; fore wing with well developed fuscate patches that meet wing margins; pilosity of anterior metapleuron moderate to very dense (Africa, Arabian-Plate) ... 5

5. Mesonotum smooth and shining except for setose punctures and in some longitudinal carinae along posterior margin adjacent scutellum  ... 6

- Mesonotum predominately sculptured, at most with some smooth obliterated patches along humeral area, between notauli, or on anterior mesoscutum  ... 8

6. Head and mesoscutum metallic green to blue; posterior margin of mesoscutum and anterior margin of scutellum smooth (South Africa to Kenya) ... 7

- Head black, mesoscutum orange, sometimes brown to dark brown medially, without any trace of metallic coloration; posterior margin of mesoscutum and anterior margin of scutellum with slight grooves (United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia)... Scelio poecilopterus Risbec

7. Fore wing with apical fascia absent (not to be confused with presence of lighter colored radial cell); pilosity of hind tibia strongly appressed, not distinctly elongate ... Scelio nitens Brues

- Fore wing with apical fascia present; pilosity of of hind tibia nearly completely erect, distinctly elongate, and somewhat sparse ... Scelio paranitens Yoder

8. Mesosoma orange, with at most some patches of brown to dark brown dorsomedially ... 9

- Mesosoma brown, near black, or with a metallic sheen or coloration, if traces of orange (primarily along sutures) then otherwise completely metallic ... 10

9. Head black, without any trace of metallic coloration, with sculpture almost granular in appearance; medial mesoscutum with parallel fine striae all but anteriorly, lateral mesoscutum smooth; body moderately hairy, pilosity moderate length, white to golden brown, appressed to semi-errect; posterodorsal metasoma without metallic coloration ... Scelio variegatus Kozlov

- Head completely metallic, green or blue, with dense fine rugulae throughout; mesoscutum with fine rugulae throughout; body extremely hairy, pilosity long, white and erect; posterodorsal metasoma with metallic blue coloration (South Africa, Botswana) ... Scelio miror Yoder

10. Head and mesosoma with metallic sheen to strong metallic coloration, frequently sheen visible on dorsal metasoma as well, degree of coloration variable, bright to almost gone, but always present; metasoma in profile with terga arched, terga and sterna somewhat asymmetrical  ... 11

- Head, mesosoma (and metasoma) without metallic sheen, brown to black; metasoma in profile with terga more or less flat to slightly convex, not arched, terga and sterna more or less symmetrical  ... 12

11. Head and mesonotum uniformly sculptured throughout with fine well developed rugulae ... ?Scelio marbis Nixon

- Head and mesonotum somewhat irregularly sculptured, frequently with smooth patches, particularly on vertex near lateral ocelli, rugulae somewhat coarse ... Scelio antorides Nixon

12. Lateral mesoscutum with a distinct smooth patch or completely smooth ... 13

- Lateral mesoscutum sculptured throughout ... 15

13. Dorsal head sculptured throughout, though minutely in some; transverse pronotal carina complete, meeting mesoscutum or adjacent cell  ... 14

- Dorsal head smooth or very nearly so; transverse pronotal carina incomplete; mesoscutum with 4 smooth patches, two medially and two in humeral area; pilosity of metasoma semi-erect to erect, evenly distributed; apex of fore wing with minimal infuscation (South Africa, 2 females, E. and W. Cape) ... Scelio habilis Nixon

14. Lower frons with fine transverse striae; medial mesoscutum sculptured throughout, sculpture predominately longitudinal, parallel sided, with interstices predominately smooth though some with few to moderate number of transverse elements; hind femur narrow, dorsal surface weakly convex view (Niger, Mali, Burkino Faso) ... Scelio corion Nixon / ?Scelio baoli Risbec?

- Lower frons rugulose; medial mesoscutum with two somewhat elongate obliterated patches anteriorly, otherwise more or less reticulate with some longitudinal elements; hind femur broad, dorsal surface distinctly bulging (South Africa, Botswana) ... Scelio turbidus Yoder

15. Apical fascia of fore wing absent; transverse pronotal carina incomplete (Madagascar) ... Scelio leipo Yoder

- Apical fascia of fore wing present (sometimes only slightly contrasting with lighter surroundings); transverse pronotal carina complete or incomplete (Madagascar or Continental Africa) ... 16

16. Sculpture of T3 finely reticulate, with few prominent longitudinal elements; sculpture of scutellum predominately fine parallel striae, in most with few connecting interstices (widespread throughout Continental Africa) ... Scelio baoli Risbec

- Sculpture of T3 predominately parallel longitudinal with evident gap between longitudinal elements; scutellum sculpture somewhat rugulose, rugulae often somewhat flattened in appearance, with only slight longitudinal trend ...17

17. Pronotum with transverse pronotal carina incomplete, not meeting mesoscutum or adjacent cell; apical fascia with a well developed posterior element ... Scelio pulchripennis Brues

- Pronotum with transverse pronotal carina complete, meeting mesoscutum or adjacent cell; apical fascia present only along anterior margin, if area along posterior margin appearing lighter then whole of apex weakly infuscated and no clear division between fascia and apex delimited (Madagascar) ... Scelio parapulchripennis Yoder

Web author Simon van Noort (Iziko South African Museum)


Citation: van Noort, S. 2021. WaspWeb: Hymenoptera of the Afrotropical region. URL: www.waspweb.org (accessed on <day/month/year>).

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