L. Limonta, D. P. Locatelli Dorypteryx longipennis Smithers (Psocoptera: Psyllipsocidae) new species for Italy

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L. Limonta, D.P. Locatelli

Dorypteryx longipennis Smithers (Psocoptera: Psyllipsocidae) new species for Italy.

Abstract – Dorypteryx longipennis Smithers (Psocoptera Psyllipsocidae) was recorded for the first time in Italy. The species was found in a private house, recently restructured.

Riassunto – Dorypteryx longipennis Smithers (Psocoptera Psyllipsocidae) specie nuova per l’Italia Prima segnalazione per l’Italia di Dorypteryx longipennis Smithers (Psocoptera Psyllipsocidae). La specie è stata trovata in un’abitazione privata appena ristrutturata.

Key words - Dorypteryx longipennis, Psocoptera, domestic situation, Italy.


On 28 August 2000 a psocid, from a private house, was brought to be identified to the Istituto di Entomologia agraria - Università degli Studi di Milano. The specimen, a female adult, was classified as belonging to Dorypteryx longipennis Smithers.

The rare species is present mostly in houses; it was described by Smithers (1991) who found it in Australia on avocado from New Zealand and on tulips imported from Holland. In 1988 it was collected in a house in Luxembourg. Lienhard and Schneider (1993) recorded the presence in a warehouse in Belgium and in a house in Switzerland.

The two-storey building where it was found was recently restructured: the floors, except in the bathroom, in the kitchen and on the staircases, are in wood. The insects were noticed on the walls and, in a great number, behind the wooden skirting boards in the period May-August in the rooms with a northern exposure. Recognizing a serious infestation, the owners employed a company to carry out an insecticide treatment with deltamethrin and afterwards, noticing some individuals were still present, they applied to our Institute to identify them. The presence of this species didn’t cause allergic reactions in the family.

An investigation on site was carried out in order to collect other specimens; the walls and the floors of the whole house were examined, collecting a male adult and some nymphs.

During the investigation also some straw baskets were controlled and several adults and nymphs belonging to the family of Liposcelidae were found.

.In Italy D. domestica (Smithers) (sub Dolopteryx domestica by Locatelli & Ottoboni, 1987) and Dorypteryx pallida Aaron [sub Dorypterix albicans Ribaga (Ribaga, 1907)] resulted to be already recorded.

In houses and in a library in North Italy, several infestations due to D. domestica were brought to the attention of our Institute; in many cases allergic reactions were recorded.

genus Dorypteryx Aaron,1883

Adults brachipterous. Fore wings reduced to slender straps with simple venation; R and M veins unbranched. Fore wing with margin and veins hairy. Hind wing reduced to a tiny flap. Fourth segment of maxillary palp elongate. Epiproct simple, paraproctal spine present and unmodified in both sexes. External valve distally with three heavy setae. Dorsal and ventral valvae smooth and little developed. Hypandrium with apically curved margin, more or less sclerotized and phallosoma with two simple parameres, more or less curved.

Dorypteryx longipennis Smithers 1991
Head and torax pale yellow with patches brownish-red. Two transversal bars dorsally on abdomen, laterally well developed. Fore wing hyaline, length 1,1-1,3 mm, venations pale brown, r and m parallel almost on the whole length. Hypandrium with two lateral sclerites. Phallosoma with two parameres little curved (fig. 1). Body length 1,6-1,9 mm.

Specimens under study

1 ♀ 28 August 2000; 1 ♂ and nymphs 11 September 2000; collected in a private house in Merone (Como).

The specimens are in the collection of Istituto di Entomologia agraria - Università degli Studi di Milano.


Lienhard C., 1998 - Psocoptères euro-méditerranéens. (Faune de France et régions limitrophes, n. 83). - Fédération Française des Sociétés de Sciences Naturelles, Paris, XX + 517 pp.
Lienhard C., Schneider N., 1993 - Dorypteryx longipennis Smithers, un psoque domicole noveau pour l’Europe (Psocoptera: Psyllipsocidae). - Bull. Annls. Soc. r. belge. Ent., 129: 129-137.
Lienhard C., Schneider N., 1994 - Psocoptera. In: Minelli A., Ruffo S. & La Posta S. (eds.) - Checklist delle specie della fauna italiana, 38. Calderini, Bologna.
Locatelli D.P., Ottoboni F., 1987 - Dolopteryx domestica Smithers (Psocoptera Psyllipsocidae) nuovo Psocottero introdotto in Italia. - Boll. Zool. agr. Bachic., ser.2, 19 (1986-1987): 13-21.
Mockford E.L.,1993 - North american Psocoptera (Insecta). Sandhill Crane Press Inc. - Flora & Fauna Handbook No. 10.
Ribaga C., 1907 - Copeognati nuovi. - Redia, 4:181-189.
Smithers C.N., 1991 - A new species of Dorypteryx Aaron (Psocoptera: Psyllipsocidae) described from Australia. - Gen. Appl. Ent., 23:45-48.

Dr Lidia Limonta - Istituto di Entomologia agraria. Università degli Studi di Milano, Via Celoria 2, I - 20133 Milano (Italy). E-mail: lidia.limonta@unimi.it.

Prof. Daria Patrizia Locatelli - Istituto di Entomologia agraria. Università degli Studi di Milano, Via Celoria 2, I - 20133 Milano (Italy). E-mail: daria.locatelli@unimi.it.

Fig. 1 - Dorypteryx longipennis Smithers, adult.

Fig.2 - a) fore wing; b) female external valve; c) hypandrium, phallosome underlying.

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