Saturday, 21 September 2013

Three Coeliccia damsels from Ba Be and C. uenoi from Cuc Phuong

It was not easy to find streams in the forest at Ba Be National Park, as all water seeps through the rocks into the lake. However, eventually we found a place in the forest on a hill where water was welling up from the ground, to stream down to some fields. And along this little stream we found interesting damsels, dark Protosticta satoi of varying sizes, but apparently still the same species, and Agriomorpha fusca, a common species, but also three Coeliccia species, all of which I later found in a different location, a stream at a completely different locality. From which it appears that although streaming water inside the forest is scarce, these Coeliccia species are spread widely in the reserve. Two species are relatively common, Coeliccia scutellum for instance can be seen at Ba Vi, Cuc Phuong and Tam Dao, so basically the hills that I visited until now. C. pyriformis is a species that has a much restricted range, but nevertheless seen at all these locations too. It is listed by IUCN as data deficient. Well, here is some more data! The third species was more puzzling. In fact, it seems not known from Vietnam, nor have I been able to find anything like it in the literature. If anyone has a suggestion, please tele me, but for now I suggest it may be a new species. It is rather large, like C. uenoi and superficially resembles that species (which I saw a few days later in Cuc Phuong, I add the photos here for comparison), but differs in the details of the pattern on the synthorax, with different width to blueish and black lines and and different shape and size to dorsal spots, apart from small differences for instance in the markings on the abdomen. It is difficult to judge the shape of the appendages properly from the photos and sadly the one specimen collected from Ba Be has disfigured appendages. Please see the photos for details.

Common, but beautiful: Coeliccia scutellum, male

Data deficient, but apparently not so rare C. pyriformis, male

Another C. pyriformis, male. Note the banana shape of the dorsal spots.

Coeliccia sp. nov?, male. Note the smaller dorsal spot, in comparison to C. uenoi, the wider black line along the mesopleural sutureand again along the divide of metepisternum and metepimeron. And lack of black at the lower edge of metepimeron. Also, note yellow spot on ventral side of distal S7 and S8.

Coeliccia sp. nov?, male

A better view of the amount of black along the sutures

Hazy enlargement of the appendages

Coeliccia uenoi, male, note the different width of black lines along sutures and different dorsal spot, amongst others

A better shot of its appendages

And a close-up of the dorsal pattern

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