StDl, 1871: "Genus Dymantis, quod Paramecocorem habitu maxime simulat, una cum AŽpto, Menestheo et Eribote divisionem (AŽptina) format, quF ad Myrocheina valde appropinquat, differt autem articulo secundo rostri articulis duobus apicalibus simul sumtis multo longiore femoribusque sFpissime inermibus." Loose translation: Genus Dymantis, because Paramecocoris appears very similar, a division with Aeptus, Menestheus, and Eribotes is formed, which is near Myrocheina, but differs by the second rostral segment much longer than the apical two together and the femora oftentimes unarmed. So, originally the tribe contained 4 genera: Dymantis, Aeptus, Menestheus, and Eribotes, and was separated from the Myrocheini by the more elongate second rostral segment, and the femora usually being unarmed.
StDl, 1876: Once again, he treated the same 4 genera as a group under the heading "Dymantis et genera nonnulla affinia." He characterized the group: "quibus sunt tubercula antennifera a marginibus capitis remota, articulus primus antennarum apicem capitis haud attingens, bucculF anterius rotundatF, rostri articulus primus bucculas posterius Fquans vel superans, articulus secundus articulis duobus apicalibus simul sumtis longior, sterna sulcata et ostia odorifera subaruiculata." A translation of this passage was given by Kirkaldy, 1909 (see below)
Kirkaldy, 1909: Page 34: "Aeptini; antenniferous tubercles remote from the margins of the head, first segment of antennae not reaching the apex of the head, bucculae rounded anteriorly, first segment of labium extending posteriorly as far as the bucculae or beyond, second longer than the two apical segments together, sterna sulcate; ostioles subauriculate." He now includes 9 genera in this tribe: Paramenestheus, Menestheus, Halyabbas, Eribotes Belopis, Aeptus, Dorpius, Dymantis, and Pretorius.
Oshanin, 1912: In his Palearctic catalog, he catalogued a single genus in this tribe, Dorpius.
Bergroth, 1920: "Eribotes belongs to a small group of genera, the AŽptaria, represented only in Africa and Australia. The Asiatic genera Halyabbas Dist. and Belopis Dist., which Kirkaldy placed in this tribe, have nothing to do with it, but belong to the true Pentatominae, and the Asiatic genus Dorpius Dist. (represented in Africa by one species) pertains to the Myrochearia, not to the AŽptaria where Kirkaldy placed it. Whether the African genera Pretorius Dist. and Dregea Dist., placed in the AŽptaria by Distant, really belong here is impossible to know from the inadequate descriptions."
Gross, 1975: Under the heading Menestheus Group and pertaining probably in whole to only the Australian genera: "This group of genera has been separated off to include the six genera Eribotes StDl, Neomenestheus Distant, Paramenestheus Breddin, Menestheus StDl, Hillieria Distant, and Pseudaelia Distant, along with several undescribed genera."
"The group may be characterized as follows: Ė Head elongate and narrowed anteriorly, juga narrowly rounded, acuminate, and frequently longer than anteclypeus, frequently meeting in front of it. Antennophores placed well inside lateral margins of head, bucculae strongly elevated. All thoracic sterna sulcate, prosternal sulcus with an elevated sharp ridge on each side, produced forward as a small tooth beneath the base of the head."
Excerpts from the next paragraph: "The claspers are strongly C-shaped and robust. Parandria are also present on the inner wall of the capsule, their shape varying according to species. The phallosoma is barrel-shaped, very lightly sclerotized and without a thecal shield. The conjunctiva is large and developed into a strong lateral tubular lobe on each side. Ventrally there are a pair of more globular conjunctival lobes. The vesica is straight and elongate and the gonopore terminates well in front of the bridge uniting the right and left medial penial plate."
"StDl grouped the two Australian genera known to him with Dymantis StDl, an African genus. Distant (1903) in the Fauna of British India extended the group under the name Dymantaria to include four Indian genera. Kirkaldy in his catalogue of Pentatomidae (1909) recognised the same general group under the name Aeptini. This particular name is predated by Distantís Dymantaria but both appear to be predated by a StDl name which changes under modern rules to Aeliini should that group be found to be worthy of full tribal status."
"The situation at the moment would tend to indicate that these Australian genera, although they look very similar to Dymantis StDl, and Aelia Fabricius, are a separate grouping. McDonald (1966, Quaestiones Entomologicae 2: 20) has investigated the claspers and aedeagus of Aelia americana (Dallas). He makes no mention of parandria, and the clasper (his Fig. 150) is very different from that of Eribotes or Paramenestheus. The medial penial plates are much more robust though they are joined together medianly to form an H-shaped structure."
Linnavuori, 1982: Under the heading Tribe Aeptini and pertaining probably in whole to only the genus Aeptus: "Color brown. Body pear-shaped in outline, coarsely and densely punctate. Head large, elongately triangular, longer than median length of pronotum; genae extending far beyond apex of tylus, lateral margins narrowly lamellate; eyes small; ocelli very reduced, near posterior margin of head; bucculae broad, extending near to base of head; antennal tubercles small, not visible from above. Antennae long and gracile, 5-segmented. Rostrum extending beyond hind coxae, 2nd joint longer than the two apical joints together, 3rd joint tumid. Pronotum collar-like, lateral margins carinate. Scutellum broadly parabolic, extending slightly beyond the reduced squarish elytra. Prosternum in front of fore coxae bordered by a pair of erect lobes. Mesoternum sulcate. Scent gland orifices very small, evaporatoria extremely reduced."
"Male genitalia: Pygofer robust, apical margin deeply insinuated in middle, lateral lobes bifid, ventral margin with small deep median depression. Style distinctive, long and slender; expanded apex with numerous long stiff hairs. Spermathecal bulb small, simple."
My comments: This tribe currently contains 1 South African genus, Aeptus Dallas, 1851, and 7 Australian genera. I have compared specimens of Aeptus singularis Dallas with specimens of Eribotes and Paramenestheus, and although they are very similar in overall appearance, I do not believe that they belong in the same tribe. All of these genera have the same basic head structure and in all three, the thoracic sterna are distinctly sulcate without any sign of a median keel, the prosternal sulcus is bordered on each side by a strongly elevated ridge which forms a tooth or obtuse flap anteriorly near the base of the head. Also, the ostiolar ruga is very short and subauriculate, and the femora tend to be unarmed. Aeptus, however is brachyterous, lacking all wing membranes, the scutellum is relatively short and extremely broad, the apex very broadly rounded; in the Australian genera, the wings are fully developed and the scutellum is a more typical triangular shape. There are also major differences in the male genitalia. In the Australian genera, the parameres are described as robust and C-shaped, and there are parandria located inside the genital capsule. In Aeptus, the parameres are much smaller and oriented in a different direction, and there is no sign of parandria.
Aeliosoma Baehr, 1985
David A. Rider
updated: 30 Aug 2005
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