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The planthopper genus Acanalonia in Florida with notes on a recently introduced species, A. excavata (Hemiptera: Fulgoroidea: Acanaloniidae).


Acanalonia excavata Van Duzee, described from Nicaragua, has been found at 4 localities in Florida. Although 6 species of Acanalonia have been reported from Florida, 2 species known from single disjunct records, A. concinnula Fowler and A. virescens Stal, are either in error, or finds have not been replicated. A key for the identification of the resulting 5 species known to occur in Florida is provided. The male and female genitalia of A. excavata are illustrated, and the placement of this species in the key to the United States species is indicated.

Key Words: Acanalonia, Fulgoroidea, Acanalonia excavata, new record, Florida


Acanalonia excavata Van Duzee, descrita de Nicaragua, fue encontrada en 4 sitios en la Florida. Aunque 6 especies de Acanalonia ban sido reportadas en la Florida, 2 de estas especies son conocidas de un solo registro incongruente, A. concinnula Fowler y A. virescens Stal; estos pueden representar un error o hallazgos que no ban sido replicados. Se provee una clave para la identification de las 5 especies resultantes conocidas que se sabe ocurren en la Florida. Se ilustra la genitalia del macho y la hembra de A. excavata, y se indica la posicion de esta especie en la clave para las especies en los Estados Unidos.


Six species of the planthopper genus Acanalonia (Hemiptera: Fulgoroidea: Acanaloniidae) have been recorded from Florida: Acanalonia bivittata (Say), A. concinnula Fowler, A. conica (Say), A. pumila Van Duzee, A. servillei Spinola 1839 (= A. latifrons (Walker 1851)), and A. virescens Stal (Metcalf 1954; Freund & Wilson 1995). A seventh species, A. excavata Van Duzee, has been collected in 4 sites in Florida and represents a new record for the United States. Fruend & Wilson (1995) reviewed the species of Acanalonia known to occur in the United States. The purpose of this paper is to note the introduction of a species new to the United States, to provide a key to the Florida species that includes A. excavata, and to evaluate and correct published distribution records for Florida.

Acanalonia excavata was described from Nicaragua by Van Duzee (1933) and has not been reported from any other locality since its original description. This species recently has been collected on 4 occasions in south Florida. Data for these specimens are as follows: FLORIDA: Miami-Dade County, Kendall, 25 IV 1997, coll. J. R. Martin (1 female); Coral Gables, 6 V 2000, coll. J. Brambila (1 male); Florida City, 9 VI 2004, coll. E. T. Putland (1 female); Miami, 25 X 2004, coll. E. T. Putland (1 female). Specimens are housed in the Florida State Collection of Arthropods, Division of Plant Industry, Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Gainesville. Acanalonia excavata can be separated from the 18 species of United States Acanalonia by the produced head, pubescent frons, the presence of a strongly curved spine on the left side of the aedeagus, and the shape of the posterior margin of the female terminal abdominal sternite (Figs. 1, 2). This species will key to couplet 7 in Freund & Wilson's (1995) key to the Acanalonia species of the United States but can be separated from the similar species A. conica, A. clypeata, and A. saltonia by the characters of the head, aedeagus, and female venter. For comparative purposes, the male and female genitalia are illustrated in Fig. 2 from specimens with the following collecting data: NICARAGUA: 10-16 km W Managua, 18 X 1970, coll. E. Moore (male); Managua, 17 VII 1970, coll. L. H. Rolston (female). Acanalonia excavata is likely to be a recent introduction into Florida from Central America. Nothing is known about the biology of this planthopper; however, the other Acanalonia species that have been studied are widely polyphagous, particularly on woody plants (Wilson & McPherson 1980, 1981; Freund & Wilson 1995).


Acanalonia concinnula was described from Mexico by Fowler (1900) and reported from Venice, Florida by Ball (1933). The single male specimen, upon which the Florida record was based (housed at the National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D. C.), was misidentified, as determined by comparison of China's illustrations of the holotype (housed at the Museum of Natural History, London, UK) published by Doering (1932). The Florida specimen is actually a pale form of A. bivittata. Thus, there is no evidence that this Mexican species occurs in Florida. Acanalonia concinnula is known from the states of Jalisco, Guerrero, Sinoloa, and Puebla in Mexico (Metcalf 1954, L.B.O., unpublished data). Acanalonia concinnula was recorded from Texas by Melichar (1901) whose specimens are supposed to be housed in museums in Stockholm, Paris, and Brussels. We know of no US specimens of this species in any collections in the United States.

Acanalonia virescens was described from Mexico by Stal (1864) and reported from Marco, Florida by Ball (1933). The male specimen upon which this record is based has not been found; thus, the presence of this species in Florida cannot be verified. Doering (1932) recorded this species only from Texas. There is no evidence that A. virescens occurs in Florida.

There has been taxonomic confusion about the status of A. latifrons (described from New Orleans LA, USA) and A servillei (described from Philadelphia PA, USA). Fennah (1971) determined that the type of A. latifrons corresponded to the description of A. servillei. However, it is doubtful that Fennah was able to examine the type of A. servillei because it was housed in Spinola's castle of Tassarolo until 1979 when it was moved to the Museo Regionale di Scienze Naturali in Turin, Italy (Casale 1981). Doering (1932) and Metcalf & Bruner (1930) used a specimen from Cuba as the basis for their concept of A. servillei (Fennah 1971). Fennah believed that this specimen was too large (13-15 mm) to be what Spinola described as A. servillei, which was 8.5 mm long. According to Fennah's (1971) description and key, the A. servillei of Metcalf & Bruner (1930) and Doering (1932) probably was A. ingens (Fennah). Ball (1933) also synonymized A. servillei and A. latifrons stating "[there] is certainly but a single large blunt-headed species of this genus occurring in the United States." He compared specimens from Philadelphia, the type locality of A. servillei, with specimens from New Orleans, the type locality of A. latifrons, and found them to be the same species. However, he did not examine the types. He also synonymized A. servillei with a species from "Hayti", which was later found to be distinct. Metcalf (1954) apparently ignored the synonymy. It is likely that Fennah (1971) was correct in his synonymy of A. latifrons with A. servillei (Freund & Wilson 1995); however, it would be necessary to compare specimens with the type of A. servillei to be absolutely certain. For the time being, we treat the Florida species as A. servillei.


So far, A. excavata is known only from Miami-Dade County. Acanalonia servillei, A. pumila, and A. conica appear to be distributed widely in Florida. FSCA distribution records are disjunct, probably representing localities of collecting activities rather than actual distribution of the insects. In general, based on FSCA specimens, A. bivittata may be a northern species that ranges into northern Florida, whereas A. pumila may be a Caribbean species that also occurs in peninsular Florida. However, Metcalf (1954) lists North Carolina as a location for A. pumila.

1a. Vertex with a prominent Acanalonia servillei Spinola
 median longitudinal carina

1b. Vertex without a prominent
 median longitudinal carina 2

2a. Dorsum with a pair of dark
 longitudinal stripes Acanalonia bivittata (Say)

2b. Dorsum without a pair of dark
 longitudinal stripes 3

3a. Body less than 7 mm long;
 forewings hemispherical Acanalonia pumila (Van Duzee)

3b. Body greater than 7 mm
 long; forewings trapezoidal 4

4a. Head extended anteriorly beyond the lateral carina greater than
 the horizontal length of an eye, in lateral view; frons with
 length/width ratio greater than 0.65; head declivent at most
 10[degrees]; frons sparsely pubescent

 Acanalonia conica (Say)

4b. Head extended anteriorly beyond the lateral carina less than the
horizontal length of an eye, in lateral view; frons with length/width
ratio less than 0.65; head declivent about 30[degrees]; frons densely

 Acanalonia excavata (Van Duzee)


We thank Mr. David Ziesk, Division of Plant Industry, Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Gainesville, for providing the automontage photographs and Dr. Stuart McKamey, National Museum of Natural History, Washington, D.C., for the loan of Ball's specimen from Florida. This is Entomology Contribution No.1068, Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Division of Plant Industry, Bureau of Entomology, Nematology, and Plant Pathology.


BALL, E. D. 1933. Notes on the Fulgoridae with some new species. Psyche 40: 145-150

CASALE, A. 1981. Cataloghi. II. Collezione emitterologica di Massimiliano Spinola. Museo Regionale di Scienze Naturali, Torino, pp. 1-120.

DOERING, K. C. 1932. The genus Acanalonia in America north of Mexico (Fulgoridae, Homoptera). Annals of the Entomological Society of America 25:758-786.

FENNAH, R. G. 1971. Fulgoroidea of the Cayman Islands and adjacent areas. J. Natural Hist. 5:299-342.

FOWLER, W. W. 1900. Order Rhynchota. Suborder Hemiptera-Homoptera. Biologia Centrali-Americana 1: 49-56.

FREUND, R., AND S. W. WILSON. 1995. The planthopper genus Acanalonia in the United States (Homoptera: Issidae): male and female genitalic morphology. Insecta Mundi 9: 195-215.

MELICHAR, L. 1901. Monographie der Acanaloniiden und Flatiden (Homoptera). Annalen des Kaiserlich Koenigliches Naturhistorischen Hofmuseum in Wien 16: 178-258.

METCALF, Z. P. 1954. General Catalogue of the Homoptera. Fascicle IV, Part 14. Acanaloniidae. North Carolina State College, Raleigh. 64 pp.

METCALF, Z. P., AND C. BRUNER. 1930. Cuban Fulgorina, the families Tropiduchidae and Acanaloniiidae. Psyche 37: 393-424.

STAL, C. 1864. Hemiptera mexicana enumeravit speciesque novas descripsit (continuatio). Stettinen Entomologische Zeitung 25: 49-86.

VAN DUZEE, E. P. 1933. The Templeton Crocker Expedition of the California Academy of Science, 1932. No. 4. Characters of the twenty-four new species of Hemiptera from the Galapagos Islands and the coast and islands of Central America and Mexico. Proc. California Acad. Sci. 21: 25-40.

WILSON, S. W., AND J. E. MCPHERSON. 1980. A list of the host plants of the Illinois Acanaloniidae and Flatidae (Homoptera: Fulgoroidea). Trans. Illinois State Acad. Sci. 73: 21-29.

WILSON, S. W. AND J. E. MCPHERSON. 1981. Life histories of Acanalonia bivittata and A. conica with descriptions of immature stages. Ann. Entomol. Soc. America 74: 289-298.


(1) Division of Plant Industry, Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Gainesville, FL

(2) Visiting Scholar, Department of Entomology, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ

(3) Department of Biology, University of Central Missouri, Warrensburg, MO
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Article Details
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Author:Halbert, Susan; O'Brien, Lois B.; Wilson, Stephen W.
Publication:Florida Entomologist
Article Type:Report
Geographic Code:1U5FL
Date:Dec 1, 2007
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