Scientists have discovered a new species of mayfly in the southern Western Ghats, a mountain range along the west coast of India. In fact, this is the first time that any mayfly belonging to the genus Labiobaetis has been collected in peninsular India.
The new species, called Labiobaetis soldani, "is named in honor of Dr. T. Soldan for his substantial contribution to the understanding of the Ephemeroptera of Palaearctic and Oriental realms," according to the authors of a study that describes the new mayfly in the Journal of Insect Science.
The larvae have light-brown heads with light-yellow antennae, and they grow to be about 4-5 millimeters in length. Adults are also about five millimeters long, and the males and females both lack hind wings.
Labiobaetis soldani is closely related to Labiobaetis pulchellus, which has been described from Sri Lanka in the larval stage. However, it can be differentiated from all other Labiobaetis species described from the Oriental region by several morphological differences.
- T. Kubendran et al. A new species of Labiobaetis Novikova & Kluge, 1987 (Ephemeroptera: Baetidae) from the southern Western Ghats in India, with comments on the taxonomic status of Labiobaetis. Journal of Insect Science, July 2014
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