Classification of the Meenoplidae

The Meenoplidae are a small family of 23 genera (161 species) found in the Old World tropics.   The Meenoplidae are related to the Kinnaridae, and may be paraphyletic with respect to the Kinnaridae (Bourgoin 1993, 1997), although this idea has not been recently explored.  Superficially (to me), Meenoplidae resembles derbid in the Cedusiini or Cenchreini.  Metcalf (1945) provided features for the family as follows: All species are moderately small, with the body strongly compressed and the tegmina tectiform.  The head has the vertex and frons (usually) broad and the lateral carinae strongly elevated. The antennae are generally short and simple. The last segment of the labium is elongate. The median ocellus is generally present. The thorax is usually large, with the carinae indistinct or wanting. The tegulae are large, the pronotum is short, broader than the head, and the mesonotum is broader than the pronotum. The tegmina are always macropterous and normally are held vertically in repose. The venation is in general cixiid-like, with the basal costal area more or less expanded.  Subcosta and radius are typically united for more than half their lengths. Radius and media are usually simple, but cubitus is complex, generally with supernumerary veins. One or both claval veins are typically granulate. The abdomen is compressed, with the sixth, seventh and eighth tergites bearing wax-secreting pores. The male genitalia superficially resemble the genitalia in many derbids, with the genital plates large and complex. The female genitalia are incomplete, the ovipositor being absent or greatly reduced.

Muir (1927, 1930)  classified Meenoplidae into 2 subfamilies, the nominotypical one and Nisiinae (‘described’ by Kirkaldy 1907: 163 in the Derbidae – actually just listed), and provided a key to genera (modified from 1925a) known at the time.  Metcalf (1945) utilized Muir’s (1930) classification, although he placed Nisiinae Kirkaldy, 1907 as a senior synonym of Kermesiinae Kirkaldy, 1906, probably on the basis of Haupt (1926: 197), who who recognized Kermesiinae and Meenoplinae as subfamilies of Derbidae.  Emeljanov (1984, English version 1985) revised the higher classification, described Nisamia and Eponisiella, and presented a key to genus.  Subsequently (Bourgoin 1993) presented a preliminary phylogeny of Kinnaridae and Meenoplidae that provided evidence that Meenoplidae are derived within the Kinnaridae.  Bourgoin (1997) revised the Meenoplidae of New Caledonia and provided additional phylogenetic evidence, along with Bourgoin & Deiss (1994) who examined female wax plates in a phylogenetic context.  Subsequent quantitative phylogenetic analyses has not been completed, although additional taxa (including troglobitic species), and faunal reviews, have been published by Tsaur et al. 1986, Dlabola 1986, Wilson 1988, 2010; Hoch & Asche 1988, 1993; Tsaur 1989, Hoch 1990, 1993, 1996; Bonfils & Attié 1998; Hoch et al. 1999, 2012, 2014; Rahman et al. 2014.  Additionally,  Chen (1992) studied the wax secretory plates  in Taiwanese Meenoplidae.

The classification used here is on Emeljanov, 1984, or as placed by subsequent authors in original descriptions.  All taxa placed to formally subfamily – tribes are implicit.

Distribution of Meenoplidae from FLOW

Distribution of Meenoplidae from FLOW (17 Apr. 2018)

Phylogeny of Kinnaridae and Meenoplidae from Bourgoin  1993

Phylogeny of Kinnaridae and Meenoplidae from Bourgoin (1993)

Forewing venation in Meenoplidae from Bourgoin

Forewing venation in Meenoplidae from Bourgoin 1997


Meenoplidae forewing detail

Meenoplidae forewing detail (claval veins granulate) from New South Wales Government Department of Primary Industries Biosecurity Collections, Key to Families of Fulgoroidea.

Wings of Meenoplidae from Emeljanov 1994

Wings of Meenoplidae from Emeljanov 1994

Wings of Meenoplidae from Emeljanov 1994

Family Meenoplidae Fieber, 1872

Meenoplinae Fieber 1872
Meenoplini Fieber 1872
Anigrus Stål, 1866 (= Inxwala Distant, 1907 by Muir 1925; = Paranisia Matsumura, 1914 by Muir 1930; = Paranigrus Bergroth, 1920 by Muir 1930)
Distantiana Bourgoin, 1997
Meenoplus Fieber, 1866
Metanigrus Tsaur & Yang, 1986

Anigrus sp. (image from BOLD from Canadian National Collection).

Anigrus sp. (image from BOLD from Canadian National Collection).

Kermesiinae Kirkaldy 1906: 427 (= Nisiinae Kirkaldy 1907: 164 syn. by Em. 1984)
Kermesiini Kirkaldy 1906
Afronisia Wilson, 1988
Anorhinosia Bourgoin, 1997
Caledonisia Bourgoin, 1997
Eponisia Matsumura, 1914
Eponisiella Emeljanov, 1984
Fennahsia Bourgoin, 1997
Glyptodonisia Bourgoin, 1997
Insulisia Bonfils & Attié, 1998
Kermesia Melichar, 1903
Koghisia Bourgoin, 1997
Muirsinia Bourgoin, 1997
Nisamia Emeljanov, 1984
Nisia Melichar, 1903
Phaconeura Kirkaldy, 1906
Robigalia Distant, 1916
Suva Kirkaldy, 1906
Suvanisia Bourgoin, 1997
Tyweponisia Bourgoin, 1997

Nisia australiensis

Nisia australiensis (from New South Wales Government Department of Primary Industries Biosecurity Collections, Key to Families of Fulgoroidea; Nick Monaghan,]).

Nisia nervosa

Nisia nervosa (image from BOLD from Canadian National Collection).

Phaconeura hackeri

Phaconeura hackeri (from New South Wales Government Department of Primary Industries Biosecurity Collections, Key to Families of Fulgoroidea).


[Should include all works that investigate higher systematics or describe genera; literature for species-level descriptions not yet included]

Ammar, E.D., A.K.M. El-Nahal, and M.M. El-Bolok. 1977. Population studies on ten planthopper species at Giza, Egypt (Homoptera: Delphacidae, Meenoplidae and Cixiidae). Bulletin of the Entomological Society of Egypt 61: 257-266.

Attié, M. 1999. Etude sur l’entomofaune associee a la flore indigene de l’ile de la Reunion. [Study on entomofauna associated with indigenous flora of la Réunion Island.] Université de La Réunion, Sainte-Clotilde, France. Thèse nouveau doctorat.

Barrion, A.T. and J.A. Litsinger. 1990. Lathromeromyia baltazarae sp.n. (Hymenoptera: Trichogrammatidae) parasitic on the eggs of Nisia carolinensis Fennah (Hemiptera: Meenoplidae) in the Philippines. Philippine Entomologist 8(1): 689-695.

Bonfils, J. and M. Attié. 1998. Description et éléments d’écologie d’un nouvel Hémiptères de La Réunion: Insulisia borbonica n. gen, n. sp. (Fulgoromorpha, Meenoplidae). Bulletin de la Société Entomologique de France 103: 479-482.

Bourgoin, T. 1993. Cladistic analysis of the Meenoplidae–Kinnaridae genera: the Kinnaridae, a paraphyletic family (Hemiptera, Fulgoromorpha). In: S. Drosopoulos, P.V. Petrakis, M.F.

Bourgoin, T. 1997. The Meenoplidae (Hemiptera, Fulgoromorpha) of New Caledonia, with a revision of the genus Eponisia Matsumura, 1914, and new morphological data on forewing venation and wax plate areas. Memoires du Museum National d’Histoire Naturelle 171: 197-249 [250?].

Bourgoin, T. and V. Deiss. 1994. Sensory plate organs of the antenna in the Meenoplidae-Kinnaridae group (Hemiptera : Fulgoromorpha). International Journal of Insect Morphology and Embryology 23(2): 159-168.

Catindig, J.L.A., A.T. Barrion, and J.A. Litsinger. 1995. Developmental biology and plant host range of the ricefield planthopper, Nisia carolinensis Fennah (Hemiptera: Meenoplidae). Asia Life Sciences 4(1): 71-81.

Chen, C.W. 1992. Morphological study of wax secretory plates and phylogenetic relationship analysis in Taiwanese Meenoplidae(Homoptera: Fulgoroidea). National Chung Hsing University. Taichung, Taiwan. Master’s Thesis.

Claridge, and P.W.F. de Vrijer, (eds.). [1993] Proceedings of the 8th Auchenorrhyncha Congress, Delphi, Greece, 9–13 August 1993. Pp. 22-24.

Dlabola, J. 1959. Neue Paläarktische Zikaden der Fam. Meenoplidae un der Gattung Handianus Rib. Acta Faunistica Entomologica Musei Nationalis Pragae 33(565): 445-452.

Dlabola, J. 1986. Neue Arten der Fulgoromorphen Zikaden – Familien vom Mittelmeergebiet und nahen Osten. (Homoptera, Auchenorrhyncha: Cixiidae, Meenoplidae, Derbidae, Dictyopharidae, Lophopidae und Issidae). Sbornik Narodniho Muzea V Praze Rada B Prirodni Vedy 42(3-4): 169-196.

Emeljanov, A.F. 1985. A contribution to knowledge of the families Kinnaridae and Meenoplidae (Homoptera, Fulgoroidea). Entomological Review 64(1):49-65.

Emeljanov, A.F. 1984. To the knowledge of the families Kinnaridae and Meenoplidae (Homoptera, Fulgoroidea). Entomologicheskoe Obozrenie 63(3): 468-483. [Russian] [Translated to English. 1985. Entomological Review, 64(1): 49-65.]

Fennah, R.G. 1963. A new species of Phaconeura (Fulgoroidea: Meenoplidae). Annals and Magazine of Natural History 13(6): 299-301.

Fieber, F. X. 1872. Katalog der europäischen Cicadinen, nach Originalien mit Benützung der neuesten Literatur. Druk und Verlag von Carl Gerold’s Sohn, Wien (Austria). 19 pp.

Haupt, H. 1929c. Neueinteilung der Homoptera-Cicadina nach phylogenetisch zu wertended Merkmalen. Zoologische Jahrbücher. Abteilung für Systematik, Geographie und Biologie der Thiere 58: 173-286.

Hoch, H. 1990. Cavernicolous Meenoplidae of the genus Phaconeura (Homoptera: Fulgoroidea) from Australia. Bishop Museum Occasional Papers 30: 188-203.

Hoch, H. 1993. A new troglobitic planthopper species (Hemiptera: Fulgoroidea: Meenoplidae) from Western Australia. Records of the Western Australian Museum 16(3): 393-398.

Hoch, H. 1996. A new cavernicolous planthopper of the family Meenoplidae from New Caledonia (Hemiptera: Fulgoroidea). Records of the Western Australian Museum 17(4): 451-454.

Hoch, H. and M. Asche. 1988. A new troglobitic meenoplid from a lava tube in Western Samoa (Homoptera Fulgoroidea Meenoplidae). Journal of Natural History 22: 1489-1494.

Hoch, H. and M. Asche. 1993. Evolution and speciation of cave-dwelling Fulgoroidea in the Canary islands (Homoptera: Cixiidae and Meenoplidae). Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society 109(1): 53-101.

Hoch, H., M. Naranjo, and P. Orom. 2012. Witness of a lost world: Meenoplus roddenberryi sp. N., a new cavernicolous planthopper species (Hemiptera, Fulgoromorpha, Meenoplidae) from Gran Canaria. Deutsche Entomologische Zeitschrift 59(2): 207-215.

Hoch, H., P.Oromi, and M. Arechavaleta. 1999. Nisia subfogo sp.n., a new cave-dwelling planthopper from the Cape Verde islands (Hemiptera: Fulgoromorpha: Meenoplidae). Revista de la Academia Canaria de Ciencias 11(3-4): 189-199.

Hoch, H., T. Bourgoin, B. Stelbrink and A. Wessel. 2014. Small giants from Madagascan caves: autapomorphic giantism in the new cave-dwelling planthopper Tsingya clarkei gen. nov., sp. Nov. (Hemiptera: Fulgoroidea: Meenoplidae). Journal of Natural History 48(15/16): 919-935. DOI: 10.1080/00222933.2013.840399

Humphreys, W.F. 1998. Phaconeura (Homoptera: Meenoplidae) attended by ants of the genus Paratrechina (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) in caves. The Australian Entomologist 25: 23-27.

Lodos, N. and A. Kalkandelen. 1980. Preliminary list of Auchenorrhyncha with notes on distribution and importance of species in Turkey. 3. Families Meenoplidae, Derbidae, Achilidae, Dictyopharidae and Tettigometridae. Turkiye Bitki Koruma Dergisi 4(3): 161-176.

Metcalf, Z.P. 1945. General Catalogue of the Hemiptera. Fascicle IV, Fulgoroidea, Part 6. Meenoplidae. Smith College, Northhampton, Massachusetts.

Muir, F.A.G. 1925a. On the genera of Cixiidae, Meenoplidae and Kinnaridae (Fulgorlidea, Homoptera). Pan-Pacific Entomologist 1: 97-110. [Key to the genera and list of genera with genotypes and synonyms.]

Muir, F. A. G. 1925f. On the genera of Cixiidae, Meenoplidae and Kinnaridae. Pan-Pacific Entomologist 1: 156-163.

Muir, F.A.G. 1927b. New species of African Meenoplidae (Fulgoroidea, Homoptera). Annals and Magazine of Natural History (series 9) 19:197-208.

Muir, F.A.G. 1930c. On the classification of the Fulgoroidea. Annals and Magazine of Natural History (Ser. 10) 6: 461-478.

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Pilet, F., René Philippe, Simon Reignard, Sophie Descamps, Robert Quaicoe, Joe Nkansa-Poku, Sandrine Fabre, and Michel Dollet. 2009. Identification of potential insect vectors of the Cape Saint Paul Wilt Disease of coconut in Ghana by PCR. Oléagineux, Corps Gras, Lipides 16(2): 107-110.

Rahman, M.A., Y.J. Kwon, and S.J. Suh. 2014. Taxonomic revision of the subfamily Kermesiinae (Hemiptera: Meenoplidae) from Korea. Entomological Research 44(6): 323-330. DOI: 10.1111/1748-5967.12082.

Swamy, B.C.H., D. Rajagopal, A.A. Farooqi, and A.K. Chakravarthy. 1993. Insect pests of Costus speciosus, a medicinal plant. Myforest 29(2): 101-103.

Synave, H. 1957. Les Meenoplidae de Madagascar (Hemiptera-Homoptera). Naturaliste Malgache Tananarive 9: 141-145.

Synave, H. 1957. Meenoplidae (Homoptera Fulgoroidea). Institut des Parcs Nationaux du Congo, Exploration Parc National Albert 90(2): 7-30.

Synave, H. 1957. Meenoplidae (Homoptera-Fulgoroidea). Exploration du Parc National Albert I. Mission G. F. De Witte 1933-1935 90(2): 7-29.

Synave, H. 1957. Meenoplidae (Homoptera-Fulgoroidea). Parc National del’upemba I. Mission G. F. De Witte en Collaboration Avec W. Adam, A. Janssens, L. Van Meel et R. Verheyen (1946-1949) 43(2): 79-81.

Synave, H. 1958. Hemiptera Homoptera: Cixiidae, Meenoplidae, Dictyopharidae, Tropiduchidae, Flatidae, Ricaniidae, Issidae, Eurybrachidae, Lophopidae, Cercopidae. In: H. Synave, (ed.). South African Animal Life. V. Hanström, Brinck and Rudebeck. Pp. 158-189.

Synave, H. 1961. Meenoplidae (Homoptera-Fulgoroidea). Exploration du Parc National de la Garamba. – Mission H. De Saeger. Institut des Parcs Nationaux du Congo et du Rwanda. Publie avec le concours de l’Institue Belge pour l’Encouragement de la Recherche Scientifique Outre-Mer 20: 1-37.

Synave, H. 1966. Homoptères de Madagascar. Families: Ceropidae, Cixiidae, Meenoplidae, Dictyopharidae,Tropiduchidae, Flatidae, Ricaniidae. Verhandlungen der Naturforschenden Gesellschaft in Basel 77(1): 55-75.

Tsaur, S.C. 1989. Addition to the Fanua [sic] of Taiwanese Meenoplidae. Journal of the National Taiwan Museum 42(1): 25-29.

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