Genus Pichinchana Asche and Webb, 2013

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Family Delphacidae Leach, 1815

Subfamily Asiracinae  Motschulsky, 1863, 108.

Tribe Platysystatini Emeljanov, 1995

Genus Pichinchana Asche & Webb, 2013: 164.

Type species (in original combination): Pichinchana gilletti Asche and Webb, 2013: 166.



Distribution of Pichinchana gilletti

Distribution of Pichinchana gilletti from FLOW (as of 4 Feb 2020)

Recognized species

There is a single species in this genus.

Pichinchana gilletti Asche and Webb, 2013 – Ecuador

Known from a single, female specimen, viz. Pichincha, Bellavista Cloudforest Reserve, 0°00’55.77″ N, 78°40’49.73″ W, 2,200-2,300 m., 24-28.vii.2007 (BMNH)

Plant Associations



The only known specimen was collected in a flight intercept trap, but Asche and Webb (2013), and they (reasonably, I think) speculate as follows:

Pichinchana gilletti obviously has a specialized life-style. Similar looking Auchenorrhyncha are found living close to or in the soil, or in leaf litter. Unlike the new genus these have a Gondwanaland distribution, i.e., the delphacid ugyopine genus Notuchus Fennah from New Caledonia and Australia (see Donaldson 1979, 1987; Fennah 1969b, 1972, 1980, Hoch et al. 2006), some Cicadellidae, i.e., Sagmatiini from Australia and Madagascar and Evansiolini from Juan Fernández Islands (Chile) and Myerslopiidae from New Zealand and Chile (see Hamilton, 1999 and Szwedo 2004a). A rather stunning morphological similarity to Myerslopiidae species, for instance of the genus Mapuchea Szwedo, 2004, is observed in the shape of the coriaceous tegmina and in the absence of hind wings. For Myerslopiidae a life in “decomposing leaf litter and soil debris with high organic content in forest environments” (Szwedo 2004a: 2, 2004b: 2) is assumed which might equally apply to the new genus. However, the only female specimen of Pichinchana gilletti examined does not show any traces of encrusted soil or debris.”

Economic Importance: Limited.


According to Asche & Webb (2013), this genus can be readily recognized by the forked frontal carina (vs. single or absent in other Platysystatini), by a deep furrow formed by foliate lateral carinae of vertex and frons shielding small compound eyes and the antennae (viz. scape short, terete, pedicel 3x longer than scape, widening toward apex, laterally compressed, and few rhinaria at apex), by robust tegmina with reduced venation and dorsally wrapped around the abdomen (more complete venation in other genera), by a strongly sclerotized costal cell pointing basally (feebly expressed in other genera), by the absence of setae along the veins except for rather long bristles at the distal margin (setae along vein of entire tegmina in other genera)

Holotype of Pichinchana gilletti, dorsal and lateral views (Images courtesy of Manfred Asche and Hannelore Hoch, Museum für Naturkunde, Leibniz-Institut für Evolutions- und Biodiversitätsforschung an der Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, published in from Deutsche Entomologische Zeitschrift 60(2))

Illustrations From Asche & Webb (2013).

Molecular resources


At this time, neither Genbank or Bold have any molecular resources for this genus.

Selected references

Asche, M. and M. D. Webb. 2013. A remarkable new asiracine delphacid planthopper from Ecuador (Hemiptera, Fulgoroidea, Delphacidae). Deutsche Entomologische Zeitschrift 60(2): 163-169.

Donaldson, J. F. 1979. Revision of the genus Notuchus Fennah (Homoptera: Fulgoroidea: Delphacidae). Journal of the Australian Entomological Society 18(2): 181-185.

Donaldson, J. F. 1987. Notuchus howensis sp. n. (Homoptera: Fulgoroidea: Delphacidae) from Lord Howe Island. Journal of the Australian Entomological Society 26(1): 81-83.

Emeljanov, A. F. 1995. On the question of the classification and phylogeny of the Delphacidae (Homoptera, Cicadina), with reference to larval characters. Entomologicheskoe Obozrenie 74(4): 780-794 [in Russian, English translation in Entomological Review (1996) 75(9):134-150). (PDF of English version)

Fennah, R. G., 1969b. Fulgoroidea (Homoptera) from New Caledonia and the Loyalty Islands.  Pacific Insects Monographs 21: 1–116.

Fennah, R. G. 1972. A new species of Notuchus (Homoptera, Fulgoroidea,
Delphacidae) from Lord Howe Island.  Records of the Australian Museum 28 (13): 265–267.

Fennah, R. G., 1980. A cavernicolous new species of Notuchus from New Caledonia (Homoptera: Fulgoroidea: Delphacidae). Revue suisse Zoologie 87 (3): 757–759.

Hamilton, K. G. A., 1999. The ground-dwelling leafhoppers Myerslopiidae, new family, and Sagmatiini, new tribe (Homoptera: Membracoidea). Invertebrate Taxonomy, 13: 207–235.

Hoch, H., M. Asche, C. Burwell, D. M. Monteith and A. Wessel. 2006. Morphological alteration in response to endogeic habitat and ant association in two new planthopper species from New Caledonia (Hemiptera: Auchenorrhyncha: Fulgoromorpha: Delphacidae).  Journal of Natural History 40 (32–34): 1867–1886

Leach, W. E. 1815a. Entomology. The Edinburg encyclopedia; conducted by David Brewster 9: 57-172. (family Delphacidae page 125).

De Motschulsky, V. I. 1863. Essai d’un catalogue des insectes de l’ile de Ceylan. Bulletin de la Société Impériale des Naturalistes de Moscou 36: 1-153. (p. 108).

Szwedo, J. 2004a. A new genus and six new species of ground-dwelling leafhoppers from Chile and New Zealand (Hemiptera: Cicadomorpha: Myerslopiidae). Zootaxa 424: 1–20.

Szwedo, J. 2004b. An annotated checklist of Myerslopiidae with notes on the distribution and origin of the group. Zootaxa 425: 1–15.

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