Genus Colpopyga Semenov-Tian-Shanskij, 1954

Colpopyga Semenov-Tian-Shanskij, 1954: 137.
Colopyga: Kimsey & Bohart 1991: 181, incorrect subsequent spelling.
Type species: Hedychrum flavipes Eversmann, 1858, by original designation.

Systematics. Colpopyga Semenov-Tian-Shanskij, 1954, is a small genus of cuckoo wasps and was synonymised with Hedychridium Abeille de Perrin, 1878 by Linsenmaier (1959) and its species were included in the H. flavipes species group (Linsenmaier 1968). Noskiewicz & Lorencowa (1963) and other authors considered Colpopyga a valid genus based on the modified structure of the female metasoma, in particular of the cone-shaped T3 and the modified structure of the internal sterna and terga. Finally, molecular data published by Pauli et al. (2019) placed Colpopyga on a monophyletic clade with a clear affinity with the genus Holopyga Dahlbom, 1854 rather than Hedychridium.

Diagnosis. The genus Colpopyga is characterised by the female metasoma highly modified and flattened in lateral view; the T3 is elongate, cone-shaped; the structure of internal terga and sterna is modified, highly elongated; the male T3 is dimorphic, evenly rounded; the male genitalia are weakly pigmented; in both sexes, the flagellomeres are elongate, cylindrical, with F1 at least twice as long as broad; the propodeal tooth (= posterior propodeal projection) is spiniform; the legs are largely or entirely non-metallic, yellow; the tegulae are non-metallic brown; the apical margin of T3 has a narrow hyaline-brownish rim, usually medially emarginate; the transverse frontal carina is faint; the face has sparse erect setae; the malar spaces are less than 1 MOD; the scapal basin is shallow, medially cross-ridged; the mandible is tridentate; the inner surface of the mid and hind tibia is without pits; the medial vein of forewing is arched; the tarsal claw bears a single submedian, perpendicular tooth.

Fig. 1. Habitus, females, dorsal view. A, Colpopyga flavipes flavipes (Eversmann), Italy; B, C. flavipes rugulosa (Linsenmaier), Cyprus; C, C. temperata (Linsenmaier), holotype, Morocco; D, C. auriventris (Mercet), Spain; E, C. nesterovi sp. nov., paratype, Kazakhstan. Scale bar: 1.0 mm.

Fig. 2. Habitus, males, dorsal view. A, Colpopyga flavipes flavipes (Eversmann), Italy; B, C. flavipes rugulosa (Linsenmaier), paratype, Iran; C, C. temperata (Linsenmaier), Morocco; D, C. auriventris (Mercet), Spain; E, C. nesterovi sp. nov., paratype, Kazakhstan. Scale bar: 1.0 mm.

Fig. 3. Habitus, females, lateral view. A, Colpopyga flavipes flavipes (Eversmann), Italy; B, C. flavipes rugulosa (Linsenmaier), Cyprus; C, C. temperata (Linsenmaier), paratype, Tunisia; D, C. auriventris (Mercet), Spain; E, C. nesterovi sp. nov., paratype, Kazakhstan. Scale bar: 1.0 mm.

Fig. 4. T3, dorso-lateral view. A, Colpopyga auriventris (Mercet), female, Spain; B, C. nesterovi sp. nov., female, holotype, Kazakhstan; C, C. nesterovi sp. nov., male, paratype, Kazakhstan; D, C. flavipes flavipes (Eversmann), female, Italy; E, C. flavipes rugulosa (Linsenmaier), female, Cyprus; F, C. temperata (Linsenmaier), female, holotype, Morocco; G, C. temperata (Linsenmaier), male, Tunisia; H, C. flavipes cyanomaculata (Trautmann), male, lectotype, Tunisia; I, Hedychridium elongatum Linsenmaier, holotype, Morocco.

Remarks. The Palaearctic species of Colpopyga can be distinguished from members of the genus Hedychridium by the sexual dimorphic structure of T3, which is cone-shaped in females and normally rounded in Hedychridium; in both sexes, the T3 is medially emarginated and continuous in Hedychridium. However, the female of the new African species is apico-medially continuous. The metasomal sterna are entirely metallic in Colpopyga and usually non-metallic in Hedychridium, at most with a median metallic spot, yet fully metallic in some African groups, e.g. the dybowskii group. In Colpopyga the female internal sterna and terga have a peculiar shape (see Noskiewicz & Lorencowa 1963), are noticeably elongated and different from those of Hedychridium; pinned female specimens usually have the long ovipositor fully exerted. The male genital capsule is weakly pigmented and elongated. Members of this genus, with the sole exception of C. auriventris which is bicolour, can be easily distinguished from Hedychridium by the uniform metallic body colouration which contrasts with the entirely or largely non-metallic yellow legs; for this reason, they are commonly named “yellow-legged cuckoo wasps” (Zettel 2017). African Hedychridium may have equal body colour, nevertheless the shape of the female T3, the shape of the internal segments and the length of flagellomeres allow an easy separation of the two genera. Colpopyga is separated from African Holopyga by the shape of the tarsal claws, with a short median tooth (vs. multidentate); fore wing with gently curved median vein (vs. strongly arched and angulate), unmodified mesopleuron (vs. strongly angulate).

Species included. Colpopyga Semenov-Tian-Shanskij, 1954 includes four Palaearctic species: C. flavipes (Eversmann, 1858), C. auriventris Mercet, 1904, C. temperata Linsenmaier, 1959, C. nesterovi Rosa, 2017 and at least a Nearctic one: C. crassa (Bohart in Bohart & Kimsey, 1978) (Rosa 2017).

Key to the Palaearctic species of the genus Colpopyga

1. Body colour more or less uniform metallic green to blue or violet, with a distinct median, matt, dark to blackish dark spot on T2 (Figs 1A–C) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2
– Body colour various, yet metasoma always entirely metallic red to coppery, with or without darkened median area on T2 (Figs 1D–E) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4
2. In lateral view, T2 apically thickened, convex (Figs 3A, 3B); punctuation of metasoma distinctly double (Figs 4D, 4E); pronotum more than 2.8 times as long as wide; T3 slightly to strongly transversely carinate . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
– In lateral view, T2 apically not thickened, flat (Fig. 3C); punctuation of metasoma simple (Figs 4F, 4G); pronotum 2.4–2.5 times as long as wide; T3 transversely ecarinate . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . C. temperata
3. In lateral view, T2 apically standing out over T3; double punctuation on T2 dense (Fig.
4D); T3 with weak transverse median carina (Fig. 4D) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . C. flavipes flavipes
– In lateral view, T2 apically largely protruding over T3 (Fig. 3B); double punctuation on T2 sparse (Fig. 4E) and with shining interspaces between larger punctures (Fig. 3B); T3 with strong transverse median carina (Fig. 4E) . . . . . . . . . . . . . C. flavipes rugulosa
4. Metasoma with small, dense, deep punctures (Fig. 4A); head and mesosoma blue, dorsally greenish (male) to coppery (female) on frons, pronotum, mesoscutum and mesoscutellum (Figs 1D, 2D, 3D); metasoma metallic red, without darkened T2 median area . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . C. auriventris
– Metasoma with tiny, scattered, shallow punctures (Figs 4B, 4C); body almost uniformly red-coppery, with or without darkened T2 median area (Figs 1E, 2E, 3E, 5, 6) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . C. nesterovi sp. nov.


Rosa P., 2017: Review of the Palaearctic species of the genus Colpopyga (Hymenoptera:
Chrysididae) with description of a new species. – Zoosystematica Rossica 26 (2): 294–

Rosa P., 2023 – First record of the genus Colpopyga Semenov-Tian-Shanskij, 1954 from the Ethiopian Region, with description of a new species (Insecta: Hymenoptera: Chrysididae). Ann. Naturhist. Mus. Wien, B 125 37–43.

European species

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