What Bug Is That? The guide to Australian insect families.

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Salpingidae Leach, 1815


Adult salpingids are usually found on foliage or flowers, and larvae commonly occur under bark or in dead twigs, stems, or vines, where they feed on bark or phloem (Howden and Howden 1981). Some exotic species have been reported to be predacious; the European Sphaeriestes mutilatus feeds on fruiting bodies of Cucurbidothis (Ascomycetes: Pleosporales) (J. Franz 1955); and the subantarctic and northern Pacific Aegialitinae apparently feed on algae growing on intertidal rocks (Spilman 1967).


Elongate, slightly to strongly flattened beetles, which are subglabrous or clothed with scattered setae (except in Elacatis which is densely clothed with decumbent hairs). Head prognathous, sometimes produced and rostrate, and never abruptly narrowed behind eyes; lateral pronotal carinae complete, incomplete or occasionally absent, and simple, undulate or dentate; elytra rarely ( Inopeplus ) abbreviated, exposing several abdominal tergites; tarsi almost always simple; fore and mid tarsi 4-segmented only in Aglenus and Ocholissa .

Larvae elongate, parallel-sided, slightly to strongly flattened, and moderately to lightly pigmented, except for head and abdominal apex. Epicranial stem absent; frontal arms with relatively narrow angle between them and usually with paired endocarinae beneath them; hypostomal rods moderately to very long and subparallel; S9 with 1 to several teeth on each side at base (sometimes forming basal row interrupted at middle); except in a few Salpinginae, armature on T9 complex, with accessory processes on urogomphi and/or additional spines or processes in front of or between them.


Australian Salpingidae belong to 6 of the 7 known subfamilies, several of which are usually given family status. Dacoderinae are represented by the unusual myrmecophilous species Tretothorax cleistostoma ; Agleninae by the introduced, blind Aglenus brunneus , which is found in decaying vegetation; Othniinae by Elacatis delusa , known also from Borneo and Papua New Guinea (Brooks 1965); and Inopeplinae by several species of Inopeplus . Prostominiinae are primarily tropical and include genera often placed in various other families; the Australian fauna includes Ocholissa , Prostominia and Szekessya , as well as undescribed genera. Salpinginae are best represented in temperate regions; Notosalpingus , Neosalpingus , Orphanotrophium , Lissodema and Platysalpingus occur in Australia. [Blair 1919, 1925; Lawrence 1977, 1982; Sasaji 1988; Spilman 1954; Watt 1967]

  • Ocholissa sp.