Himerta Förster, 1869

Taxonomic History / Nomenclature
Himerta Foerster, 1869: 200. Type species: Euryproctus (Himertus) bisannulatus Thomson. Subsequent designation by Viereck (1914: 69), selected from the two species first included by Thomson (1883: 927).

Ithagenes Foerster, 1869: 158. Type species: Ichneumon defectivus Gravenhorst, 1820. Subsequent designation by Townes (1970: 120). Synonymized by Townes (1970). Junior homonym of Ithagenes Agassiz, 1846.

Clepsiporthus Foerster, 1869: 200. Type species: Mesoleptus rubiginosus Cresson, 1879. Subsequent designation by Viereck (1914: 33), selected from among four species first included by Davis (1897: 326). Synonymized by Cushman (1927).

Enoecetis Foerster, 1869: 211. Type species: Enoecetis scutellaris Kriechbaumer, 1897. Included by Kriechbaumer (1897: 175). Monobasic. Synonymized by Townes et al. (1965: 260).

Dolioctonus Foerster, 1869: 212. Type species: Ichneumon defectivus Gravenhorst, 1820. Subsequent designation by Perkins (1962: 419). Monobasic. Synonymized by Perkins (1962: 419).

Himertus Thomson, 1883: 927. Unjustified emendation.

Neoprotarchus Cushman, 1924: 10. Type species: Neoprotarchus ater Cushman, 1924. Original designation. Synonymized by Cushman (1927).

Daisetsuzania Uchida, 1930: 289. Type species: Daisetsuzania albifrons Uchida, 1930. Original designation. Synonymized by Townes (1957: 104).

26 valid species were included by Yu et al. (2012). The Nearctic species were revised by Leblanc (1989).
Diagnosis and Relationships
Himerta is fairly distinctive for a mesoleiine. The clypeus is characteristic and uniform across the species that we examined: short, bulging dorsally, flat to impressed ventrally, with sharp margin. The mandibles are short and broad basally, with the dorsal tooth broader and usually a bit longer than the ventral tooth. The propodeal carinae are generally poorly developed and the fore wing areolet is absent. Specimens with hing wing CU1 shorter than 1cu-a are more readily recognized since this character state is relatively restricted among mesoleiines, but unfortunately, not all Himerta possess this feature.
Clypeus (Fig. 3) narrow, weakly to strongly bulging subdorsally, with rounded transverse ridge; ventral 0.5-0.7 flat to slightly impressed; margin sharp throughout, truncate to weakly concave medially, lateral margins broadly angled dorsally; epistomal sulcus narrow, distinct. Malar space nearly always shorter than half basal width of mandible, rarely half basal width of mandible. Mandible (Fig. 3) short, curved to strongly curved, usually strongly narrowing from base to about midpoint, with apical portion parallel-sided; dorsal tooth wider and usually a little longer than ventral tooth; ventral margin carinate, sometimes strongly so. Inner eye margins parallel to weakly diverging. Ocelli small, with maximum diameter of lateral ocellus shorter than distance between ocellus and eye. Maxillary palps shorter than height of head. Female (Fig. 2) and male (Fig. 1) antennae about as long as body or slightly shorter; first flagellomere very long and slender, at least twice longer than second (Figs 1, 4). Hypostomal carina joining occipital carina above base of mandible; occipital carina complete. Epomia usually present, sometimes small or apparently absent. Dorsal end of epicnemial carina usually (80%) not extending to anterior margin of mesopleuron (Fig. 5); mesopleuron polished or mat, punctate to coarsely granular punctate to partly rugulose (Fig. 5). Notaulus (Fig. 6) usually short and weakly impressed on anterior declivity (Fig. 6), weak to absent on disk, less commonly (20%) more deeply impressed anteriorly and occasionally with weak sculpture. Pleural carina (Figs 9-11) often distinct as in Fig. 9, but just as often weak and indistinct as in Fig. 10; propodeal carinae reduced: lateral longitudinal carina sometimes distinct but often indistinct; median longitudinal carinae usually (90%) absent or barely indicated as low, rounded irregularities; petiolar area absent or broadly open anteriorly when lateral longitudinal carinae well developed. Legs with apical comb on posterior side of hind tibia poorly developed to indistinct; hind tibial spurs long, slender (Fig. 1), longest spur about half length of hind basitarsus; all tarsal claws simple, not pectinate. Fore wing (Fig. 7) with areolet absent; stigma relatively narrow, with Rs+2r arising from basal 0.35-0.45. Hind wing (Figs 7, 8) with first abscissa of CU1 vertical to weakly reclivous, usually (70%) shorter than 1cu-a, sometimes equal in length or slightly longer. T1 (Figs 10-11) gradually widening posteriorly, not particularly slender nor short and broad; dorsal carinae usually confined to margins of broad basal depression of dorsal tendon attachment, rarely with dorsal carinae distinct posteriorad level of spiracle; dorsal-lateral carina usually low, rounded, indistinct for most of its length between level of spiracle and posterior margin of T1, less commonly sharp and distinct from spiracle to posterior margin of T1, when sharp and distinct throughout, positioned well ventral spiracle; glymma basal, distinct. S1 extending to level of spiracle in a few species, nearly so (Fig. 11) in others. T2 thyridium present (Fig. 12); laterotergites of T2 and T3 completely separated by creases. Ovipositor (Fig.13) short, more or less straight, with deep subapical, dorsal notch; ovipositor sheath shorter than hind tibial spur. Setae on female subgenital plate generally very short and directed ventrally (Fig. 13) or slightly forward (unusual for mesoleiines). Cerci flattened, not protruding in both males and females. Apex of female metasoma as in Fig. 13.

The species are relatively robust for the most part.

This description is considerably modified from Townes (1970) and based largely on about eight species in the Texas A&M University Collection.

1. Himerta habitus...
2.Himerta habitus
3. Himerta face, clypeus, and ma...
4. Hime...
5. Himerta mesople...
6.Himerta mesoscutum
7.Himerta wings
8.Himerta wings
9.Himerta propodeum
10. Himerta propodeum and T1...
11. Himerta propodeum and T1...
12.Himerta T2
13.Himerta ovipositor
Holarctic, including both Eastern and Western Palaearctic.
No referenced distribution records have been added to the database for this OTU.
Biology / Hosts
Known hosts include species in two genera of Tenthredinidae as well as species in the genus Zaraea (Cimbicidae). At least two authors have suggested that Zaraea are the normal hosts, but the tenthredinid records seem quite sound and host preferences therefore remain to be explored.

There are no specimens currently determined for this OTU, or those specimens determined for this OTU are not yet mappable.

This page was assembled by Bob Wharton as part of a larger collaborative effort on the genera of Ctenopelmatinae. Page last updated May, 2015.

This work would not have been possible without the groundwork provided by Ian Gauld’s study of the Australian and Costa Rican faunas, and we are particularly grateful for his assistance in many aspects of this study. We are also grateful to David Wahl of the American Entomological Institute and Andy Bennett of the Canadian National Collection for extended loans of the material used for this study. We also thank David Wahl for useful feedback throughout our study, Al Gillogly and Matt Yoder for collecting several species useful for composing this page, and Dave Karlsson for access to material from the Swedish Malaise Trap Survey (collection event 215, trap id 60). Matt Yoder provided considerable assistance with databasing issues, and our use of PURLs (http://purl.oclc.org) in this regard follows the example of their use in publications by Norm Johnson. Heather Cummins, Andrea Walker, Patricia Mullins, Caitlin Nessner, Mika Cameron, Karl Roeder, Danielle Restuccia, and Cheryl Hyde graciously assisted us with image processing, formatting, and literature retrieval. This study was supported by the National Science Foundation’s PEET program under Grant No. DEB 0328922 and associated REU supplement nos DEB 0723663, 0923134, and 1026618.

This material is based upon work at Texas A&M University supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant Number DEB 0328922 with REU supplements DEB 0723663, 0923134, and 1026618. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.