Opius Wesmael, 1835

Taxonomic History / Nomenclature
Opius Wesmael, 1835: 115. Type species: Opius pallipes Wesmael, 1835. Subsequent designation (Wharton 1987, ICZN 1988).

There was formerly some confusion about the interpretation of Opius since Wesmael (1835) did not designate a type species and several subsequent authors designated different taxa as the type species. This situation was resolved through a petition to the International Commission on Zoological Nomenclature, ultimately resulting in fixation of Opius pallipes as the type species.

The name Opius was restricted by Van Achterberg and Salvo (1997) to species with a basal lobe on the mandible, referring to a classification in press that was later published in part as a revision of Chinese species by Li et al. (2013). A major concern in this regard is that the type species of Biosteres Foerster, another large genus within the Opiinae, also has a basal mandibular lobe. Until a more complete classification is offered, I prefer to treat Opius in a much broader sense as a repository for the bulk of the Opiinae whose relationships remain uncertain, largely following the approach of Fischer (1972) and Wharton (1997a, 1997b).
The type species of Opius (Opius pallipes Wesmael), is characterized by reduced body sculpture, a concealed labrum (Fig. 4), and a wide basal tooth or lobe ventrally on the mandible (Fig. 4). Figs 1-3 are of one of the paralectotypes. Figures 4 and 5 are of Opius dissitus, which is very similar morphologically.
1. Part of paralectotype series of Opius...
2. Part of paralectotype series of Opius ...
3. Part of paralectotype series of Opius ...
4. Opius dissitus mandibles...
5. Opius dissitus wings...
No referenced distribution records have been added to the database for this OTU.

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. It is part of a review of the genera of World Opiinae, conducted at Texas A&M University. We are particularly grateful to Xanthe Shirley, Andrew Ly, Patricia Mullins, Trent Hawkins, Lauren Ward, Cheryl Hyde, Karl Roeder, Danielle Restuccia, and Andrea Walker, who did nearly all of the imaging for this project. Matt Yoder and Istvan Miko provided guidance on databasing issues associated with our use of mx and HAO respectively. This project would not have been possible without the kindness of many curators at museums throughout the world who gave generously of their time to Bob Wharton and his students. In particular, I thank Henry Townes (deceased) and David Wahl (American Entomological Institute, Gainesville), Gordon Nishida (Bernice P. Bishop Museum, Honolulu), Norm Penny, and Bob Zuparko (California Academy of Sciences, San Francisco), Bill Mason (deceased), Mike Sharkey, Andrew Bennett, and Henri Goulet (Canadian National Collection, Ottawa), Paul Dessart (deceased) (Institut Royal des Sciences Naturelles de Belgique, Brussels), Marc De Meyer (Koninklijk Museum voor Midden-Afrika, Tervuren), Axel Bachmann (Museo Argentino de Ciencias Natureles, Buenos Aires), Eberhard Koenigsmann (deceased) and Frank Koch (Museum fuer Naturkunde der Humboldt-Universitaet, Berlin), J. Casevitz Weulersse and Claire Villemant (Museum National d’Historie Naturelle, Paris), James O’Connor (National Museum of Ireland, Dublin), Jenö Papp (National Museum of Natural History, Budapest), Kees van Achterberg (National Museum of Natural History, Leiden), Max Fischer, Herb Zettel, and Dominique Zimmermann (Naturhistorisches Museum, Wien), Per Persson and Lars-Åke Janzon (Naturhistoriska Riksmuseet, Stockholm), Ermenegildo Tremblay (Silvestri Collection, Portici), Erasmus Haeselbarth (Staatliche Naturwissenschaftliche Sammlungen Bayerns, Munich), Tom Huddleston and Gavin Broad (The Natural History Museum, London), Paul Marsh and Robert Kula (USDA Systematic Research Laboratory and US National Museum of Natural History, Washington, D. C.), Vladimir Tobias (deceased) and Sergey Belokobylskij (Zoological Institute, Academy of Sciences, St. Petersburg), and Roy Danielsson (Zoological Institute, Department of Systematics, Lund) for facilitating loans and general assistance associated with examination of holotypes and other material in their care. This work was supported largely by NSF/PEET DEB 0328922 and 0949027, with REU supplements 0616851, 0723663, 1026618, 1213790, 1313933 (to Wharton). Page last updated July, 2014. The material on this page is freely available, but should be acknowledged if used elsewhere.

This material is based upon work at Texas A&M University supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant Numbers DEB 9300517, DEB (PEET) 9712543, DEB (PEET) 0328922 with REU supplements 0616851, 0723663, and 1026618 and DEB 0949027 with REU supplements 1213790 and 1313933. 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.