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Species Dicromantispa sayi

Mantidfly - Dicromantispa sayi Mantidfly - Dicromantispa sayi Look at these eyes! - Dicromantispa sayi mantidfly - Dicromantispa sayi Mantid? - Dicromantispa sayi Mantidfly - Dicromantispa sayi Dicromantispa sayi? - Dicromantispa sayi - female mantidfly - Dicromantispa sayi - female
Classification
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Neuroptera (Antlions, Owlflies, Lacewings, Mantidflies and Allies)
Suborder Hemerobiiformia (Lacewings, Mantidflies and Allies)
Family Mantispidae (Mantidflies)
Subfamily Mantispinae
Genus Dicromantispa
Species sayi (Dicromantispa sayi)
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Dicromantispa sayi (Banks)
Orig. Comb: Mantispa sayi Banks 1897
Syns: M. uhleri, M. fuscicornis (1)
Identification
Dicromantispa sayi has dark brownish-to-black as well as lighter yellowish color forms (2). Note these characters:
    • Smaller than interrupta, with apex of forewing clear (D. interrupta differs in having apex of forewing with a dark spot);
    • Antennae can be either brown with yellow basal segments or tri-colored...see comments here, remarks here, and images below:
       
Range
New World--s.e. Canada to Carribean and Central America (3)(4)(1) (5). Detailed distribution in our area below:
Canada: s. Ontario(1); USA: AZ, AR, CA, CT, FL, GA, IL, IN, KS, LA, MD, MA, MI, MN, MS, MO, NE, NM, NC, OH, OK, PA, SC, SD, TX, UT, VA, WV, WI (5)(3) (6).
Lectotype Locality: Brazos Co., Texas
Remarks
Dicromantispa sayi is comprised of two or more different color forms which are largely allopatric (see 2nd paragraph here). Those color forms more or less correspond to three previously named species that were synonymized in Hoffman (1989), namely: Mantispa sayi, M. fuscicornis, and M. uhleri (original descriptions here,  here, and at bottom of pg. 79 here). The dark forms of D. sayi, from east of the Mississippi River and northward, correspond to the former Mantispa uhleri...they have significant amounts of black coloration on the abdomen, pronotum and forelegs (especially in females). Much interesting life history, behavioral, and other information on M. uhleri (=D. sayi) can be found in the 1985 study by Redborg & McLeod.
Care must be taken in identifying D. sayi, as the dark "uhleri" forms can look very much like the the dark forms of L. pulchella...and similarly for the light forms of D. sayi and those of L. pulchella. However, in one case identification can be fairly straightforward: if the antennae are tri-colored, with basal 2/3 brown, next 1/6 yellow, and terminal 1/6 dark brown-to-black, then one has the lighter southern form of D. sayi. Otherwise, attention should be paid to the setation (i.e "hairiness") on the pronotum...for details see comments under the heading "See Also" here. (Note that D. interrupta typically has such "tri-colored antennae" as well, but its wing markings distinguish it from D. sayi and L. pulchella.)
Note: I see several images filed under D. sayi which I feel might be misidentified Leptomantispa pulchella. These can be very tricky, but see the guide page for Leptomantispa for discussion. --P. Coin (Cotinis) 7/17/13.
Print References
Redborg K.E. & E.G. MacLeod. 1985. The developmental ecology of Mantispa uhleri Banks (Neuroptera: Mantispidae). Illinois Biol. Monogr. 53. 130 pp.
Rice, M. E. & W. B. Peck. 1990. Mantispa sayi (Neuroptera: Mantispidae) parasitism on spiders (Araneae) in Texas, with observations on oviposition and larval survivorship. Ann. Entomol. Soc. Am. 84: 52-57.
Hoffman, K. M. 1989. Taxonomic status of Mantispa sayi, Mantispa fuscicornis, and Mantispa uhleri (Neuroptera: Mantispidae). Proc. Entomol. Soc. Wash. 91:637–639. (Full Text)
Works Cited
1.The Mantispidae (Insecta: Neuroptera) of Canada, with notes on morphology, ecology, and distribution
Cannings R.A., Cannings S.G. 2006. Can. Entomologist 138: 531-544.
2.Insects: Their Natural History And Diversity: With a Photographic Guide to Insects of Eastern North America
Stephen A. Marshall. 2006. Firefly Books Ltd.
3.Mantispidae (Neuroptera) of Mexico: Distribution and key to genera
Reynoso-Velasco D., Contreras-Ramos A. 2008. Ann. Entomol. Soc. Am. 101(4): 703-712.
4.Family Mantispidae. In: Penny N.D., ed. A guide to the lacewings (Neuroptera) of Costa Rica
Kevin M. Hoffman. 2002. Proceedings of the California Academy of Sciences 53(12): 251-275.
5.Systematics of the Mantispinae (Neuroptera: Mantispidae) of North, Central and South America
Kevin M. Hoffman. 1992. University Microfilms International.
6.A Checklist and Bibliography of the Megaloptera and Neuroptera of Florida (by L. Stange)