What is Semagystia clathrata (Christoph, 1884) (Lepidoptera, Cossidae: Cossinae)?
DOI: 10.14258/abs.v8.e44

What is Semagystia clathrata (Christoph, 1884) (Lepidoptera, Cossidae: Cossinae)?

Altai State University, 61 Lenina Ave., Barnaul 656049, Russia. https://orcid.org/0000-0001-9512- 8709
Biodiversity Carpenter Moths fauna Central Asia Turkmenistan Uzbekistan Kazakhstan


The article gives a redescription of the little studied species, Semagystia clathrata (Christoph, 1884) (Lepidoptera, Cossidae: Cossinae). For the first time, we provide the images of the male and female adults from various portions of the distribution range, and describe the male genitalia. The species is reported for the first time for the fauna of Kazakhstan (Mangystau Region). The species distribution map is presented, the article is illustrated with nine figures.

Corresponding author: Roman V. Yakovlev (yakovlev_asu@mail.ru)

Academic editor: A. Matsyura | Received 9 November 2022 | Accepted 30 November 2022 | Published 14 December 2022


Citation: Yakovlev RV (2022) What is Semagystia clathrata (Christoph, 1884) (Lepidoptera, Cossidae: Cossinae)? Acta Biologica Sibirica 8: 713–719. https://doi.org/10.14258/abs.v8.e44


Biodiversity, Carpenter Moths, fauna, Central Asia, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan


Endagria clathrata Christoph, 1884 is one of the least studied Central-Asian species of Carpenter-Moths (Lepidoptera, Cossidae: Cossinae), described on a series of specimens from Turkmenistan. Seitz (1912: 427) established a new combination, Dyspessa clathrata. Daniel (1961: 203), without any arguments, used the combination Catopta clathrata. Schoorl (1990: 84) once again offered a new combination, moving clathrata to the genus described by him, Semagystia Schoorl, 1990 (type species, by original designation: Endagria agilis Christoph, 1884). Yakovlev (2011: 42) and Yakovlev & Witt (2016: 170) also used the combination suggested by Schoorl. In the literature, there are still no reasoned (confirmed by morphological information) published data on this little studied species. Basing on an extensive material, in this study we give a detailed redescription of the species and prove its taxonomic position.

Material and methods

Male genitalia were mounted in euparal on slides following Lafontaine and Mikkola (Lafontaine & Mikkola 1987). The images were photographed using digital camera of iPhone 7. The genitalia preparations were photographed using an Olympus DP74 camera attached to an Olympus SZX16 stereomicroscope.

Abbreviation list

ISEA – Institute of Systematic and Ecology of Animals (Novosibirsk, Russia);

MWM − Museum of Thomas Witt (Munich, Germany);

NHMUK – National History Museum (London, G.B.);

RYB − collection of Roman Yakovlev (Barnaul, Russia);

ZISP − Zoological Institute of the Russian Academy of Science (Saint-Petersburg, Russia).


Taxonomical part

Semagystia clathrata ( Christoph, 1884 )

Figs 1‒9

Endagria clathrata Christoph, 1884: 114−115, pl. 7: 4

Type locality: Kyzyl Arvat und Bami [Turkmenistan, Gyzylrabat and Bami].

Type material (syntypes) in ZISP. Christoph (1884) gives the following information on the type specimens and type range, “Dieser Schmetterling wurde am 15. April an den Stations – laternen der Eisenbahn zwischen dem Michailow-Busen und Kisil-Arvat in beiden Geschlechtern gefangen. Später fing ich noch ein ♀ in der Nacht, auf dem Wege zwischen Kisil-Arvat und Bami”. In the collection of ZISP, I managed to find only one female from “Kisil-Arvat”, which is the syntype.

Material examined. Syntype, female, Kyzyl-Arvat (ZISP); 13 males, 9 females, Kara-Kum, 50 km N Ashabad, 38º22ˊN, 58º33ˊE, 10.v.1991, leg. Danilevsky (GenitalPräparat Heterocera: 28.220; MWM); 6 males, 5 females, same locality, 17.04.1993, leg. Hreblay, Laszlo & Podlussany (MWM); 1 male, Kopet-Dagh, Parkhay, 38º22ˊN, 56º13ˊE, 26.iv.1991, leg. Csorba, Fabian, Herczig, Hreblay & Ronkay (MWM); 1 male, Kara-Kum, Pavlan Kui, 12.vi.1972 (MWM); 3 males, 3 females, Ayakguzhumdy, 40 km E Dzhing, Kyzylkum, 15.iv.1970, Falkovitch (ZISP); 12 males, 5 females, Turkmenistan, Kara-Kumy, 50 km N Ashkhabad, on the road to Bakhardok, 17.iv.1991, leg. V.V. Dubatolov (slide AN053, ISEA); 1 male, Western Kazakhstan, Mangystau Region, N scarp of the Kaudy depression, near the Kurbanbay Mt., 42°59ˊN 52°51ˊE, 19.v.2002, leg. V. Karalius & J. Miatleuski (slide AN052; RYB).

Redescription. Male. Length of fore wing 8−11 mm. Antenna about 2/3 of fore wing in length, setae (in medium third of antenna) 3−3.5 times longer than antenna stem in diameter. Tegulae and patagia, thorax and abdomen covered with light-brown scales. Fore wing brown; costal margin with wide creamy stroke with thin transverse brown hatches; narrow longitudinal creamy stroke in discal cell; small creamy spot in base of cubital cell; poorly expressed wavy brown pattern postdiscally and submarginally; border thin, brown; fringe mottled (brown at veins, creamy between veins). Hind wing light-brown, without pattern.

Male genitalia. Uncus triangular, apically acute; tegumen significantly wider than base of uncus; gnathos arms thick, relatively short; gnathos poorly structured, ribbon-like; valve relatively wide, with clearly expressed sacculus, apex of valve semicircular, membranous; costal edge of valve (on border between sclerotized and membranous portions) with distinctive semicircular process with uneven edge; transtilla process located very close to base of costal edge of valve, short, basally very thick, sharply narrowing to acute apex; juxta shaped as “Turkish saddle” with leaf-like lateral processes widely diverged to sides; saccus robust, semicircular; phallus equal to valve in length, poorly curved throughout length, slightly narrowing from base to apex, vesica aperture in dorso-apical position (about third of phallus in length), vesica without cornuti.

Female. Length of fore wing 10−12 mm. Antenna bipectinate, setae (in medium third of antenna) twice longer than antenna stem in diameter . Colour slightly darker, light-coloured pattern less developed. Ovipositor very long.

Taxonomical remarks. The genitals are typical for the representatives of the nominative subfamily Cossinae, which is confirmed by a series of characteristic features (the valve divided into the sclerotized proximal and the membranous distal portion, the developed transtilla process, and the big bump developed on the costal margin of the valve). For the subfamily Catoptinae and the subfamily and genus Catopta Staudinger, 1899 (type species, by original designation, Catopta albimacula Staudinger, 1899) there are other characteristic apomorphies, the most important of which is the presence of small spiky cornuti in vesica (Yakovlev 2009). Thus, the opinion of Daniel (1961) is not confirmed. The species noticeably differs from other species of the genus in the more developed antennae (considering the length of antenna and its setae in relation to the stem diameter), and in the special structure of the transtilla process.

Figure 1.Figures 1–6. Semagystia clathrata (Christoph, 1884), imago: 1. Female, Syntype (ZISP); 2. Male, Turkmenistan (MWM); 3. Male, Turkmenistan (MWM); 4. Male, Uzbekistan (ZISP), 5. Male, Kazakhstan (RYB); 6. Female, Turkmenistan (MWM).

Distribution: Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan (Daniel 1961; Krivokhatskyi 1985; Falkovich 1986; Weisert 1997), SW Kazakhstan (new record). The indication for Afghanistan (Daniel 1964, 1971) has not been confirmed by the study of the factual material (Yakovlev et al. 2015). Additionally, Schoorl (1990: 86) reported S. clathrata for Kyrgyzstan (Issyk-Kul) on the materials from NHMUK, but my research of the factual material from NHMUK and large new materials on Kyrgyzstan (including specimens from the Issyk-Kul lake shores), has not confirmed this finding. Thus, this species is an endemic of the deserts Kara-Kum and Kyzyl-Kum (Yakovlev & Dubatolov 2013; Yakovlev 2015).

Figure 2.Figures 7–8. Semagystia clathrata (Christoph, 1884), male genitalia: 7. Turkmenistan (GenitalPräparat Heterocera: 28.220; MWM); 8. Kazakhstan (slide # slide AN052; RYB).

Figure 3.Figure 9. Map showing distribution of Semagystia clathrata (Christoph, 1884) (red circles - the type locality).


The authors are indebted to Mr. Thomas Witt† and Mr. Harald Sulak (Museum Witt, Munich), Sergei Sinev (Sankt-Petersburg), and Vladimir V. Dubatolov (Novosibirsk) for their kind assistance provided during the study of the deposited material, and to Anna Ustjuzhanina (Tomsk) for language improvements.

This study was supported by the grant of the Russian Science Foundation No. 22-24-00265 “Cossoid Moths (Lepidoptera, Cossoidea) of tribus Endagriini Duponchel, 1844 of the World: systematic, phylogeny and evolution of the group”, https://rscf.ru/project/22-24-00265/


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