Genus Paulianius Brunhes & Boussès, 2017

Type species: 

Paulianius tiptoni (Grjebine, 1953), original combination: Aedes tiptoni.

Classification: 

Subfamily Culicinae, tribe Aedini. Paulianius includes eight species, which are divided between three species groups, the Tiptoni Section (Pl. hirsutus, Pl. tiptoni), the Niveus Section (Pl. niveus) and the Coulangesi Section (Pl. ambremontis, Pl. coulangesi, Pl. grassei, Pl. madagascarensis, Pl. rodhaini). Genus abbreviation – Pl.

Characteristics: 

The following features are most distinctive of species of genus Paulianiius. ADULTS – Black mosquitoes adorned with numerous spots, rings or bands of large white scales. Vertex of head covered with separate areas of black and white scales, white scales generally forming longitudinal patches; pedicel of antenna with white scales; proboscis black-scaled; scutum black-scaled with longitudinal stripes of white scales or white scaling on anterior half; dorsocentral setae strongly developed, acrostichal setae absent; large white scales present at least on midlobe of scutellum; pleura with numerous spots of silvery scales; lower mesepimeral seta present (absent in Pl. niveus); fore- and midungues of males claws unequal; wing entirely black-scaled or at most a few pale scales at base of costa; legs black-scaled with stripes and rings of white scales; forefemur, and sometimes midfemur, with a ventral white patch or strip; tarsi entirely black-scaled or with white rings; abdominal terga mainly black-scaled, terga II–VI with pale median basal band and lateral patches of white scales. MALE GENITLIA – Gonostylus formed of 2 equal arms (distinction from African Diceromyia); dorsal arm often flattened and spatulate at apex, bearing very small sensory setae; ventral arm slightly shorter than dorsal arm and sometimes cylindrical, bearing a short broad more or less spatulate claw; claspette always present, often long (poorly developed in Tewarius). LAEVAE – Antenna very slightly spiculate at base or glabrous; seta 4-C with about 15 short flexible branches; setae 5,6-C single; seta 15-C with 3 or 4 very long flexible branches; seta 1-P very long; support plates of pleural setal groups without strong spine (distinction from Diceromyia); seta 4-X with 5 pairs of setae. PUPAE – Inner and outer margins of paddle lined with denticles or long filaments; midrib clearly visible to near apex; seta 1-Pa single, relatively short. See Aedini.

Phylogenetic relationships: 

Paulianius appears to be most closely related to Tewarius, sylvatic species which occur in the mountainous western areas of India. The genus also shares affinities, to a lesser degree, with African Diceromyia (Brunhes et al., 2017).

Bionomics and disease relations: 

Paulianius are forest species.The larval habitats of species of the Coulangesi Section are unknown, but he immature stages of the other species of Paulianius, like those of Tewarius, develop in plant cavities, frequently in tree holes. Little is known about the bionomics of the adults. Females of Pl. tiptoni feed mainly during twilight hours, and are known to bite humans outdoors and more frequently indoors. Females of Pl. madagascarensis bite during the day and those of Pl. coulangesi have been captured on human bait but are reluctant to bite. Females of Pl. madagascarensis have been found naturally infected with West Nile virus, but it is unlikely that species of Paulianius are of medical and economic importance to humans (see references in Brunhes et al., 2017).

Distribution: 

Madagascar (seven species) and southern Africa (Pl. niveus, known from Zambia and Zimbabwe).

Principal references: 

Brunhes et al., 2017 (new genus, taxonomy, bionomics, keys).

Species: 

ambremontis Brunhes & Boussès, 2017 (in Brunhes et al., 2017)
coulangesi (Rodhain & Boutonnier, 1983)
grassei (Doucet, 1951)
hirsutus Brunhes & Boussès, 2017 (in Brunhes et al., 2017)
madagascarensis (van Someren, 1949)
niveus (de Meillon, 1943)
rodhaini Brunhes & Boussès, 2017 (in Brunhes et al., 2017)
tiptoni (Grjebine, 1953)

Scratchpads developed and conceived by (alphabetical): Ed Baker, Katherine Bouton Alice Heaton Dimitris Koureas, Laurence Livermore, Dave Roberts, Simon Rycroft, Ben Scott, Vince Smith