Indonesian researcher discovers new species of beetles in N Maluku

Indonesian researcher discovers new species of beetles in N Maluku
The four news species of beetles found in North Maluku by researchers from the Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI) and Zoologische Staatssammlung München, Germany. (LIPI)

Jakarta (Indonesia Window) – A researcher from Biological Research Center at the Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI), Raden Pramesa Narakusumo, along with Michael Balke of the Zoologische Staatssammlung München, Germany, has discovered four new species of Chafer beetle (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae) from genus Epholcis in North Maluku.

A statement from LIPI quoted by Indonesia Window here on Thursday mentioned that the four new species are Epholcis acutus, Epholcis arcuatus, Epholcis cakalele, and Epholcis obiensis.

Meanwhile, one lectotype named Maechidius moluccanus Moser was synonymized to Epholcis clan as Epholcis moluccanus (Moser).

Up to now ten species of Epholcis have been found. Six of them were identified in 1957 by Britton in New Queensland and New South Wales, Australia.

Meanwhile, the four new species discovered in Maluku Islands are from Halmahera, Obi, and Ternate Islands.

Pramesa explained, Epholcis beetle was a nocturnal insect that eats Eucalyptus leaves in Australia and also clove flowers (Syzigium sp.).

“Meanwhile in Maluku, the beetle eats plants belong to the Myrtaceae family,” he noted.

The discovery of the four new beetle species was published in the Journal of Treubia Vol. 46 in December 2019.

Reporting by Indonesia Window

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