CryptalyraScott Richard Shaw
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Cryptalyra is a small genus with three rare species known only from South America. Cryptalyra plaumanni was described by Shaw (1987) from southern Brazil. Cryptalyra colombia was described from Colombia by Shaw (2002). Cryptalyra depressa, the most recently discovered species, was described by Azevedo and Tavares (2006).
Shaw (1990) inferred a sister-group relationship of Cryptalyra with the Oriental/Australasian genus Carminator, and placed both in the tribe Cryptalyrini. Three synapomorphies support this relationship: compact flagellomeres, loss of the forewing metacarpus vein, and loss of the hind wing RS vein.
Cryptalyra species can be distinguished from other megalyrids by their minute body size (4.6 mm or less), very short antenna, and exceptionally short ovipositor sheath (barely protruding beyond the apex of the metasoma). The ovipositor can be retracted into the body.
Discussion of Phylogenetic Relationships
Azevedo and Tavares (2006) suggested that Cryptalyra plaumanni and Cryptalyra depressa are sister-species because both species have the occipital carina curved toward the mandible, and the antenna only as long as the head.
Azevedo, C. O. and M. T. Tavares. 2006. A new species of Cryptalyra (Hymenoptera, Megalyridae) from Brazil with a key to the species of the genus. Zootaxa 1259:55-59.
Shaw, S. R. 1987. Three new megalyrids from South America (Hymenoptera: Megalyridae). Psyche 94(1-2):189-199.
Shaw, S. R. 1990. Phylogeny and biogeography of the parasitoid wasp family Megalyridae (Hymenoptera). Journal of Biogeography 17:569-581.
Shaw, S. R. 2003. A new Cryptalyra species from Colombia (Hymenoptera: Megalyridae). Zootaxa 248:1-4.
About This Page
Scott Richard Shaw
University of Wyoming, Laramie, Wyoming, USA
Correspondence regarding this page should be directed to Scott Richard Shaw at
Page copyright © 2005 Scott Richard Shaw
All Rights Reserved.
- First online 18 February 2005
- Content changed 20 February 2007
Citing this page:
Shaw, Scott Richard. 2007. Cryptalyra. Version 20 February 2007 (under construction). http://tolweb.org/Cryptalyra/28843/2007.02.20 in The Tree of Life Web Project, http://tolweb.org/