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  • December 2, 2015

Discovery of a new genus and a new species of longhorn beetle

  • Insectarium
Viracocha limogesi
Photo: Espace pour la vie

Stéphane Le Tirant, curator of the Montréal Insectarium, and his colleague Antonio Santos-Silva from the Museu de Zoologia at Brazil’s Universidade de Sao Paulo have discovered a new species and a new genus of longhorn beetle, Viracocha limogesi. Examining a few specimens of Trachyderini from Rio Venado in the province of Satipo (Junín district), Peru, they determined noteworthy distinctions in terms of the position of the mandibles, among other things, as well as differences in coloring and in the number of antenna segments between male and female. Their discovery, a rare occurrence in the field of entomology, was formalized and published in Insecta Mundi, A Journal of World Insect Systematics on June 19, 2015. This exceptional success demonstrates the expertise of the Insectarium team and adds to the reputation of Space for Life internationally.

Straight from the kingdom of the Incas

The new genus of beetle, native to Peru, bears the name of the creator deity in Incan mythology, Viracocha, in tribute to the people who lived in Peru for several centuries. As for the new species, its designation of “limogesi” is derived from the name René Limoges, a technician in the Montréal Insectarium entomological laboratories who works primarily on the conservation of scientific collections and on mounting naturalized specimens.

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