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- Ablattaria Reitter 1884: 75.
Body, in general, dull-black (brown to dark brown in subteneral specimens), total body length 9–19 mm.
Head flattened with dense but fine puncturing, extra prolonged (used for the invasion of snail shells during feeding; Fig. 20). Eyes large, prominent, emerge to the sides. Antennae clavate, club formed by the antennomeres 9–11 (Fig. 22). Antennomere 1 longer than antennomeres 2 and 3 combined. Antennomere 2 slightly longer than antennomere 3. Frons broad, mandibles large and sickle-shaped, typical to snail eaters, maxilla densely haired outwards (Fig. 20).
Pronotum with continuous margins, semielliptical (Figs 12, 13, 15) (conical in Ablattaria subtriangula, Fig. 14), with distinct punctures covering its dorsal surface (Figs 13–15) (only very superficial medially in Ablattaria arenaria, Fig. 12), rarely with a fine line in the middle.
Scutellar shield small in size, cordiform in shape and with distinct punctation.
Elytra regularly vaulted, densely and regularly punctured (Figs 16–19), without vestigial ribs, rarely with two very fine, longitudinal lines that are occasionally more visible (Fig. 21). Elytral epipleural ridge is incomplete; extends along the elytron but not to its subapical part (Figs 9–11). Punctures homogenously distributed, of similar size (Figs 18, 19) or varying in size, fine punctures intermixed with larger ones, predominantly in medial part (Figs 16, 17).
Legs strong with fine spines, femur of hind legs broad, tibia ends with an apical spine stretching out (Figs 5, 6). Tarsi with robust tarsal claws. Males with laterally expanding tarsomeres, females with cylindrical and more slender tarsomeres (e.g., as show in Figs 4 and 5).
Ablattaria is classified preliminarily as a sister lineage to Phosphuga Leach, 1817 and Silpha Linnaeus, 1758, based on 2.1 kB sequence of cytochrome oxidase subunits I and II (Dobler and Müller 2000, Sikes et al. 2005), sometimes treated also as a subgenus of Silpha (Sikes et al. 2005).
Key to the Ablattaria species
- Qubaiová, J; Růžička, J; Šípková, H; 2015: Taxonomic revision of genus Ablattaria Reitter (Coleoptera, Silphidae) using geometric morphometrics ZooKeys, (477): 79-142. doi
- Reitter E (1884) Bestimmungs-Tabellen der europäischen Coleopteren. XII. Necrophaga (Platypsyllidae, Leptinidae, Silphidae, Anisotomidae und Clambidae). Verhandlungen des Naturforschenden Vereines in Brünn 23: 3–122.
- Hatch M (1928) Fam. Silphidae II. In: Schenkling S (Ed.) Coleopterorum Catalogus, Pars 95. W. Junk, Berlin, 63–244.
- Dobler S, Müller J (2000) Resolving Phylogeny at the Family Level by Mitochondrial Cytochrome Oxidase Sequences: Phylogeny of Carrion Beetles (Coleoptera, Silphidae). Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 15: 390–420. doi: 10.1006/mpev.1999.0765
- Sikes D, Trumbo S, Peck S (2005) The Tree of Life Web Project, Silphinae. Version 07 February 2005 (under construction). http://tolweb.org/Silphinae/26994/2005.02.07