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Description of the male holotype
Length 15 mm from apex of head to apex of forewings at rest. Head (Fig. 2a, b) strongly produced anteriorly; median length of crown approximately 4/5 interocular width and 1/2 transocular width; anterior margin broadly rounded in dorsal view; without carina at transition from crown to face; ocelli located behind imaginary line between anterior eye angles, each ocellus slightly closer to median line of crown than to adjacent anterior eye angle; crown with concavity between eye and ocellus, without median fovea and without sculpturing or setae; frontogenal sutures extending onto crown and attaining ocelli; antennal ledges, in dorsal view, slightly protuberant, in lateral view with anterior margin broad and rounded; frons convex, muscle impressions distinct; epistomal suture obscure; clypeus not produced, its contour continuing profile of lower portion of frons.
Thorax (Fig. 2a, b) with pronotal width distinctly greater than transocular width; lateral pronotal margins convergent anteriorly; posterior margin slightly concave; dorsopleural carinae complete, rectilinear, distinctly declivous anteriorly; pronotal disk without sculpturing or pubescence; mesonotum with scutellum not swollen. Forewings (Fig. 2c) with membrane including all of apical cells except short basal portions of second, third, and fourth; veins mostly indistinct except at wing apical portion; with four apical cells, base of fourth more proximal than base of third (not shown in Fig. 2c); without anteapical plexus of veins. Hindlegs with femoral setal formula 2:1:1; length of first tarsomere greater than combined length of two more distal tarsomeres; plantar surface with two parallel rows of small setae.
Color (Fig. 1a) of anterior dorsum orange; pronotum with transverse brown stripe on posterior margin, this stripe distinctly broader medially; mesonotum with pair of large yellow maculae laterobasally. Forewings (Fig. 2c) with corium mostly translucent yellow, costal margin dark brown; clavus mostly yellow with two longitudinal brown stripes, both extending from basal portion to about middle area, one along claval sulcus (broadened posteriorly) and another along inner claval margin; posterior portion of clavus with transverse, oblique brown stripe extending over corium and reaching costal margin, this stripe distinctly narrowed towards costal margin; with red area behind transverse stripe covering apex of clavus, apexes of brachial and inner discal cells and large portion of corium adjacent to inner apical cell, this red area strongly constricted posteriorly and then forming stripe (evanescent towards costal margin) across bases of apical cells; corium region between red area and costal margin mostly depigmented. Face and venter orange-yellow with brown irregular areas on legs.
Genitalia with pygofer (Fig. 3a), in lateral view, strongly produced posteriorly; posterior margin narrowly rounded; distal third of dorsal margin with strong spiniform process, apex of process located slightly before pygofer apex, process (Fig. 3b), in dorsal view, directed inward, not attaining median body line; macrosetae distributed mostly on distal third of disk, some smaller macrosetae extending anteriorly along ventral margin. Subgenital plates (Fig. 3c), in ventral view, triangular but with basal half broad, expanded, with lateral margin round; distal half extremely narrow; plates not fused to each other basally; in lateral view, plates distinctly shorter than pygofer (Fig. 3a), extending posteriorly approximately as far as 2/3 of pygofer disk length; plates with uniseriate macrosetae (very large on basal half, very small on distal half), microsetae also present. Connective (Fig. 3d), in dorsal view, broadly T-shaped; stalk with strong median keel, the latter bifurcated basally and extending for short distance over arms. Styles (Fig. 3d), in dorsal view, extending almost as far posteriorly as connective; strongly curved inward; without preapical lobe; apex slightly expanded, obliquely truncate, more sclerotized than remainder of apophysis; style median portion with a few setae on outer margin. Aedeagus (Fig. 3e, f), in lateral view, narrowest in basal third, gradually broader in distal two-thirds; shaft with two pairs of longitudinal flanges, one along lateral portion, another along dorsal margin; apical portion of shaft (Fig. 3f), in ventral view, with these flanges forming pair of projections directed medially; these projections covered by many tiny tegumentary processes; gonoduct distinctly visible in broadened portion of shaft (Fig. 3e), directed ventrally, gonopore located preapically.
Male holotype, “BRASIL: Rondônia, \ Ouro Preto d'Oeste [10°40'S, 62°18'W], \ 28.X.1983 \ J. Becker, O. Roppa & \ B. Silva” (MNRJ). The holotype is in good condition but the forewing apices are damaged (Fig. 1a).
The new species is described in honor of the late Prof. Johann Becker (Museu Nacional, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro) in recognition of his contribution to the development of Brazilian entomology. He was also one of the collectors of the holotype.
Tacora johanni can be distinguished from the other known species of the genus by the following combination of features: (1) pronotum with a transverse brown stripe on posterior margin (Figs 1a, 2a); (2) subgenital plates extending posteriorly approximately as far as 2/3 of pygofer disk length (Fig. 3a); (3) subgenital plates with the basal half broad, expanded, with round lateral margin (Fig. 3c); (4) preapical pygofer process long and slender; (5) preapical pygofer process without pegs (Fig. 3a, b); (6) styles strongly curved inward (Fig. 3d); (7) aedeagus with two pairs of longitudinal flanges (Fig. 3e).
The male genitalia of the new species are similar to those of Tacora dilecta and Tacora cavichiolii. The presence of sculpturing (pegs) on the pygofer process of the male holotype of Tacora dilecta was mentioned and illustrated by Young (1977: 317 and Fig. 257p) as a diagnostic feature of this species. These pegs are not present in Tacora johanni. Other features that distinguish the new species (known only from the male) from Tacora dilecta include (1) the red color of the claval apex behind the transverse dark stripe (orange to yellow in Tacora dilecta) and (2) the rectilinear distal portion of the pygofer process in dorsal view (distinctly curved in Tacora dilecta). The above-mentioned features of the subgenital plates and styles of Tacora johanni are distinct from those of Tacora dilecta and Tacora cavichiolii. In addition, the pygofer process in Tacora cavichiolii is short and robust (Takiya and Mejdalani 2002: 239: Fig. 17), whereas it is long and slender in Tacora johanni.
- Mejdalani, G; Silva, R; Garcia, C; 2011: Descriptions of a new Brazilian Tacora species and the female of Tacora saturata, and a key to the species of the genus (Insecta, Hemiptera, Cicadellidae, Cicadellini) ZooKeys, 160: 59-71. doi
- Takiya D, Mejdalani G (2002) On the Central and Western Amazonian genus Tacora Melichar, 1926 (Hemiptera: Cicadellidae: Cicadellinae): key to species and descriptions of three new taxa. Amazoniana 17: 227-242.