Buprestidae of South Australia
( Jewel beetles )
by Peter J. Lang
Diphucrania aurocyanea   (Carter, 1934)
subfamily  Agrilinae » tribe  Coraebini » subtribe  Cisseina
Diphucrania aurocyanea   Adult images
Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL2136C, female, on Acacia pycnantha, MU, 6.0 × 2.4 mm Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL2136C, female, on Acacia pycnantha, MU, 6.0 × 2.4 mm Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL2136A, male, from Acacia pycnantha, MU, 6.0 × 2.4 mm Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL2141B, male, from Acacia pycnantha, NL, 5.2 × 2.1 mm Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL1619, male, from Melaleuca gibbosa, KI, 5.6 × 2.3 mm Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL4997, female, SE, summer 2019-20, 6.2 × 2.4 mm Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL2136C, female, on Acacia pycnantha, MU, 6.0 × 2.4 mm Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL2141B, male, NL, 5.2 × 2.1 mm Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL2136C, female, on Acacia pycnantha, MU, 6.0 × 2.4 mm Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL2136C, female, on Acacia pycnantha, MU, 6.0 × 2.4 mm
Actual
size¹:
5.4 mm
×
2.2 mm
Measurements (mm)
malefemale
L15.3
3.9 – 6.5
n = 315.7
4.8 – 6.45
n = 9
L25.6
4.35 – 6.4
n = 95.9
5.3 – 6.35
n = 3
W2.1
1.45 – 2.7
n = 312.3
1.9 – 2.7
n = 9
Legend  L1length from clypeus/frons to elytral apex (mean, range, sample size)
L2length from anterior of edge of eyes to elytral apex
Wmaximum width with elytra fully closed
Diphucrania aurocyanea  Distinctive features

Lacks white scale-hair patches on the elytra.

Notes

This species was not reported from SA until I collected it in the northern Mt Lofty Ranges in 2011, and subsequently in the Barossa Ranges, Adelaide Hills and on Kangaroo Island. Its breeding stages came to light in 2020 when A.M.P. Stolarski collected a larva on Eyre Peninsula and I found a pupa in the Adelaide Hills, both of which I reared to an adult.

Specimens from the NL Region tend to have less colourful and more subdued markings than those from elsewhere. The single KI specimen is unusual in having the pronotum with punctulate rather than striate sculpturing as in all other specimens seen. Nevertheless, DNA barcode sequencing (mitochondrial CO1) groups it together with specimens from NL and very close to a sample from NSW.

Occurrences in MU region are confined to the eastern edge of the Mt Lofty Ranges.

The gall-making habit of this species was first recognised in August 2021.

Distribution
SA Regions¹:  EPNLMUSLKISE
Australian States:  SANSWQLD
Southern South Australia distribution
LegendP.J.Lang collection vouchered records
other private collection or museum specimens, or sightings
Satellite map
Terrain map
Enlarge map
Adult activity records for Diphucrania aurocyanea  (total of 49 beetles)
2
8 1 26
11
1
Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun
Legend
live emerged adults, count > median value of 8 per quarter month
live emerged adults, count <= median value of 8
live non-emerged adults only, for that quarter month
12
number of active beetles for that quarter month
Adult host plants
beetles sites SA regions¹ family position on host plant
Acacia pycnantha474NL, MUF
Melaleuca gibbosa11KIM
Spyridium parvifolium11SLR
Legendbeetlescount of beetles collected from, or sighted on, host plant taxon
sitescount of major sites (unique 10 km grid cells +/- some distinct approximate localities)
Plant family
Code beetles % host plant taxa
F Fabaceae 47 96% 1
M Myrtaceae 1 2% 1
R Rhamnaceae 1 2% 1
Position on adult host
positionbeetlessites
on flowering plant11
on foliage or non-flowering plant485
Lure affinity
colour beetles sites SA regions¹
blue11SE
Diphucrania aurocyanea Breeding record images
Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL5439, larva, from Cryptandra setifera (PJL 3553) collar gall, EP, 10.1 × 2.2 mm Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL5438A, prepupa, EP, collar gall on Cryptandra setifera (PJL 3553) containing prepupa, 6.8 × 2.2 mm Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL5438A, prepupa, EP, same gall sectioned showing larval frass, 6.8 × 2.2 mm Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL5438A, prepupa, EP, other side of same gall sectioned showing larval frass and dark brown hardwood stem core above it, 6.8 × 2.2 mm Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL5438A, prepupa, EP, same gall cut away exposing prepupa in central stem of Cryptandra setifera (PJL 3553), 6.8 × 2.2 mm Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL5438A, prepupa, from Cryptandra setifera (PJL 3553) collar gall, EP, 6.8 × 2.2 mm Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL5438B, prepupa, EP, another collar gall on C. setifera (PJL 3553) showing tunnel entry into stem core (arrowed), 7.0 × 2.0 mm Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL4766xx, prepupa, in Cryptandra setifera (PJL 3493) stem gall, EP, photo by A.M.P. Stolarski, 7.5 × 2.0 mm Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL4766xx, prepupa, in Cryptandra setifera (PJL 3493) stem gall, EP, 7.5 × 2.0 mm Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL4766xx, prepupa, in Cryptandra setifera (PJL 3493) stem gall, EP, 7.5 × 2.0 mm Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL4766xx, prepupa, in Cryptandra setifera (PJL 3493) stem gall, EP, 7.5 × 2.0 mm Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL4766x, pupa, in Cryptandra setifera (PJL 3493) stem gall, EP Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL4766x, pupa, in Cryptandra setifera (PJL 3493) stem gall, EP Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL4766, male, reared adult, in Cryptandra setifera (PJL 3493) stem gall, EP, 5.1 × 2.1 mm Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL4766, male, reared adult, in Cryptandra setifera (PJL 3493) stem gall, EP, 5.1 × 2.1 mm Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL4766, male, reared adult, from larva ex Cryptandra setifera (PJL 3493), EP, 5.1 × 2.1 mm Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL4766, male, reared adult, from larva ex Cryptandra setifera (PJL 3493), EP, matured, 5.1 × 2.1 mm Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL4864, reared adult, in Spyridium parvifolium (PJL 3520) stem base gall, SL, 6.1 × 2.5 mm Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL4864, reared adult, in Spyridium parvifolium (PJL 3520) stem base gall, SL, 6.1 × 2.5 mm Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL4864, reared adult, in Spyridium parvifolium (PJL 3520) stem base gall, SL, 6.1 × 2.5 mm Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL4864, male, reared adult, from pupa in Spyridium parvifolium (PJL 3520), SL, 6.1 × 2.5 mm Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL5544, reared adult, from Cryptandra setifera, EP, with its gall and exit hole  2021-11-18 22-06-26 (B Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL5544, reared adult, from Cryptandra setifera, EP, with its gall and exit hole  2021-11-18 22-06-26 (B Diphucrania aurocyanea, SID7324, larval host plant, host Cryptandra setifera (PJL 3553), EP, hatched gall showing exit hole Diphucrania aurocyanea, PL5544, larval host plant, host Cryptandra setifera, EP, with exit hole above gall
Larval host plants
records sites SA regions¹ family adult ex pupapupapupa ex larvalarvagall (only)
Cryptandra setifera133EPR1174
Spyridium parvifolium52SLR1112
Cryptandra campanulata22EP, MUR2
Legendrecordscount of breeding adults, pupae and larvae
sitescount of major sites (unique 10 km grid cells +/- some distinct approximate localities)
adultlive = extracted alive;   dead = extracted dead as intact or fragmentary remains;   ex billet = reared and emerged from stored sections of host;   ex pupa = reared from sampled pupa
pupaextracted pupa;   pupa ex larva = reared pupa from larva
larvaextracted larva (any stage including prepupa)
gall (only)hatched or unhatched gall identified by form and position rather than contents
Plant family
Code records % host plant taxa
R Rhamnaceae 20 100% 3
Position in larval host
positionrecordssitesadult ex pupapupapupa ex larvalarvagall (only)
stem gall1861188
stem base gall2111
Host plant notes

Golden Wattle Acacia pycnantha is well established as a major adult host plant in the northern and southern Mt Lofty Ranges. The single occurrence on the Melaleuca may be incidental, but the one on Spyridium parvifolium is notable, as that species is also a larval host.

The breeding records are established by individuals reared from two plant species: Spyridium parvifolium and Cryptandra setifera, supported by consistent associated larvae and gall morphology. The two larval host plant species are quite different in form, but are both in the family, Rhamnaceae. Both genera are widespread across the range of D. aurocyanea, with Cryptandra being more prevalent in the northern Mt Lofty Ranges sites which is where the greatest numbers of beetles have been found in SA. Further breeding records are needed to ascertain the degree of specificity to the Rhamnaceae, and whether a wide range of genera and species of that family are used, as is the case for Anilara subcostata.

Pupation occurs in the centre of quite narrow stems, with the pupal cavity occupying most of the diameter of the hard woody stem core. The first adult to be reared came from a prepupa in a stem and the surrounding collar gall was initially thought to be coincidental. Discovery of more specimens, showed that the larvae are always associated with collar galls. The younger stages feed and tunnel in the relatively soft and moist outer ring of gall tissue, before the final instar larva tunnels into the hard inner woody stem core to pupate.

¹ LegendregionsSA State Herbarium regions (map)
EA: Eastern, EP: Eyre Peninsula, FR: Flinders Ranges, GT: Gairdner-Torrens, KI: Kangaroo Island, LE: Lake Eyre, MU: Murray, NL: Northern Lofty, NU: Nullarbor, NW: North-Western, SE: South-Eastern, SL: Southern Lofty, YP: Yorke Peninsula
sizeThe ellipse is the correct size when printed, indicative on a desktop screen, and likely to be wrong on a mobile device.