Buprestidae of South Australia
( Jewel beetles )
by Peter J. Lang
Hypocisseis ornata   Carter, 1923
subfamily  Agrilinae » tribe  Coraebini » subtribe  Cisseina
Hypocisseis ornata   Adult images
Hypocisseis ornata, SAMA, male, from Amyema sp., (cut from) Hypocisseis ornata, SAMA, male and female, from Amyema preissii
Hypocisseis ornata  Distinctive features

Head with frons strongly concave between heavy 'eye-brow-like' forward-projecting ridges that border the inside edge of the eyes; pronotum and elytral surface very uneven; coloration dark grey-brown with areas of blue reflections.

Notes

Despite its wide distribution spanning southern Australia and its common mistletoe hosts, this species appears not to have been collected in SA since being described by Carter 1923a around 100 years ago. Carter cited two localities: Lucindale in the SE Region of SA ,and Geraldton in WA; the former is represented in the SA Museum by five syntype specimens.

In October 2021 I found degraded dead remains of two specimens in stems of a dead mistletoe on Fleurieu Peninsula. This prompted more systematic searching, and in the same month dead remains were discovered in the SE Region by A.M.P. Stolarski and I found a live pupa in the Adelaide foothills.

Distribution
SA Regions¹:  SLSE
Australian States:  WASAVICNSW
Southern South Australia distribution
LegendP.J.Lang collection vouchered records
other private collection or museum specimens, or sightings
Satellite map
Terrain map
Enlarge map
Hypocisseis ornata Breeding record images
Hypocisseis ornata, PL5525, larva, in Amyema miquelii dead stem, (remains only), SL Hypocisseis ornata, PL5526, pupa, in Amyema miquelii (PJL 3569) stem, SL Hypocisseis ornata, PL5526, pupa, in Amyema miquelii (PJL 3569) stem, SL Hypocisseis ornata, PL5526, pupa, in Amyema miquelii (PJL 3569) stem, SL Hypocisseis ornata, PL5536, pupa, in Amyema miquelii stem, SE, photo by A.M.P. Stolarski Hypocisseis ornata, PL5536, pupa, in Amyema miquelii stem, SE, photo by A.M.P. Stolarski Hypocisseis ornata, PL5512A, dead non-emerged adult, from Amyema miquelii dead stem, SL Hypocisseis ornata, PL5512B, dead non-emerged adult, in Amyema miquelii dead stem section, SL Hypocisseis ornata, PL5512B, dead non-emerged adult, in Amyema miquelii dead stem, SL Hypocisseis ornata, PL5524, dead non-emerged adult, in Amyema miquelii dead stem, SE Hypocisseis ornata, PL5524, dead non-emerged adult, in Amyema miquelii dead stem, SE Hypocisseis ornata, PL5524, dead non-emerged adult, from Amyema miquelii dead stem, SE Hypocisseis ornata, PL5524, dead non-emerged adult, from Amyema miquelii dead stem, SE Hypocisseis ornata, PL5524, dead non-emerged adult, from Amyema miquelii dead stem, SE Hypocisseis ornata, PL5512A, larval host plant, host Amyema miquelii dead stem section, SL, with old exit hole and small central frass-filled tunnel Hypocisseis ornata, PL5512A, larval host plant, host Amyema miquelii dead stem section obverse, SL, showing central frass-filled tunnels Hypocisseis ornata, PL5525, larval host plant, host Amyema miquelii dead stem, SL, with old pupal chamber and exit hole
Larval host plant
records sites SA regions¹ family adult deadpupalarva
Amyema miquelii93SL, SEL315
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
L Loranthaceae 9 100% 1
Position in larval host
positionrecordssitesadult deadpupalarva
stem93315
Host plant notes

Strongly associated with mistletoes (Loranthaceae); Armstrong 1947 refers to adults being taken on two species of mistletoe in NSW (as 'Loranthus', probably Amyema spp. There are two more recent WA collections by R.P. McMillan in the SA Museum which show that Amyema is a larval host. A pair was cut from 'from tunnels in Loranthus preissii' (now Amyema preissii) and a single individual was 'cut from Amyema'. The mistletoe A. preissii also occurs widely in SA and mainly parasitises Acacia species. The recent SA larval host records are from A. miquelii (Box Mistletoe), another common species that parasitizes a range of woodland Eucalypts in temperate areas, and, occasionally, a small number of mallee Eucalypt species.

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