Panorpa flexa  Carpenter, 1935


Diagnosis:  This species is part of the nebulosa group which have spotted pigmentation on the wings, and males have no anal horn on the 6th abdominal tergite.  This species is part of the subgroup in which males have a cluster of spines at the inner margin of the basistylar apex, and a series of stout spines along the mesal margin of the hypovalves.  Like P. nebulosa there are two lobes at the apex of the 9th tergite, but differs from this species in that the ventral parameres are sharply curved in a semicircle near the apex of the basistyles.


Distribution – Geographical:  This species has a relatively restricted distribution in the mountains of North and South Carolina, Georgia, and Tennessee.


Distribution – Temporal:  27 May until 4 September with a peak emergence in June in the mountains at 4000 to 6000 ft.


Ecology:  The type locality of Indian Pass in the Great Smoky Mountains is an area of spruce-fir forests, and at slightly lower elevations Rhododendron, Azalea and mixed deciduous and conifer forest.


Biology:  Mature larvae collected in pitfall traps at Clingman’s Dome (6000 ft. elevation) were described by Boese (1973).


Notes:  The name flexa comes from the Latin word for bend or bent and probably refers to the extreme curvature of the male ventral parameres.




Boese, A.E. 1973. Descriptions of larvae and key to fourth instars of North American Panorpa (Mecoptera: Panorpidae). Kansas University Science Bulletin, 50:163-186.


Carpenter, F.M. 1935. New Nearctic Mecoptera, with Notes on other Species. Psyche. 42:105-122.



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