Biosecurity threat, not present in Australia

Tartessus ferrugineus


Many of the insects depicted on these pages are outwardly similar and you should not use photographs as the sole means of identification. These pages form part of a scientific key which will assist a trained entomologist to identify the species accurately.

Tartessus ferrugineus (Walker 1851)

Common name: no common name

Subfamily/Tribe: Tartessinae/Tartessini

Distribution: Indonesia, Borneo, Philippines, Singapore, Cambodia, Burma (Myanmar), Malaysia, Japan, Taiwan, China, India, Russia, Micronesia.

Metcalf (1964) recorded this species from the "Australian region" based on Oshanin (1912) who refers to "RAu" as one of the localities. Some subsequent authors (e.g. Datta 1988, Dmitriev 2003) have taken this to mean that the species was recorded in Australia. However, there are no records of the species in Australia and the latest review of the Australian fauna (F. Evans 1981) gave the distribution of this species as the Oriental region.


Economic Status: Pest of citrus, figs and tropical fruits. Identified as a potential biosecurity risk from imported logan fruit from China to Australia (Australian Government 2004) and logan fruit from Taiwan to the United States (USDA 2007)

Notes: Five subspecies have been recognised: T. f. ferrugineus (Walker 1851), T. f. akonis (Matsumura 1912), T. f. malayus (Stål 1859), T. f. nigricosta (Matsumura 1912) and T. f. proximus (Linnavuori 1960). Despite not having any species of Tartessus, Australia has a rich native fauna of Tartessini with 69 species to date. Many of these could easily be confused with Tartessus ferrugineus. Genitalia dissection remains the best way to separate species and, therefore, specimens should be referred to a trained taxonomist.

Image © Kwan Han (used with permission)