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Mantids in the Mist – Taxonomy of the Andean genus Pseudopogonogaster Beier, 1942, a cloud forest specialist, with notes on its biogeography and ecology (Mantodea: espidae: Miopteryginae)

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The Neotropical lichen mimicking mantid genus Pseudopogonogaster Beier, 1942 is revisited and re-described. The examination of the type species, P. mirabilis Beier, 1942, the first described species of this lineage, allowed us to determine that those species currently included in Pseudopogonogaster and Calopteromantis Terra, 1982 are all congeneric. As a result, the genus Calopteromantis is now considered to be a junior synonym of Pseudopogonogaster. Accordingly, Calopteromantis hebardi Terra, 1982 and Calopteromantis marulandae Salazar, 2002 are transferred to Pseudopogonogaster. The species Calopteromantis otongica Lombardo & Ayala, 1998 from Ecuador was also found to be a synonym of P. mirabilis. In addition, a new species from northwestern Peru, Pseudopogonogaster kanjaris, is described herein, thus constituting a new genus and species record for this country. Analysis of the distribution of the six recognized species of Pseudopogonogaster suggests that this genus is endemic to the mountain forests of Colombia, Ecuador and northern Peru and its members are specialized inhabitants of epiphytic vegetation, exhibiting unique morphological and chromatic adaptations to these habitats. The newly available information on Pseudopogonogaster also allowed to determine that Calopteromantis terrai Jantsch, 1994, described from Mato Grosso, Brazil, is actually a member of the genus Eumiopteryx Giglio-Tos, 1915 (espidae: Pseudomiopteriginae) and, thus, is transferred to this genus as E. terrai (Jantsch, 1994) comb.n.


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