PARNASSIANA ARCHIVES 9: 15-17 2021
© Parnassiana Archives 9, 2021
ISSN (print-edition) : 2241-7834
ISSN (on-line edition) : 2241-7842
THE NEARCTIC CHALYBION ZIMMERMANNI
(HYMENOPTERA: SPHECIDAE) REAPPEARS IN EUROPE:
A NEW RECORD OF AN ALIEN SPECIES IN GREECE
Jakovos Demetriou1, 2, George Kakiopoulos3 & Evangelos Koutsoukos1, 2
1 Section of Ecology and Systematics, Department of Biology, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, 15784
Athens, Greece, e-mails: email@example.com & firstname.lastname@example.org
2 Museum of Zoology, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, 15784 Athens, Greece
3 Ilidos 60-62 street, 11527 Athens (Ampelokipi), Greece, e-mail: email@example.com
Published online: March 4, 2021
Genus Chalybion Dahlbom, 1843 is represented by 51 species, distributed across the globe (Pulawski
2020). In the European fauna it is represented by six native species, namely: Ch. ebile (Lepeletier,
1845), Ch. femoratum (Fabricius, 1781), Ch. klapperichi (Balthasar, 1957), Ch. minos (de Beaumont,
1965), Ch. omissum (Kohl, 1889) and Ch. walteri (Kohl, 1889) (Pulawski 2020), all present in Greece
(Hensen 1988, Standfuss & Standfuss 2006, Dollfuss 2016). In addition, three species alien to the
European continent have been identied, the Oriental Ch. bengalense (Dahlbom, 1845) established in
Italy (Mei et al. 2012), the Nearctic Ch. californicum (Saussure, 1867) reported from Croatia (Mei &
Boščík 2016) and the Nearctic Ch. zimmermanni Dahlbom, 1843 intercepted until now only once in
Belgium (Leclercq 1994). In this publication we report the rst alien species of the genus Chalybion
Examined material: Greece, Thessaly, Karditsa Province, Magoulitsa, 39.42°N 21.76°E, 1♀, alt. 120
m, 10.vii.2020, leg. G. Kakiopoulos (Fig. 1). The specimen is deposited at the Museum of Zoology
of the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens (ZMUA, voucher code: ZMUA HYM 041).
The female specimen is identied as Ch. zimmermanni following the identication keys and species
descriptions of Hensen (1988). The black erect pubescence covering the head and thorax as well as
the dark brown wings can be used to set this species apart from others, within the bengalense species
group (Hensen 1988). In addition, the specimen is distinguished from the similar C. californicum
by the presence of a mandibular subapical tooth (absent in Ch. californicum), the presence of three
clypeal teeth of equal width (narrower median tooth in Ch. californicum), the absence of an angular
carina (characteristic of the monotypic californicum species group) and the absence of tarsal plantulae
(present in Ch. californicum) (Hensen 1988, Mei & Boščík 2016). This nding constitutes the rst
record of Ch. zimmermanni from Greece and only the second reported introduction incident of the
species in the European Continent.
As only one individual was collected from a building wall, in a rural area, no remarks concerning the
species ecology or the presence of an established population can be made. Ward & Cole (1975) stated
that captive individuals were attracted to Conium maculatum L. and Pastinaca sativa L. Both plant
species are widely distributed in the Greek mainland (Dimopoulos et al. 2013, Strid et al. 2020) and
their owering period coincides with the specimen’s collection date.
The alien Chalybion zimmermanni new to Greece
Fig. 1. Chalybion zimmermanni Dahl-
bom, 1843, ♀ (ZMUA). A. dorsal view,
forewing length = 13 mm; body length =
20mm. B. head, anterior view, mandibles
with subapical tooth, clypeus with 3 teeth
of equal width (scale bar: 4 mm).
Chalybion zimmermanni is known to utilize old nests belonging to species of the genus Sceliphron
Klug, 1801 and pre-existing cavities in wood (Bohart & Menke 1976, Ward 1971). According to Ward
& Ode (1984) the majority of the species active nests were built in wood while only a small proportion
(9%) accounted for used nests of Sceliphron caementarium (Drury, 1773), used nests of Trypoxylum
politum Drury, 1773, or other material. The species accidental introduction in Greece may have been
mediated by the transport of utilized old Sceliphron spp. nests, which are easily carried throughout
great distances via international trade. The Nearctic S. caementarium, whose nesting habits have been
closely associated with human settlements (Bohart & Menke 1976), may have acted as a mediator
of this transport. Alien to Europe, it has been identied in Greece only recently (Demetriou et al.
2020) and its range expansion in Europe may have well facilitated the dispersal of Ch. zimmermanni.
Alternatively, the species may have reached the Greek mainland by emerging from imported cargo
including timber, ornamental or horticultural trees.
The success of the presented introduction, through the formation of established populations, and
potential adverse ecological impacts should be re-addressed after the examination of further future
material, spider prey and possible nuisance to native Sceliphron spp. and xylophagous insects.
We are highly grateful to Dr. Maurizio Mei (Università di Roma "Sapienza", Italy) for comments
on the identication of the specimen as well as for his valuable revision, corrections and comments
regarding the manuscript. We would also like to thank Fanourios - Nikolaos Sakellarakis (Tour du
Valat, France) for providing us literature regarding the referred plant species and for his helpful
corrections on the manuscript.
Parnassiana Archives 9
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