Agapanthia (Epoptes) asphodeli (Latreille, 1804)
ssp. zappii Sama, 1987
[= Agapanthia zappii Sama, 1987]

Subfamilia: LAMIINAE  /  Tribus: AGAPANTHIINI
Agapanthia asphodeli zappii
[Photo © Petr Jelínek]

Agapanthia asphodeli, a species widely distributed in Mediterranean region, has been described from Bordeaux environs (France) as Lamia asphodeli by Pierre-André Latreille in 1804 [✱].

Its North-African subspecies, A. asphodeli zappii, described as a separate species by Gianfranco Sama in 1987 [❖], differs from a nominotypical subspecies by the green elytra with lateral-longitudinal grey pubescence band. It was downgraded to the subspecies level by Maxim A. Lazarev in 2023 [✳]. A. asphodeli zappii, develops in asphodels (Asphodelus spp.). According to literature [✧][✮], female of A. asphodeli zappii lays egg into living Asphodelus inflorescence and the larva feeds in the stem of the host plant, forming a gallery towards the base of the stem. A bulky sawdust plug, created by larva, seals the lower part of the gallery, while the upper end is closed by a much smaller plug. Pupation in autumn or early winter. Adults, active from late February to early June, are diurnal and can be collected on the host plants.

Host plant update May 2022: during our last expedition to Morocco, we observed many A. asphodeli zappii adults exclusively on a completely different (hitherto undetermined) host plant from the Apiaceae family (fresh exit holes, eggs laying and feeding females, etc.).

Body length:12 - 16 mm
Life cycle:1 year
Adults in:February - June
Host plant:Asphodelus aestivus, Asphodelus fistulosus, still undetermined Apiaceae
Distribution:North Africa (Morocco, Lybia, Algeria, Tunisia)

The depicted beetles were collected on still undetermined Apiaceae in Oulmes (أولماس) environs (Khémisset province, Rabat-Salé-Kénitra region, Morocco) on May 13, 2022.

Collected by Petr Jelínek

Latreille P.-E.:
Histoire Naturelle, Générale et particulière des Crustacés et des Insectes.
Imprimerie F. Dufart, Paris 11, 424pp, 1804. [download pdf icon]

Sama G.:
Note préliminaire pour une faune des longicornes de l'Afrique du Nord.
Biocosme Mésogéen, Nice 4 (1): 43-64, 1987. [download pdf icon]

Lazarev M.A.:
Taxonomy structure of Agapanthia (Epoptes) asphodeli (Latreille, 1804) (Coleoptera, Cerambycidae).
Humanity space International almanac 12 (5): 468-491, 2023. [download pdf icon]

Sama G., Ringenbach J.-C., and Rejzek M.:
A preliminary survey of the Cerambycidae of Lybia (Coleoptera).
Bulletin de la Société Entomologique de France, Paris 110 (4/5): 439-454, 2005. [download pdf icon]

Trócoli S.:
Actualización del catálogo de Longicornios de Marruecos Actualisation du catalogue des Longicornes du Maroc (Parte IV / Partie IV : Cerambycidae : Lamiinae).
Revue de l'Association Roussillonnaise d'Entomologie (R.A.R.E.) 29 (1): 26-65, 2020. [download pdf icon]

SubfamiliaLamiinae Latreille, 1825
TribusAgapanthiini Mulsant, 1839
GenusAgapanthia Audinet-Serville, 1835
SubgenusEpoptes Gistl, 1857
SpeciesAgapanthia (Epoptes) asphodeli (Latreille, 1804)
SubspeciesAgapanthia (Epoptes) asphodeli zappii Sama, 1987