Trihelota, a new and unusual helotid beetle genus from mid-Cretaceous Burmese amber (Coleoptera: Helotidae)

Tihelka Erik, Huang Diying, Cai Chenyang
Acta Entomologica Musei Nationalis Pragae 60(2): 509-516, 2020
Published online: 23rd September 2020
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Abstract: A new genus belonging to the cucujoid family Helotidae, Trihelota gen. nov., is described from mid-Cretaceous (ca.99 million years old) amber from Kachin State, northern Myanmar, containing a single species T. fulvata sp. nov. The minute fossil was documented using fluorescence microscopy and X-ray microtomography to reveal fine morphological details. Trihelota is characterised by its transverse head, antennal club about 1.5 times longer than wide, pronotum almost parallel-sided, and elytra not costate. Notably, each elytron possesses three coloured spots, a character unique within Helotidae. The new genus considerably expands the known morphological disparity of Cretaceous helotids. A keyto extinct and extant genera of the family Helotidae is provided along with a checklist of fossil species.
Key words: Coleoptera, Cucujoidea, Helotidae, Cretaceous, Mesozoic, fossil, Burmese amber
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