|Hemp, C; Kehl, S; Heller, K-G; Wägele, W; Hemp, A: A new genus of African Karniellina (Orthoptera, Tettigoniidae, Conocephalinae, Conocephalini): integrating morphological, molecular, and bioacoustical data, Systematic Entomology, 35, 581-595 (2010)|
Melanoscirtes gen.n. is established within Karniellina. The members of this subtribe are small conocephaline bush crickets, confined to Africa. Melanoscirtes is erected on Phlesirtes kibonotensis, a species restricted to forest clearings and forest edge in the submontane and montane zones of Mt. Kilimanjaro. A subspecies, M. kibonotensis uguenoensis, is described from the North Pare mountains, a mountain range of the Eastern Arc adjacent to Mt. Kilimanjaro. Further species of Melanoscirtes occur on other mountain ranges of the northern branch of the Eastern Arc mountains of northern Tanzania and southern Kenya. The South Pare mountains harbour M. shengenae; the West Usambaras, M. usambarensis, and the Taita Hills, M. taitensis. All species and subspecies of Melanoscirtes exhibit a similar morphology and occupy analogous habitats on the respective mountains. The song patterns for all species found within this genus are very similar, and this, together with evidence from molecular data, suggests that allopatric speciation is the reason for the biogeographic pattern found in this genus. A key for the subspecies and species of Melanoscirtes is provided.