The first female of Alvamaja chlorometallica Rognes, 2010 found in Romania

This autumn my friend Alexandru Pintilioaie in Romania sent me a batch of flies, including one metallic rhinophorid. We both agreed that it looked very odd and interesting so I took some photos on the photo-stacking system at the Angela Marmont Centre (NHM) to thank him. European rhinophorids are not really my group so I later posted these on the “Diptera” Facebook group to see if anyone could suggest what it might be. Within 10 minutes Paul Beuk in the Netherlands replied and suggested that it might be a female of a species described by Knut Rognes in 2010 (Rognes K (2010) Alvamaja chlorometallica new species from Europe – the first metallic Rhinophoridae). Alvamaja chlorometallica was described from 3 male specimens collected in 1963 in Serbia and held in the Zoölogisch Museum, Universiteit van Amsterdam, Amsterdam, Netherlands. In June 2008 Liekele Sijstermans made the initial discovery and sent photos and, later, specimens to Knut Rognes who immediately noticed how unusual they were.

I sent my photos to Knut who confirmed that it looked very much like a female of this species and no females had to date been found. I double-checked the specimen through the key and it runs quite easily. This was a really interesting find and an article is in production.

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