Emeljanov A.F., Shcherbakov D.E.
The longest-nosed Mesozoic Fulgoroidea (Homoptera): a new family from mid-Cretaceous Burmese amber
Number: 354, Pages: 1 - 14
Dorytocus ornithorhynchus gen. et sp. n., based on nymphs of three different instars from mid-Cretaceous Burmese amber, represents a new family Dorytocidae fam. n., which is similar to Cretaceous Perforissidae in the unique structure of the pronotum and abdominal segments IX and X, but differs from it in the presence of a long (especially in late instars) head process, long rostrum, flattened fore and mid tibiae, asetigerous hind tibial pecten, and highly carinate abdomen. Structural features and relative abundance of Dorytocidae fam. n. imply that they dwelt on the bark of amber-producing trees. The new genus is the longest-snouted Mesozoic planthopper known so far – its slender head process is one-quarter as long as the body in the last instar nymph, and more than one-third as long in the adult (known to us from photos). These hoppers were likely thorn mimics, and their elaborate crypsis protected them from increased visual predation during the rise of modern-type birds in the mid-Cretaceous.