View the above photo record (by Zenobia van Dyk) in LacewingMAP here.
Size: Small-Medium sized (Wingspan around 56mm)
Delicate and beautiful antlions with very long, slender legs. The wings are iridescent with intricate brown markings. The hind wings end in elegant pointed tips.
Larvae: The larvae of Cymothales illustris are unknown.
Cymothales illustris inhabits arid regions. It is found in karroid scrublands as well as arid kalahari woodland and other dry woodland types.
It normally rests well camouflaged among grass or other vegetation. Adults are readily attracted to lights and are recorded from October to May.
They are known to prey on various flying insects including other antlions.
The life history of the larval stage is unknown, but other species of Cymothales live in detritus in tree holes or on rock ledges. This species is likely to do the same.
Status and Distribution
Cymothales illustris is fairly common in the drier western parts of Southern Africa, unlike others in the genus that occur in the northern and eastern regions. It is also found in Namibia, Botswana and Zimbabwe.
Order: Neuroptera Family: Myrmeleontidae Subfamily: Dendroleontinae Tribe: Dendroleontini Genus: Cymothales Species: illustris
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The use of photographs by Karis Daniel, Vaughan Jessnitz and Zenobia van Dyk is acknowledged. This species text has benefited enormously from comments made by Mervyn Mansell on records he has identified in LacewingMAP. We acknowledge his important contribution.
Recommended citation format for this species text:
Tippett RM 2022. Cymothales illustris. Biodiversity and Development Institute, Cape Town.
Available online at http://thebdi.org/2022/10/24/cymothales-illustris/