Coniopteryx, photographed by Tom Murray.

Belongs within: Neuropterida.

The Coniopterygidae, dustywings, are a group of minute lacewings, generally with wingspans less than 7 mm, and with reduced wing venation and a dense covering of a waxy or mealy secretion (Grimaldi & Engel 2005). The wings are coupled by hamuli though the hind wings may occasionally be reduced (New 1991). Larvae are predators of small arthropods; adults may be predatory or herbivorous.

Coniopterygids are divided between the subfamilies Coniopteryginae, Aleuropteryginae and Brucheiserinae. Aleuropteryginae have fore wings with 2 R-M crossveins near the centre of the wing and hind wings with Rs branching from R very near the wing base whereas Coniopteryginae have 1 R-M crossvein near the centre of the fore wing and the hind wing Rs not branching from R near the wing base (New 1991). The Brucheiserinae are a little-known group from southern South America with a broad pronotum and lateral lobes on the fourth tarsomeres.

Characters (from New 1991): Antennae short and moniliform; scape enlarged; pedicel elongate; basal three segments may be enlarged in males. Ocelli absent. Wings generally longer than body, rarely shorter or with hind wing reduced, sometimes with distinct dark grey or black spotting, apex rounded; Rs two-branched; wings held in steep ‘tent’ over body when at rest. Aedeagus present in male.

<==Coniopterygidae [Coniopterygoidea]S07
|--Brucheiserinae [Brucheiseridae]EWB18
| |--Juraconiopteryx zherichiniGE05
| |--Heteroconis nigripennisN91, S84
| |--SpiloconisN91
| `--CryptosceneaN91
| |--C. australiensisN91
| |--C. evansorum Smithers 1984T13
| `--C. obscuriorWHW10
|--Neosemidalis farinosaWHW10
| |--C. pineticolaWHW10
| `--C. psociformisRD77
| |--S. aleyrodiformisVM20
| |--S. obscura Sziráki & Greve 1996A02
| `--S. vicina [=Coniopteryx vicina]VC07
`--Coniopteryx Curtis 1834S07
| i. s.: C. diptera Meinander 1971S07
| C. pygmaeaVM20
| C. tjederi Kimmins 1934A02
`--C. (Xeroconiopteryx Meinander 1972)S07
|--C. (X.) aegyptiacaS07
|--C. (X.) atlasensis Meinander 1963S07
|--C. (X.) dentifera Meinander 1983S07
|--C. (X.) kerzhneri Meinander 1971S07
|--C. (X.) ketiae Monserrat 1985S07
|--C. (X.) kinali Sziráki 2007S08
|--C. (X.) loipetsederi Aspöck 1963S07
|--C. (X.) mongolica Meinander 1969S07
|--C. (X.) mucrogonarcuata Meinander 1979S07
|--C. (X.) orbaS07
|--C. (X.) perisi Monserrat 1976S07
|--C. (X.) platyarcus Sziráki & Van Harten 2006S07
`--C. (X.) rostrogonarcuataS07

Coniopterygidae incertae sedis:
|--G. baliopteryxGE05
|--G. cretica Meinander 1975P92
`--G. fadiacraP92
Apoglaesoconis ackermaniGE05
|--H. hirtipennis Tjed. 1960T61
|--H. maroccanaT61
`--H. saltiT61

*Type species of generic name indicated


[A02] Aspöck, U. 2002. Phylogeny of the Neuropterida (Insecta: Holometabola). Zoologica Scripta 31: 51–55.

[EWB18] Engel, M. S., S. L. Winterton & L. C. V. Breitkreuz. 2018. Phylogeny and evolution of Neuropterida: where have wings of lace taken us? Annual Review of Entomology 63: 531–551.

[GE05] Grimaldi, D., & M. S. Engel. 2005. Evolution of the Insects. Cambridge University Press: New York.

[N91] New, T. R. 1991. Neuroptera (lacewings). In: CSIRO. The Insects of Australia: A textbook for students and research workers 2nd ed. vol. 1 pp. 525–542. Melbourne University Press: Carlton (Victoria).

[P92] Poinar, G. O., Jr. 1992. Life in Amber. Stanford University Press: Stanford.

[RD77] Richards, O. W., & R. G. Davies. 1977. Imms’ General Textbook of Entomology 10th ed. vol. 2. Classification and Biology. Chapman and Hall: London.

[R70] Riek, E. F. 1970. Neuroptera (lacewings). In: CSIRO. The Insects of Australia: A textbook for students and research workers pp. 472–494. Melbourne University Press.

[S84] Smithers, C. N. 1984. The Neuroptera of Barrow and nearby islands off the west coast of Western Australia. Australian Entomological Magazine 11 (4–5): 61–68.

[S07] Sziráki, G. 2007. Presence of the subgenus Xeroconiopteryx Meinander, 1972 in Hungary (Neuroptera: Coniopterygidae). Annales Historico-Naturales Musei Nationalis Hungarici 99: 93–100.

[T13] Taylor, C. K. 2013. Annotated bibliography for Barrow Island terrestrial invertebrates. Records of the Western Australian Museum Supplement 83: 135–144.

[T61] Tjeder, B. 1961. Neuroptera-Planipennia. The lace-wings of southern Africa. 4. Family Hemerobiidae. In: Hanström, B., P. Brinck & G. Rudebeck (eds) South African Animal Life: Results of the Lund University Expedition in 1950–1951 vol. 8 pp. 296–408. Almqvist & Wiksell: Uppsala.

[VM20] Vasilikopoulos, A., B. Misof, K. Meusemann, D. Lieberz, T. Flouri, R. G. Beutel, O. Niehuis, T. Wappler, J. Rust, R. S. Peters, A. Donath, L. Podsiadlowski, C. Mayer, D. Bartel, A. Böhm, S. Liu, P. Kapli, C. Greve, J. E. Jepson, X. Liu, X. Zhou, H. Aspöck & U. Aspöck. 2020. An integrative phylogenomic approach to elucidate the evolutionary history and divergence times of Neuropterida (Insecta: Holometabola). BMC Evolutionary Biology 20: 64.

[VC07] Villanueva, R. T., & C. C. Childers. 2007. Insect predators of eriophyids on Florida citrus including a new predacious Lepidoptera and two cecidomyiids. In: Morales-Malacara, J. B., V. M. Behan-Pelletier, E. Ueckermann, T. M. Pérez, E. G. Estrada-Venegas & M. Badii (eds) Acarology XI: Proceedings of the International Congress pp. 391–395. Instituto de Biología and Faculdad de Ciencias, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Sociedad Latinoamericana de Acarología: México.

[WHW10] Winterton, S. L., N. B. Hardy & B. M. Wiegmann. 2010. On wings of lace: phylogeny and Bayesian divergence time estimates of Neuropterida (Insecta) based on morphological and molecular data. Systematic Entomology 35: 349–378.

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