The genus Leonseius Chant & McMurtry (Phytoseiidae: Typhlodrominae) was proposed to accommodate Typhloseiopsis regularisDe Leon, 1965, a species with a troubled taxonomic history that was previously classified in the genera Typhlodromus Scheuten, Diadromus Athias-Henriot and Chanteius Wainstein. Due to its Amblyseius-like appearance (long s4, Z4 and Z5, most other setae minute; atypical for a typhlodromine), the poor descriptions of reproductive structures (spermatheca, spermatodactyl), and probably also because at the time it was a monotypic genus, researchers over the years have based the species-level identification of Leonseius regularis mainly on dorsal and ventral idiosomal chaetotaxy and setal length. In a survey of phytoseiid mites conducted in cacao plantations (Theobroma cacao L.: Malvaceae) of the municipality of Ilhéus, Bahia, northeastern Brazil, we identified two distinct morphotypes among specimens initially identified as L. regularis. Herein we provide new morphological data for L. regularis to complement the original description and previous redescriptions, and then describe Leonseius elbanhawyi Carvalho, Ferragut & Oliveira sp. nov., from cacao, distinguishing it from L. regularis by its spermatheca and spermatodactyl. Also, the diagnosis of Leonseius is amended.
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