Treehoppers are found on all major landmasses except Antarctica and Madagascar. Numbering about 3,500 species in 300 genera, they are divided into three families. All treehoppers feed on plant sap by sucking it out with piercing mouthparts. Some species exude sweet honeyde" from excess consumed sap, which they share with ants in a mutualistic relationship, the ants feeding on the honeydew and protecting the treehoppers from predators. Some treehoppers are also known to form mutualistic relationships with wasps and bees.
The new genus Selenacentrus was named after the singer Selena Quintanilla, who was known as the "Queen of Tejano Music." The new species is called wallacei in honor of Matthew S. Wallace, a biology professor from East Stroudsburg University.
For the experts: A new treehopper genus Selenacentrus (Membracidae: Centrotinae), and new species, S. wallacei, from the southwestern United States and northern Mexico, are described and illustrated. This genus lacks key characteristics of currently recognized New World centrotine tribes including the dorsoapical and ventral lobes of the male lateral plate and cucullate setae of the mesothoracic femora (characteristic of the Boocerini). It also lacks the additional m-cu crossvein and broadened second valvulae characteristic of Platycentrini. The narrow, curved second valvulae, with prominent dorsal teeth, and lateral exposure of the scutellar apices resemble those of some endemic Antillean centrotines (Monobelini, Nessorhinini); however, Selenacentrus differs from these groups in characters of the forewing and male genitalia.