Length: 3.0-8.5 mm
Pyropyga is a small genus in the Nearctic, and only three species are found east of the Mississippi River:
- Pyropyga nigricans, 4.2-8.5 mm. Somewhat scarce in the East, and absent from the Southeast. More common in the western U.S. and Canada, and in Mexico.
- Pyropyga minuta, 3.0-5.5 mm. Records from North Carolina, Florida, Louisiana, Missouri, and a number of southwestern states, also Mexico and Honduras. This is the smallest member of Pyropyga.
- Pyropyga decipiens, 4.5-7.2 mm. Southeastern Canada and as far south as Tennessee and North Carolina. Distribution in the western states unclear.
Unfortunately, the species in this genus are usually very difficult to separate, and markings and even body shape vary from individual to individual. Green (1961) argued that for most species of Pyropyga, dissection of the male genitalia is the only way to identify to species, and that females of most species must remain unidentified unless identified by association with an identified male.
In this genus, Dillon and Dillon (1972) note, the light organs are "feebly developed."
Insects of West Virginia