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Venezia, Italy

Brown B.V.,Entomology Section | Smith P.T.,California State University, Bakersfield
Systematic Entomology

The phylogeny of the bee-killing flies, genus Melaloncha Brues (Diptera: Phoridae) is analysed using six genes - cytochrome oxidase I, 16S ribosomal DNA, 12S ribosomal DNA, NADH1 dehydrogenase, 28S ribosomal DNA and CAD- plus 47 morphological characters. A total of 91 specimens, including eight out-groups and 83 Melaloncha (representing 70 species) were included in the analyses. Parsimony analysis of the combined data set produced a single most parsimonious tree with varied Bremer and bootstrap support of interior nodes. Bayesian analysis of molecules only and of morphology + molecules produced trees largely in agreement with parsimony results, although with a few differences. Supported groups included subfamily Metopininae, genus Melaloncha, and subgenera Melaloncha s.s. and Melaloncha (Udamochiras) Enderlein. Within the subgenera, the previously recognized Melaloncha furcata, Melaloncha cingulata, Melaloncha ungulata and Melaloncha stylata groups were recovered, as well as some new groupings. The M. furcata group was placed as the sister group of other Melaloncha s.s., which is consistent with known host-attacking behaviour. © 2010 The Authors. Systematic Entomology © 2010 The Royal Entomological Society. Source

Okins K.E.,Cooperative Agricultural Pest Survey | Thomas M.C.,Entomology Section
Florida Entomologist

The ambrosia beetle Xyleborinus andrewesi (Blandford) is recorded from North America for the first time. It was reared from a section of sugar apple (Annona squamosa L.) collected in North Fort Myers, Lee Co., Florida. Source

Minelli A.,University of Padua | Munari L.,Entomology Section
Development Genes and Evolution

Recording and describing animal 'monsters' collected in the field can still contribute to progress in developmental biology despite the uncontrolled conditions the specimen experienced throughout development. Comparison with model organisms and a sound phylogenetic analysis may offer a tentative explanation for the underlying developmental mechanism and suggest new targets for experimental studies. We describe a female specimen of the anthomyiid fly Hydrophoria sp. with an ectopic macrochaeta in the left eye and suggest tentative interpretations, including one in terms of a local expression, or derepression, of a proneural gene. The anthomyiid lineage has been estimated to have split ca. 65 million years ago from the dipteran clade containing Drosophila and ca. 140 million years ago from the clade containing Megaselia. © 2012 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg. Source

Brown B.V.,Entomology Section
Annals of the Entomological Society of America

A new fossil species of the genus Anevrina Lioy is described from 40 million-year-old Baltic amber. It differs from the only other described fossil species of this genus, Anevrina oligocoenica Brues, by the setation of the tibiae and the structure of the male genitalia. The new species is most similar to the extant Anevrina olympiae (Aldrich), from which it differs by the darker color and details of the male genitalia. © 2013 Entomological Society of America. Source

Brown B.V.,Entomology Section
Journal of Systematic Palaeontology

Fossil phorid flies display various levels of morphological change that are correlated with myrmecophily (association with ants) and termitophily (association with termites) in the modern fauna. Three discrete episodes in the evolution of limuloidy, a defensive body form, are documented from Eocene Baltic amber. Extinct fossil stem-group taxa of the modern myrmecophilous genus Aenigmatias Meinert are described, with three new species – A. longicornis sp. nov., A. primitivus sp. nov. and A. nigeroticus sp. nov. – recognized and illustrated. Protoplatyphora Brues is synonymized with Aenigmatias, with its single previously described species, A. tertiarius (Brues), considered a new combination. Chaetopleurophora bisetosa Brown, 2007 is transferred to Aenigmatias as A. bisetosus (comb. nov.). An unrelated Aenigmatias-like fossil is described as Pseudaenigmatias ctenitibia gen. et sp. nov., and belongs to a modern termitophilous clade. Limulomyia tyche Brown, 1999 is interpreted as a separate, already highly limuloid lineage not related to either of the other two limuloid groups. A key to fossil Aenigmatias is given, along with a phylogenetic analysis of fossil taxa. Fossil specimens have profound implications for our knowledge of the evolution of the limuloid body form found in modern species of Aenigmatias. http://zoobank.org/urn:lsid:zoobank.org:pub:DE779D49-7636-4B1D-9F7D-CF3FF6D3CE97 © 2016 The Trustees of the Natural History Museum, London 2016. All Rights Reserved. Source

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