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Title: Cryptic or underworked? Taxonomic revision of the Antistrophus rufus species complex (Cynipoidea, Aulacideini)

Cryptic species present challenges across many subdisciplines of biology. Not all “cryptic” species, however, are truly cryptic; many are simply underexplored morphologically. We examined this idea for theAntistrophus rufusspecies complex, which previously contained three species thought to be morphologically cryptic. To determine whether theA. rufuscomplex are truly cryptic species, we assessed species boundaries of members of theA. rufusspecies complex using morphological, ecological, and DNA barcode data, and tested whether a set of 50 morphological characters could adequately diagnose these species. We revealed that this complex includes five species, and that there are useful phenotypic diagnostic characters for all members of this species complex. This enabled redescription of four species and the description ofAntistrophus laurenaeNastasi,sp. nov., which induces externally inconspicuous galls in stems ofSilphium integrifoliumMichx., a host not associated with other members of the complex. We use these new diagnostic characters to construct a key to the five species of therufuscomplex. We conclude that theA. rufuscomplex was not a true case of cryptic species. Our Bayesian analysis of DNA barcode data suggests possible cospeciation of members of therufuscomplex and theirSilphiumhost plants, but further study is necessary to better understand the evolution of host use in the lineage.

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Award ID(s):
1856626 2338008
Author(s) / Creator(s):
; ; ; ; ; ; ; ;
Publisher / Repository:
Date Published:
Journal Name:
Journal of Hymenoptera Research
Page Range / eLocation ID:
399 to 439
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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