Morphological and molecular analysis of Australian earwigs (Dermaptera) points to unique species and regional endemism in the anisolabididae family

Oliver P. Stuart, Matthew Binns, Paul A. Umina, Joanne Holloway, Dustin Severtson, Michael Nash, Thomas Heddle, Maarten Van Helden, Ary A. Hoffmann

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Abstract

Dermaptera (earwigs) from the Anisolabididae family may be important for pest control but their taxonomy and status in Australia is poorly studied. Here we used taxonomic information to assess the diversity of southern Australian Anisolabididae and then applied cox1 barcodes as well as additional gene fragments (mitochondrial and nuclear) to corroborate classification and assess the monophyly of the putative genera. Anisolabididae morphospecies fell into two genera, Anisolabis Fieber and Gonolabis Burr, based on paramere morphology. Combinations of paramere and forceps morphology distinguished seven morphospecies, which were further supported by morphometric analyses. The morphospecies were corroborated by barcode data; all showed within-species genetic distance < 4% and between-species genetic distance > 10%. Molecular phylogenies did not support monophyly of putative genera nor clades based on paramere shape, instead pointing to regional clades distinguishable by forceps morphology. This apparent endemism needs to be further tested by sampling of earwig diversity outside of agricultural production regions but points to a unique regional insect fauna potentially important in pest control.
Original languageEnglish
Article number72
Pages (from-to)1-25
Number of pages25
JournalInsects
Volume10
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 14 Mar 2019

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    Stuart, O. P., Binns, M., Umina, P. A., Holloway, J., Severtson, D., Nash, M., Heddle, T., Van Helden, M., & Hoffmann, A. A. (2019). Morphological and molecular analysis of Australian earwigs (Dermaptera) points to unique species and regional endemism in the anisolabididae family. Insects, 10(3), 1-25. [72]. https://doi.org/10.3390/insects10030072