Multilocus phylogeny of the parasitic wasps in the tribe Euphorini (Hymenoptera: Braconidae) with revised generic classifications

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Abstract

Background. Parasitic wasps in the family Braconidae are important regulators of insect pests, particularly in forest and agroecosystems. Within Braconidae, wasps in the tribe Euphorini (Euphorinae) attack economically damaging plant bugs (Miridae) that are major pests of field and vegetable crops. However, the evolutionary relationships of this tribe have been historically problematic. Most generic concepts have been based on ambiguous morphological characters which often leads to misidentification, complicating their use in biological control. Methods. Using a combination of three genes (COI, 28S, and CAD) and 80 taxa collected worldwide, we conducted Bayesian inference using MrBayes, and maximum likelihood analyses using RAxML and IQ-Tree on individual gene trees as well as the concatenated dataset. Results. The monophyly of the tribe Euphorini and the two genera Peristenus and Leiophron were confirmed using maximum likelihood and Bayesian inference. The subgeneric classifications of Leiophron sensu lato were not supported, and the monotypic genus Mama was also not supported. Discussion. Euphoriella, Euphoriana, Euphorus, and Mama syn. n, have been synonymized under Leiophron. Mama mariae syn. n was placed as a junior synonym of Leiophron reclinator. The generic concepts of Peristenus and Leiophron were refined to reflect the updated phylogeny. Further we discuss the need for revising Euphorini given the number of undescribed species within the tribe.

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Zhang, Y. M., Stigenberg, J., Meyer, J. H., & Sharanowski, B. J. A. (2018). Multilocus phylogeny of the parasitic wasps in the tribe Euphorini (Hymenoptera: Braconidae) with revised generic classifications. PeerJ, 2018(5). https://doi.org/10.7717/peerj.4783

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