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Journal Article

Australian Blephariceridae (Diptera)


Zwick,  Peter
Limnological River Station Schlitz, Max Planck Institute for Limnology, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology, Max Planck Society;

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Zwick, P. (1977). Australian Blephariceridae (Diptera). Australian Journal of Zoology Supplementary Series, 46, 1-121.

Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-000F-CD18-3
A general description of the morphology of Australian Blephariceridae and - where needed for comparison - of other members of the family is given. The data provide the basis for a reconstruction of phylogenetic relationships (sensu Hennig). Only two subfamilies (Edwardsininae and Blepharicerinae, s.l.) are recognized; the former subfamilies Blepharicerinae, s.s., Paltostomatinae and Apistomyiinae are considered tribes of the Blepharicerinae. Phylogenetic relationships of Australian taxa are considered in detail. All Australian Edwardsina belong to the subgenus Tonnoirina and have their closest relatives in Australia. They provide no evidence for transantarctic distribution, as their present distribution can equally well be explained by relict distribution. Australian Blepharicerinae all belong to the Apistomyiini, which are shown to be a tribe of Neotropical Paltostomatini. The sequence of phyletic branching within the Apistomyiini matches geographical distribution from New Zealand to New Caledonia, the Oriental Region, and then to Australia. It is concluded that the group reached New Zealand from the Neotropical Region via Antarctica, spread along the Inner Melanesian Arc to the Oriental Region, and finally invaded Australia when in the relatively recent past it temporarily made contact with the Oriental Region. Apistomyiini are therefore absent from Tasmania. The bionomics of Australian Blephariceridae are described from field data and several types of life cycle are distinguished. Habitat preferences, longitudinal zonation and seasonal succession are also described. Brief accounts of predators, commensals, and parasites are provided. All known stages of all Australian species (18 species of Edwardsina and at least three genera and seven species of Apistomyiini) are described and keys to all stages are provided. New taxa described are: E. affinis, sp. nov.; E. alticola, sp. nov.; E. australiensis aberrans, subsp. nov.; E. bubalus, sp. nov.; E. gigantea, sp. nov.; E. pilosa, sp. nov.; E. plicata, sp. nov.; E. polymorpha, sp. nov.; E. reticulata, sp. nov.; E. soror, sp. nov.; E. spinosa, sp. nov.; E. torrentium, sp. nov.; E. torrentium aspera, subsp. nov.; E. williamsi, sp. nov.; Parapistomya, gen. nov., with type-species P. tropica, sp. nov.; P. bulbifera, sp. nov. The following new synonymies are established: E. australiensis (= E. tillyardi), E. confinis (= E. fluviatilis), subgenus Tonnoirina of Edwardsina (= Alexina). The subgenus Curupirina of Austrocurupira from New Caledonia is given generic rank.