Monday, December 10, 2007 - 10:05 AM

Revealing Australia's Miridae diversity: New species and genera of Leucophoropterini (Heteroptera: Miridae) from Australia

Katrina L Menard,, Texas A&M University, Entomology, 413 Heep Center, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX

The Plant-bug Planetary Biodiversity Inventory is an ongoing effort by leading experts in Miridae (Hemiptera: Heteroptera) to collect, describe, and database the world fauna of two of its largest sub-families: the Phylinae and the Orthotylinae. Both sister subfamilies are unique in their high degree of host-plant specificity, as well as their biology. Research efforts have focused on the temperate regions of the world, which have shown to have the highest diversity of these two groups. Australia is of particular importance due to the high amount of endemism of its plant fauna, as well as the lack of knowledge about its diverse mirid fauna. Current only 10% of its fauna have been described. As part of this effort to describe and study the fauna of this region, my research has focused on the genus Sejanus Distant (Phylinae: Leucophoropterini), a group that is believe to have a large radiation in Australia. Initially described from India, the distribution of this genus has been expanded through recent investigations to include the Japan, China, Indonesia, Papua New Guinea, and the Pacific Islands. Presented are new species of Leucophoropterini from Australia, as well as a discussion about the status of Sejanus as a genus within the Leucophoropterini.

Species 1: Hemiptera Miridae Sejanus spp