A Morphological Phylogeny of the Nightshade Flea Beetles Epitrix and Acallepitrix in America North of Mexico

Monday, March 14, 2016
Oak Forest Ballroom Prefunction Area (Sheraton Raleigh Hotel)
Anthony Deczynski , School of Agricultural, Forest, and Environmental Sciences, Clemson University, Clemson, SC
Epitrix is a large genus of flea beetles with over 200 described species worldwide and many more undescribed.  They are associated with solanaceous plants and some species are major pests of crops such as potato, tomato, eggplant, and tobacco.  Acallepitrix is a primarily Neotropical genus of solanaceous feeding flea beetles with a single North American representative which is poorly distinguished from Epitrix.  In this research I have produced a phylogeny for all known species north of Mexico using morphological characters.  The evolutionary history of the group and relationships between Epitrix and Acallepitrix are discussed.