Phylogeny and classification of Ochlerotatus and allied taxa (Diptera: Culicidae: Aedini) based on morphological data from all life stages




The phylogenetic relationships and generic assignments of ‘Ochlerotatus’ and related taxa of uncertain taxonomic position in the classification of Aedini previously proposed by the authors in 2004 and 2006 are explored using 297 characters from eggs, fourth-instar larvae, pupae, adults and immature habitat coded for 158 exemplar species. The ingroup comprises 54 species and the outgroup includes four non-aedine species and 100 aedine species, 21 of which were previously classified as incertae sedis. Data are analysed in a total-evidence approach using implied weighting. The analysis produced 158 most parsimonious cladograms. The strict consensus tree (SCT) corroborates the monophyly of the 30 generic-level taxa recognized previously that are included in the analysis. Overall, the results show remarkable congruence with those obtained previously despite differences in the taxa and morphological characters analysed in this and the two previous studies. All species of Ochlerotatus s.s., subgenus ‘Ochlerotatussensu auctorum, Geoskusea, Levua, Pseudoskusea and Rhinoskusea included in the analysis fall within a single clade that is treated as genus Ochlerotatus; thus, the last four taxa are restored to their previous subgeneric rank within this genus. Nine additional subgenera, of which four are new, are proposed for monophyletic clades of Ochlerotatus species based on the strength of character support and application of the principle of equivalent rank. Acartomyia stat. nov., Culicelsa stat. nov., Gilesia stat. nov., Protoculex stat. nov. and Chrysoconops stat. nov. are resurrected from synonymy with Ochlerotatus; and Empihals subgen. nov. (type species: Culex vigilax Skuse), Pholeomyia subgen. nov. (type species: Aedes calcariae Marks), Buvirilia subgen. nov. (type species: Aedes edgari Stone & Rosen) and Sallumia subgen. nov. (type species: Aedes hortator Dyar & Knab) are described as new. The sister group of Ochlerotatus includes a number of species that were previously regarded as incertae sedis in ‘Oc. (Finlaya)’ and ‘Oc. (Protomacleaya)’. Based on previous observations, refined relationships and new character support, three additional genera are recognized for species previously included in ‘Finlaya’, i.e. Danielsia stat. nov. (type species: Danielsia albotaeniata Leicester), Luius gen. nov. (type species: Aedes fengi Edwards) and Hopkinsius gen. nov. (type species: Aedes ingrami Edwards). Additionally, Alloeomyia subgen. nov. (type species: Culex pseudotaeniatus Giles) and Yamada subgen. nov. (type species: Aedes seoulensis Yamada) are introduced as subgenera of Collessius and Hopkinsius, respectively. As is usual with generic-level groups of Aedini, the newly recognized genera and subgenera are polythetic taxa that are diagnosed by unique combinations of characters. The analysis corroborates the previous observation that ‘Oc. (Protomacleaya)’ is a polyphyletic assemblage of species. © 2008 The Linnean Society of London, Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society, 2008, 153, 29–114.