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24 April 2020 Phylogeny, systematics and rarity assessment of New Zealand endemic Saphydrus beetles and related enigmatic larvae (Coleoptera : Hydrophilidae : Cylominae)
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The New Zealand endemic beetle genus Saphydrus Sharp, 1884 (Coleoptera : Hydrophilidae : Cylominae) is studied in order to understand its phylogenetic position, species-level systematics, biology and distribution, and to reveal reasons for its rarity. The first complete genus-level phylogeny of Cylominae based on two mitochondrial (cox1, 16S) and two nuclear genes (18S, 28S) covering 18 of 19 genera of the subfamily reveals Saphydrus as an isolated lineage situated in a clade with Cylorygmus (South America), Relictorygmus (South Africa) and Eurygmus (Australia). DNA is used to associate two larval morphotypes with Saphydrus: one of them represents the larvae of S. suffusus Sharp, 1884; the other, characterised by unique characters of the head and prothorax morphology, is revealed as sister but not closely related to Saphydrus. It is described here as Enigmahydrus, gen. nov. with a single species, E. larvalis, sp. nov., whose adult stage remains unknown. Saphydrus includes five species, two of which (S. moeldnerae, sp. nov. and S. tanemahuta, sp. nov.) are described as new. Larvae of Enigmahydrus larvalis and Saphydrus suffusus are described and illustrated in detail based on DNA-identified specimens. Candidate larvae for Saphydrus obesus Sharp, 1884 and S. tanemahuta are illustrated and diagnosed. Specimen data are used to evaluate the range, altitudinal distribution, seasonality and population dynamics over time for all species. Strongly seasonal occurrence of adults combined with other factors (winter occurrence in S. obesus, occurrence at high altitudes in S. tanemahuta) is hypothesised as the primary reason of the rarity for Saphydrus species. By contrast, Enigmahydrus larvalis underwent a strong decline in population number and size since the 1970s and is currently known from a single, locally limited population; we propose the ‘nationally threatened’ status for this species.

© CSIRO 2020
Matthias Seidel, Yûsuke N. Minoshima, Richard A. B. Leschen, and Martin Fikáček "Phylogeny, systematics and rarity assessment of New Zealand endemic Saphydrus beetles and related enigmatic larvae (Coleoptera : Hydrophilidae : Cylominae)," Invertebrate Systematics 34(3), 260-292, (24 April 2020).
Received: 23 July 2019; Accepted: 8 January 2020; Published: 24 April 2020

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