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25 June 2021 Species Delimitation of Scavenger Flies in the Valley of Mexico
Carlos Pedraza-Lara, Marco A. Garduño-Sánchez, Isabel Téllez-García, Stephany Rodríguez-González, Eduardo Nuple-Juárez, Mariano Guardado-Estrada
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Abstract

Identification of species involved in cadaveric decomposition, such as scavenger Diptera, is a fundamental step for the use of entomological evidence in court. Identification based on morphology is widely used in forensic cases; however, taxonomic knowledge of scavenger fauna is poor for many groups and for many countries, particularly Neotropical ones. A number of studies have documented the utility of a DNA barcoding strategy to assist in the identification of poorly known and diverse groups, particularly in cases involving immature states or fragmented organisms. To provide baseline knowledge of the diversity of scavenger Diptera in the Valley of Mexico, we generated a DNA barcode collection comprised of sequences of the cytochrome c oxidase subunit 1 (COI) gene for all families sampled at a nature reserve located in this region. We collected and identified specimens on the basis of morphology and a species delimitation analysis. Our analyses of 339 individuals delineated 42 species distributed across nine families of Diptera. The richest families were Calliphoridae (9 species), Sarcophagidae (7 species), and Phoridae (6 species). We found many of the species previously recorded for the Valley of Mexico, plus 18 new records for the region. Our study highlights the utility of DNA barcoding as a first-step strategy to assess species richness of poorly studied scavenger fly taxa.

© The Author(s) 2021. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.
Carlos Pedraza-Lara, Marco A. Garduño-Sánchez, Isabel Téllez-García, Stephany Rodríguez-González, Eduardo Nuple-Juárez, and Mariano Guardado-Estrada "Species Delimitation of Scavenger Flies in the Valley of Mexico," Journal of Medical Entomology 58(6), 2206-2215, (25 June 2021). https://doi.org/10.1093/jme/tjab094
Received: 26 February 2021; Accepted: 29 April 2021; Published: 25 June 2021
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KEYWORDS
Diptera
DNA barcoding
scavenger
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