Preliminary re-examination of genus-level taxonomy of the pollen beetle subfamily Meligethinae (Coleoptera: Nitidulidae)
Paolo Audisio, Francesco Lamanna, Sirio Strika, Lorenzo Costantini, Marco Trizzino, Emiliano Mancini, Gloria Antonini, Alessio De Biase, Andrew R. Cline, Pierfilippo Cerretti
The pollen beetle subfamily Meligethinae C. G. Thomson, 1859 (Nitidulidae), is distributed throughout the Holarctic, Afrotropical, Oriental, and Australasian Regions. Previously, the subfamily included fifteen genera and approximately seven hundred species, most of which were attributed to the widespread and paraphyletic genus Meligethes Stephens, 1830, and to a lesser extent the primarily Afrotropical genus Pria Stephens, 1830. Herein, twenty-two additional genera are described as new from Europe, Africa, North America and Asia; including the following: Afrogethes, Aristogethes, Asterogethes, Bolbocerogethes, Boragogethes, Brassicogethes, Fabogethes, Genistogethes, Indogethes, Jelinekigethes, Lamiogethes, Lucanopria, Neolariopsis, Odontholariopsis, Paleogethes, Rubiogethes, Sagittogethes, Stachygethes, Tarchonanthogethes, Thymogethes, Xenostrongylogethes, and Xerogethes, all Audisio & Cline, gen. nov. Six previously recognized and/or described subgenera of Meligethes are elevated to generic rank; including Acanthogethes Reitter, 1871, Clypeogethes Scholz, 1932, Idiogethes Kirejtshuk, 1977, Chromogethes Kirejtshuk, 1989, Lariopsis Kirejtshuk, 1989, and Astylogethes Kirejtshuk, 1992 stat. nov. The new combinations for all transferred species are established. The type species of all recognized genera are fixed and/or indicated, a preliminary check list of inclusive described species attributed to each of the resulting 43 Meligethinae genera is provided, and a new genus/species is described from Rwanda, i.e. Lucanopria wagneri Audisio & Cline, gen. nov. and sp. nov. One new synonymy is proposed: Meligethes albens Audisio & De Biase, 2004, = Chromogethes formosus (Kirejtshuk, 1989) syn. nov. A preliminary phylogenetic scenario of Meligethinae is discussed, based on selected morphological characters and evidence from partially published molecular data (i.e. COI, ITS2, and PEPCK genes) representing most Meligethinae genera. Also, the available bionomical data and larval host-plant associations of inclusive genera are summarized.