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Morphology and DNA barcoding reveal three species in one: Description of Culicoides cryptipulicaris sp. nov. and Culicoides quasipulicaris sp. nov. in the subgenus Culicoides

Talavera S., Muñoz-Muñoz F., Verdún M., Pagès Martinez N.. 2017. Medical and Veterinary Entomology, 31 (2) : p. 178-191.

DOI: 10.1111/mve.12228

Species of the genus Culicoides (Diptera: Ceratopogonidae) are well known for their importance in the field of medical and veterinary entomology. Culicoides spp. transmit a wide variety of pathogens, primarily viruses that affect animals and humans. In Europe, the most economically important disease transmitted by Culicoides is bluetongue (BT). Culicoides spp. have been recently involved as primary vectors for Schmallenberg disease. The taxonomy within the subgenus Culicoides has been historically difficult and reorganizations have been proposed regularly. The subgenus Culicoides includes species that are considered to be potential vectors for BT. High morphological intraspecific variability has been attributed to these species. This highlights the apparent presence of previously undetected cryptic species diversity in the subgenus. In the present study, a detailed morphological and molecular study of specimens belonging to Culicoides pulicaris s.l. and specimens resembling a cross between C. pulicaris and Culicoides punctatus revealed the presence of two new species: Culicoides cryptipulicaris and Culicoides quasipulicaris. Females of C. quasipulicaris and males of both species were morphologically distinguished from C. pulicaris (Linnaeus, 1758), whereas females of C. cryptipulicaris were identified using molecular techniques exclusively.

Mots-clés : espagne

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