Dragonflies and Damselflies: References

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Reference Link. Citation Primary biogeographic zone Disciplinary domains URL Usage
von Ellenrieder 2003a. von Ellenrieder, N. (2003) A synopsis of the Neotropical species of 'Aeshna' Fabricius: the genus Rhionaeschna Förster (Odonata: Aeshnidae) Tijdschrift voor Entomologie 146: 67-207, figs. 1-468, tabs. 1-3. Neotropical Taxonomy Link Check use

Key words
Odonata; Aeshnidae; Aeshna; Rhionaeschna; systematics; keys; cladistics; phylogeny; biogeography.

This study includes a revisionary, phylogenetic and biogeographical analysis of Neotropical components of Aeshna Fabricius characterized by a midventral tubercle on abdominal sternum I. Phylogenetic relationships of the Neotropical species of Aeshna were inferred based on 39 adult characters. Ingroup taxa included 68 out of the 85 species currently assigned to Aeshna, and two species each of Andaeshna De Marmels and Anaciaeschna Selys. Oreaeschna dictatrix Lieftinck was chosen as outgroup. The strict consensus tree obtained after successive weighting revealed that Aeshna is not monophyletic; some of its species are more closely related to Anaciaeschna or Andaeschna. The name Aeshna should consequently be restricted to the Holarctic group including the type species Aeshna grandis Fabricius. In the present synopsis the generic name Rhionaeschna Förster is assigned to the New World group characterized by the presence of a conical tubercle on abdominal sternum I, comprising 39 species formerly assigned to Aeshna. The synopsis includes keys to adults of both sexes, diagnoses, biological notes, distribution maps and more than 400 diagnostic illustrations. Rhionaeschna demarmelsi sp. n. is described, R. maita Förster is considered a junior synonym of R. brevifrons (Hagen), R. peralta (Ris) is considered a valid species, not a synonym of R. variegata (Fabricius), R. planaltica (Calvert) is raised to specific rank, ‘Aeshna’ williamsoniana Calvert, formerly included in the subgenus Hesperaeschna Cockerell, is excluded from Rhionaeschna, and lectotypes are designated for R. maita, R. intricata (Martin), R. multicolor (Hagen), R. bonariensis (Rambur), R. diffinis (Rambur), and R. peralta. Females of three species and larvae of 16 species are still unknown. Rhionaeschna occurs from southern Argentina to southern Canada, but is primarily Neotropical with its highest diversity along the Andean mountain range between Venezuela and Bolivia. It is absent from the Amazon basin, only three species occur north to the Neotropical region. The sister group of Rhionaeschna includes some African species of ‘Aeshna’ (A. rileyi Calvert, A. subpupillata McLachlan and A. moori Pinhey). Rhionaeschna plus the African clade constitute the sister group of Andaeshna, Anaciaeschna, Anax Leach, Hemianax Selys and several species of ‘Aeshna’ of uncertain affinities (i.e. A. affinis Vander Linden, A. brevistyla Rambur, A. ellioti Kirby, A. mixta Latreille, A. isoceles Müller and A. williamsoniana); the phylogenetic relationships within this complex are not yet known and their resolution is beyond the scope of this study. Rhionaeschna is absent from the Brazilian shield. Its related species and genera (‘A.’ rileyi, ‘A.’ subpupillata, ‘A.’ moori in Africa; ‘A.’ brevistyla in Australia and New Zealand, Andaeshna in the Andes and ‘A.’ williamsoniana in Central America, ‘A.’ isoceles and highest species numbers of Anaciaeschna, Hemianax and Anax species in the Indo-Australian region) display a low diversity in Africa, which suggests a trans-Pacific rather than trans-Atlantic (Gondwanian) track, as has been hypothesized for other groups of similarly distributed odonates.