Taxonomy of West-Palaearctic Lampromeloe (Coleoptera: Meloidae) with the description of a new species

Keywords: Atlas Mountains, North Africa, blister beetles, taxonomy, geometric morphometrics


Widely distributed phoretic blister beetles usually display unstructured geographic patterns of genetic diversity within species, resulting from recurrent long-dispersal events across their range. To investigate the extent of this pattern in the phoretic genus Lampromeloe, and particularly in western Mediterranean and European populations of L. variegatus, we performed: (1) a phylogeographic analysis based on fragments of the mitochondrial genes COI and 16S, and (2) a morphological revision based on qualitative and morphometric traits. Two allopatric lineages were recovered within L. variegatus, one distributed across Europe and the other in North Africa. These lineages are readily distinguishable based on morphological traits. We conclude that these lineages constitute two diagnosable evolutionary units and, consequently, we describe the North African populations as a new species, Lampromeloe pantherinus sp. nov. The new species is closely related to L. variegatus, from which it differs mainly by the elytral macrosculpture and by the shape of male genitalia. The elytral macrosculpture of L. pantherinus is somewhat similar to that of L. cavensis, a species widely distributed in the lowlands of the Mediterranean Basin. However, these two non-sister species can be distinguished by the morphology and macrosculpture of the pronotum and by the shape of the male genitalia.


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How to Cite
Sánchez-Vialas, A., López-Estrada, E. K., Ruiz, J. L., & García-París, M. (2024). Taxonomy of West-Palaearctic Lampromeloe (Coleoptera: Meloidae) with the description of a new species. European Journal of Taxonomy, 917(1), 19–49.
Research article