ZooKeys opens the gates to America's moth diversity

Feb 06, 2013
This picture shows examples of the pattern of some of the newly found Neotropical tigermoth species (Clockwise from top left: Lophocampa atriceps, Lophocampa hyalinipuncta, Lophocampa flavodorsata, Lophocampa sullivani) Credit: Dr. Benoit Vincent

Since its inception in 2009, the "Contributions to the systematics of New World macro- moths" series in ZooKeys has been playing an important role in publishing taxonomic changes and new discoveries concerning moth diversity in North America. With a total of 49 publications by 38 authors, this well-established series is among the topic leaders, alongside publications such as Canadian Staphylinidae.

Geographic coverage in Zookeys has previously focused primarily on the North American fauna (Canada, United States and Mexico). This issue marks a rapid acceleration in contributions concerning : its articles expand the geographic reach to regions from all over North and South America, the adjacent islands and territories.

This picture shows some of the newly discovered moth species, among which is Paectes longiformis (bottom left), which could have great use in biocontrol Credit: Dr. Michael Pougue

The total of 27 new species described in this issue includes moths from North America, Venezuela, Brazil, Argentina and the Dominican Republic. Among the more interesting ones are 5 newly described additions to the particularly big family of Neotropical tigermoths. As the name suggests, they can be easily recognized by their wing decoration that imitates the fur pattern of a .

ZooKeys opens the gates to America's moth diversity
This picture shows the early stages of the new Dunama jessiebarronae species of Costa Rica Credit: Dr. Isidro A. Chacón

Another newly described species that could be of great interest was found near the Brazilian Airport, Salvador. Despite its modest looks, this animal could potentially be used for biological control in Florida against the invasive and problematic Brazilian peppertree, which is the natural habitat and food for these .

Explore further: Scientists reveal global patterns of specialized feeding in insect herbivores

More information: Schmidt BC, Lafontaine JD (2013) Contributions to the systematics of New World macro-moths IV. In: Schmidt BC, Lafontaine JD (Eds) Contributions to the systematics of New World macro-moths IV. ZooKeys 264: 1. doi: 10.3897/zookeys.264.4687

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