Signiphora Ashmead, 1880

Woolley, J. B. & Dal Molin, A., 2017, Taxonomic revision of the flavopalliata species group of Signiphora (Hymenoptera: Signiphoridae), Zootaxa 4315 (1), pp. 1-150 : 4

publication ID 10.11646/zootaxa.4315.1.1

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Signiphora Ashmead, 1880


Classification of Signiphora Ashmead, 1880 View in CoL View at ENA

Signiphora is the most speciose genus in the Signiphoridae , with 46 valid species ( Noyes 2016) and at least as many undescribed species. The great majority of these are known from the equatorial and tropical zones of the Neotropical region, especially Central America.

All species of Signiphora share two synapomorphies ( Woolley 1988): 1) a lamelliform process extending posteriorly from the posterior margin of the medial sclerite of the propodeum, and 2) a comb of fine setae on the medial surface of the calcar on the protibia. These features have not been observed in any of the other genera of Signiphoridae . In addition, the occipital margin of Signiphora is distinctively acute and concave, causing the head to appear lens-shaped in dorsal view, whereas the occipital margin of Chartocerus species is narrowly rounded and that of Clytina and Thysanus species is broadly rounded. Woolley (1988) treated Signiphora as composed of four species groups: the flavopalliata group (there subdivided into the aleyrodis and flavopalliata groups for the phylogenetic analysis), the bifasciata group, the dipterophaga group, and the coleoptrata group. Although all these groups can be diagnosed with combinations of morphological features, only the flavopalliata group has been consistently well supported as monophyletic in both morphological ( Woolley 1988) and molecular (Dal Molin, unpublished) studies. The coleoptrata group, a small group of highly apomorphic and rarely collected species, is likely monophyletic as well, but its relationships to other Signiphora are not yet clear.

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