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Leafhoppers (Homoptera: Cicadellidae) that probe human skin: A review of the world literature and nineteen new records, from Panama

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We review the world literature on leafhoppers (Cicadellidae) that have probed human skin, update the names presented in those published reports, and sort out which are original accounts and which are citations of previous reports (Table 1). We add 19 new records, representing five subfamilies, and at least 13 genera, all from Panama (Table 2). We speculate as to why these normally phytophagous insects sometimes probe human skin, and provide insight into the possible evolutionary consequences of this behavior.

Affiliations: 1: Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, Apartado 0843-03092 Balboa, Ancon, Republic of Panama, e-mails:;


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