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Phylogeny and reclassification of Pristocera Klug (Hymenoptera: Bethylidae)

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The current classification of Pristocera does not have taxonomic or cladistic support, which results in mistakes during the allocation of its species, especially within the genera Dicrogenium, Kathepyris, Neodicrogenium and Diepyris. This study aimed to verify the monophyly and to present a cladistic hypothesis for the genus. The analyses were based on 147 characters of 50 terminal taxa. Parsimony analyses under both equal and implied weightings were performed. All cladograms obtained by the implied weighting recovered Pristocera and all four related genera as polyphyletic. A monophyletic group with Pristocera and the other genera of the inner group was formed. This group was supported by 13 synapomorphies, with one of them exclusive, as follows: the presence of a hypopygium that was divided into two parts. Based on our results, the following new genus-group synonyms were established: Dicrogenium, Kathepyris, Neodicrogenium and Diepyris syn.n. for Pristocera, and their 39 species were combined with the latter. The following new names are proposed to avoid homonyms: Pristocera zata nom.n. for Dicrogenium bequaerti Benoit, Pristocera zela nom.n. for Kathepyris katangensis Benoit, Pristocera zintica nom.n. for Kathepyris uelensis Benoit, Pristocera zonta nom.n. for Neodicrogenium bequaerti Benoit and Pristocera zuncra nom.n. for Neodicrogenium tuberculatum (Turner). Therefore, Pristocera now comprises 124 species from the Old World.

Affiliations: 1: aUniversidade Federal do Espirito Santo, PPG-Biologia Animal, Av. Marechal Campos 1468, Maruípe, 29.040-090 Vitoria ES, Brazil; 2: bUniversidade Federal do Espirito Santo, Departamento de Biologia, Av. Marechal Campos 1468, Maruípe, 29.040-090 Vitoria ES, Brazil


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