Subfossils of extinct and extant species of Simuliidae (Diptera) from Austral and Cook Islands (Polynesia): anthropogenic extirpation of an aquatic insect?

Craig, Douglas A. and Porch, Nick 2013, Subfossils of extinct and extant species of Simuliidae (Diptera) from Austral and Cook Islands (Polynesia): anthropogenic extirpation of an aquatic insect?, Zootaxa, vol. 3641, no. 4, pp. 448-462.

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Title Subfossils of extinct and extant species of Simuliidae (Diptera) from Austral and Cook Islands (Polynesia): anthropogenic extirpation of an aquatic insect?
Author(s) Craig, Douglas A.
Porch, Nick
Journal name Zootaxa
Volume number 3641
Issue number 4
Start page 448
End page 462
Total pages 15
Publisher Magnolia Press
Place of publication Auckland, N. Z.
Publication date 2013
ISSN 1175-5326
1175-5334
Keyword(s) Pacific
Polynesia
Cook islands
Austral islands
simuliidae
simulium
inseliellum
larvae
subfossil
taxonomy
biogeography
extirpation
anthropogenic
Summary Subfossil head capsules of Simuliidae larvae have been recovered from swamps on Tubuai and Raivavae of the Austral Islands, and Atiu and Mangaia of the southern Cook Islands. For Tubuai and Raivavae it is likely that the simuliids are extinct, but a single simuliid species is extant on nearby Rurutu. For Atiu and Mangaia, extant simuliids have not been reported, but are known on Rarotonga. Well-preserved head capsules indicate that the Cook Islands subfossils are those of Simulium (Inseliellum) teruamanga Craig and Craig, 1986. For the Austral Islands, the simuliid from Tubuai is considered a variant of Simulium (Inseliellum) rurutuense Craig and Joy, 2000. That from Raivavae is morphologically distinct and is described here as a new species, Simulium (Inseliellum) raivavaense Craig and Porch. Humans arrived in Eastern Polynesia ca. 1,000 years ago resulting in the widespread destruction of lowland forest and conversion of wetlands to agriculture with implied consequences for the indigenous biota of these habitats. Here we consider that one such result was loss of freshwater aquatic biodiversity.
Language eng
Field of Research 060206 Palaeoecology
040606 Quaternary Environments
060808 Invertebrate Biology
Socio Economic Objective 970105 Expanding Knowledge in the Environmental Sciences
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30053606

Document type: Journal Article
Collection: School of Life and Environmental Sciences
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