A revised cladistic classification of the Nepticulidae (Lepidoptera) with descriptions of new taxa mainly from South Africa

Publication Type:Journal Article
Year of Publication:1983
Authors:M. J. Scoble
Journal:Transvaal Museum Monograph
Date Published:1983-04-30
Keywords:Areticulata leucosideae, Ectoedemia alexandria, Ectoedemia bicarina, Ectoedemia capensis, Ectoedemia craspedota, Ectoedemia crispae, Ectoedemia crypsixantha, Ectoedemia denticulata, Ectoedemia digitata, Ectoedemia furcella, Ectoedemia fuscata, Ectoedemia guerkiae, Ectoedemia gymnosporiae, Ectoedemia hobohmi, Ectoedemia incisaevora, Ectoedemia indicaevora

Previous classifications of the Nepticulidae were based on species from the northern hemisphere, primarily western Europe (including the United Kingdom) and North America. The revised classification presented in the present work was developed from a study of material primarily from southern Africa, but also from Australia, Europe, North America, and the Orient. Most of the descriptive section deals with the taxonomy of the Nepticulidae of southern Africa. Nevertheless, a guide to the supraspecific classification of the family was a major aim.
Cladistic methods were used to assess relationships between species as far as possible. The degree to which they have been elucidated is incorporated into the classification. As a result of the study, the Nepticulidae are divided into two subfamilies. One of these subfamilies is divided into two tribes. Fifteen genera and six subgenera are recognised. Two keys are presented, one to subfamilies and tribes and the other to genera and subgenera.
The species from southern Africa are included in eight genera, three of which are new. Thirty-two new species are described in this work. For some species described by previous workers lectotypes have been designated where appropriate. The primary types of all the known species from southern Africa have been examined.
Observations on adult structure are discussed from the viewpoint of phylogenetic relationships both within the Nepticulidaeand between the family and other lepidopteran groups. This has led to a reinterpretation and expansion of some aspects of nepticulid morphology.
Numerical phenetic methods, which include cluster analyses and an ordination technique (principal component analysis), were used to check my personal assessment of phena. The illustrations (phenograms and ordination diagrams) provide a visual summary of phenetic relationships of as wide a range of Nepticulidae as possible. The aims of the phenetic methods and the cladistic methods were quite different.
Aspects of the nature of taxonomic characters, ancestor- descendant relationships, and homoplasy are discussed. Brief comments are made on distribution, and host-plant choice and phylogeny.

Scratchpads developed and conceived by (alphabetical): Ed Baker, Katherine Bouton Alice Heaton Dimitris Koureas, Laurence Livermore, Dave Roberts, Simon Rycroft, Ben Scott, Vince Smith