Revised systematics and higher classification of pierid butterflies (Lepidoptera Pieridae) based on molecular data

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Abstract

The butterfly family Pieridae comprises approximately 1000 described species placed in 85 genera, but the higher classification has not yet been settled. We used molecular data from eight gene regions (one mitochondrial and seven nuclear protein-coding genes) comprising a total of ~6700 bp from 96 taxa to infer a well-supported phylogenetic hypothesis for the family. Based on this hypothesis, we revise the higher classification for all pierid genera. We resurrect the tribe Teracolini stat. rev. in the subfamily Pierinae to include the genera Teracolus, Pinacopteryx, Gideona, Ixias, Eronia, Colotis and most likely Calopieris. We transfer Hebomoia to the tribe Anthocharidini and assign the previously unplaced genera Belenois and Dixeia to the subtribe Aporiina. Three lineages near the base of Pierinae (Leptosia, Elodina and Nepheronia + Pareronia) remain unplaced. For each of these, we describe and delineate new tribes: Elodinini Braby tribus nova, Leptosiaini Braby tribus nova and Nepheroniini Braby tribus nova. The proposed higher classification is based on well-supported monophyletic groups and is likely to remain stable even with the addition of more data.

Details

Authors
Organisations
External organisations
  • University of Turku
  • Australian National University
  • Harvard University
  • Stockholm University
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Zoology
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)641-650
Number of pages10
JournalZoologica Scripta
Volume43
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2014 Nov 1
Publication categoryResearch
Peer-reviewedYes