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Diverse filters to sense: Great variability of antennal morphology and sensillar equipment in gall-wasps (Hymenoptera: Cynipidae)

AuthorsPolidori, Carlo ; Nieves-Aldrey, J. L.
Issue Date8-Jul-2014
PublisherPublic Library of Science
CitationPLoS ONE 9(7): e101843 (2014)
AbstractComparative studies on antennal sensillar equipment in insects are largely lacking, despite their potential to provide insights into both ecological and phylogenetic relationships. Here we present the first comparative study on antennal morphology and sensillar equipment in female Cynipoidea (Hymenoptera), a large and diverse group of wasps, with special reference to the so-called gall-wasps (Cynipidae). A SEM analysis was conducted on 51 species from all extant cynipoid families and all cynipid tribes, and spanning all known life-histories in the superfamily (gall-inducers, gall-inquilines, and non-gall associated parasitoids). The generally filiform, rarely clavate, antennal flagellum of Cynipoidea harbours overall 12 types of sensilla: s. placoidea (SP), two types of s. coeloconica (SCo-A, SCo-B), s. campaniformia (SCa), s. basiconica (SB), five types of s. trichoidea (ST-A, B, C, D, E), large disc sensilla (LDS) and large volcano sensilla (LVS). We found a great variability in sensillar equipment both among and within lineages. However, few traits seem to be unique to specific cynipid tribes. Paraulacini are, for example, distinctive in having apical LVS; Pediaspidini are unique in having ≥3 rows of SP, each including 6-8 sensilla per flagellomere, and up to 7 SCo-A in a single flagellomere; Eschatocerini have by far the largest SCo-A. Overall, our data preliminarily suggest a tendency to decreased numbers of SP rows per flagellomere and increased relative size of SCo-A during cynipoid evolution. Furthermore, SCo-A size seems to be higher in species inducing galls in trees than in those inducing galls in herbs. On the other hand, ST seem to be more abundant on the antennae of herb-gallers than woodgallers. The antennal morphology and sensillar equipment in Cynipoidea are the complex results of different interacting pressures that need further investigations to be clarified. © 2014 Polidori, Nieves-Aldrey.
Identifiersdoi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0101843
issn: 1932-6203
Appears in Collections:(MNCN) Artículos
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