An Integrative Approach to Understand the Biogeography, Taxonomy and Ecology of the Macroheteroceran Fauna of the Amanos Mountains in Southern Turkey
In 2014 and 2015, Macroheterocera were collected in three altitudinal transects in the Amanos mountains from 0 m up to 1104 m above sea-level. Altogether, 249 specimens were registered. Tissues from 91 selected specimens (42 Noctuidae/Erebidae, 35 Geometridae, 14 others) were submitted to DNA barcoding, partly for identification purposes, partly to investigate zoogeographical questions about the relationships between Anatolian and Levantine populations.
The sequencing was very successful (97%, only three failures) and revealed to include 81 BINs, 13 of them new for the BOLD database. Three species (Eublemma cf. gratissima, Erebidae, 3.4% from E. suppuncta; Dyspessa cf. ulula, Cossidae, 9.1% from D. ulula; Cryphia cf. ravula Noctuidae 4.7% from C. ravula) may be new for science and require further taxonomical analysis. All of them differ by more than 3.4% from their nearest neighbours, as currently present on BOLD database. In two other cases (genera Mythimna (Noctuidae) and Zeuzera (Cossidae), we found smaller genetic divergences (1.3-2.0%) from their European relatives, which require further taxonomic investigation. Geometra papilionaria (Linnaeus, 1758) and Macaria notata (Linnaeus, 1758) (Geometridae), previously only known from the Black Sea Region in Turkey, now were reported in the Amanos mountains, thus considerably extending the distribution areas southwards. Moreover, Lomaspilis marginata (Linnaeus, 1758) (Geometridae), is possibly new for Turkey as the only previous literature record (Koçak and Kemal, 2009) is doubtful as no authentic specimens have been traced. We present several cases where the DNA barcodes helped to clear up zoogeographical patterns.
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