Location: Systematic Entomology LaboratoryTitle: Phylogenetic assessment of Metamasius hemipterus species complex (Coleoptera, Curculionidae, Dryophthorinae)
|PALMIERI, LUCIANO - University Of Wisconsin|
|SHARMA, PRASHANT - University Of Wisconsin|
Submitted to: Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/14/2022
Publication Date: 7/18/2022
Citation: Palmieri, L., Chamorro, M.L., Sharma, P.P. 2022. Phylogenetic assessment of Metamasius hemipterus species complex (Coleoptera, Curculionidae, Dryophthorinae). Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution. 175:1-6. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ympev.2022.107589 .
Interpretive Summary: The sugarcane, palm, and banana pest weevil known as the Silky Cane Weevil, Metamasius hemipterus, has been considered for decades to represent more than one species due to its many color forms and distinct geographic distribution. This study aims to inform the natural boundaries of the species. Currently, a lineage of this pest species is currently established in Florida and Hawaii. Our study found the Silky Cane Weevil to represent two species, Metamasius sericeus, which is the one currently found in the United States, and Metamasius hemipterus, not yet present in the US and restricted to parts of Northern South America. Our study provides sound scientific evidence using independent sources of data that will help inform and implement management decisions to regulatory agencies. It will especially prevent potential incursion and established of a second pest of sugarcane and banana in the US.
Technical Abstract: The speciose dryophthorine genus Metamasius Linnaeus includes numerous species of economic importance. Among them is the Silky Cane Weevil, Metamasius hemipterus (Linnaeus) with three currently recognized subspecies. These weevils are major pest of sugarcane and banana. The lack of resolution of natural limits of this species has caused considerable confusion for regulatory agencies. We assess, for the first time, the species boundaries of Metamasius hemipterus using a molecular approach. We constructed a reduced genome representation of eight specimens of Metamasius hemipterus species complex and related taxa using restriction site-associated DNA sequencing (RADseq) and investigated it under phylogenetic methods. Our results support M. h. carbonarius syn. nov. and M. h. sericeus be treated as a single species, M. sericeus (Olivier) stat. n. and separate from nominate M. hemipterus (Linnaeus). An updated key is presented to separate the two species. Our study provides sound scientific evidence using independent sources of data that will help inform and implement management decisions and regulatory policies globally.