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The oldest species of the relic extant genus Mesochria from Eocene Fushun amber of China (Diptera: Anisopodidae: Mycetobiinae)

Ryszard Szadziewski, Jacek Szwedo, Elżbieta Sontag, and Bo Wang

Plain Language Abstract

A new species of wood gnat from Eocene Fushun amber is described. It is the oldest record of this fly genus in the fossil state. These relictual flies, which include 10 existing species living in the tropics of the African and Oriental regions, are also known from Miocene Dominican amber.

Resumen en Español

Las especies más antiguas del actual género relicto Mesochria del ámbar eoceno de Fushun de China (Diptera: Anisopodidae: Mycetobiinae)

Se describe una nueva especie – Mesochria fani Szadziewski et Szwedo sp. nov. – del ámbar eoceno de Fushun. Este es el registro fósil más antiguo del género Mesochria, que incluye 10 especies actuales que viven en la región Oriental y en la región Afrotropical. Los registros fósiles del género del ámbar mioceno de República Dominicana (20 Ma) y del ámbar eoceno de Fushun (50 Ma) indican que este grupo actual es relicto, y que durante su evolución tenía una distribución pantropical más amplio.

Palabras clave: Diptera; Anisopodidae; ámbar; Fushun; pantropical; nueva especie

Translation: Enrique Peñalver (Sociedad Española de Paleontología)

Résumé en Français

La plus ancienne espèce du genre actuel relique Mesochria (Diptera : Anisopodidae : Mycetobiinae) de l'ambre éocène de Fushun, Chine

Une nouvelle espèce – Mesochria fani Szadziewski et Szwedo sp. nov. – est décrite à partir de l'ambre éocène de Fushun. Cela constitue la plus ancienne trace du genre Mesochria qui inclut 10 espèces actuelles vivant dans les tropiques des régions orientales et afrotropicales. Le registre fossile du genre dans l'ambre dominicain miocène (20 Ma) et dans l'ambre éocène de Fushun (50 Ma) indique que ce groupe actuel est relique, et qu'au cours de son évolution, il avait une distribution pantropicale plus large.

Mots-clés : Diptera ; Anisopodidae ; ambre ; Fushun ; pantropical ; nouvelle espèce

Translator: Antoine Souron

Deutsche Zusammenfassung

Die älteste Art der heutigen Relikt-Gattung Mesochria aus dem eozänen Fushun-Bernstein von China (Diptera: Anisopodidae: Mycetobiinae)

Eine neue Art - Mesochria fani Szadziewski und Szwedo sp. nov. – aus dem eozänen Fushun-Bernstein wird beschrieben. Dies ist der älteste Nachweis der Gattung Mesochria, die 10 heutige Arten beinhaltet, die in den Orientalischen Tropen und in der Afrotropischen Region leben. Fossile Nachweise der Gattung aus dem miozänen Dominikanischen Bernstein und dem eozänen Fushun-Bernstein weisen darauf hin, dass diese Gruppe ein Relikt ist, das im Laufe seiner Entwicklung eine größere pantropische Verbreitung hatte.

Schlüsselwörter: Diptera; Anisopodidae; Bernstein; Fushun; pantropisch; neue Art

Translator: Eva Gebauer

Arabic

544 arab

Translator: Ashraf M.T. Elewa

 

 

szadziewskiRyszard Szadziewski. Department of Invertebrate Zoology and Parasitology, University of Gdańsk, 59, Wita Stwosza Street, PL80-308 Gdańsk, Poland. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Ryszard Szadziewski received his M.Sc. from University of Nicolaus Copernicus in Toruń, defended his Ph.D. in 1979 at the Institute of Zoology, Polish Academy of Sciences in Warsaw, and habilitation dissertation defended in 1987 at Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań. In 1978 commenced his research and teaching work at the Department of Invertebrate Zoology and Parasitology at the University of Gdańsk, since 1991 he has been head of this department. During his research he drew attention to a relatively little known family of flies – the biting midges, Ceratopogonidae. He became a world-famous specialist and taxonomist in both the recent as well as the fossil flies of this family. It was his idea to found the laboratory "Museum of Amber Inclusions" at the Department, to which he donated his collection of amber inclusions. He is involved in the promotion of knowledge about amber, its importance in discovering fossil flora and fauna, as well as the idea of Gdańsk as the World Capital of Amber. He is a member of the International Amber Association, Arbeitskreis Bernstein, the International Palaeoentomological Society, the Amber Museum Council, as well as the World Amber Council, whose president he has been since 2008.

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szwedoJacek Szwedo (corresponding author). Department of Invertebrate Zoology and Parasitology, University of Gdańsk, 59, Wita Stwosza Street, PL80-308 Gdańsk, Poland. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Jacek Szwedo received his M.Sc. (1990) and Ph.D. (1997) at University of Silesia in Katowice, and his habilitation dissertation he defended at the Museum and Institute of Zoology, Polish Academy of Sciences in Warsaw (2013). He used to work at Department of Zoology, University of Silesia in Katowice, Museum and Institute of Zoology, Polish Academy of Sciences in Warsaw, and since 2014 at the Department of Invertebrate Zoology and Parasitology, University of Gdańsk. His research interests cover evolution, taxonomic diversity and morphological disparity, systematics and distribution of the Hemiptera, particularly Fulgoromorpha and Cicadomorpha, and their relatives. He is studying inclusions in amber, rock-preserved fossils, as well as modern representatives of the hemipterans, to recover their morphology, phylogeny, taxonomy, evolutionary and biogeographical scenarios, palaeoecology and palaeobiodiversity.

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sontagElżbieta Sontag. Department of Invertebrate Zoology and Parasitology, University of Gdańsk, 59, Wita Stwosza Street, PL80-308 Gdańsk, Poland. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

She graduated M.Sc. (1995) and Ph.D. (2001) at the University of Gdańsk. Her main interest is in amber and its inclusions, particularly Diptera, as well as in co-occurrence of the syniclusions. Since 1998 she is creator and curator of the scientific collection of the Museum of Amber Inclusions at the Department of Invertebrate Zoology and Parasitology, University of Gdańsk. And author of the scenario of permanent exhibition opened in 2013 "Life in amber forest" presented at the Museum of Amber Inclusions, University of Gdańsk. Since 2008 she is President of the Palaeoentomological Section of the Polish Entomological Society and organizer of annual meetings of the Sections, as well as presentations of Museum of Amber Inclusions during the annual International Amber Fairs - Amberif and Ambermart. Honored as Amber Personality of the Year for 2007 by International Amber Association, and with Medal of the Mayor of the City of Gdańsk – in tribute to and as thanks for entanglement of promotion of amber and City of Gdańsk as World Capital of Amber.

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wangBo Wang. Nanjing Institute of Geology and Palaeontology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, No.39 East Beijing Road, Nanjing 210008, China; Steinmann Institute, University of Bonn, 53115 Bonn, Germany. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Bo Wang received his B.A. from the China University of Geosciences (Wuhan), and his Ph.D. from the Nanjing Institute of Geology and Palaeontology (CAS). He is an Associate Professor at the Nanjing Institute of Geology and Palaeontology (CAS), and a Guest Professor at the Institute of Zoology (CAS). His research interests include the amber biota, and the taxonomy and taphonomy of fossil insects. Recently he has worked on some well-preserved insects from the mid-Cretaceous Burmese and Eocene Fushun ambers. 

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FIGURE 1. 1, Fushun fossil site location and palaeogeographic setting of north-eastern China during the Eocene; Palaeotopographic reconstruction after Wang H. (1995); 2, stratigraphic sequence of the West Opencast Coalmine. The yellow heptagons indicate amber-bearing layers in upper section of the Guchengzi Formation. PETM - Palaeocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum (approximately 55 Ma); EECO - Early Eocene Climatic Optimum (51-53 Ma); MECO - Middle Eocene Climatic Optimum (approximately 41.5 Ma); 3, View of the West Opencast Coalmine, from the east, 3 September 2013; arrows indicate amber-bearing strata; 4, View of reclamation works in the West Opencast Coalmine from the west, 5 September 2014.

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FIGURE 2. Holotype male of Mesochria fani Szadziewski and Szwedo, sp. nov. 1, habitus, lateral aspect; 2, wings; 3, mouthparts; 4, palpus; 5, legs; 6, wing reconstructed; 7, genitalia, lateral aspect.

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FIGURE 3. Geographical distribution of fossil and extant species of the genus Mesochria.

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TABLE 1. Length measurements of legs (in mm). TR (ta1/ta2) - tarsal ratio; fe - femur; ti - tibia; ta1-ta5 - tarsomeres 1-5.

  TR fe ti ta1 ta2 ta3 ta4 ta5
Fore leg 2.8 0.90 0.95 0.61 0.22 0.15 0.09 0.09
Mid leg 2.7 1.00 0.88 0.60 0.22 0.16 0.09 0.09
Hind leg 3.1 1.18 1.37 0.81 0.26 0.16 0.09 0.09