Species status and population structure of the Australian Eucalyptus pest Paropsis atomaria Olivier (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae)

Schutze, Mark, Mather, Peter, & Clarke, Anthony R. (2006) Species status and population structure of the Australian Eucalyptus pest Paropsis atomaria Olivier (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae). Agricultural And Forest Entomology, 8(4), pp. 323-332.

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1 Paropsis atomaria Olivier represents an emergent pest of Eucalyptus plantations in Queensland and New South Wales, Australia. Most prior studies on the biology and control of P. atomaria have centred on populations from Canberra in the Australian Capital Territory, but the biological relationship between beetles from Canberra and those from up to 1500 km further north are unknown.

2 DNA markers were used to determine whether P. atomaria from Canberra are the same biological species as those from Eucalyptus forestry plantations in northern New South Wales and Queensland, where the beetle has become an important pest. Using the mitochondrial gene, cytochrome c oxidase I (COI), individuals collected from across the distribution of P. atomaria were investigated for haplotype diversity and levels of mitochondrial divergence.

3 Within P. atomaria, genetic distance averaged 0.5% across 23 unique haplotypes for 93 individuals, with an average of 14% difference between P. atomaria and the outgroup species, Paropsis obsoleta. Significant genetic structure was observed relative to geographical distribution, but not with respect to host plant species of origin. Greatest divergence was between the southern-most sample site (Canberra) and northern sites in New South Wales and Queensland, indicating reduced gene flow between these regions.

4 Individuals from across eastern Australia belong to the same genetic species with population substructuring evident. Consequently, there is no evidence to suggest cryptic species complexes exist within the currently defined taxon. Continued implementation of control strategies for P. atomaria across its distribution is appropriate.

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ID Code: 21867
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: Cryptic Species, Cytochrome c Oxidase I, Forestry, Leaf Beetle, Population Structure
DOI: 10.1111/j.1461-9563.2006.00316.x
ISSN: 1461-9555
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES (060000) > ECOLOGY (060200) > Terrestrial Ecology (060208)
Divisions: Past > Schools > Biogeoscience
Past > QUT Faculties & Divisions > Faculty of Science and Technology
Deposited On: 17 Jun 2009 12:59
Last Modified: 29 Feb 2012 13:25

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