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      Gall-inducing insects of restinga areas (Atlantic Forest) in Brazil: economic importance

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          Abstract

          Abstract Many gall-inducing insects have been reported as pests in the Old World and North America, although few such examples are known from South America. A list of gall-inducing insects of potential economic importance, with a focus on those of restinga environments, was compiled using Maia (2013a) as starting point and updated with the database “Thompson ISI”, using ‘Insect (title) and gall (topic)’ as keywords. Botanical names were updated using the site “Flora do Brasil, 2020”, while potential economic significance of host plant species was acquired from Santos et al. (2009) and the site “Useful Tropical Plants”. Fifty-eight galling species were associated with 29 economically important plant species of 18 families in Brazilian restingas. The gallers were found to belong to Diptera (Cecidomyiidae and Agromyzidae) and Hemiptera (Eriococcidae and Psyllidae), among which Cecidomyiidae were the most important, with 55 gall-inducing species distributed among 28 genera. Six of the found genera are endemic to the Atlantic Forest and, until now, have been exclusively reported in restingas. About 78% of the gallers have been recorded only in Southeast Brazil and about 64% only in the state of Rio de Janeiro. Most gallers were found to be mainly associated with edible and/or medicinal plant species. Data on natural enemies are scarce with most records having been published at the taxonomic level of family or genus. Natural enemies were found associated with 43 gall-inducing species and included parasitoids, predators and inquilines. The first were the most diverse, being represented by 13 hymenopteran families, but the impacts of all of these guilds on galler populations are poorly known. Although 58 gall-inducing species were identified in the present study, the number of insect galls associated with plants of economic interests in restinga environments is about three times greater, since a total of 186 gall morphotypes have been reported. Nonetheless, many gallers are still undetermined, thus revealing how deficient their taxonomical knowledge remains.

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          The gall midges (Diptera, Cecidomyiidae) from three restingas of Rio de Janeiro State, Brazil

          One hundred and eight species of Cecidomyiinae (Cecidomyiidae) were found in association with 53 species of plant distributed among 42 genera and 32 families at restingas of Barra de Maricá, Itaipuaçu and Carapebus. Ninety four gall midge species were cecidogenous, four predaceous, five inquilinous of galls and five were free living. Galling species were associated with 47 plant species belonging to 36 genera and 28 families. The majority of the galls occurred on the leaves (N = 63); 13 on buds; nine on inflorescence, closed flower or flower peduncle; three on fruits and one on tendril. Myrtaceae were the richest plant family in number of galls followed by Burseraceae, Nyctaginaceae, Sapotaceae, Erythroxylaceae, Malpighiaceae and Solanaceae. New records of host plants and localities were recorded. Seventy nine Cecidomyiinae species were found at Restinga of Barra de Maricá, 64 at Carapebus and 41 at Itaipuaçu. Sorensen's index revealed that the restingas of Barra de Maricá and Itaipuaçu ate more similar in Cecidomyiinae fauna, confirming a positive relation between geographical proximity and fauna similarity.
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            Are gall midge species (Diptera, Cecidomyiidae) host-plant specialists?

            Despite the speciose fauna of gall-inducing insects in the Neotropical region, little is known about their taxonomy. On the other hand, gall morphotypes associated with host species have been extensively used as a surrogate of the inducer species worldwide. This study reviewed the described gall midges and their galls to test the generalization on the use of gall morphotypes as surrogates of gall midge species in the Brazilian fauna. We compiled taxonomic and biological data for 196 gall midge species recorded on 128 host plant species. Ninety two percent of those species were monophagous, inducing galls on a single host plant species, whereas only 5.6% species were oligophagous, inducing galls on more than one congeneric host plant species. Only four species induced galls on more than one host plant genus. We conclude that gall morphotypes associated with information on the host plant species and attacked organs are reliable surrogates of the gall-inducing species.
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              Insect galls from Serra de São José (Tiradentes, MG, Brazil)

              One hundred thirty-seven morphotypes of insect galls were found on 73 plant species (47 genera and 30 families) in Serra de São José, in Tiradentes, MG, Brazil. Fabaceae, Myrtaceae, Asteraceae, and Melastomataceae were the plant families that supported most of the galls (49.6% of the total). Galls were mostly found on leaves and stems (66.4% and 25.5%, respectively). Galls were induced by Diptera, Lepidoptera, Coleoptera, Hemiptera (Sternorrhyncha), Hymenoptera, and Thysanoptera. The majority of them (73.7%) were induced by gall midges (Cecidomyiidae: Diptera). Besides the gall inducers, other insects found associated with the galls were parasitoids (Hymenoptera), inquilines (Coleoptera, Lepidoptera, Diptera, and Hemiptera), and predators (Diptera).
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                Author and article information

                Contributors
                Role: ND
                Journal
                paz
                Papéis Avulsos de Zoologia
                Pap. Avulsos Zool.
                Museu de Zoologia da Universidade de São Paulo (São Paulo, SP, Brazil )
                0031-1049
                1807-0205
                November 2018
                : 58
                : 0
                Affiliations
                Rio de Janeiro Rio de Janeiro orgnameUniversidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro orgdiv1Museu Nacional Brazil maiavcid@ 123456acd.ufrj.br
                Article
                S0031-10492018000100248
                10.11606/1807-0205/2018.58.50

                This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

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