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Are the wing shape similarities among Partamona species (Hymenoptera: Apidae: Meliponini) consistent with the relationships proposed by Camargo & Pedro (2003)?

Grant number: 20/14187-9
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): March 01, 2021
Effective date (End): February 28, 2022
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Zoology - Morphology of Recent Groups
Principal researcher:Marco Antonio Del Lama
Grantee:Lucas Araújo Magri
Home Institution: Centro de Ciências Biológicas e da Saúde (CCBS). Universidade Federal de São Carlos (UFSCAR). São Carlos , SP, Brazil

Abstract

The genus Partamona Schwarz, 1939 groups 33 species of stingless bees that occur in Neotropical zones from southern Brazil to southern Mexico. Species of the group are morphologically quite similar, resulting in a shortage of representative morphological characters for the establishment of phylogenetic relationships. Molecular analyses conducted by our group showed relationships among species that disagree with the relationships established in phylogeny based on biogeography, morphological traits, and the nesting biology of species of the genus. Sequence analyses of the 12S ribosomal gene revealed that the species Partamona ailyae Camargo, 1980 and Partamona mulata Moure in Camargo, 1980 (both grouped in the clade cupira) have the insertion of a motif (CCTAT) that was also found only in species of the clade testacea, suggesting greater proximity between these taxa. Additional evidence was obtained by species delimitation methods using sequences of the COI gene, highlighting this and other disagreements in relation to the aforementioned phylogeny. These findings are good evidence that phylogenetic relationships in the genus available in the literature should be reviewed. Considering these facts, the present project proposes the use of geometric morphometry to establish similarities in wing shape among species of Partamona. These data will contribute to outlining a consistent scenario regarding the meaning of the previously defined disagreements and, if confirmed, will assist in the delineation of an alternative hypothesis on the evolutionary history of the genus to be tested in the near future using phylogenomic analysis.

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