Timing the radiations of leaf beetles: Hispines on gingers from latest Cretaceous to recent

Publication Type:Journal Article
Year of Publication:2000
Authors:Wilf, P, Labandeira, CC, Kress, WJ, Staines, CL, Windsor, DM, Allen, AL, Johnson, KR
Keywords:angiosperm radiation north-america evolution chrysomelidae coleoptera heliconia diversity genus associations communities

Stereotyped feeding damage attributable solely to rolled-leaf hispine beetles is documented on latest Cretaceous and early Eocene ginger leaves from North Dakota and Wyoming. Hispine beetles (6000 extant species) therefore evolved at least 20 million years earlier than suggested by insect body fossils, and their specialized associations with gingers and ginger relatives are ancient and phylogenetically conservative. The latest Cretaceous presence of these relatively derived members of the hyperdiverse leaf-beetle clade (Chrysomelidae, more than 38,000 species) implies that many of the adaptive radiations that account for the present diversity of leaf beetles occurred during the Late Cretaceous, contemporaneously with the ongoing rapid evolution of their angiosperm hosts.

Scratchpads developed and conceived by (alphabetical): Ed Baker, Katherine Bouton Alice Heaton Dimitris Koureas, Laurence Livermore, Dave Roberts, Simon Rycroft, Ben Scott, Vince Smith