[Syrphidae] Criorhina & Eristalinae of the British Isles

Kevin kevinmoran88 at comcast.net
Fri Aug 18 21:12:18 BST 2017

Hello all, 

My name is Kevin Moran. I am a Ph.D. student working under Dr. Skevington at the Canadian National Collection (CNC). My research involves a review of the generic and species concepts of the subtribe Criorhinina. To my surprise, most species concepts of Criorhina in Europe represent complexes. Evidence for these complexes is provided by barcodes as well as male genitalia and discrete external characters. Barcodes have also revealed that a number of other 'widespread' Eristaline species are complexes. 

Evidence is mounting that the British Isles (BI) are an interesting region for Syrphidae. Barcodes and morphology show some Eristalines are distinct from the mainland European population. Instead, these BI Eristalines appear to belong to unrecognized species also found in Scandinavia and/or other regions. Others, so far, appear completely endemic to the BI. 

At the CNC we lack fresh barcode-able material from the BI for many Syrphids. I write in the hope of locating a collector of BI Syrphidae who possesses a great deal of recent Eristaline material, especially that of rot-hole dwellers, in their collection . Specimens under twenty, but preferably ten, years of age killed using methods other than ethyl acetate (EA) or 70% EtOH are preferred. However, I won't dismiss freshly collected EA specimens. Our method of barcoding at the CNC is minimally destructive. We remove a single mid-leg from a specimen, soak it in buffer and then mount it on a point underneath the specimen. 

My primary goal is to verify that morphospecies concepts of BI Criorhina represent valid species and also gather diverse distribution data. A secondary goal is to locate fresh material of other Eristaline species which can be barcoded for comparison to continental populations. 
I plan to travel to London in Early/Mid October to visit the BMNH as part of a larger European tour of collections. Ideally, I am looking for someone whose collection I can visit in person, is amenable to a loan and is willing to let specimens undergo barcoding. A diversity of collecting sites or large locally collected series is always a plus. I am willing to travel, although it is a plus if you are not terribly far from London. For those unavailable Early/Mid October I will return to London Mid/Late November to fly back to Canada. 

Kind regards, 
Kevin Moran 
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