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Phylogeny of Feather Mite Subfamily Avenzoariinae (Acari: Analgoidea: Avenzoariidae) Inferred from Combined Analyses of Molecular and Morphological Data

Elsevier Inc.
Publication Date
DOI: 10.1006/mpev.2001.0948
  • Feather Mites
  • Avenzoariinae
  • Charadriiformes
  • Phylogeny
  • Cospeciation
  • Morphology
  • Mtdna
  • 16S Rdna
  • Congruence Tests
  • Mathematics


Abstract Phylogenetic relationships among feather mites of the subfamily Avenzoariinae (Acari: Analgoidea: Avenzoariidae) were reconstructed by parsimony analysis of a combined data matrix. We analyzed 41 morphological characters and 246 molecular characters from a fragment of the 16S rDNA. Morphological trees were well supported at deep branches (genera and above), but showed much less support and resolution within genera. Molecular analyses produced trees with better resolution and support on terminal branches and worse support on basal branches. I MF index for the combined matrix pointed to the significant congruence of both data subsets with the whole of the data. The topology of the combined tree was close to the morphological tree in the deep branches and had well-resolved terminal branches as in the molecular tree. This suggests a considerable level of complimentarity between the two data sets. An analysis of association patterns of the mites and their hosts was conducted based on the results of the combined analyses for the Avenzoariinae and a phylogeny of their charadriiform hosts (compiled from various bird phylogeny hypotheses). The trees could be reconciled by the invoking of 12–13 cospeciation events, 6–7 duplications, 2 host shifts, and 26–29 sorting events. This suggests a high degree of cospeciation.

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