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Revision of Hemiquedius Casey (Staphylinidae, Staphylininae) and a review of beetles dependent on beavers and muskrats in North America

Brunke, A., Smetana, A., Carruthers-Lay, D., Buffam, J. (2017). Revision of Hemiquedius Casey (Staphylinidae, Staphylininae) and a review of beetles dependent on beavers and muskrats in North America, 2017(702), 27-43. http://dx.doi.org/10.3897/zookeys.702.19936

Abstract

© 2017 Pensoft Publishers. Based on newly discovered characters on the male genitalia, external morphology and an accumulation of ecological data, we revise the single member of the genus Hemiquedius. Two new species, H. infinitus Brunke & Smetana, sp. n. and H. castoris Brunke & Smetana, sp. n., from eastern North America are described, and H. ferox (LeConte), restricted to peninsular Florida, is re-described. Hemiquedius castoris is strongly associated with the microhabitats provided by nest materials of the North American beaver and muskrat. A key to the three species of Hemiquedius is provided and diagnostic characters are illustrated. We also review the beetles known to be obligate associates of beavers and muskrats, and discuss the potential role of these keystone vertebrates in beetle evolution and distribution. Based on nest-associated beetles and their closest living relatives, beaver and muskrat lodges may extend distributions northward by moderating winters, promote sympatric speciation and act as refugia against extinction of lineages on a broader time­scale. Further research into these potential impacts by ecologists and evolutionary biologists is encouraged.

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