Species Complexes in Asilidae

I'm considering adding a few species complexes to the iNat taxonomy for Asilidae, particularly for North American Laphria and Efferia. Is this something that people would find useful? Does anyone have reservations about unranked taxa?

Which complexes would you like to see added?

iNat guidelines for complexes:

Some discussions about species complexes for reference:

Three complexes added so far:

To find a complex, search for the species name included in the respective link above, and the complex will be one of the two choices.

Posted on May 24, 2019 09:16 PM by myelaphus myelaphus


Very useful, instead of Laphria sp. we can narrow it down to more useful ID's. e.g. Laphria aktis/sericea and L. canis/sicula/winnemana..

Posted by pbedell almost 5 years ago

Go for it, I think it is a good idea.

Posted by gcsnelling almost 5 years ago

I think it's a good idea too, for photos not backed up by specimens. Another Laphria would be L index/ithypyga.

Posted by giffbeaton almost 5 years ago

Okay, I've made three new complexes:

The naming is a bit awkward, but I don't think there's much I can do about that.

EDIT: I've fixed the names

Posted by myelaphus almost 5 years ago

Looks good, how about just removing the first word "complex", having it repeat like that really does not roll off the tongue well.

Posted by gcsnelling almost 5 years ago

That's what I meant by awkward. The "Complex" prefix is added by iNat, and I have no control over it.

The issue is that, for example, iNat treats "Laphria canis" as an existing name, so I can't use that name for the complex (e.g. Complex Laphria canis).

Posted by myelaphus almost 5 years ago

Are you sure? I was able to create this: https://www.inaturalist.org/taxa/894751-Laphria-canis

Posted by bouteloua almost 5 years ago

Well that is just plain silly. Good job though.

Posted by gcsnelling almost 5 years ago

Weird - maybe I was doing it wrong.

Posted by myelaphus almost 5 years ago

Now someone needs to do this for mushrooms.

Posted by gcsnelling almost 5 years ago

Ok, I think I fixed the names

Posted by myelaphus almost 5 years ago

Looks good

Posted by gcsnelling almost 5 years ago

Diogmites angustipennis / bilobatus / texanus would be another good one.

Posted by stevecollins almost 5 years ago

I was thinking the same thing. I'll make a new complex for that group in the near future.

Posted by myelaphus almost 5 years ago

A recent discussion about species complexes on another journal post brought up some points I would like to address here. @tristanmcknight @quaedfliegh @bradmoon @rogue_biologist

Tristan asked whether the computer vision suggestions have incorporated the Laphria species complexes (let's call these Phase 1). Looking at observations of the three complexes posted in July 2021, I would estimate that at least 40-50% of those had an initial CV suggestion for the relevant complex. So it appears that the CV has in fact incorporated our complexes and should do the same for future ones.

Tristan also mentioned his concerns about iNat species complex records be converted to s.s. species when imported into GBIF. This is certainly a data quality issue for GBIF, but personally I don't see this as our responsibility. I prefer to prioritize tools (like the species complex) that make identification more efficient for us on this platform.

I have compiled a list of candidate Phase 2 species complexes based on the discussion mentioned above. I consider this to be a second, broader trial phase to see how these taxa perform before opening the proverbial floodgates on species complexes. Let me know which complexes should be the highest priority to include in this phase. I will create these taxa once I've gotten some feedback on the list below. Also note that with this list we are beginning to stray from the curator guidelines in that many of these complexes are not named explicitly in the literature. If you see that as a problem let me know.

Phase 2
Complex Choerades marginata (dioctriaeformis, femorata, marginata, mouchai)
Complex Diogmites angustipennis (angustipennis, bilobatus)
Complex Efferia aestuans (aestuans, kondratieffi)
Complex Holcocephala abdominalis (abdominalis, fusca)
Complex Machimus chrysitis (chrysitis, chrysitis nigrofemoratus, fortis, subdolus)
Complex Promachus rufipes (hinei, rufipes) [especially useful for purported hybrid observations]
Complex Promachus bastardii (bastardii, dimidiatus, texanis, quadratus)
Complex Stenopogon junceus (cervinus, elongatus, junceus)

Edit: removed D. texanus from Complex Diogmites angustipennis

Posted by myelaphus almost 3 years ago

Complexes under consideration for Phase 3 and beyond:
Complex Atomosia puella (melanopogon, puella)
Complex Cerotainia macrocera (albipilosa, macrocera)
Complex Choerades fimbriata (castellanii, fimbriata, fulva)
Complex Dasypogon diadema (bacescui, diadema, gerardi, iberus, irinelae, kugleri, magisi, melanopterus, octonotatus, regenstreifi, tsacasi)
Complex Efferia tagax (tagax, neosimilis, incognita, sonorensis, armata)
Complex Efferia zonata (zonata, peralta, vertebrata, fisheri)
Complex Holopogon phaeonotus (guttulus, phaeonotus
Complex Laphria vultur (vultur, asackeni).
Complex Machimus setibarbus (caliginosus, cyanopus, intermedius, setibarbus)
Complex Machimus concinnus (concinnus, nevadensis)
Complex Machimus notatus (notatus, virginicus)
Complex Proctacanthus rufus (hinei, rufus)
Complex Promachus aldrichii (aldrichii, nigrialbus)
Complex Promachus giganteus (giganteus, magnus, minisculus)
Complex Stichopogon trifasciatus (trifasciatus, coquilletti, venturiensis)

Posted by myelaphus almost 3 years ago

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