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Type: Article
Published: 2023-02-28
Page range: 058–063
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The earliest Pupipara (Diptera: Hippoboscoidea): A new genus and species from the lower Eocene of the Green River Formation

Institut de Systématique, Évolution, Biodiversité (ISYEB), Muséum national d’Histoire naturelle, CNRS, Sorbonne Université, EPHE, Université des Antilles, CP50, 57 rue Cuvier 75005 Paris, France
Institut de Systématique, Évolution, Biodiversité (ISYEB), Muséum national d’Histoire naturelle, CNRS, Sorbonne Université, EPHE, Université des Antilles, CP50, 57 rue Cuvier 75005 Paris, France
Division of Invertebrate Zoology, American Museum of Natural History, Central Park West at 79th Street, New York, New York 10024-5192, USA
Diptera Hippoboscoidea Insecta Muscomorpha ectoparasitism dating evolution

Abstract

Eornithoica grimaldii gen. et sp. nov., the currently earliest Pupipara, is described from the lower Eocene of the Green River Formation. The previously oldest representative of this clade was from the Oligocene. The new fossil has some plesiomorphic character states, suggesting a ‘basal’ position in the clade. Its age, around 52 Ma, suggests that these epizooic ectoparasitic flies originated during the Paleocene or even the latest Cretaceous, prior to the first bats, if the latter. As is the case for several early diverging hippoboscids that feed on birds, E. grimaldii possibly victimized birds or terrestrial mammals. This study is a further example of the quantity of new information that can be obtained by the examination of fossil insects under UV light.

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