|Hemp, C; Küchler, S; Kehl, S; Wägele, W; Hemp, A: The genus Phlesirtes Bolivar, 1922 (Orthoptera: Tettigoniidae: Conocephalinae, Conocephalini), a mountain adapted taxon of Karniellina: a molecular phylogeny of the genus., Systematic Entomology, 44(2), 408-417 (2018), doi:https://doi.org/10.1111/syen.12332 [Link]|
A phylogeny of the genus Phlesirtes Bolivar is presented, based on new sequence data of three genes (16S rDNA, COI, H3). Species of the genus Phlesirtes (subtribe Karniellina of the Tribe Conocephalini) occupy habitats of montane to afroalpine grasslands in East Africa. Phlesirtes is the most species‐rich genus of the subtribe Karniellina, a group of small flightless Ensifera restricted to eastern Africa. Taken together, the biogeographical patterns seen in Phlesirtes and its molecular phylogeny suggest a migration scenario: the mountain ranges acting as stepping stones, enabling a spread of Phlesirtes ancestors during periods of favourable climatic conditions in the past. The Pleistocene inland volcanoes, such as Mt Kenya or Mt Kilimanjaro, allow us to date speciation processes within the genus Phlesirtes. It is suggested that cooler humid periods of the past 3 Ma boosted speciation of Phlesirtes in East Africa.