Journal of Undergraduate Research


phylogeny of Hetaerina, mating behaviors


Life Sciences




Damselflies (Zygpotera) exhibit diverse mating behaviors, with the family Calopterygidae known for its pigmented wings and territorial behavior (Cordoba-Aguilar, Cordero-Rivera 2005). The genus Hetaerina, or rubyspot damselflies, has been used in numerous studies due to mating behaviors, morphology and a high density along certain streams (Anderson 2010, 2011; Contreras-Garduno 2006; Cordoba-Aguilar 2009; Grether 1996, 1997; Raihani 2008; Regions 2011). Despite use in studies, relationships between species of Hetaerina remain unclear. Over the past ten years, the taxonomy of Hetaerina and their sister genus Mnesarete has been in flux with species being transferred between the two genera and into Ormenophlebia and Bryoplathanon (Garrison 1990, 2006). In 2005 Dumont went so far as to suggest Hetaerina should be its own family, Hetaerinidae. However, the basic taxonomy of the group needs to be refined before any family designation can be properly assessed.

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