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Novitates Theriologicae

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2021 Vol. 12 Contents of volume >>>



download pdfArtemieva, E. 2021. Sibling species as a result of microevolution (a case study of Lepidoptera). Novitates Theriologicae, 12: 13-23.



Sibling species as a result of microevolution (a case study of Lepidoptera)


Elena Artemieva (Ulianovsk State Pedagogical University)


This article is devoted to the problems of diagnosis and taxonomy of sibling species in Lepidoptera of different taxonomic groups. The most important advances in understanding the reality of species include: species are real and objectively exist; each species has specific spatial characteristics and its own biological time, which may not coincide with the physical one. The main criteria for the reality of a species include the following: a certain stability in space and time, isolation from the surrounding world, a certain opposition to the environment; material continuity over time; a certain degree of indivisibility; the presence of special, distinctive properties in relation to other similar systems; the presence of a certain number of degrees of freedom in relation to higher taxa; the presence of a given set of individuals of a lower order, a certain hierarchy of individuals; continuity in space and time. Through the construction of a natural system of phenotypes of the wing pattern, it is possible to build a system of groups of populations of a species and create a population taxonomy, while the phenotype should act as a reliable diagnostic feature of a specific population or groups of populations. In the landscape complex of Lepidoptera populations of a particular geographic region, as a rule, only one of the available forms is the most often found, which is also the most often collected and described as typical. All other forms are found in populations with a lower frequency, so they can be described as atypical, up to giving them the status of new species. This applies primarily to European populations of Lepidoptera, individuals of which were once accepted by taxonomists as typical and therefore received the status of nominative species and subspecies. Individuals from populations at the border of ranges, for example, from mountainous areas, are most often described as new taxa. Quite often, polytypical Lepidoptera species have a wide phenotypic diversity of the wing pattern, which makes rare forms in central populations often found in peripheral populations of the range. Therefore, the species of Lepidoptera should be considered in the light of a biological concept. Based on an integrated approach to studying the phenotypic variability of the wing pattern, it is possible to carry out taxonomic studies of Lepidoptera populations and the separation of sibling species.


Russian, with English summary



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