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    Author(s): Peter S. Cranston; Brendan McKie
    Date: 2006
    Source: Gen. Tech. Rep. SRS-93. Asheville, NC: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Southern Research Station. pp. 9-14
    Publication Series: Miscellaneous Publication
    PDF: View PDF  (122 KB)

    Description

    Immersed wood provides refugia and substrate for a diverse array of macroinvertebrates, and food for a more restricted genuinely xylophagous fauna. Worldwide, xylophages are found across aquatic insect orders, including Coleoptera, Diptera, Trichoptera and Plecoptera. Xylophages often are specialised, feeding on the wood surface or mining deep within. Many feed preferentially on wood of particular species or of a particular decay class. Some of the most specialised genuine wood miners occur among the Chironomidae, and the fauna is particularly rich in Australia. Recent discoveries of unusual midges in Australia and south-east Asia allow speculation about the evolution of immersed-wood mining by Chironomidae. Subfamily Orthocladiinae contains many unrelated taxa with larval mouthpart modifications associated with gouging wood. Wood-mining chironomines, in fewer groups, mostly lack morphological differentiation. However, several early-branching clades of both subfamilies show radiation (diversity), and the condition can be inferred as ancestral, potentially associated with differential historical survival from cataclysmic extinction events.

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    Citation

    Cranston, Peter S.; McKie, Brendan. 2006. Aquatic wood -- an insect perspective. Gen. Tech. Rep. SRS-93. Asheville, NC: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Southern Research Station. pp. 9-14

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