oa Annals of the Natal Museum - Rarely encountered Diptera families in southern Africa: an introductory conservation perspective

Volume 35, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 0304-0798



Invertebrates are often not considered when reviewing conservation and biodiversity issues in southern Africa. This paper reviews the conservation status of 11 rarely encountered Diptera families in the subregion, and presents data on their distribution, biology and habitat requirements (if known) and all other pertinent, published information. As six of the families (Marginidae, Aulacigastridae, Campichoetidae, Neurochaetidae, Tachiniscidae and Corethrellidae) occur in Afromontane forest or its margins, atmospheric warming is briefly discussed, as this could impact on biodiversity at higher altitudes. The conservation of Afromontane forest patches (and associated grassland) in southern Africa is discussed, most notably those in the southeastern highlands of Zimbabwe (source of all known southern African Marginidae, Neurochaetidae, Tachiniscidae) and the central Natal Drakensberg (source of the only named southern African Thaumaleidae, Aulacigastridae, Campichoetidae). The 11 rarely encountered families are provisionally divided into three groups based on habitat specificity and geographical range. The first group of families is comprised of eurytopic species with widespread geographical ranges (Odiniidae, Ctenostylidae). We predict that informed collecting will show that neither family is particularly uncommon in southern Africa. The second group (Tanyderidae, Thaumaleidae, Marginidae, Aulacigastridae, Neminidae, Campichoetidae, Neurochaetidae) are stenotopic species with restricted geographical ranges. Tanyderidae and Thaumaleidae are considered to be families requiring conservation priority. The third group of families (Tachiniscidae and possibly Corethrellidae) are thought to have species with widespread geographical ranges, but are stenotopic.

Loading full text...

Full text loading...


Article metrics loading...


This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error