n African Entomology - Amblyceran chewing lice (Phthiraptera: Amblycera) from wild passerines (Passeriformes) in South Africa, with a note to their phylogenetic relationships and with the description of a new species in the genus

Volume 22, Issue 3
  • ISSN : 1021-3589



A total of 655 individuals of 110 passerine species belonging to 28 families were examined for chewing lice in South Africa. A total of 80 (12 %) birds of 33 species were parasitized with amblyceran chewing lice (Phthiraptera: Amblycera) belonging to three genera: and . In this paper we report the occurrence of 11 species of chewing lice identified from 38 birds of 16 species. Three samples of chewing lice containing only nymphs were identified to the generic level only. Description and illustrations are given for Sychra & Halajian, sp. n. ex (Vieillot, 1818) (Muscicapidae). Our data represent the first louse records for Linnaeus, 1766 (Laniidae), (Gmelin, 1789) and (Muscicapidae), and (Vieillot, 1818) and (A. Smith, 1834) (Pycnonotidae). Records of new host-louse associations are: (Guérin-Meneville, 1843) (Hirundinidae) for (Giebel, 1874); (Muscicapidae) for (Uchida, 1915); (Laniidae) for (Nitzsch [in Giebel], 1874); Rüppell, 1845 (Ploceidae) for Klockenhoff, 1984; and (Vieillot, 1820) (Cisticolidae) for (Schrank, 1776). A portion of the mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase I (COI) gene for some species of chewing lice was sequenced in order to assess their genetic divergences.

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