Timing the radiations of leaf beetles: Hispines on gingers from latest cretaceous to recent

Peter Wilf, Conrad C. Labandeira, W. John Kress, Charles L. Staines, Donald M. Windsor, Ashley L. Allen, Kirk R. Johnson

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Abstract

Stereotyped feeding damage attributable solely to rolled-leaf hispine beetles is documented on latest Cretaceous and early Eocene ginger leaves from North Dakota and Wyoming. Hispine beetles (6000 extant species) therefore evolved at least 20 million years earlier than suggested by insect body fossils, and their specialized associations with gingers and ginger relatives are ancient and phylogenetically conservative. The latest Cretaceous presence of these relatively derived members of the hyperdiverse leaf-beetle clade (Chrysomelidae, more than 38,000 species) implies that many of the adaptive radiations that account for the present diversity of leaf beetles occurred during the Late Cretaceous, contemporaneously with the ongoing rapid evolution of their angiosperm hosts.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)291-295
Number of pages5
JournalScience
Volume289
Issue number5477
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 14 2000

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Cite this

Wilf, P., Labandeira, C. C., Kress, W. J., Staines, C. L., Windsor, D. M., Allen, A. L., & Johnson, K. R. (2000). Timing the radiations of leaf beetles: Hispines on gingers from latest cretaceous to recent. Science, 289(5477), 291-295. https://doi.org/10.1126/science.289.5477.291