Current estimates of the species richness of Tachinidae among geographical provinces suggest that the Neotropical Region harbors the largest number of species and represents a geographic epicenter of tachinid diversification (O’Hara 2006). The Neotropics boasts an impressive fauna consisting of 2864 described species belonging to 822 genera at the time of the Neotropical catalog (Guimarães 1971), making it almost twice as species rich as any other geographic realm (O’Hara 2006; Stireman et al. 2006). This diversity is most apparent at middle elevations (1000– 2000m) along the mountain chains of tropical Central and South America, where tachinids are an abundant and conspicuous component of the diurnal insect fauna. Despite this large number of described species, it is generally thought that only a fraction of Neotropical Tachinidae have been described, and for most of those that have been described, nothing is known about their life history, host associations, or behavior (Guimarães 1977). Here, I provide a preliminary list of the genera and numbers of species that have been reared from a research program focused on rearing Lepidoptera in the Ecuadorian Andes. I also provide host–family affiliations for most taxa as well as notes concerning the species reared, their characteristics, and/or their host associations. A more complete analysis of species diversity patterns and host associations will be published in a forthcoming special issue of the Journal of Research on the Lepidoptera.
Stireman, J. O.
(2007). Preliminary Notes on Tachinidae Reared from Lepidoptera in the Ecuadorian Andes. The Tachinid Times (20), 4-8.