Phylogeography Approach of Diloboderus abderus (Coleoptera: Melolonthidae) in the Southern Cone of America

Neotrop Entomol. 2019 Apr;48(2):332-339. doi: 10.1007/s13744-018-0637-0. Epub 2018 Oct 29.


Diloboderus abderus (Sturm, 1826) (Coleoptera: Melolonthidae) is a serious soil pest of corn, wheat, oat, and natural and cultivated pastures in Argentina, Paraguay, Uruguay, and southern Brazil. Despite its economic importance, the genetic diversity and population structure of D. abderus remain unknown. We sequenced a fragment of the mitochondrial gene cytochrome oxidase I region (COI), of six populations of D. abderus from the Southern Cone of America. The mtDNA marker revealed a high haplotype diversity, high pairwise FST values, and significant genetic variations among populations. No correlation was found between genetic and geographical distances, yet the most common haplotype (Dab01) was present in four out of the six populations. Analysis of molecular variance showed that most of the variation was within populations of D. abderus. Tajima's D and Fu's FS tests indicated no evidence that D. abderus populations are under recent expansion. Our results indicate that genetic-based traits will likely remain localized or spread slowly, and management strategies need to be undertaken on a small scale.

Keywords: Dynastinae; Pampa biome; population genetics; soil pest; white grub.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Coleoptera / genetics*
  • DNA, Mitochondrial / genetics
  • Genetic Markers
  • Genetic Variation
  • Genetics, Population*
  • Haplotypes
  • Phylogeography*
  • Sequence Analysis, DNA
  • South America


  • DNA, Mitochondrial
  • Genetic Markers