Svenson, G.J., Hardy, N.B., Wightman, H. and Wieland, F. 2015. Of flowers and twigs: phylogenetic revision of the plant-mimicking praying mantises (Mantodea: Empusidae and Hymenopodidae) with a new suprageneric classification. Systematic Entomology Online http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/syen.12134
See the paper at: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B_iJfIsJ4GB0dUVXNDdubzJpbkE/view?usp=sharing
See the CMNH website story on this publication here.
Gavin Svenson and Sydney Brannoch spent two weeks in May 2015 conducting fieldwork in Vietnam. They were part of a larger entomological collecting group, composed of Seth Bybee (Brigham Young University), Wendy Moore (University of Arizona), Nathan Lord (Georgia College), and James Roberston (University of Arizona). Svenson and Brannoch collected many different species of praying mantises in Cát Tiên National Park, Tà Cú Mountain, and Phú Quốc National Park. The entomologists collected many incredible insect specimens, had the opportunity to see Vietnam’s largest reclining Buddha, and ate a lot of Phở!
Gavin Svenson and Rick Wherley visited the collections at the Royal Museum for Central Africa in Tervuren, just outside of Brussels, the National Museum of Natural History in Paris, and the Natural History Museum in Geneva to examine mantids and photograph type specimens for the online image database.
Gavin amazed by a specimen in Tervuren
Roger Roy, Nicolas, and Gavin outside the MNHN in Paris
Gavin, John Hollis, and Peter Schwendinger in the collection in Geneva
A new publication by Gavin Svenson in ZooKeys details the mantis type specimens in the collection of the National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution, USA. The USNM collection is currently on loan to the Cleveland Museum of Natural History.
A new publication in ZooTaxa by Svenson and Vollmer describes the synonymy of genus Majangella and genus Ephippiomantis, and the reclassification of taxon Majangella from within Liturgusidae to within the Hymenopodidae subfamily of Acromantinae, as supported by morphological and molecular data.
Female: Dystacta tigrifrutex
On a collecting trip to Rwanda in May of 2013, Riley Tedrow found both a male and female specimen of a new species of mantid, which he subsequently named Dystacta tigrifrutex. Tedrow, a Case Western Reserve University undergraduate, was part of a team of researchers led by Dr. Gavin Svenson.
Tedrow’s work in identifying the new species was published on May 20, 2014 in ZooKeys. Read more about this discovery and view photos from the trip on the CMNH web site.
In May 2014, Julio Rivera and Rick Wherley visited the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia to study their mantid collection and collect images of type specimens.
Jason Weintraub, ANSP Entomology Collections Manager, with Julio
Julio examines type specimens in the collection
A new publication by Gavin Svenson in ZooKeys describes the revision of genus Liturgusa, as well as the identification of three new mantid genera and 19 new species. Svenson is the Curator of Invertebrate Zoology at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History, which also posted a news release about these discoveries. Dr. Svenson describes this research in this video.
Check out the following videos for information about preparing for, and a student’s perspective on, our trip to Rwanda in May of 2013. You can also see a gallery of images from the trip!
Julio Rivera wrote a feature article in Etiqueta Negra on systematics, biodiversity, and discovering new species of Mantodea.
Check it out!