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Synonymy between two spider mite species, Tetranychus kanzawai and T. hydrangeae (Acari: Tetranychidae), shown by ribosomal ITS2 sequences and cross-breeding experiments

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  09 March 2007

M. Navajas*
INRA, Centre de Biologie et Gestion de Populations, Campus International de Baillarguet, CS 3001 Montferrier-sur-Lez, 34988 Saint Gely du Fesc, France
J. Gutierrez
INRA, Centre de Biologie et Gestion de Populations, Campus International de Baillarguet, CS 3001 Montferrier-sur-Lez, 34988 Saint Gely du Fesc, France
M. Williams
Department of Primary Industries, Water and Environment, 13 St Johns Avenue, New Town 7008, Tasmania, Australia
T. Gotoh
Laboratory of Applied Entomology and Zoology, Faculty of Agriculture, Ibaraki University, Ami, Ibaraki, 300–0393, Japan


Amplification of the second internal transcribed spacer (ITS2) of ribosomal DNA was used to compare seven samples of the Tetranychus kanzawai Kishida–T. hydrangeae Pritchard & Baker mite complex from five different countries: Australia, the Congo, Indonesia, Japan and the USA. No morphological differences were detected between these mites and their ITS2 sequences displayed strong similarity except for a small nucleotide divergence of 0.2% in specimens from Australia and Indonesia. Reciprocal crosses and backcrosses between mites assumed to be T. kanzawai and T. hydrangeae respectively showed reproductive compatibility. Fertile hybrid females were obtained in all cases, indicating conspecificity of the mites tested. It is concluded that T. hydrangeae is a synonym of T. kanzawai. The evidence suggests that T. kanzawai originated in South-east Asia and probably spread throughout the world on Hydrangea spp. cuttings.

Research Article
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2001

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