0042. Preliminary Checklist of the Mecoptera of Florida: Earwigflies, Hangingflies, and Scorpionflies


  • Louis A. Somma
  • James C. Dunford


We provide the first species checklist of Mecoptera indigenous to Florida, based upon preliminary data gathered primarily from specimens housed in the Florida State Collection of Arthropods. There are 11 described and one undescribed species of mecopterans, representing three families, inhabiting the state of Florida. These include the recently discovered meropeid (earwigfly), Merope tuber Newman, four species of bittacids (hangingflies), represented by the genus Bittacus Latreille, and 7 species (one undescribed) of panorpids (scorpionflies), represented by the genus Panorpa Linnaeus. We are not certain if one of these, Bittacus texanus Banks, is indigenous, represents a nonindigenous occurrence, or is simply erroneous. Two of the species on our list, Bittacus stigmaterus Say and Panorpa venosa Westwood, represent first state records and one species, Panorpa floridana Byers, is endemic. Six of the species which have been recorded in Florida, M. tuber, Bittacus punctiger Westwood, Panorpa rufa Gray, Panorpa pachymera Byers, Panorpa lugubris Swederus and P. venosa, represent them southernmost records for these species in the continental United States. Perceived diversity and abundance of mecopteran species in Florida are limited by climate, biogeography, and collection bias.