The Chironomus species studied by Letha Karunakaran in Singapore, with a review of the status of selected South-East Asian Chironomus
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In the 1960s Letha Karunakaran studied the chironomid fauna of Singapore but faced a lack of sufficiently detailed descriptions to enable identification of her material with any certainty. She recognized seven species of Chironomus (s.s) but sent me fixed larval material of only four of these which she tentatively identified as C. apicatus Johannsen 1932, C. costatus Johannsen 1932, C. javanus Kieffer 1924, and C. stupidus Johannsen 1932. She sent fixed larvae to me for confirmation of her identifications, but died before I was able to determine accurate identities from morphology alone. With additional comparative material, along with polytene chromosome banding patterns and DNA barcode sequence from the mitochondrial COI gene, the species have been identified as a form of C. flaviplumus (auct, not Tokunaga)(here called C. flaviplumus Type B), C. circumdatus Kieffer 1916, probably C. striatipennis Kieffer 1910, and Kiefferulus barbatitarsis (Kieffer 1911), respectively. The identification of one species as a form of C. flaviplumus required an assessment of the present state of knowledge of this species where the name has been applied to at least five different species. Determination of a valid name for this species is not currently possible. The confusion of species identification is an indication that there are a number of closely related species which constitute a “C. flaviplumus group”.
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