Degree Type


Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy





First Advisor

Gregory W. Courtney


A taxonomic revision and phylogenetic analysis of Tanyderidae, a family of Diptera (True flies) known as primitive crane flies, were undertaken. The Afrotropical fauna is treated as part of a larger reference work on Diptera in the region. All major life stages of the Neotropical Araucoderus are described in detail, as well as details on natural history and mating behavior. A treatment of the extremely rare Neotropical genus Neoderus is presented, including one new species and habitat description. The world fauna of Tanyderidae is revised, including new generic diagnoses for all genera in the family except Nothoderus.

Structure and homologies of male genitalia were examined, and a new standardized terminology is proposed. A phylogenetic analysis of the family used nine larval and 59 adult characters (68 total). Nine of 10 currently valid genera were recovered with . Protoplasa consistently nested within Protanyderus, merging all respective species into the former. Eutanyderus is split leaving the monotypic E. wilsoni, while Xenoderus Madriz gen. n. is erected to house E. oreonympha. A novel approach to remotely convey complex comparative morphological information using digital, interactive 3D models is presented, using male terminalia of Araucoderus gloriosus (Tanyderidae) and Nemopalpus glyphanos (Psychodidae) as models. An anecdotal account of the rediscovery of the rare Neotropical Neoderus is presented as a publication to the newsletter Fly Times. An illustrated guide to insect curation was designed as aid for the Iowa State University class Insect Biology (ENT 370). A syllabus and laboratory manual are presented for the newly created class Mosquito Surveillance and Curation (ENT 270L), offered as part of the Iowa State University Entomology class curriculum.


Copyright Owner

Ruben Isai Madriz Villanueva



File Format


File Size

463 pages

Included in

Entomology Commons