Communities of Chironomidae (Diptera) from four ecological zones delimited by the Mediterranean coastal ecosystems of Morocco (Moroccan Rif). Updated list and faunal data from the last two decades Chironomidae from coastal ecosystems of Morocco

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Kawtar Kettani *
Joel Moubayed-Breil
(*) Corresponding Author:
Kawtar Kettani | kettani.ka@gmail.com

Abstract

Based on a large material collected during the last two decades in 43 sites covering a wide range of habitats (fresh and brackish water) we delimited four ecological zones, which extend between sea level and high mountain areas located above 1000 m. The four ecological zones are: Zone 1 (Estuarine zone including pools, ponds, lagoons and wet meadows, altitude 0-10 m); Zone 2 (Potamal, alt. 10-350 m); Zone 3 (Lower basin of streams and wadis (alt. 350-1000 m); Zone 4 (Upper basin of streams, wadis, springs and peat bogs, alt. > 1000 m). An updated list of 256 species/taxa belonging to Chironomidae (Diptera) has been established which complements previous data for the chironomid fauna of Morocco. The list includes 72 (28%) new records for the fauna of Morocco, 21 (8%) undescribed species and probably 2 new genera (1 Orthocladiinae and 1 Tanytarsini). Spatial distribution of species by subfamilies is highlighted in the four ecological zones where faunal comparative results are: Buchonomyinae (1 species); Tanypodinae (21); Diamesinae (8); Orthocladiinae (143); Chironominae (82, including 40 Chironomini and 42 Tanytarsini). Currently, a total of 410 valid species are reported from Morocco. The low frequency of both listed and undescribed species in Mediterranean coastal ecosystems is linked to the limited faunal knowledge of wetland coastal areas and fragility of lowland habitats, which are regarded as true hotspots.


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