Graduate Studies


Date of this Version

Summer 7-25-2012


Pucu de Araujo, Elisa. 2012. Ectoparasites of Ctenomys (Rodentia: Hystricognathi) from Bolivia: Distribution Records of Fleas, New Species Descriptions, and Phylogenetic Analysis of Chewing Lice (Gyropidae: Phtheiropoios). MS Thesis, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, 107p.


A THESIS Presented to the Faculty of the Graduate College at the University of Nebraska In Partial Fulfillment of Requirements For the Degree of Master of Science, Major: Biological Sciences, Under the supervision of Professor Scott Lyell Gardner. Lincoln, Nebraska: August, 2012

Copyright (c) 2012 Elisa Pucu de Araujo

Nomenclatural Disclaimer *This thesis includes taxa and combinations designated as ‘new’, however it is not issued for the purpose of public and permanent scientific record, and remains unpublished for the purposes of zoological nomenclature (Article 8.2, International Code of Zoological Nomenclature, ICZN, 1999). Taxonomic decisions herein will be made available by subsequent publication in scientific journals.


This study focused on ectoparasites of tuco-tucos (Rodentia: Ctenomys) that occur in Bolivia. Fleas and lice were studied from different species of Ctenomys collected from 1984-2000 in different localities in Bolivia. A total of 88 fleas were identified, with taxonomic and geographic distributions given. The results demonstrate that Tiamastus palpalis and Ectinorus (Panallius) galeanus are first records for Bolivia; and Gephyropsylla klagesi, Sphinctopsylla inca and Tetrapsyllus tristis are considered first records from a ctenomyid rodent in Bolivia. From these same rodents, several new species of chewing lice (Gyropidae: Phtheiropoios) were discovered and described. All lice were found in Bolivia, on different species of Ctenomys. The total of ten species were described utilizing diagnostic features and figures. Finally, the species of lice that were found in Ctenomys were analyzed phylogenetically using the comparative morphology of 32 characters. One tree was obtained in the analysis, with a consistency index of 0.744. In general, the phylogenetic analysis showed that species that occur in geographic proximity appear to be in the same clade, while the ones that occur more distantly in geographic space appear more derived. Each species of Ctenomys has one or more lice species, except for Ctenomys andersoni and Ctenomys yatesi, which share one lice species, Phtheiropoios ctenomysandersoni sp.nov.

Advisor: Scott L. Gardner