Date of Completion


Embargo Period



David L. Wagner, Carlos Garcia-Robledo, Scott E. Miller

Field of Study

Ecology and Evolutionary Biology


Master of Science

Open Access

Campus Access


The Lactura Walker, 1854 fauna north of Mexico are revised. Six species are documented, one new species Lactura nalli sp. nov. and two synonymies are established: Lactura psammitis (Zeller, 1872) rev. stat. and L. rhodocentra (Meyrick, 1913) n. syn. We illustrate adult and larval stages, male and female genitalia, present a preliminary phylogeny based on nuclear and mitochondrial data, provide distribution records for verified specimens, and briefly characterize the biology and life history for each species. Phylogenetic analyses, larval phenotypes, and life history information reveal that much of the historic taxonomic confusion rampant across this group in North America traces to the extreme phenotypic variation in just one species, L. subfervens (Walker, 1854).

Major Advisor

David L. Wagner