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[ 9th Dresden Meeting on Insect Phylogeny, 20. – 22.09.2019 ]


Research in the Coleoptera Section spans a wide range of projects related to the comparative and functional morphology (exoskeleton, musculature, nerves, glands), phylogenetics, taxonomy, paleontology, and faunistics in a number of insect orders, with a focus on Coleoptera (beetles), Mantophasmatodea (heel-walkers), Dictyoptera (cockroaches, termites, and praying mantids), Odonata (dragonflies and damselflies), and Dermaptera (earwigs). Major long-term strands of research concern the comparative morphology of the female and male postabdomen (including the genitalic region) across the insect orders (aimed at phylogeny reconstruction as well as evolutionary scenarios for these structures and aspects of reproduction), the morphology and phylogeny of Dictyoptera, species diversity in Mantophasmatodea and Coleoptera-Byrrhidae, and faunistic inventories of aquatic beetles in eastern Germany.

In the various research projects, team members cooperate with each other in varying combinations and also with the molecular laboratory of Senckenberg Dresden, and there is also a great number of collaborators from universities and other research institutes worldwide (mainly Germany, Denmark, Ukraine, Russia, South Africa, USA, Japan, Brasil, Australia).

 Our research contributes to the Research Field Biodiversity and Systematics.


The Coleoptera collection includes ca. 2 million specimens, mostly dried and pinned, that represent ca. 80,000 species from all zoogeographical regions. It holds primary types for ca. 13,000 taxa, plus secondary types for numerous additional taxa. The most important systematic focus is the Curculionoidea, with nearly 20.000 species and primary types for ca. 7,400 taxa. Other outstanding parts are the Scarabaeidae and the less species-rich Mordellidae, Lycidae, and Byrrhidae. A recent regional focus is the Himalaya region.