Drosophila, A Laboratory Handbook, Drosophila, A Laboratory Handbook

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Chapter 33: The Melangaster Species Subgroup

Michael Ashburner, Kent G. Golic, R. Scott Hawley


The nine species of the melanogaster species subgroup are morphologically very similar to one
another. For a general review of this species subgroup, see Lachaise et al. 2004. The only reliable
characteristics for the identification of eight of these species are the male genitalia. In each of D.
melanogaster, D. simulans, D. mauritiana, and D. sechellia, the process of the genital arch (epandrium)
has a characteristic shape, which readily allows these species to be distinguished (Fig. 33.1).
The genitalia of the other species are also distinctive, and these are illustrated in Figure 33.2. A
key for the identification of the nine species is given in Table 33.1.

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