The Cyphonocerinae are a subfamily of fireflies (Lampyridae) with only a few handful of species in (presumably) two genera found in North America and Eurasia.[1] Its taxonomic history is confusing; it has at various times been included in the now-abolished Amydetinae or the Lampyrinae (which made these paraphyletic).

Alternatively, Psilocladius was included herein, in which case it was united with and became a junior synonym of the Psilocladinae, but this appears to be incorrect and the latter group is nowadays usually included in the Lampyrinae. Stenocladius, though usually placed in the Ototretinae, might actually belong to the present subfamily, but more study of this peculiar genus is necessary.[1]

Related to the Luciolinae and Ototretinae,[1] the Cyphonocerinae appear to be one of the most primitive living lineages of fireflies. In fact, this group is so plesiomorphic that Cyphonocerus was not recognized as a firefly and placed in the Drilidae when it was first described. Cyphonocerus can display weak light signals, while Pollaclasis (and Stenocladius) have only the plesiomorphic pheromone signals like their relatives.[1]

The genera placed in the Cyphonocerinae are:


  1. ^ a b c d Stanger-Hall et al. (2007)

Further reading[edit]

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