Abstract

Mechanisms governing taxon replacement and subsequent radiation remain little understood. We examine possible forcing factors in a turnover of subfamily dominance seen within the fossil record of green lacewings (Neuroptera: Chrysopidae), a common, cosmopolitan, nocturnally active insect family. Analyses indicate that Nothochrysinae dominated the family in the Eocene, while today they are relictual and the cosmopolitan Chrysopinae dominates with > 97% of its > 1200 species. Our findings suggest that this turnover is consistent with two key adaptations in the Chrysopinae: a tympanum that detects echolocation sounds of bats, which appeared in the fossil record and rapidly radiated during this time (a Red Queen interaction), and increased climatic tolerance coincident with the onset of post-Eocene global icehouse world climate (a Court Jester effect).

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