Canthariphilous species are those arthropods attracted to cantharidin (CTD), a defensive compound produced by two beetle families (Meloidae and Oedemeridae). Although several species are known to be attracted to CTD, canthariphily was recently discovered in new species, suggesting that the list of canthariphilous species is still far from being complete.A systematic sampling focused to detect canthariphilous species has never been performed in Italy. The present research provides a list of seven canthariphilous species (Diptera: Ceratopogonidae, Anthomyiidae; Coleoptera: Anthicidae) from the Tolfa Mountains (Latium, Central Italy) resulting from a one-year sampling with CTD-baited and control traps. New species (Atrichopogon atriscapulus and A. tolfensis) were found to be attracted to CTD, and other species, already known as canthariphilous, were recorded for the first time in the Italian fauna (A. atriscapulus and A. meloesugans). A new scenario about the ecological significance of CTD in the sexual selection of canthariphilous species was speculated in A. meloesugans. Finally, a list of CTD-producing species occurring in the sample area was provided to suggest putative natural CTD sources
Molfini, M., Nardi, G., GWIZDALSKA-KENTZER, M., Mancini, E., DI GIULIO, A., Szadziewski, R., et al. (2023). Exploring the canthariphilous species of the Tolfa Mountains (Latium, Central Italy): taxonomic diversity, phenology, and putative sources of cantharidin. THE EUROPEAN ZOOLOGICAL JOURNAL, 90(2), 547-555 [10.1080/24750263.2023.2227655].