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Georgia Journal of Science

Article Title

DETERMINING ANTLION SPECIES DIVERSITY IN GWINNETT COUNTY USING MORPHOLOGICAL FEATURES AND PRINCIPAL COORDINATE ANALYSIS**

Abstract

Antlions, also known as doodle bugs (Family: Myrmeleontidae), are insects found around the world, including Gwinnett County, Georgia. Antlion larvae are ambush predators that build pits in the sand to capture their prey. Their main food source is ants and other small prey that fall into the antlion pits, including other antlions. There are approximately 100 or more antlion species in North America. The main goal of the project is to determine various morphological features that can distinguish different potential species present in Gwinnett County, Georgia. The number of species existing in the area is currently unknown. It is hypothesized that there are at least four species existing locally. In this experiment, we will be using a Principle Coordinate Analysis (PCoA) to obtain a set number of species for Gwinnett County. This data will then be tested against DNA sequencing of the CO1 gene in another experiment. Preliminary results suggest that there are currently two different species based on morphological data collected.

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