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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Using citizen science to monitor non-native species: the case of Lethocerus patruelis (Stål, 1855) (Hemiptera: Belostomatidae) in Italy


Findings of Lethocerus patruelis (Stål, 1855) in Southern Italy have become frequent in the last decades. We collected records of Lethocerus patruelis observations in Italy using scientific literature, citizen science programs, and social networks as data sources to create a complete and up-to-date dataset. This dataset is made of 59 Lethocerus patruelis observations from the Apulia, Basilicata, Calabria, and Abruzzi regions, 32 of which were previously unpublished, spanning from 1997 to 2020. Half of these records comes from biodiversity dedicated Facebook groups, citizen science programs and online forums, underlining the usefulness of unconventional data sources to gather data on species with poorly known distributions. The existence of Lethocerus patruelis viable populations in Italy remains unclear.


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