Geographical parthenogenesis of earthworms (Oligochaeta, Lumbricidae) species communities in the situation of open landscapes in Ukraine


  • S.V. Mezhzherin I.I. Schmalhausen Institute of Zoology of the NAS of Ukraine, Kyiv
  • Yu.Yu. Chayka Zhytomyr Ivan Franko State University
  • V.V. Popov Kharkiv State Zooveterinary Academy
  • R.P. Vlasenko Zhytomyr Ivan Franko State University
  • O.I. Zhalay I.I. Schmalhausen Institute of Zoology of the NAS of Ukraine, Kyiv
  • O.V. Harbar Zhytomyr Ivan Franko State University



Lumbricidae, geographical parthenogenesis, open landscapes


The earthworms communities of the open landscapes of Ukraine confirm the geographic heterogeneity associated with the species-specific peculiarities of the reproduction of the constituent species. In the northwestern regions of Ukraine predominating species are amphimictic, otherwise in the eastern and southern regions the parthenogenetic species are dominating. The alternative character of the distribution of parthenogenetic and amphimictic species in the direction from northwest to southeast is confirmed by correlation analysis. It was revealed a negative dependence between the species richness of the community at the regional level and the representation of parthenogenetic earthworms in it. The predominance of parthenogenetic species in areas with dry and continental climates and depleted species composition gives the reason to consider the application of the concept of geographic parthenogenesis to the distribution of patterns of amphimictic and parthenogenetic earthworms species. Besides, there is no reason to consider parthenogenetic lumbricids are extremophiles; in this situation, it would be more accurate to classify them as highly tolerant organisms.


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How to Cite

Mezhzherin С., Chayka Ю., Popov В., Vlasenko Р., Zhalay О., & Harbar О. (2021). Geographical parthenogenesis of earthworms (Oligochaeta, Lumbricidae) species communities in the situation of open landscapes in Ukraine. Reports of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, (2), 108–114.