Friday, November 30, 2018

[Crustacea • 2018] Chinapotamon maolanense • A New Species of Karst-dwelling Freshwater Crab of the Genus Chinapotamon Dai & Naiyanetr, 1994 (Decapoda: Brachyura: Potamidae), from Guizhou, southwest China

Chinapotamon maolanense
Zou, Bai & Zhou​, 2018

Chinapotamon maolanense sp. n. from Maolan National Nature Reserve, Guizhou, southwest China, is described. C. maolanense sp. n. has diagnostic features of Chinapotamon, such as a slender and sinuous male first gonopod, prominently convex carapace, and one-third ratio of frons to carapace width. This new species can be distinguished from congeners by the combination of the following characters: relatively slender subterminal segment of the first gonopods, nearly oval-shaped carapace, anterolateral margin cristate of carapace and an oval-shaped gap between the fingers of the male major chela. In addition, we used a 16S rRNA gene fragment to explore the relationship between C. maolanense sp. n. and C. glabrum, C. depressum and other freshwater crabs distributed in Guizhou; the results support the new species being assigned to Chinapotamon and clearly different from other species used in the analysis.

Figure 7: Living color. (A and B) Chinapotamon maolanense n. sp. Paratype male (32.9 × 25.1 mm) (NCU MCP 196102). Photograph courtesy of Xian-min Zhou, October 2010.

Figure 2: Chinapotamon maolanense n. sp.  Holotype male (35.8 × 25.9 mm) (NCU MCP 196101).
 (A) Overall habitus; (B) dorsal view of carapace; (C) frontal view of cephalothorax; (D) left third maxilliped. Photograph courtesy of Xian-min Zou, August 2017.

Family Potamidae Ortmann, 1896

Chinapotamon Dai & Naiyanetr, 1994

Chinapotamon maolanense sp. n. (Figs. 2–7)

Materials examined. Holotype: ♂ (35.8 × 25.9 mm) (NCU MCP 196101), ..., Baixian Hill, Banzhai Village, Lino County, Guizhou Province, ..., 532 m asl. Xian-min Zhou, October 2010. 
Paratypes: 1♀ (allotype) (36.7 × 26.6) (NCU MCP 196107), same data as holotype; 1♂ (32.9 × 25.1 mm) (NCU MCP 196102). Others: 5♂ (40.4 × 30.9, 30.2 × 22.8, 28.9 × 21.4, 27.8 × 20.7, 27.7 × 19.5) (NCU MCP 196103, 196105, 196106, 196109, 196110), same data as holotype; and 2♀ (38.5 × 29.7, 31.6 × 23.5) (NCU MCP 196104, 196108), same data as holotype.

Description. Carapace nearly oval, widest at anterior one-third, 1.3–1.4 times as broad as long (mean = 1.34, specimens in the Materials examined sections were measured); dorsal surface (Figs. 2A and 2B) smooth, with inconspicuous small granular depression, prominently convex horizontally at anterior one-third and bent forward and backward. Branchial regions slightly convex laterally, with inconspicuous granular depressions. Epigastric cristae low, separated by a narrow gap; central part of the epigastric region slightly depressed. Postorbital cristae very low, not fused with epigastric cristae. Anterolateral margin distinctly cristate, lined with granules. Frons approximately one-third as wide as the carapace. Orbits (Fig. 2C) suboval. Epistome longitudinally narrow, posterior margin with blunt median lobe (Fig. 2B). Ocular peduncle (Fig. 2C) relative slender, medially constricted, distal end (cornea) and base with approximately same diameter.

Etymology. The species is named after the type locality: the Maolan National Nature Reserve.

Figure 1: Typical karst terrain of Maolan National Nature Reserve.
Photo: Xian-min Zhou, August, 2017.

Figure 8: Habitat of Chinapotamon maolanense n. sp.  at the type locality.
Photograph: Xian-min Zhou, October, 2010.

Ecological note. Karst terrain usually lacks soil and water, but in karst forests such as the Maolan National Nature Reserve, water could be conserved by dead branches and deciduous layers, and groundwater is another source. C. maolanense sp. n. crabs are locally known as “mountain crabs” because the species is generally distributed in low-altitude mountain forests. This species inhabits small mountain streams with low water flow and even moist soil where the surface has no flow; in contrast, most other Chinapotamon species live under stones in streams, while C. dashiwei and C. clarkei live in streams in caves. This species inhabits environments with dead leaves, dead branches, and humus (Fig. 8).

Remarks. Chinapotamon is characterized by the sinuous and slender G1, prominently convex dorsal surface of the carapace, and frons approximately one-third as wide as the carapace (Dai, 1999; Ng, 2017). C. maolanense sp. n. has all these features. Compared with the other Chinapotamon species, the shape of the G1 of C. maolanense sp. n. is similar to that of C. anlongense, C. depressum, C. dashiwei, and C. clarkei, but the terminal segment of the G1 of the new species is fairly straight, whereas those of the other four species are clearly curved. The subterminal segment of the G1 of C. maolanense sp. n. is almost as slender as the terminal segment, but the subterminal segment of the other four species are clearly stouter than the terminal segment. Additionally, the nearly ovate and prominent convex carapace, the large, oval-shaped gap between the fingers of the male major chela, and the uncountable granular teeth along the anterolateral margin of C. maolanense sp. n. are all distinguishable features (Table 2).

General Discussion: 
China has the largest area of karst in the world, most of which is located in the subtropical climate zone in southern China (Liu et al., 2014; Zhou, 1987). Based on theoretical inference or speculation due to existing forest fragments, these karst landforms are believed to have been covered with dense forest vegetation before human influence, but these forests are gradually disappearing and are nearly destroyed (Han, Tang & Wu, 2010). Thus, the discovery of the Maolan karst forest and the primitiveness and richness of the forest vegetation in this area have attracted attention from researchers (Han, Tang & Wu, 2010), but biodiversity surveys in this region have mainly focused on plants (Zhou, 1987). Among the collections of freshwater crab specimens in this area, we found a new species described herein as C. maolanense sp. n.

Most known Chinapotamon species are distributed in Guangxi and Guangdong Provinces, China, except for C. anlongense and C. xingrenense from southwest Guizhou Province, where the average altitude is 1,000–2,000 m. Dai (1999) also collected observations at altitudes above 1,000 m. However, the average altitude of the type locality of C. maolanense in southern Guizhou Province is approximately 500 m, and the main terrain of this area is a low karst peak cluster instead of high mountains. In contrast to the other karst-dwelling crabs, the specimens of C. maolanense were not collected from caves but rather from the humus layer in the forest with small water flow or even just a wet environment; this is a rare habitat for freshwater crabs. In this case, we speculate that this species may have more athletic ability.

Jie-Xin Zou, Jun Bai and Xian-Min Zhou​. 2018. A New Species of Karst-dwelling Freshwater Crab of the Genus Chinapotamon Dai & Naiyanetr, 1994 (Crustacea: Decapoda: Brachyura: Potamidae), from Guizhou, southwest China. PeerJ. 6:e5947.  DOI: 10.7717/peerj.5947

[Ichthyology • 2018] Austrolebias queguay • A New Species of Annual Killifish (Cyprinodontiformes, Rivulidae) Endemic to the lower Uruguay River Basin

Austrolebias queguay
Serra & Loureiro, 2018  

  DOI: 10.3897/zse.94.29115  

In this article we describe a new species of the annual fish genus Austrolebias from the lower Uruguay river basin. The fusion of the urogenital papilla to the first anal fin ray in males and the pigmentation pattern, indicates a close relationship with the clade formed by A. bellottii, A. melanoorus, and A. univentripinnis. The new species can be differentiated from those by the following combination of characters: presence of well-defined light bands contrasting with the sides of the body, the distal portion of the anal fin dark gray, pelvic fins dark bluish green and bases united at about 50–80% on their medial margins, pectoral fins with iridescent blue sub-marginal band, and general coloration of body bluish green. The new species can only be found in wetlands of the Queguay river, an area included in the Uruguayan protected areas system and represents so far the only annual fish species endemic to the lower Uruguay river basin.

Key Words: Austrolebias bellottii species group, Systematics, La Plata basin

Austrolebias queguay sp. n. 
Figure 2. 
A. paratype male (ZVCP 11620); B. non type male, not preserved (right side, photo flipped)

Figure 2. A. Austrolebias queguay sp. n. paratype male (ZVCP 11620); B. A. queguay non type male, not preserved (right side, photo flipped); C. i non preserved male; D. A. univentripinnis male (UFRGS 18064, right side photo flipped); E. A. melanoorus topotype male (ZVCP13651); F. Detail of pectoral and pelvic fins of A. melanoorus; G. Detail of pectoral and pelvic fins of  A. queguay.

Figure 3. A. Austrolebias queguay sp. n. female: paratype ZVCP 11620; B. A. bellottii female (ZVCP 11560); C. A. univentripinnis female (UFRGS 18066); D. A. melanoorus topotype female (ZVCP 13651).

Austrolebias queguay sp. n.
Austrolebias sp. in Loureiro et al. (2018)

Diagnosis: The new species differs from all the other species of the genus except Austrolebias bellottii, A. univentripinnis and A. melanoorus, by the presence of the urogenital papilla attached to the anal fin in males (vs. free from the anal fin). It differs from A. bellottii and A. univentripinnis by the presence of well-defined light blue bands contrasting with the sides of the body in adult males (vs. vertical rows of light blue dots) (Fig. 2); from A. melanoorus, by the presence of dark gray coloration of the distal portion of the anal fin in males (vs. distal portion of anal-fin black), pelvic-fins dark bluish green (observed in ventral view) and bases united at about 50–80% on their medial margins (vs. dark gray and united about 50% or less), pectoral-fins with iridescent blue sub-marginal band (vs. sub-marginal band absent), and general coloration of the body bluish green (vs. grayish sky blue).

 Figure 6. Geographic distribution of Austrolebias queguay sp. n. (orange dots, Uruguay river basin), A. bellottii (yellow dots, Paraná and Uruguay river basins), A. melanoorus (red dots, Negro and Yaguarón river basins), and A. univentripinnis (green dots, Yaguaron river basin). Orange star indicates type locality.

Figure 7. Type locality of Austrolebias queguay sp. n., wetlands of middle Queguay river basin.

Etymology: The specific name, queguay, is in reference to Queguay river basin, the type locality of the new species, treated as a noun in apposition to the generic name.

Distribution: Austrolebias queguay is endemic to the wetlands of middle Queguay river basin (30 meters above sea level), Paysandú Department, Uruguay, which flows to the lower Uruguay river (Fig. 6).

Ecology: As many species of the family Rivulidae, A. queguay presents an annual life cycle which includes drought resistant eggs and diapausing embryos. All species of Austrolebias are obligate annuals (Berois et al. 2016). In the Pampa biome there is not a defined dry season, so dried environments can be found between mid spring to early fall (depending on the year), when evaporation is higher than precipitations (Williams 2006; García et al. 2017). Austrolebias species can be found in small grassland ponds and seasonal floodplain wetlands; however the new species has been found so far only in the latter environments (Fig. 7).

 Wilson S. Serra and Marcelo Loureiro. 2018. Austrolebias queguay (Cyprinodontiformes, Rivulidae), A New Species of Annual Killifish Endemic to the lower Uruguay River Basin. Zoosystematics and Evolution. 94(2): 547-556.  DOI: 10.3897/zse.94.29115

[Ichthyology • 2018] Redescription and Phylogenetic Placement of Cirrhilabrus sanguineus Cornic (Teleostei: Labridae), with First Documentation of the Female Form

Cirrhilabrus sanguineus Cornic, 1987

in Tea, Frable & Van Der Wal, 2018. 

The labrid fish Cirrhilabrus sanguineus Cornic is redescribed on the basis of the neotype, two male specimens, and an additional female specimen recently collected from the northern coast of Mauritius. We provide new live and nuptial colouration descriptions, as well as the first documented female specimen for the species. we also include a molecular phylogenetic analysis of related species, with brief comments on phylogenetic interpretation of putative relationships amongst members of the genus Cirrhilabrus.

Keywords: Pisces, taxonomy, ichthyology, Mauritius, systematics, fairy wrasse

Yi-Kai Tea, Benjamin Frable and Cara Van Der Wal. 2018. Redescription and Phylogenetic Placement of Cirrhilabrus sanguineus Cornic (Teleostei: Labridae), with First Documentation of the Female Form. Zootaxa. 4526(3); 358–372. DOI: 10.11646/zootaxa.4526.3.5

[Botany • 2019] Didymocarpus middletonii (Gesneriaceae) • A New Species from Limestone Area of central Laos [Nam Kading National Protected Area VI]

Didymocarpus middletonii   Souvann., Soulad. & Tagane

in Souvannakhoummane, Souladeth, Tagane, et al., 2019. 
ດອກລຳໂພງຫີນສີມ່ວງ |

Didymocarpus middletonii Souvann., Soulad. & Tagane, a new species of Gesneriaceae from Nam Kading National Protected Area, is described and illustrated. The new species is morphologically similar to Didymocarpus brevicalyx, D. formosus and D. puhoatensis but distinguished from the three by its fewer-flowered inflorescence, longer pedicel, and urceolate and multicellular eglandular hairy calyx. Based on the latest IUCN criteria, Didymocarpus middletonii is proposed to be Critically Endangered (CR). Our record of Didymocarpus represents a new genus record for the flora of Laos.

Keywords: Biodiversity, Didymocarpus brevicalyx, Didymocarpus formosus, Didymocarpus puhoatensis, Indochina, Laos, new taxa, taxonomy.

Fig. 1. Didymocarpus middletonii Souvann., Soulad. & Tagane.
 A, Habit; B, abaxial surface of lamina; C, inflorescence with flower (lateral view); D, flower (top view); E, dissected corolla, showing stamens and staminodes; F, multicellular glandular and eglandular hairs on pedicel; G, calyx and pistil; H, fertile stamens. Scale bars: A, 4 cm; B, 3 cm; C–E and G, 1 cm; F and H, 4 mm.
Drawn by K. Souvannakhoummane from Tagane et al. L1198 (FOF).

Fig. 2. Didymocarpus middletonii Souvann., Soulad. & Tagane in the type locality.
 A, Habit; B, abaxial surface of lamina; C, flower (front view); D, flower (lateral view). Scale bars: A, 4 cm; B–D, 1 cm.
Photographed by S. Tagane on 29 June 2017.

Didymocarpus middletonii Souvann., Soulad. & Tagane, sp. nov. 

Didymocarpus middletonii is similar to Didymocarpus brevicalyx Nangngam & D.J.Middleton, Didymocarpus formosus Nangngam & D.J.Middleton from Thailand and Didymocarpus puhoatensis X.Hong & F.Wen from Vietnam but differs from these three in having an urceolate calyx (versus campanulate) and a smaller corolla (c.3.4 cm long versus longer than 4.5 cm). 

– Type: Laos, Nam Kading National Protected Area, Bolikhamxai Province, ..., 665 m elevation, 29 vi 2017, Tagane, S., Souladeth, P., Okabe, N., Yang, C.-J. L1198 [fl.] (holo FOF; iso E, HNL, P). 

Distribution. Laos, Bolikhamxai Province (so far known only from the type locality). 

Habitat and ecology. Didymocarpus middletonii grows on shaded rocks, along a stream in semi-evergreen forest. Given that most of the individuals seen during our field survey had flower buds, the species should be in full bloom in July. 

Etymology. The specific epithet honours Dr David Middleton (Singapore Botanic Gardens), from whom we received the most generous advice regarding this new species.

Vernacular name. ດອກລຳໂພງຫີນສີມ່ວງ [Dok Lam Phong Hin Si Mouang (meaning: limestone purple funnel flower)].


K. Souvannakhoummane, P. Souladeth, S. Tagane, C.-J. Yang. and T. Yahara. 2019. Nam Kading National Protected Area VI: Didymocarpus middletonii (Gesneriaceae), A New Species from Limestone. Edinburgh Journal of Botany.  DOI: 10.1017/S0960428618000264

[Entomology • 2018] Scapsipedus icipe • A New Edible Cricket Species of the Genus Scapsipedus (Orthoptera: Gryllidae) from Kenya, Africa

 Scapsipedus icipe Hugel & Tanga, 2018

 in Tanga, Magara, Ayieko, et al., 2018. 

A new cricket of the genus Scapsipedus is described from Kenya. The distribution, acoustic behavior, including call and courtship song, mitochondrial sequences, and data on the biology of that new species are given. This edible cricket is a very promising species for mass production for food and feed.

Keywords: Orthoptera, new species, bioacoustics, insect farming

Scapsipedus icipe Hugel & Tanga, n. sp.

Etymology. This new cricket is named after the type locality, International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology (icipe), Duduville Campus, Nairobi, Kenya.

 Chrysantus M. Tanga, Henlay J. O. Magara, Monica A. Ayieko, Robert S. Copeland, Fathiya M. Khamis, Samira A. Mohamed, Fidelis L. O. Ombura, Saliou Niassy, Sevgan Subramanian, Komi K. M. Fiaboe, Nanna Roos, Sunday Ekesi and Sylvain Hugel. 2018. A New Edible Cricket Species from Africa of the Genus ScapsipedusZootaxa. 4486(3): 383–392.  DOI: 10.11646/zootaxa.4486.3.9

New edible cricket species discovered in Kenya 

[Botany • 2018] Haplophyllum ermenekense (Rutaceae) • A New Species from Turkey

Haplophyllum ermenekense Ulukuş & Tugay

in Ulukuş & Tugay, 2018.

A new species of Haplophyllum, Haplophyllum ermenekense (Rutaceae) is described and illustrated in line drawing. It grows on stony slopes of Ermenek town, Karaman province, in southern Turkey. It is compared with the closely related species H. myrtifolium. H. ermenekense is distinguished from the morphologically similar H. myrtifolium chiefly by sepal shape, petal size, capsule size, presence of capsule hair and appendage form. On the other hand, the seed coat and pollen grains surface of H. ermenekense and H. myrtifolium are demonstrated in SEM photographs. In addition to the detailed description, the illustration, distribution map, conservation status and ecology of the new species are also provided.

Keywords: Endemic, Haplophyllum, Karaman, Rutaceae, taxonomy

Figure 2. Line drawing of Haplophyllum ermenekense.
A habit B petal of H. ermenekense C petal of H. myrtifolium D calyx of H. ermenekense E calyx of H. myrtifolium F stamen of H. myrtifolium G stamen H. ermenekense H capsule of H. myrtifolium I capsule of H. ermenekense J flower of H. ermenekense (Drawn from the holotype by O.Tugay).

Figure 3. General view of habit and flowers: A, B Haplophyllum ermenekense C, D H. myrtifolium.

Haplophyllum ermenekense Ulukuş & Tugay, sp. nov.

Diagnosis: Haplophyllum ermenekense most resembles the closely related H. myrtifolium. It differs from H. myrtifolium by its inflorescence usually lax form (versus dense), sepals ovate or ovate-oblong (versus lanceolate or lanceolate-oblong) and deciduous in fruit (versus persistent in fruit), petals 4–5.5 × 1.5–2.5 mm (versus 6.5–9.5 × 3.5–4.5 mm), capsule 2–2.5 × 3–4 mm (versus 3–3.5 × 5–6 mm) and glabrous (in contrast to not glabrous), with a conspicuous usually erect appendage on the outer upper surface (versus incurved appendage on the outer upper portion).

Etymology: The name of Ermenek town where new species found is given to the species epithet.

Proposed Turkish name for the new species: Ermenek sedosu.

Ecology: Haplophyllum ermenekense is endemic to Turkey. It grows at altitudes between 980 and 1200 m on limestone slopes amongst bushes (e.g. Quercus coccifera L., Juniperus oxycedrus L., Pistacia terrebinthus M.Bieb. etc.). Plant diversity in this place is mainly composed of herbaceous and suffruticose plants including Adonis flammea Jacq., Aegilops cylindrica Host, Aethionema stylosum DC., Capsella bursa-pastoris (L.) Medik., Centaurea virgata Lam., Digitalis cariensis Boiss. ex Jaub. & Spach, Ebenus plumosa Boiss. & Bal. subsp. speciosa Boiss.& Bal., Glaucium corniculatum (L.) Rud. subsp. corniculatum, Glaucium leiocarpum Boiss., Hyoscyamus aureus L., Hyoscyamus niger L., Isatis ermenekense Yıld., Micromeria cristata (Hampe) Griseb. subsp. cristata, Salvia albimaculata Hedge & Hub-Mor. and Salvia aucheri Bentham var. canescens Boiss. & Heldr.

Distribution and conservation status: Haplophyllum ermenekense is endemic to Karaman province. It is an element belonging to the east Mediterranean phytogeographic region (Fig. 1). The range of this new species is limited to a single locality and its area of occupancy is estimated to be less than 5 km or 5 km2. The number of mature individual plants is estimated to be less than 250. As it is perennial, this new species has a crucial advantage for its future as destruction of the bushes by local people, road construction and deterioration of habitats may cause some threats. Thus, according to criterion D, it can be included in the EN (Endangered) category (IUCN 2001; 2016).

 Deniz Ulukuş and Osman Tugay. 2018. Haplophyllum ermenekense (Rutaceae), A New Species from Turkey.  PhytoKeys. 111: 119-131. DOI: 10.3897/phytokeys.111.24241


[Entomology • 2018] Review of the Genus Trichactia Stein (Diptera: Tachinidae) in the Palaearctic Region, with the Description of A New Species, Trichactia meridiana, from Iran and the East Mediterranean

Trichactia meridiana Ziegler & Gilasian

in Gilasian, Ziegler & Parchami-Araghi, 2018. 
   DOI:  10.11646/zootaxa.4526.2.6 

The genus Trichactia Stein, 1924 (Diptera: Tachinidae) is newly recorded from Iran and its Palaearctic species are reviewed. The new species Trichactia meridiana Ziegler & Gilasian, sp. nov. is described from Iran and the East Mediterranean. An identification key to the three known Palaearctic species of Trichactia, photographs of all species and illustrations of their male terminalia are provided. Intraspecific variation between different geographical populations of T. meridiana sp. nov. is discussed.

Keywords: Diptera, identification key, Middle East, new records, taxonomy, Tachininae

 Ebrahim Gilasian, Joachim Ziegler and Mehrdad Parchami-Araghi. 2018. Review of the Genus Trichactia Stein (Diptera: Tachinidae) in the Palaearctic Region, with the Description of A New Species from Iran and the East Mediterranean. Zootaxa. 4526(2); 207–220. DOI:  10.11646/zootaxa.4526.2.6

[Entomology • 2018] Taxonomic Revision of the Western Palaearctic Bees of the Subgenus Pseudomegachile (Hymenoptera, Apiformes, Megachilidae, Megachile)

Megachile foersteri Gerstaecker, 1869 

in Dorchin & Praz, 2018.
  DOI:  10.11646/zootaxa.4524.3.1  

The subgenus Pseudomegachile Friese of the large genus Megachile Latreille is revised for the Western Palaearctic region, Iran, and the Arabian Peninsula. Twenty species are recognized, of which five are new: Megachile blepharis Dorchin & Praz from Israel, M. plumigera Dorchin & Praz from Oman and the United Arab Emirates, M. syriaca Dorchin & Praz from Syria and Turkey, M. yezidica Dorchin & Praz from Turkey and Iran, and M. maxschwarzi Dorchin & Praz from Iran and Central Asia. The following new synonymies are proposed: M. inermis Radoszkowski 1893 (as well as the replacement name M. mitis Cockerell 1899), M. albifasciata Rebmann 1970 and M. transgrediens Rebmann 1970 are placed in synonymy with M. saussurei Radoszkowski 1874; M. tuberculata Radoszkowski 1893 (as well as the replacement name M. tuberculosa Dalla Torre 1896) is placed in synonymy with M. seraxensis Radoszkowski 1893; M. rubripes Morawitz 1875 and M. persica Rebmann 1972 are placed in synonymy with M. flavipes Spinola 1838; M. stolzmanni Radoszkowski 1893 and M. flavidula Rebmann 1970 are placed in synonymy with M. tecta Radoszkowski 1888. Lectotypes are designated for M. cinnamomea Alfken 1926, M. nilotica Pérez 1897, M. inermis, M. seraxensis, M. tuberculata, M. farinosa Smith 1853, M. derasa Gerstäcker 1869, M. erythrocnemis Alfken 1930 and M. xanthocnemis Alfken 1938. An identification key is provided, a phylogenetic hypothesis including most species in the subgenus is presented, and the biology of the species is briefly summarized.

Keywords: Hymenoptera, Apiformes, Arabian, Chalicodoma, dauber bees, Mediterranean, mason bees, nesting biology, phylogeny, pollen host, trap nest

 Achik Dorchin and Christophe J. Praz. 2018. Taxonomic Revision of the Western Palaearctic Bees of the Subgenus Pseudomegachile (Hymenoptera, Apiformes, Megachilidae, Megachile). Zootaxa. 4524(3); 251–307. DOI:  10.11646/zootaxa.4524.3.1

Thursday, November 29, 2018

[Herpetology • 2018] On the Taxonomy and Phylogeny of the Rare Selangor Mud Snake Raclitia indica Gray (Serpentes, Homalopsidae) from Peninsular Malaysia

Raclitia indica Gray, 1842 

in Quah, Wood, Grismer & Anuar, 2018.
 Photo by Evan Quah.

The taxonomic position of the rare Selangor Mud Snake (Raclitia indica) Gray to other species of homalopsids has remained uncertain due to the scarcity of specimens in collections and the lack of genetic material for comparison. Here we report the first molecular phylogenetic examination of this species based on recently acquired material. The study recovered R. indica nested within the clade of advanced, fanged homalopsids and the sister species to Erpeton tentaculatus Lácèpede. We also present notes on variation observed in the new specimens as well as range extensions for the species.

Keywords: Reptilia, Reptile, Squamata, Enhydris, conservation, endemic, biodiversity

 Raclitia indica from Lubuk Yu, Pahang, Peninsular Malaysia.
 Photo by Evan Quah.

Evan S.H. Quah, Perry L. Jr. Wood, L. Lee Grismer and Shahrul Anuar Mohd Sah. 2018. On the Taxonomy and Phylogeny of the Rare Selangor Mud Snake (Raclitia indica) Gray (Serpentes, Homalopsidae) from Peninsular Malaysia.  Zootaxa. 4514(1); 53–64. DOI:  10.11646/zootaxa.4514.1.4

[Mammalogy • 2018] The Roosevelt–Rondon Expedition Marmoset Mico marcai: Unveiling the Conservation Status of A Data Deficient Species

Mico marcai (Alperin, 1993) 

in Silva, Bizri, Gonçalves, et al,. 2018.  
photo: Marcelo Santana. 

The Roosevelt–Rondon Expedition marmoset Mico marcai was first collected in 1914 and all information on this primate previously came from three skins brought back by this expedition. As a result, M. marcai is categorized as Data Deficient on the IUCN Red List. As the presumed range of M. marcai lies on the path of the advancing arc of deforestation in Brazil, the collection of relevant data to assess the conservation status of this Amazonian species is of some urgency. Here we present the first field data on the distribution and population size of, and threats to, Mmarcai, to reassess the species’ conservation status. During 2012–2015 we surveyed the species in the Marmelos–Aripuanã interfluve, and estimated its density using distance sampling. We also used spatial predictive modelling to estimate forest loss within the species range under two deforestation scenarios. We found the marmoset in 13 localities and estimated its extent of occurrence to be 31,073 km2. We estimated the species’ density to be 8.31 individuals/km2 and extrapolated this to estimate a total population of 258,218 individuals (CI 150,705–441,860). Under a business-as-usual deforestation scenario, c. 10,000 km2 of forest, comprising 33% of the species’ range, would be lost in three marmoset generations (c. 18 years), and we, therefore, recommend that M. marcai be categorized as Vulnerable on the IUCN Red List based on criterion A3c. Other Amazonian marmosets require similar reassessment as their ranges also fall in the path of the arc of deforestation.

Keywords: Brazil, conservation status, Data Deficient, forest loss, marmoset, Mico marcai, Roosevelt–Rondon Expedition, southern Amazonia

photos: Marcelo Santana.

Felipe Ennes Silva, Hani Rocha El Bizri, Jonas da Rosa Gonçalves, Lísley P. Lemos, Rodrigo Costa-Araújo, Ivan J. Lima, Aline Tavares Santos, Marcelo Ismar Santana, Caetano L. B. Franco and Jean P. Boubli. 2018.   The Roosevelt–Rondon Expedition Marmoset Mico marcai: Unveiling the Conservation Status of A Data Deficient Species. Oryx—The International Journal of Conservation. DOI:  10.1017/S0030605318000303

Lack of information as a threat for Amazonian marmosets « Life Sciences « Cambridge Core Blog

Guilherme Siniciato Terra Garbino. 2014. The Taxonomic Status of Mico marcai (Alperin 1993) and Mico manicorensis (van Roosmalen et al. 2000) (Cebidae, Callitrichinae) from Southwestern Brazilian Amazonia. International Journal of Primatology. 35 (2): 529–546. DOI: 10.1007/s10764-014-9766-4
Felipe Ennes Silva, Rodrigo Costa Araújo and Hermano Gomes Lopes Nunes. 2014. Population Trends and Conservation Status of Mico marcai in Aripuanã River Basin, Amazon, Brazil.   FINAL REPORT.

Monday, November 26, 2018

[Herpetology • 2018] Six New Cyrtodactylus (Squamata: Gekkonidae) from northeast India; Cyrtodactylus guwahatiensis, C. kazirangaensis, C. septentrionalis, C. jaintiaensis, C. montanus & C. nagalandensis

Cyrtodactylus kazirangaensis 
Agarwal, Mahony, Giri, Chitanya & Bauer, 2018

We use mitochondrial sequence data to identify divergent lineages within the gekkonid genus Cyrtodactylus in northeast India and use morphological data to describe six new species from within the Indo-Burma clade of Cyrtodactylus. The new species share an irregular colour pattern but differ from described species from the region in morphology and mitochondrial sequence data (>11 % uncorrected pairwise sequence divergence). Three new species are from along the Brahmaputra River and three are from mountains south of the Brahmaputra, including the largest Cyrtodactylus from India and the fifth gecko to be described from a major Indian city, Guwahati.

Keywords: Reptilia, Cyrtodactylus khasiensis, endemic species, morphology, Myanmar, ND2, taxonomy


We recovered the same topology as Agarwal et al. 2014, with moderate support for the south of Brahmaputra clade (Fig. 2). A basal split within the south of Brahmaputra clade separates a mountain (clade M in Agarwal et al. 2014) and lowland clade (clade N), which contain a total of seven, unnamed divergent lineages. The lowland clade includes taxa from lowlands south of the Brahmaputra—the species C. ayeyarwadyensis Bauer, C. khasiensis, and C. tripuraensis Agarwal, Mahony, Giri, Chaitanya and Bauer; and the new species C. guwahatiensis sp. nov., C. kazirangaensis sp. nov., and C. septentrionalis sp. nov. The mountain clade has three species from Myanmar, C. brevidactylus Bauer, C. chrysopylos Bauer, and C. gansi Bauer; and the new species C. jaintiaensis sp. nov., C. montanus sp. nov., C. nagalandensis sp. nov. and the unnamed C. sp. Mizoram from mountains in northeast India. ND2 p-distance results are provided in Table 2 and are discussed below in comparisons sections. We describe six of these genetically divergent lineages from across the lowland and mountain clades as new species below.

FIGURE 3. Cyrtodactylus guwahatiensis sp. nov. in life (adult male holotype, BNHS 2146).

Cyrtodactylus guwahatiensis sp. nov.

Etymology. The specific epithet is a toponym for the type locality of the species, Guwahati, the largest city in Assam and northeast India.

FIGURE 6. Cyrtodactylus kazirangaensis sp. nov. in life (adult male paratype BNHS 2149).

Cyrtodactylus kazirangaensis sp. nov. 

Etymology. The specific epithet is a toponym for Kaziranga National Park, which is adjacent to the type locality. Kaziranga, a World Heritage Site, is best known for having most of the world’s surviving Indian one-horned rhinoceros, though it has high biodiversity across taxonomic groups.

Cyrtodactylus septentrionalis sp. nov.

Etymology. The specific epithet is a nominative, masculine, singular, Latin adjective meaning “northern”, as this species is the only known member of the lowland clade (Agarwal et al. 2014) that is found north of the Brahmaputra River, the other five known species of the clade are found south of the Brahmaputra River.

Cyrtodactylus jaintiaensis sp. nov. 

Etymology. The specific epithet is a toponym named after the type locality of the new species in the Jaintia Hills, West Jaintia Hills district, Meghalaya.

Cyrtodactylus montanus sp. nov. 

Etymology. The specific epithet is a nominative, masculine, singular, Latin adjective meaning “pertaining to a mountain” as this species is a member of the mountain clade, and is restricted to a mountainous region in northwestern Tripura.

Cyrtodactylus nagalandensis sp. nov. 

Etymology. This is the first endemic gecko from Nagaland, and the specific epithet is a toponym for the state. 

 Ishan Agarwal, Stephen Mahony, Varad B. Giri, R. Chitanya and Aaron M. Bauer. 2018. Six New Cyrtodactylus (Squamata: Gekkonidae) from northeast India. Zootaxa.  4524(5); 501–535.  DOI:  10.11646/zootaxa.4524.5.1