Friday, March 31, 2023

[Entomology • 2023] Eotrechus kerberos, E. konkakinh, E. thai, etc. • Revision of the Genus Eotrechus Kirkaldy (Hemiptera: Heteroptera: Gerridae), with Descriptions of Six New Species


 Eotrechus konkakinh 
 Tran, Zettel & Sites, 2023

Species of the Asian genus Eotrechus Kirkaldy, 1902 (Hemiptera, Heteroptera, Gerromorpha, Gerridae, Eotrechinae) are atypical water striders because they live on the near-vertical rock surfaces of waterfalls. The taxonomy of the genus is revised and six new species are described: E. steineri sp. nov., E. kerberos sp. nov., E. thai sp. nov., E. konkakinh sp. nov., E. boukali sp. nov., and E. anderseni sp. nov. Supplementary descriptions of the apterous female and macropterous male of Efuscus Basu, Chandra & Venkatesan, 2017 are provided. Additional and updated distribution data of species of Eotrechus are reported. Eotrechus fuscus is reported from Myanmar for the first time; E. brevipes is reported from Nepal for the first time; E. hygropetricus Andersen, 1982 is reported from southern Thailand for the first time, which extends the southernmost limit of the known distribution of the genus. A revised key to the species of Eotrechus is also provided.

Key Words: Eotrechus, Gerridae, Gerromorpha, new species, taxonomy

In-situ photographs of Eotrechus.
A. E. vietnamensis, apterous male, from Ha Giang Province, Vietnam;
B. E. konkakinh sp. nov., apterous male, from Gia Lai Province, Vietnam.

 Eotrechus konkakinh sp. nov.

 Eotrechus konkakinh sp. nov., apterous male, from Gia Lai Province, Vietnam.

 Eotrechus thai sp. nov.

 Anh Duc Tran, Herbert Zettel and Robert W. Sites. 2023. Revision of the Genus Eotrechus Kirkaldy (Hemiptera, Heteroptera, Gerridae), with Descriptions of Six New Species. Deutsche Entomologische Zeitschrift. 70(1): 69-111. DOI: 10.3897/dez.70.97117

[Botany • 2023] Coutaportla helgae (Rubiaceae: Chiococceae) • A New Species from Sinaloa, México


Coutaportla helgae Pío-León, Torr.-Montúfar et H. Ávila,

in Pío-León, Torres-Montúfar et Ávila-González, 2023. 

Background and Aims: During explorations in the outer limits of the Natural Protected Area Sierra de Tacuichamona, an endemic-rich area of Sinaloa, Mexico, a new species of Coutaportla (Rubiaceae) was discovered. This paper describes and illustrates Coutaportla helgae, provides an identification key, a distribution map, and discusses the morphological and geographic relationships with the rest of the species of the genus.

Methods: Botanical collections were made during 2021 and 2022, and 15 herbariums and digital databases were reviewed to compare with other species of the genus and to locate possible additional localities. A distribution map was prepared using the polygon of the Sierra Madre Occidental as a base.

Key results: Coutaportla helgae stands out from the rest of the species of the genus by having the smallest flowers of the group. It is morphologically related to C. lorenceana as they are the only species of the genus with subapical placentation and calyx lobes less than half the length of the fruit, but it differs in having smaller flowers, a shrubby habit and distribution in tropical deciduous forest.

Conclusions: With the present discovery, Coutaportla reaches four endemic species to Mexico and five overall, considering C. guatemalensis. Coutaportla helgae contributes new characteristics to the genus by having smaller flowers and growing at lower altitudes than the rest. Additionally, elements are provided to support the conservation of sites with high biodiversity and endemism such as the Sierra Tacuichamona.

Keywords:  Cosalá, endemism, flora, Tacuichamona montains, tropical deciduous forest

Illustration: Ericka Belén Cortez

Coutaportla helgae Pío-León, Torr.-Montúfar et H. Ávila, sp. nov. 

Coutaportla helgae differs from all the other species in the genus by the shrub lifeform, small corolla (up to 1.3 cm long), the subapical ovule placentation and the capsules with one-seeded locules. It most closely resembles C. lorenceana by the subapical ovule placentation, but differs in the shrub lifeform (vs. treelet in C. lorenceana) and the white corolla with purple folds (vs. completely purple corol-las in C. lorenceana).

Juan F. Pío-León, Alejandro Torres-Montúfar and Heriberto Ávila-González. 2023. Coutaportla helgae (Rubiaceae), A New Species from Sinaloa, México. Acta Botanica Mexicana. 130; DOI: 10.21829/abm130.2023.2167


[Entomology • 2023] Subancistrocerus clypeatus • Key to the Species of the Genus Subancistrocerus de Saussure, 1855 (Hymenoptera: Vespidae: Eumeninae) from China with Description of A New Species

Subancistrocerus clypeatus Tan, 

in Tan, Wang, Xu, Tang & Liu, 2023.

A newly discovered species, Subancistrocerus clypeatus sp. nov., from China (Zhejiang) is described and illustrated. In addition, Subancistrocerus kankauensis (Schulthess-Rechberg) is redescribed and photographed after studying the type series. A key to the genus Subancistrocerus de Saussure, 1855 from China is presented. The distribution of this genus is briefly discussed.

Keywords: China, key, new species, redescription

Subancistrocerus clypeatus Tan, sp. nov., female, holotype
A forewing B head, frontal aspect C ibid, dorsal aspect D mesosoma, dorsal aspect E head, lateral aspect F mesosoma lateral aspect G metasoma, dorsal aspect H ibid, ventral aspect I ibid, lateral aspect.

Subancistrocerus clypeatus Tan, sp. nov., holotype, ♀
 A wing B propodeum posterior surface C fore tarsi D mid- and hind tibiae and pretarsus.

 Subancistrocerus clypeatus Tan, sp. nov.
Diagnosis: The species is similar to two Chinese species S. kankauensis and S. compressus and to a species S. indochinensis from Laos mainly basis of the deep concavity of A11–A12 and A13 flat, reaching the basis of A11 and mid- basitarsomere curved, about 5.0× as long as wide, but can be separated from S. kankauensis and S. compressus by the characters indicated in the key. It also differs from S. indochinensis by the following characters: 1) in S. clypeatus sp. nov., clypeus of male slightly longer than wide (width: length = 2.0: 2.2) with apical emarginate (width: depth = 1.0: 0.2), but in S. indochinensis, clypeus as wide as long (width: length = 2.0: 2.0) with apical margin slightly emarginate (width: depth = 1.4: 0.2). 2) in S. clypeatus sp. nov., clypeus of female as wide as long (width: length = 2.0: 2.0) with apical slightly margin emarginate (width: depth = 1.4: 0.2), black laterally, yellow medially with a black transverse spot, while in S. indochinensis, the clypeus of female slightly wider than long (2.5: 2.3) with apical margin slightly emarginate (width: depth = 1.4: 0.2), black with a yellow transverse band basally and two yellow spots above the apical margin. 3) apical yellow band of T3 and S3 present in S. clypeatus sp. nov., but absent in S. indochinensis.

Etymology: The new species is named from Latin “clypeus, shield” referring to its shield shaped patch on the middle of female clypeus for the depression bordered by two longitudinal sinuate carinae.

Jiang-Li Tan, Meng Wang, Hongli Xu, Yan Tang and Ying Liu. 2023. Key to the Species of the Genus Subancistrocerus de Saussure, 1855 (Hymenoptera, Vespidae, Eumeninae) from China with Description of A New Species. Journal of Hymenoptera Research. 95: 113-127. DOI:  10.3897/jhr.95.96903

Thursday, March 30, 2023

[Herpetology • 2023] Cyrtodactylus chengodumalaensis • A New Spotted Species of the Cyrtodactylus (Geckoella) collegalensis (Beddome, 1870) (Reptilia: Gekkonidae) Complex from Coastal Kerala, Southwestern India

Cyrtodactylus (Geckoellachengodumalaensis 
 Agarwal, Umesh, Das, Bauer & Khandekar, 2023

DOI: 10.1607/21-075  

We describe a new spotted species of ground-dwelling gecko of the genus Cyrtodactylus (Geckoella) from coastal Kerala, southwestern India, by using an integrative taxonomic approach. The new species is a member of the C. collegalensis species complex, with 10.0–13.5% uncorrected mitochondrial sequence divergence from the other six members of the C. collegalensis complex. The new species is also recognized in tree-based delimitation methods and can be morphologically diagnosed by a spotted dorsal pattern of four to six pairs of spots (occasionally fused into figure 8–shaped markings) from the banded species C. speciosus, C. rishivalleyensis, and C. yakhuna and from the spotted C. collegalensis, C. srilekhae, and C. varadgirii by the presence of a few scattered enlarged dorsal scales. This is the only Indian member of the C. collegalensis complex with a relatively broad distribution at low elevations, other than C. varadgirii from western India (distributed in Maharashtra, southern Gujarat, and western Madhya Pradesh). The sister species to the new species is the Sri Lankan C. yakhuna, which is a banded form from low elevations. The new species is the second gecko to have been described from Chengodumala and endemic to northern and central Kerala, highlighting the importance of this area, which is under increasing anthropogenic pressure. We also provide notes on the dorsal pholidosis of C. rishivalleyensis, which was overlooked in its original description.

Cyrtodactylus (Geckoellachengodumalaensis 
 Coastal Kerala Geckoella

Ishan Agarwal, P. K. Umesh, Sandeep Das, Aaron M. Bauer and Akshay Khandekar. 2023. A New Spotted Species of the Cyrtodactylus (Geckoella) collegalensis (Beddome, 1870) (Reptilia: Squamata) Complex from Coastal Kerala, Southwestern India. Journal of Herpetology. 57(1); 75-86. DOI: 10.1607/21-075

[PaleoIchthyology • 2023] Maghriboselache mohamezanei • Broad Snouted cladoselachian (Symmoriiformes: Cladoselachidae) with Sensory Specialization at the Base of modern Chondrichthyans

Maghriboselache mohamezanei 
Klug, Coates, Frey, Greif, Jobbins, Pohle, Lagnaoui, Haouz & Ginter, 2023

Throughout the Silurian and Devonian, cartilaginous fish successively evolved their specialized skeletal and dental characteristics, and increasingly refined their sensory systems. The Late Devonian shark taxon Maghriboselache mohamezanei gen. et sp. n. from the eastern Anti-Atlas of Morocco is known from multiple specimens preserving most of its skeletal features, which in some instances are preserved in three dimensions. Key details of the dentition, jaws, and pectoral skeleton are shared with the iconic genus Cladoselache. Phylogenetic analyses place the family Cladoselachidae as the sister group of symmoriiforms and these groups as sister group of the holocephalans. Further phylogenetic results corroborate that the initial evolutionary radiation of crown chondrichthyans occurred within or before the Late Devonian. Remarkably, this new stem holocephalan is equipped with a wide snout and large laterally separated nasal capsules: the earliest known example of this condition in the chondrichthyan and (perhaps) gnathostome record. This suggests sensory specialization approaching that of extant broad-rostrum elasmobranchs and represents a significant addition to increasingly apparent ecomorphological diversity among early chondrichthyans.

Photo and drawing of a nearly complete skeleton of Maghriboselache mohamezanei n. gen. et sp., AA.BER.DS.01. The marked fin spine belongs to the posterior fin

Skeletal reconstruction of possibly a male (A dorsal. B lateral) and possibly a female (C bottom, lateral) of Maghriboselache mohamezanei n. gen. et sp. The according details were collected from the mentioned specimens. Note the presence of anterior dorsal fin spine in the supposed males, possibly serving a role during copulation. Claspers are not present in the supposed males of our sample. The photos show the according regions of specimens displayed in Fig. 1 and the Additional file 1

Systematic palaeontology
Chondrichthyes (Huxley, 1880).
Holocephali (Bonaparte, 1838).

Symmoriiformes (Zangerl, 1981).
Cladoselachidae (Dean, 1909a).

Diagnosis: Symmoriiform chondrichthyans with pectoral fins with distally broad, flat, strap-like radials. Cleaver-shaped palatoquadrate with otic process shorter than palatine process; jaw articulation barely posterior to occipital level. Teeth with tall median cusp flanked by much smaller lateral cusps and tooth base with a deep basolabial depression flanked by adjacent projections.

Remarks: This family now comprises the genera Cladoselache and Maghriboselache, thus far limited to the Famennian of the USA and Morocco.

Maghriboselache gen. n.

Etymology: From the Arabic word al Maghrib for Morocco and the Greek word σέλαχος (selachos) for cartilaginous fish.
Diagnosis: Cladoselachiid distinguished by neurocranium with broad flattened rostrum enclosing large, widely separated, nasal capsules. Rostral span, including the nasal capsules, matches span of the postorbital arcade. Postorbital arcade surrounds small jugular foramen. Ventral extremity of postorbital arcade extends anteriorly, contributing to orbit floor and almost meeting posterolateral extremity of rostral cartilage and postnasal wall. Otic process of palatoquadrate anteroposteriorly short, in lateral view terminating level with, or just caudal to, the posterior extremity of the occipital cartilage. Dentition with enlarged teeth on the mandibular symphysis. Scapulocoracoid with ventrally broad scapula process and sturdy coracoid region with slender, distinct, procoracoid cartilage. Anterior dorsal fin spine (if present): long, laterally flattened and smooth, curved posteriorly throughout length.

Maghriboselache mohamezanei sp. n.
Holotype: AA.MEM.DS.12, which preserves the 3D neurocranium, teeth, shoulder girdle, and most fins, and hence most of the relevant body parts.
Age: Thylacocephalan Layer, late early to early middle Famennian, Late Devonian.

Type locality: Mousgar, southern Maïder, southeastern Anti-Atlas, Morocco.

Etymology: Referring to Moha Mezane (El Khraouia & Merzouga, Morocco), French linguist and amateur geologist, specialized in fossils and minerals from the southern Tafilalt. He found many important specimens including some of the material described here.

Reconstruction of Maghriboselache mohamezanei n. gen. et sp. in its habitat. Thylacocephalans, cephalopods with orthoconic conchs, placoderms such as Dunkleosteus and osteichthyans populated the water column during the middle Famennian in the Anti-Atlas

Christian Klug, Michael Coates, Linda Frey, Merle Greif, Melina Jobbins, Alexander Pohle, Abdelouahed Lagnaoui, Wahiba Bel Haouz and Michal Ginter. 2023. Broad Snouted cladoselachian with Sensory Specialization at the Base of modern Chondrichthyans. Swiss Journal of Palaeontology.  142:2. DOI: 10.1186/s13358-023-00266-6

[Ichthyology • 2023] Uropterygius cyamommatus • A New Moray Eel (Anguilliformes: Muraenidae) from Anchialine Caves in Christmas Island, Australia, and Panglao Island, the Philippines

Uropterygius cyamommatus
 Huang, Liao & Tan, 2023 

Bean-eyed Snake Moray | 豆眼鰭尾鯙  ||  Raffles. Bull. Zool. 71 Wen-Chien Huang

Uropterygius cyamommatus, new species, is described based on nine specimens from limestone anchialine caves in Christmas Island and Panglao Island. This species is a small-sized, elongated moray eel belonging to the uniform brown-coloured species group of the genus. It differs from all congeners of Uropterygius in having very small eyes (3.0–4.6% of head length), a relatively long tail (56.3–61.1% of total length), and a comparatively large number of vertebrae (total vertebrae 141–149). The new species represents the first-recorded moray eel that inhabits anchialine caves. 

Key words. eastern Indian Ocean, Elopomorpha, Uropterygiinae, western Pacific Ocean

Uropterygius cyamommatus, new species, holotype, WAM P.35403.001, 361 mm TL.
 fresh colouration. Arrows indicate the position of anus.
photographed by Heok Hui Tan

Uropterygius cyamommatus, new species 
Common name: Bean-eyed Snake Moray

Diagnosis. A small-sized slender moray eel of genus Uropterygius. Tail long, 56.3–61.1% of TL. Eyes very small, 3.0–4.6% of HL, sometimes reduced and subcutaneous. One branchial pore. Maxillary teeth biserial. Dentary teeth 2–3 rows anteriorly, biserial posteriorly. Body uniform brown. Anterior nostril, gill opening, oral cavity, and head pores whitish. Pre-anus vertebrae 56–62, pre-dorsal fin vertebrae 130–138, pre-anal fin vertebrae 131–139, total vertebrae 141–149. 

Etymology. From Greek words kúamos (a bean) and ómma (the eye), in reference to its tiny bean-shaped eyes.

 Wen-Chien Huang, Te-Yu Liao and Heok Hui Tan. 2023. Uropterygius cyamommatus, A New Moray Eel (Anguilliformes: Muraenidae) from Anchialine Caves in Christmas Island, Australia, and Panglao Island, the Philippines. Raffles. Bull. Zool. 71; 268–278.

Wednesday, March 29, 2023

[Botany • 2023] Coelogyne lecongkietii (Orchidaceae: Epidendroideae) • A New Species of Coelogyne sect. Panisea from Da Lat Plateau, southern Vietnam

Coelogyne lecongkietii Vuong, Aver. & Q.T.Truong,  

in Vo, Averyanov, Maisak,  Dang, Dang, Nguyen, Nguyen, Truong & Truong, 2023.

Coelogyne lecongkietii (C. sect. Panisea) was found in Lac Duong District, Lam Dong Province, southern Vietnam (Da Lat Paleau, Central Highlands), and is described here as a new species for science. It resembles C. sagittata in having the backward pointed side-lobes of the lip, but strongly differs in the smaller flower, shorter side-lobes, and distinct, rounded column wings. This paper presents a standard taxonomic description of the new species including illustrations and data on its habitat and phenology.

Key Words: Central Highlands, Lam Dong Province, Orchidaceae, Panisea, plant diversity, plant endemism, plant taxonomy.

Coelogyne lecongkietii Vuong, Aver. & Q.T.Truong sp. nov.

ETYMOLOGY. The species name honours Dr Le Cong Kiet, well-known botanist and professor of Botany at the Vietnam National University, Ho Chi Minh city

VERNACULAR NAME. Thanh Đạm Lê Công Kiệt.

Doan Trung Vo, Leonid V. Averyanov, Tatiana V. Maisak, Minh Quan Dang, Van Son Dang, Quoc Bao Nguyen, Van Canh Nguyen, Quang Tam Truong and Ba Vuong Truong. 2023. A New Orchid Species, Coelogyne lecongkietii (C. sect. Panisea) from Da Lat Plateau, southern Vietnam. Kew Bulletin. DOI: 10.1007/s12225-023-10078-z

Tuesday, March 28, 2023

[Arachnida • 2022] Weygoldtia condao • A New Species of the Whip Spider Genus Weygoldtia (Amblypygi: Charinidae) from Con Dao National Park, Vietnam

Weygoldtia condao 
 Anh & Hong Luong, 2022

A new species of the monotypic genus Weygoldtia Miranda, Giupponi, Prendini & Scharff, 2018 was described from Con Son island, southern Vietnam, namely Weygoldtia condao sp. nov. The new species is clearly distinguished from its congener Weygoldtia davidovi (Fage, 1946) by having more articles in the tibia and tarsus of leg I. A fragment of the cytochrome c oxidase subunit I (COI) gene is also provided for the new species. The K2P genetic distance of the COI between the new species and W. davidovi is 20%, and phylogenetic analysis also supported the new species.

Keywords: Soil biodiversity, taxonomy, COI, DNA barcode, new species, Vietnam

Weygoldtia condao sp. nov. from Con Dao National Park. Habitus.

Weygoldtia condao sp. nov. 

Nguyen Thi Thu Anh and Phung Thi Hong Luong. 2022. A New Species of the Whip Spider Genus Weygoldtia (Arachnida: Amblypygi: Charinidae) from Con Dao National Park, Vietnam. Academia Journal of Biology. 44(3); 67–76. DOI: 10.15625/2615-9023/16953


[PaleoIchthyology • 2023] Khoratamia phattharajani • A New Sinamiin Fish (Amiiformes: Amiidae: Sinamiidae) from the Early Cretaceous of Thailand: Implications on the Evolutionary History of the Amiid Lineage

Khoratamia phattharajani 
Deesri, Naksri, Jintasakul, Noda, Yukawa, El Hossny & Cavin, 2023

The Sinamiidae are a family of halecomorph fishes (Holostei) stratigraphically limited to the Lower Cretaceous and confined to East Asia. The first species of sinamiids were discovered in China, and then new occurrences were recorded in Thailand and Japan. The three recognized genera, Sinamia, Siamamia and Ikechaoamia, are notably characterized by an unpaired parietal. Here, we describe a new genus and species of sinamiid based on material from the Aptian Khok Kruat Formation of Ban Krok Duean Ha, Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand. The new taxon known from preserved specimens in 3D is characterized by four pairs of extrascapular and tall cylindrical teeth with a conical enamel stalk topped by an arrowhead-shaped acrodine cap, among other characters. A phylogenetic analysis of the halecomorph fishes shows that the new taxon is the sister of the other Thai species, Siamamia naga, and that the two are grouped with two Chinese genera in a strongly supported clade, the Sinamiinae. This subfamily is here grouped with the Amiinae that contained the extant Amia. This new discovery is a clue that Southeast Asia may have been a center of diversification for this fish clade, and the phylogenetic analysis reveals that amiines may have originated somewhere in Asia during the Cretaceous before they spread throughout the northern hemisphere.

Keywords: Halecomorphi; Amiidae; Sinamiinae; phylogeny; paleobiogeography; Khorat Plateau; Early Cretaceous; Khoratamia phattharajani

 (A) The section of the sample collection and (B) stratigraphic section of the study area.

Khoratamia phattharajani gen. et sp. nov., holotype NRRU-F01020023, skull roof in dorsal view: (A) interpretative line drawing (A’) and ventral view (B) interpretative line drawing (B’).
Scales bars: 1 cm.

Khoratamia phattharajani gen. et sp. nov., holotype NRRU-F01020023, photograph of the skull in right lateral view:
(A) interpretative drawing (A’) and left lateral view (B) line drawing (B’).
Scales bar: 1 cm.

 Holotype of Khoratamia phattharajani gen. et sp. nov., NRRU-F01020023:
 (A) photograph of the complete specimen in right lateral view, an arrow indicating the origin of the dorsal fin; (B) left lateral view, a white arrow indicating the position of the pelvic fin. The black box indicates the area enlarged in (C) (close-up of the teeth from a maxilla).
Scales bars: 2 cm (A,B); 0.1 cm (C).

Systematic Paleontology
Order AMIIFORMES Hay, 1929

Superfamily AMIOIDEA Bonaparte, 1839  
Family AMIIDAE Bonaparte, 1839  
Subfamily SINAMIINAE Patterson, 1973  

Khoratamia gen. nov.
Etymology. Khoratamia is derived from “Khorat“, the local name of the city and province of Nakhon Ratchasima, northeastern Thailand, which also gives the name to the Khorat plateau, + Amia (Greek).

Khoratamia phattharajani gen. et sp. nov.

Holotype. NRRU-F01020023 (Figure 3, Figure 4, Figure 5 and Figure 6). Anterior half fish with the dermal bones preserved.

Diagnosis. Sinamiin fish characterized by the following combination of characters: crescent preopercular with a broad dorsal end; four pairs of extrascapulars with the six medial ones rectangular in shape and the lateralmost ones elongate and triangular in shape; unpaired parietal tapering anteriorly and narrowing at its posterior extremity; pyriform-shaped gular plate with a smooth undulate posterior margin; ventral postinfraorbital elongated and tapering posteriorly; small dorsal postinfraorbital; high cylindrical teeth with conical enamel stalk marked by fine ridges and with an arrowhead-shaped acrodin cap with cutting carinae; rhombic scales with serrated posterior margins; no peg and socket articulation of the scales with a keel on its internal surface at the center of the scales.

Type locality. Ban Krok Duean Ha, Tambon Suranaree, Amphoe Muang Nakhon Ratchasima, Nakhon Ratchasima Province, NE Thailand.

Type horizon. Khok Kruat Formation, Early Cretaceous, Aptian.

Etymology. Khoratamia phattharajani derives from Phatthara + Rajan the designation of Somdet Phra Phatthara Maharat [พระภัทรมหาราช], a title given to King Bhumibol Adulyadej, (Rama IX, 5 December 1927 – 13 October 2016) in recognition of his research dedication and support for breeding Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus), which has provided a new career for over a million Thai agriculturalists and became a primary protein source for the Thai people. The discovery of a new sinamiin fish resulting from cooperation between Thailand and Japan commemorates the close collaboration between the two countries in fish research and aquaculture, with Emperor Akihito presenting 50 Nile tilapias to King Rama IX in 1965.
โคราชเอเมีย ภัทรราชัน [ภัทรมหาราช]

Skull reconstructions of a Khoratamia phattharajani gen. et sp. nov. showing the pattern of sensory canals in dorsal view (A) and lateral view (B).
Scale bar: 2 cm.

The discovery of Siamamia in the Sao Khua Formation at the Phu Phok site extended the geographical distribution of sinamiins much farther south than their previous distribution, mainly in China. Then, the discovery of isolated sinamiin remains in several localities in Sao Khua Formation, and in the younger Khok Kruat Formation, indicated that these fish formed an important component of the continental aquatic vertebrate assemblages during the Early Cretaceous in what is now Thailand. The discovery of articulated material of a new genus and a new species of sinamiin in the Khok Kruat Formation, in a sister position to Siamamia, is an indication that diversification of this lineage had occurred in Southeast Asia, regardless of diversification in China. Note that another sinamiin fish specimen from the Phu Phok site, figured in Cavin et al. [2019], may correspond to a third distinctive taxon, thus reinforcing this region as a potential location for diversification of the clade.
The phylogenetic relationships obtained here, indicating the existence of a possible lineage of freshwater amiids formed by amiins and sinamiins, suggest that the extant freshwater Amia lineage may have originated in Asia before dispersal to North America.

Uthumporn Deesri, Wilailuck Naksri, Pratueng Jintasakul, Yoshikazu Noda, Hirokazu Yukawa, Tamara El Hossny and Lionel Cavin. 2023. A New Sinamiin Fish (Actinopterygii) from the Early Cretaceous of Thailand: Implications on the Evolutionary History of the Amiid Lineage. Diversity. 15(4); 491. DOI: 10.3390/d15040491
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Women’s Special Issue Series: Diversity)

Monday, March 27, 2023

[Mollusca • 2023] Diplommatina bulonensis, D. laemsonensis & D. prakaiphetensis • Three New Species of the Land Snail of the Genus Diplommatina Benson, 1849 (Caenogastropoda: Diplommatinidae) from Satun Province, Thailand

Diplommatina bulonensis, D. laemsonensis D. prakaiphetensis 

 Boonmachai, Bergey & Nantarat, 2023

The micro land snail genus Diplommatina (family Diplommatinidae) is widely distributed in Southeast Asia and includes many endemic species. Three new species of Diplommatina are described from Satun Province in southern Thailand. Diplommatina bulonensis sp. nov., D. laemsonensis sp. nov. and D. prakaiphetensis sp. nov. are distinguished from other species in the genus by their shell size and shape, the number of radial ribs on the penultimate whorl, the number of whorls, and features of the peristome. The agreement between phylogenetic tree based on analyses of COI and 16S sequences and comparative morphology support the delineation of these new species which, when compared to related species, belong to well-differentiated clades. The K2P distance between any of the three new species and other Diplommatina species included in the molecular phylogenetic analysis was at least 5.5% in COI and 3.9% in 16S. Two of the three new species (D. prakaiphetensis sp. nov. and D. bulonensis sp. nov.) are apparently endemic to Prakaiphet Hill and Bulon Pai Island, respectively. Additionally, we documented a new regional record for D. naiyanetri in Satun Province. These new species and records contribute to the knowledge of Thailand’s land snail biodiversity and highlight the need of conservation protections for regional karst habitats.

Key Words: endemic, limestone, micro land snail, phylogeny, taxonomy

Localities of micro land snail sampling in Satun Province, Thailand.
A. Bulon Pai Island; B. Talutao Island; C. Khao Yai Island; D. Laem Son Hill; E. Prakaiphet Hill; F. Tharn Pliew Waterfall; G. Phu Pha Phet Cave.
The symbols without letters show previous records for different species of Diplommatina that are known from Thailand (Maassen 2001b; Panha and Burch 2005; Tongkerd et al. 2013; Inkhavilay et al. 2019; Dumrongrojwattana et al. 2020).

Shell internal terminology of new species of the genus Diplommatina from Satun Province
under the stereo microscope and the drawing.
A, B. D. bulonensis sp. nov. (Bulon Pai Island);
C, D. D. laemsonensis sp. nov. (Laem Son Hill);
E, F. D. prakaiphetensis sp. nov. (Prakaiphet Hill).

Shell morphology of Diplommatina from Satun Province.
A. D. bulonensis sp. nov. (Holotype CMUZ 9050001; Bulon Pai Island);
B. D. laemsonensis sp. nov. (Holotype CMUZ 9050019; Laem Son Hill);
C. D. prakaiphetensis sp. nov.  (Holotype CMUZ 9050066; Prakaiphet Hill);
D. D. naiyanetri (CMUZ 905090; Tarutao Island);
E. D. canaliculata (CMUZ 9050158; Tharn Pliew Waterfall).

 Tuangthong Boonmachai, Elizabeth A. Bergey and Nattawadee Nantarat. 2023. First Record and Description of Three New Species in the Land Snail Genus Diplommatina Benson, 1849 (Caenogastropoda, Diplommatinidae) from Satun Province, Thailand. Zoosystematics and Evolution. 99(1): 195-207. DOI: 10.3897/zse.99.99030  

[Herpetology • 2023] Eleutherodactylus humboldti & E. jamesdixoni • Two New Species of Eleutherodactylus (Anura: Eleutherodactylidae) from western and central Mexico

Eleutherodactylus humboldti 
Devitt​, Tseng, Taylor-Adair, Koganti, Timugura & Cannatella, 2023

The subgenus Syrrhophus (genus Eleutherodactylus) contains >40 species of small, direct-developing frogs that occur at low to moderate elevations from Texas through Mexico and into Guatemala and Belize, with two species in western Cuba. Morphological conservatism and phenotypic convergence have made species delimitation challenging and resulted in a complicated taxonomic history. Since 2015, molecular systematic work has uncovered eleven new species from western Mexico and one from eastern Mexico, but current taxonomy still underestimates species level diversity and there is confusion surrounding the validity and boundary of several species.

We used phylogenetic analysis of 16S ribosomal RNA (rRNA) sequences, multivariate statistical analysis of morphological data, and bioacoustic analysis of male advertisement calls to discover two additional unnamed species of Eleutherodactylus from Central and Western Mexico. We describe those species here.

Eleutherodactylus (Syrrhophus) humboldti sp. nov. is described from the Quaternary Valle de Bravo volcanic field of the Eje Neovolcánico in Central Mexico. This species is sister to E. maurus and is 3% divergent in 16S. Eleutherodactylus (Syrrhophus) jamesdixoni sp. nov. is described from the Sierra Madre Occidental of western Mexico. This species is sister to E. nitidus and is 3% divergent. We provide color photographs, advertisement call recordings, and molecular diagnoses of these new species and their sister species to aid future workers.

Eleutherodactylus humboldti, sp. nov. in life
(A) MZFZ 4505 (holotype); (B) MZFZ 4504 (paratype); (C and D) MZFZ 4506 (paratype);

Eleutherodactylus (Syrrhophus) humboldti, new species 
Suggested English name: Humboldt’s Peeping Frog
Suggested Spanish name: Rana fisgona de Humboldt

Diagnosis and comparisons: 
Molecular synapomorphies for this species are (character: state change): 147: A => G, 204: C => T, 241: C => T, 243: A => T, 256: T => C, 279: C => A, 281: C => T, 292: G => A, 295: A => G and 358: G => C. Character numbers refer to the position in the alignment (Data S1).
Among species of the western clade of Syrrhophus, E. humboldti is most similar in appearance to E. maurus (Fig. 8); however, our sample sizes for each species are too small to make robust inter- or intrapopulation comparisons. These two taxa are very similar in having a triangular head with a sharp canthus rostralis with a black stripe on the lateral aspect. The stripe fades inferiorly into a grayish brown. This stripe seems to extend across the eye in the sense that the middle and lower part of the iris is black, whereas the upper part of the iris is gold. The stripe extends posterior to the eye across the tympanum (which is slightly paler in color) to the axilla. In the postorbital region, the stripe borders the sharp supratympanic fold.

Etymology: We name this species in honor of German scientist Alexander von Humboldt, whose year-long exploration of south-central Mexico at the turn of the 19th century resulted in the first scientific account of the New World and whose writings continue to influence biogeographers, ecologists and evolutionary biologists seeking to understand the origin and maintenance of biodiversity in mountain regions (Rahbek et al., 2019b, 2019a).

Holotype of Eleutherodactylus jamesdixoni, sp. nov. (IBH 34852) in life. 

Eleutherodactylus (Syrrhophus) jamesdixoni, new species
Suggested English name: Dixon’s Peeping Frog
Suggested Spanish name: Rana fisgona de Dixon

Diagnosis and comparisons: 
Molecular synapomorphies for this species are (character: state change) 204: C => T, 291: C => A, and 360: C => A. Character numbers refer to the position in the alignment (Data S1).

Among species of the western clade of Syrrhophus, E. jamesdixoni (Fig. 10) is most similar in appearance to E. nitidus (Fig. 11). We restrict our comparison to topotypic samples of E. nitidus. The two species are very similar in having a roughly triangular head with a gently angled canthus rostralis. The lateral aspect of the canthus is darker than the dorsal surface of the snout. In E. jamesdixoni a dark greenish black stripe is present, but in E. nitidus this stripe varies from very dark to barely differentiated from the color of the snout (Fig. 11). The stripe fades inferiorly in E. nitidus, but in E. jamesdixoni it is more distinct. This stripe seems to extend across the eye in that the middle and lower part of the iris is dark, whereas the upper part of the iris appears as densely packed gold flecks (this golden region is larger than in E. maurus and E. humboldti). In both, the stripe extends posterior to the eye across the tympanum (which is slightly copper-colored) to the axilla but is much less distinct than in E. maurus and E. humboldti. In the postorbital region the stripe becomes indistinct. The supratympanic fold is rounded but weakly developed.

Etymology: We name this species in honor of the late James R. Dixon, Professor Emeritus and Curator Emeritus of amphibians and reptiles at the Biodiversity Research and Teaching Collections at Texas A&M University. Dr. Dixon provided the first and most thorough statistical analysis to date of geographic variation among populations of the former genus Tomodactylus from western Mexico (Dixon, 1957).

Here, we have delimited two new species of Syrrhophus using morphology, calls, and DNA-based diagnoses. These frogs are among the most ubiquitous and abundant of Mexican amphibians, yet remain among the least known. Exceptional microendemism typifies this group, with several species known only from the type locality. Their ubiquity, diversity, high endemism, and unusual reproductive mode (direct development) offer potential for addressing fundamental and emerging questions in ecology, evolution, and behavior. This potential has not yet been realized however, due to an inaccurate taxonomy that underestimates species-level diversity. Additional species await description; the need for this research is great, and the timing is urgent. Mexico is home to two Biodiversity Hotspots—the Madrean Pine Oak Woodlands and tropical lowlands of Mesoamerica—but high rates of deforestation and a general lack of conservation areas pose increasing threats to species survival there. Some 60% of Mexican amphibians are threatened with or have already been lost to extinction, including nine species of Syrrhophus that are classified as Endangered or Critically Endangered by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN, 2021). Discovering and describing unrecognized species-level diversity and identifying areas of endemism will directly impact conservation prioritization in Mexico.

Thomas J. Devitt​, Karen Tseng, Marlena Taylor-Adair, Sannidhi Koganti, Alice Timugura and David C. Cannatella. 2023. Two New Species of Eleutherodactylus from western and central Mexico (Eleutherodactylus jamesdixoni sp. nov., Eleutherodactylus humboldti sp. nov.) PeerJ. 11:e14985. DOI:  10.7717/peerj.14985