Monday, February 19, 2018

[Botany • 2018] Lecanorchis sarawakensis • A New Mycoheterotrophic Species (Orchidaceae, Vanilloideae) from Sarawak, Borneo

Lecanorchis sarawakensis Suetsugu & Naiki

in  Suetsugu, Ling, Naiki, et al., 2018.

Lecanorchis Blume (1856: 188) comprises about 30 species of mycoheterotrophic orchids (Seidenfaden 1978, Hashimoto 1990, Szlachetko & Mytnik 2000, Govaerts et al. 2017) characterized by having numerous, long, thick, horizontal roots produced from a short rhizome, presence of a calyculus (i.e. a cup-like structure located between the base of the perianth and apex of the ovary) and an elongate column with a pair of small wings on each side of the anther (Seidenfaden 1978, Hashimoto 1990). The genus is distributed across a wide area including China, Korea, India, Indonesia, Japan, Laos, Malaysia, New Guinea, Pacific islands, the Philippines, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam (Seidenfaden 1978, Hashimoto 1990, Pearce & Cribb 1999, Szlachetko & Mytnik 2000, Averyanov 2011, 2013).

Lecanorchis sarawakensis in the type locality.
A. Habit. B. Flower, side view. C. Flower, front view.

Lecanorchis sarawakensis Suetsugu & Naiki, sp. nov.

Kenji Suetsugu, Ling Chea Yiing, Akiyo , Shuichiro Tagane, Yayoi Takeuchi, Hironori Toyama and Tetsukazu Yahara. 2018. Lecanorchis sarawakensis (Orchidaceae, Vanilloideae), A New Mycoheterotrophic Species from Sarawak, Borneo. Phytotaxa. 388(1); 135–139. DOI:  10.11646/phytotaxa.338.1.13

[Crustacea • 2018] The Freshwater Shrimp Family Euryrhynchidae Holthuis, 1950 (Decapoda: Caridea) Revisited, with A Taxonomic Revision of the Genus Euryrhynchus

 Euryrhynchus amazoniensis  Tiefenbacher, 1978

in Pachelle & Tavares. 2018. 


The present revision is based on the largest sample of Euryrhynchidae Holthuis, 1950 studied to date, with special reference to Euryrhynchus Miers, 1878. The revision confirms the validity of the 8 currently recognized species of Euryrhynchidae and describes 2 new species related to Euryrhynchus amazoniensis Tiefenbacher, 1978: E. taruman sp. nov. and E. tuyuka sp. nov. The species Euryrhynchus amazoniensis, E. burchelli Calman, 1907, E. pemoni Pereira, 1985 and E. wrzesniowskii Miers, 1878 are redescribed and illustrated based on specimens from the type series and additional material. Additional diagnostic characters are proposed to differentiate the species of Euryrhynchus, previously separated only by the armature of the second pereopod carpus and merus.

Keywords: Crustacea, Amazon, South America, West Africa, Gondwana, new species

Paulo P. G. Pachelle and Marcos Tavares. 2018. The Freshwater Shrimp Family Euryrhynchidae Holthuis, 1950 (Crustacea: Decapoda: Caridea) Revisited, with A Taxonomic Revision of the Genus Euryrhynchus Miers, 1878.  Zootaxa. 4380(1); 1-110.   DOI:  10.11646/zootaxa.4380.1.1

[Ecology / Invasive Species • 2018] More Invaders Do Not Result in Heavier Impacts: The Effects of Non-native Bullfrogs on Native Anurans are Mitigated by High Densities of Non-native Crayfish

Liu, Wang, Ke, et al., 2018. 

1. With accelerating species introductions in an era of globalization, co-occurring alien species have become increasingly common. Understanding the combined ecological impacts of multiple invaders is not only crucial for wildlife managers attempting to ameliorate biodiversity loss, but also provides key insights into invasion success and species coexistence mechanisms in natural ecosystems. Compared with much attentions given to single-invader impacts, little is known about the impacts of multiple co-occurring invaders.
2. The American bullfrog (Lithobates catesbeianus Rana catesbeiana) and the red swamp crayfish (Procambarus clarkii) are two aquatic invasive species in many different areas of the globe. They coexist with native anurans in a variety of permanent lentic waters, which provide an ideal model system to explore the combined effects of multiple invaders from different trophic levels on native species.
3. Based on a global diet analysis covering 34 native and invasive bullfrog populations, and data from 10-year field surveys across 157 water bodies in the Zhoushan Archipelago, China, we observed a reduced impact of bullfrogs on native anurans at high crayfish densities when the two invaders co-occurred.
4. The global diet analysis showed that crayfish occurrence reduced the number of native anuran prey consumed by bullfrogs in both native and invasive populations. After accounting for pseudoreplication of different observations among water bodies, islands, and survey time, model averaging analyses based on GLMMs showed a negative relationship between bullfrog density and native anuran densities for field observations of invasive bullfrogs alone and co-invaded observations with low crayfish density. However, this negative relationship disappeared when the two invaders co-occurred with high crayfish density. Structural equation modelling (SEM) analyses further validated that the impacts of bullfrogs on native frogs were mitigated by the negative interactions between crayfish and bullfrogs.
5. Our results provide novel evidence of a density-dependent antagonistic effect of two sympatric invaders from different trophic levels on native species. This study highlights the importance of considering complex interactions among co-invaders and native species when prioritizing conservation and management actions and will facilitate the development of a more precise framework to predict invasion impacts.

  Xuan Liu, Supen Wang, Zunwei Ke, Chaoyuan Cheng, Yihua Wang, Fang Zhang, Feng Xu, Xianping Li, Xu Gao, Changnan Jin, Wei Zhu, Shaofei Yan and Yiming Li. 2018. More Invaders Do Not Result in Heavier Impacts: The Effects of Non-native Bullfrogs on Native Anurans are Mitigated by High Densities of Non-native Crayfish.  Journal of Animal Ecology. DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12793   

[PaleoIchthyology • 2017] Tugenchromis pickfordi • A Stem-group Cichlid of the ‘East African Radiation’ from the upper Miocene of central Kenya

Tugenchromis pickfordi
 Altner, Schliewen, Penk & Reichenbacher, 2017

The highly diverse tropical freshwater fish family Cichlidae is sparsely represented in the fossil record. Here we describe the new cichlid †Tugenchromis pickfordi, gen. et sp. nov., from the Upper Miocene (9–10 Ma) of central Kenya. The new taxon possesses a unique combination of characters, including six lateral line foramina on the lacrimal, three lateral line segments, cycloid scales, and a low number of vertebrae (29), dorsal fin spines (13), and dorsal soft rays (9). Its lacrimal morphology and tripartite lateral line suggest an affinity with the present-day Lake Tanganyika tribes Ectodini and Limnochromini, and thus with members of the ‘East African Radiation’ among the African cichlids. To further elucidate the relationships of †T. pickfordi, we used a comprehensive comparative data set comprising meristic data from all present-day tribes of the ‘East African Radiation.’ Principal coordinates analyses support links between the fossil and Ectodini + Limnochromini, and additionally with modern Haplochromini. We conclude that †T. pickfordi could be an extinct lineage within the ‘most ancient Tanganyika tribes,’ or a stem lineage of the ‘ancient Tanganyika mouthbrooders.’ A direct relationship to the Haplochromini is unlikely because its members do not exhibit the derived characteristics of the lacrimal as seen in †T. pickfordi. Because Lake Tanganyika is located in the western branch of the East African Rift System, †T. pickfordi from the eastern branch supports the ‘melting-pot Tanganyika hypothesis,’ which posits that the cichlids of modern Lake Tanganyika are derived from riverine lineages that had already diversified prior to the lake formation.

FIGURE 2. †Tugenchromis pickfordi, gen. et sp. nov. A1–A2, holotype in part (OCO-5-35) and counterpart (OCO-5-22); A3, right lateral view of the specimen (shading refers to ribs from the left side of the specimen);

Abbreviations: cl, cleithrum; cor, coracoid; ep, epural; hs, hemal spine; hyp, hypural plate; lac, lacrimal; nlc, neurocranial lateral line canal; ns, neural spine; o, otolith; op, operculum; ph, parhypural; pha, pharyngeal teeth; ppc, postcleithrum; ptt, posttemporal; pu, preural centrum; rad, radials; sca, scapula; scl, supracleithrum; sop, suboperculum; us, urostyle; un1, uroneural 1; = , tubular lateral line scale; °, pitted lateral line scale. 

CICHLIDAE Bonaparte, 1835


Generic Diagnosis: Lateral line on the trunk divided into three segments, two of which are posterior lateral lines. One posterior segment positioned ventrally, the other dorsally to the anterior lateral line segment. This is a condition not seen in any other cichlid genus.

Etymology: Tugen’ refers to the ‘Tugen Hills’ (named after the local people, i.e., the ‘Tugen,’ a subgroup of the Kalenjin ethnic group), in which the type locality of the new fossil taxon is located. The Greek word ‘Chromis’ (χρόμις) is a name used by the Ancient Greek and was applied to various fish. It is a common second element in cichlid genus names. Tugenchromis is masculine.

Type Species: Tugenchromis pickfordi, sp. nov.


Holotype: OCO-5-22/35, partially complete skeleton in part and counterpart (Fig. 2A1–A3), approximately 60 mm total length, 33.5 mm body length.

Etymology: Species named in honor of the paleontologist Martin Pickford in recognition of his outstanding contributions to the geology and paleontology of East Africa.

Locality, Horizon, and Age: Outcrop Waril in Central Kenya; Ngorora Formation, Member E; late Miocene (9–10 Ma) (see Rasmussen et al., 2017).

Based on lacrimal morphology and meristic data derived from all present-day cichlids of the ‘East African Radiation,’ we propose that the newly discovered cichlid fossil from the upper Miocene of Central Kenya either represents a stem lineage of the ‘ancient Tanganyika mouthbrooders’ or an extinct lineage within the ‘most ancient Tanganyika tribes.’ This result implies that the use of a comprehensive set of comparative material derived from extant cichlids may make it possible to phylogenetically place other fossil cichlids with greater confidence in future studies.

Apart from a lower Miocene cichlid from Uganda (‘cf. Pelmatochromis spp.’), none of the previously described fossil cichlid taxa from Africa, Arabia, and Europe possess distinctive similarities to †T. pickfordi. This indicates that the Ngorora fish Lagerstätte in Central Kenya may provide an unrivalled window into the evolutionary history of African cichlids, particularly into the origin of the ‘East African Radiation,’ i.e., the megadiversity of the present-day cichlids in Lake Tanganyika, Lake Malawi, and Lake Victoria.

Furthermore, the new fossil provides additional support for the presence of an ancient east-west connection (e.g., proto-Malagarasi River) between the Central Kenya Rift and Lake Tanganyika, which is consistent with previous assumptions regarding the hydrological networks across East and Central Africa during the Miocene.

Melanie Altner, Ulrich K. Schliewen, Stefanie B. R. Penk and Bettina Reichenbacher. 2017 . †Tugenchromis pickfordi, gen. et sp. nov., from the upper Miocene—A Stem-group Cichlid of the ‘East African Radiation’. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology. 37(2); e1297819. DOI:  10.1080/02724634.2017.1297819

Sunday, February 18, 2018

[Herpetology • 2018] Hyperolius stictus • A New Reed Frog (Hyperoliidae: Hyperolius) from coastal northeastern Mozambique

Hyperolius stictus 
Conradie, Verburgt, Portik, Ohler, Bwong & Lawson, 2018


A new species of African reed frog (genus Hyperolius Rapp, 1842) is described from the Coastal Forests of the Eastern Africa Biodiversity Hotspot in northeastern Mozambique. It is currently only known from less than ten localities associated with the Mozambican coastal pans system, but may also occur in the southeastern corner of Tanzania. Phylogenetic reconstructions using the mitochondrial 16S marker revealed that it is the sister taxon of Hyperolius mitchelli (>5.6% 16S mtDNA sequence divergence) and forms part of a larger H. mitchelli complex with H. mitchelli and H. rubrovermiculatus. The new species is distinguished from other closely related Hyperolius species by genetic divergence, morphology, vocalisation, and dorsal colouration.

Keywords: Amphibia, Amphibian, endemic, coastal pans

 Werner Conradie, Luke Verburgt, Daniel M. Portik, Annemarie Ohler, Beryl A. Bwong and Lucinda P. Lawson. 2018. A New Reed Frog (Hyperoliidae: Hyperolius) from coastal northeastern Mozambique. Zootaxa. 4379(2); 177–198.   DOI:  10.11646/zootaxa.4379.2.2

[Entomology • 2018] Revision of the Genus Callipia Guenée, 1858 (Lepidoptera, Geometridae), with the Description of 15 New Taxa

Callipia rosetta Thierry-Mieg, 1904
C. walterfriedlii  Brehm, 2018
C. augustae Brehm, 2018

   DOI:  10.5852/ejt.2018.404 


The vividly coloured Neotropical genus Callipia Guenée (1858) (Lepidoptera Linnaeus, 1758, Geometridae (Leach, 1815), Larentiinae (Leach, 1815), Stamnodini Forbes, 1948) is revised and separated into four species groups, according to a provisional phylogeny based on Cytochrome Oxidase I (COI) gene data and morphology. 

Fourteen new species are described using COI data and morphology:
a) in the balteata group: C. fiedleri sp. nov., C. jakobi sp. nov., C. lamasi sp. nov.;
b) in the vicinaria group: C. hausmanni sp. nov., C. walterfriedlii sp. nov.;
c) in the parrhasiata group: C. augustae sp. nov., C. jonai sp. nov., C. karsholti sp. nov., C. levequei sp. nov., C. milleri sp. nov., C. sihvoneni sp. nov., C. wojtusiaki sp. nov. and
d) in the constantinaria group: C. hiltae sp. nov., C. rougeriei sp. nov.
 One new subspecies is described: C. wojtusiaki septentrionalis subsp. nov. 

Two species are revived from synonymy: C. intermedia Dognin, 1914 stat. rev. and C. occulta Warren, 1904 stat. rev. 

The taxon hamaria Sperry, 1951 is transferred from being a junior synonym of C. constantinaria Oberthür, 1881 to being a junior synonym of C. occulta stat. rev. The taxon admirabilis Warren, 1904 is confirmed as being a junior synonym of C. paradisea Thierry-Mieg, 1904. The taxon languescens Warren, 1904 is confirmed as being a junior synonym of C. rosetta, Thierry-Mieg, 1904 and the taxon confluens Warren, 1905 is confirmed as being a junior synonym of C. balteata Warren, 1905. 

The status of the remaining species is not changed: C. aurata Warren, 1904, C. brenemanae Sperry, 1951, C. parrhasiata Guenée, 1858, C. flagrans Warren, 1904, C. fulvida Warren, 1907 and C. vicinaria Dognin. 

All here recognised 26 species are illustrated and the available molecular genetic information of 25 species, including Barcode Index Numbers (BINs) for most of the taxa is provided. The almost threefold increase from 10 to 26 valid species shows that species richness of tropical moths is strongly underestimated even in relatively conspicuous taxa. Callipia occurs from medium to high elevations in wet parts of the tropical and subtropical Andes from Colombia to northern Argentina. The early stages and host plants are still unknown.

Keywords: Callipia; taxonomy; Andes; insect; Neotropics

Figs 131–138. Living specimens and habitats. 131. Callipia rosetta Thierry-Mieg, 1904, ♂, Ecuador, Loja province, Podocarpus National Park, Cajanuma, 2897 m, 26 Mar. 2011. The specimen was attracted to light and benumbed. 132. Elfin forests are a habitat of C. rosetta Thierry-Mieg, 1904 and C. walterfriedlii sp. nov., Ecuador, Loja province, Podocarpus National Park, Cajanuma, 3000 m, 30 Jan. 2013. 133. C. walterfriedlii sp. nov., ♀, Ecuador, Loja province, Podocarpus National Park, Cerro Toledo, 2938 m, 27. Feb. 2013. The specimen was attracted to light and benumbed. 134. Habitat (elfin forest) of C. walterfriedlii sp. nov. at Cerro Toledo. 

Figs 131–138. Living specimens and habitats. 135. Callipia augustae sp. nov., ♂, Peru, Cusco province, Wayqecha station, 2900 m, 26 Aug. 2016. The specimen was collected at night, trapped, photographed and released the next morning. 136. Habitat of C. augustae sp. nov. and Callipia sp. near Wayqecha station. 137. C. augustae sp. nov., ♂, Peru, Cusco province, road Wayqecha–Pillcopata, 2284 m, 23 Aug. 2016. The specimen was attracted to UV light and tried to take up fluid (see proboscis). 138. Callipia sp. at Wayqecha station, 4 Sep. 2016. This specimen was attracted to UV light, but escaped into the vegetation when disturbed.

Gunnar Brehm. 2018. Revision of the Genus Callipia Guenée, 1858 (Lepidoptera, Geometridae), with the Description of 15 New Taxa. European Journal of Taxonomy. 404; 1–54.   DOI:  10.5852/ejt.2018.404

[Paleontology • 2018] The Nemegt Basin — One of the Best Field Laboratories for Interpreting Late Cretaceous Terrestrial Ecosystems

A herd of Saurolophus angustirostris moves along a river bank after a storm in the Cretaceous Nemegt Basin. The feet of the large herbivores sink into the soft sediment crushing the skull of a Tarbosaurus bataar that was lying in the mud.

 Illustration based on specimen MPC-D107/05 collected at the Nemegt locality (Nemegt Formation) and discovered by J.Ed. Horton. Artwork by Davide Bonadonna.

Fanti, Bell, Currie & Tsogtbaatar, 2018. 
  Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology. 494

• The Nemegt Basin is perhaps the most important fossil-bearing region of Mongolia.
• The unique fossils of Mongolia have sparked an explosion of illegal fossil poaching in the country.
• We introduce multidisciplinary methodologies to understand the Cretaceous Nemegt ecosystem.
• We discuss biotic response to local and large-scale Nemegt paleocological dynamics.

 Keywords: Mongolia, Late Cretaceous, Paleoecology, Stratigraphy, Vertebrate paleontology

Fig. 1: A herd of Saurolophus angustirostris moves along a river bank after a storm in the Cretaceous Nemegt Basin. The feet of the large herbivores sink into the soft sediment crushing the skull of a Tarbosaurus bataar that was lying in the mud. Illustration based on specimen MPC-D107/05 collected at the Nemegt locality (Nemegt Formation) and discovered by J.Ed. Horton.
Artwork by Davide Bonadonna. 

  Federico Fanti, Phil R. Bell, Philip J. Currie and Khishigjav Tsogtbaatar. 2018. The Nemegt Basin — One of the Best Field Laboratories for Interpreting Late Cretaceous Terrestrial Ecosystems [Dedicated to Ryszard Gradziński, Ivan Antonovĭc Efremov, and Demchig Badamgarav whose pioneer work unraveled the unique Late Cretaceous Nemegt ecosystems.]. [in Federico Fanti, Phil Bell, Philip Currie and Khishigjav Tsogtbaatar (eds.). 2018. The Late Cretaceous Nemegt Ecosystem: Diversity, Ecology, and Geological Signature.Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology. 494; 1-4. DOI: 10.1016/j.palaeo.2017.07.014

[Paleontology | Ichnotaxa • 2018] Sauripes hadongensis • Lizards ran Bipedally 110 Million Years Ago

Sauripes hadongensis Lee, Lee, Fiorillo & Lü, 2018

A reconstruction of a lizard running bipedally chased by the pterosaur Pteraichnus koreanensis, based on the trackway.  

 Illustration: Chuang Zhao 

Four heteropod lizard trackways discovered in the Hasandong Formation (Aptian-early Albian), South Korea assigned to Sauripes hadongensis, n. ichnogen., n. ichnosp., which represents the oldest lizard tracks in the world. Most tracks are pes tracks (N = 25) that are very small, average 22.29 mm long and 12.46 mm wide. The pes tracks show “typical” lizard morphology as having curved digit imprints that progressively increase in length from digits I to IV, a smaller digit V that is separated from the other digits by a large interdigital angle. The manus track is 19.18 mm long and 19.23 mm wide, and shows a different morphology from the pes. The predominant pes tracks, the long stride length of pes, narrow trackway width, digitigrade manus and pes prints, and anteriorly oriented long axis of the fourth pedal digit indicate that these trackways were made by lizards running bipedally, suggesting that bipedality was possible early in lizard evolution.

Figure 1 Photograph and drawing of lizard trackways on the block.

Figure 5 A reconstruction of a lizard running bipedally chased by the pterosaur Pteraichnus koreanensis, based on the trackway (Drawn by Chuang Zhao).

Systematic ichnology
Order Squamata Oppel, 1811

Sauripes hadongensis ichnogen. et ichnosp. nov.

Etymology: Ichnogenus named from ancient Greek “sauros” (lizard) and “pes” (foot). Ichnospecies named after Hadong County that yielded the holotype.

Holotype: Manus and pes prints on a mudstone slab (70 × 30 cm) (KIGAM VP 201501: Korea Institute of Geoscience and Mineral Resources, Vertebrate Paleontology).

Type locality and horizon: Hasandong Formation, Lower Cretaceous (Aptian-early Albian), an abandoned quarry next to Hadong power plant, Hadong County, South Gyeongsang Province, South Korea.

Diagnosis: Quadrupedal tracks; manus prints are medial to the pes prints; the pes prints are larger than the manus prints; plantigrade and pentadactyl pes prints are longer than wide; the digit length progressively increasing from digits I to IV (ectaxonic); digit V is oriented more laterally and offset from other digits; digit imprint IV is more than twice the length of the metatarsal impression; plantigrade and pentadactyl manus print has similar length and width dimensions; digits II and IV are shorter than digit III (mesaxonic); the interdigital angle between digits I and V of the manus is larger than that of the pes.

Figure 2 Manus and pes tracks of Sauripes hadongensis, n. ichnogen., n. ichnosp. (a) Enlarged photograph and drawing of a manus imprint (B1). (b) A pes imprint (A6). Scale bars equal 1 cm.

Figure 3 Pes tracks of Sauripes hadongensis, n. ichnogen., n. ichnosp. (a) Enlarged photograph and drawing of a pes imprint (A3). (b) A pes imprint (B8). (c) A pes imprint (B9). Scale bars equal 1 cm.

Hang-Jae Lee, Yuong-Nam Lee, Anthony R. Fiorillo and Junchang Lü. 2018. Lizards ran Bipedally 110 Million Years Ago.  Scientific Reports. 8, Article number: 2617.  DOI: 10.1038/s41598-018-20809-z

Fossil Footprints Are Oldest Traces of Lizards Running on Two Legs via @NatGeo

[Cephalopoda • 2018] Idiosepius hallami • A New Pygmy Squid (Cephalopoda: Idiosepiidae) from eastern Australia and Elevation of the southern Endemic ‘notoides’ Clade to A New Genus, Xipholeptos

Idiosepius hallami
Reid & Strugnell, 2018


A new species of pygmy squid, Idiosepius hallami n. sp., is described from eastern Australia. It differs from I. notoides Berry, 1921 and I. pygmaeus Steenstrup, 1881 (also found in Australian waters) in a number of traits, including the number of club suckers, shape of the funnel-mantle locking apparatus and the modification of the male hectocotylus. Mitochondrial DNA markers (12S rRNA, 16S rRNA and cytochrome c oxidase subunit 1) indicate that it is also distinct on a molecular level. The new Australian species is also recognised as the taxon from Stradbroke I., Queensland for which the entire mitochondrial genome has been sequenced (Hall et al. 2014). Idiosepius hallami n. sp. is compared with all nominal Idiosepius Steenstrup, 1881 and a current summary of Idiosepius systematics is provided as a basis for future studies. Based on our analyses, we propose the elevation of the ‘notoides’ clade to the new genus Xipholeptos n. gen., retaining Idiosepius as the genetic epithet for all other nominal idiosepiids. This is supported by: monophyly of the two lineages based on molecular data sets, the level of sequence divergence between these lineages, and morphological differences. The ‘notoides’ clade is endemic to southern Australia and its basal phylogenetic position suggests that the family may have originated in the Australasian region. Idiosepiids are found in seagrass beds and among mangroves—among the most threatened ecosystems in the world.

Keywords: Mollusca, new taxa, pygmy squid, XipholeptosIdiosepiusIdiosepius hallami, seagrass, Australia

Idiosepius hallami, attached to a seagrass blade, Cudgen Creek, northern NSW.
 photo: M. Reid

Xipholeptos notoides n. gen. b, live animal, anterio-lateral view, Victoria, Port Phillip Bay, Point Cooke, photo J. Gaskell. c, live animal, dorsal view, Victoria, Port Phillip Bay, Ricketts Point, photo J. Gaskell. d, e, live animal, ventral view, female, AM C.532745, photos A. Reid. 

FIGURE 10. Idiosepius hallami n. sp. a, live animal, dorsal view, NSW, Lord Howe Island, photo A. Reid.
Xipholeptos notoides n. gen. b, live animal, anterio-lateral view, Victoria, Port Phillip Bay, Point Cooke, photo J. Gaskell. c, live animal, dorsal view, Victoria, Port Phillip Bay, Ricketts Point, photo J. Gaskell. d, e, live animal, ventral view, female, AM C.532745, photos A. Reid. 

Amanda L. Reid and Jan M. Strugnell. 2018. A New Pygmy Squid, Idiosepius hallami n. sp. (Cephalopoda: Idiosepiidae) from eastern Australia and Elevation of the southern Endemic ‘notoides’ Clade to A New Genus, Xipholeptos n. gen.   Zootaxa.  4369(4); 451–486. DOI: 10.11646/zootaxa.4369.4.1

[Herpetology • 2018] Xenosaurus fractus • A New Species of Knob-scaled Lizard (Xenosauridae, Xenosaurus) from the Sierra Madre Oriental of Puebla, Mexico

Xenosaurus fractus 
de Oca, Sánchez-Vega & Durán-Fuentes, 2018

A new species of Xenosaurus in the X. tzacualtipantecus clade is described from the Sierra Madre Oriental of northern Puebla, Mexico. The new species differs from all of its congeners in possessing a unique combination of characters. The new species appears to be allopatric and fills in the geographic gap between the geographic distributions of X. tzacualtipantecus and the species in the newmanorum clade to the north and northwest and those of the species in the grandis and rackhami clades to the south and southeast. The new species occurs between approximately 880 m and 1470 m of elevation, and appears to be restricted to cloud forest, which has been replaced by coffee plantations in many areas. An updated key to the species of Xenosaurus is provided.

Keywords: Mexico, new species, Puebla, Sierra Madre Oriental, Xenosauridae, Xenosaurus, Xenosaurus tzacualtipantecus clade

Figure 3. Xenosaurus fractus in life. Specimens not collected.
from Puebla, Municipality of Xochitlán, 200 m N ex-hacienda Apulco, cloud forest, 1450 m.
Photograph by Luis Canseco Márquez.

Figure 3. Xenosaurus fractus in life. Specimens not collected.
from Municipality of Huehuetla (no further data).

Photograph by Luis Canseco Márquez.

Xenosaurus fractus sp. n.

Diagnosis: Xenosaurus fractus may be distinguished from all of the other species of Xenosaurus, except X. tzacualtipantecus, by lacking a continuous dark crossband on the nape, or collar; and having instead a funnel-shaped mark on the nape formed by the dorsal color pattern of the head extending posteriorly, gradually narrowing on the nape (while bordered by the posterior extension of a narrow, dark brown stripe on the canthus temporalis, the posterior extension of a broad, cream subocular stripe, and a broad, black stripe on each side), to the first brown crossband on the trunk (posterior extensions of the subocular stripes remaining narrowly separated medially at their posterior end), versus a mainly uninterrupted dark crossband on the nape enclosed anteriorly by the pale subocular stripes, which extend medially onto the nape producing a pale crossband (often interrupted medially) similar to those on the trunk, and a pale crossband in the scapular region separating the dark crossband on the nape from the first dark crossband on the trunk in the other species.

Xenosaurus fractus may be distinguished from X. tzacualtipantecus by having, on average, more subdigital scales on the fourth toe (26–34, x = 29.9, n = 10; versus 23–28, x = 25.6, n = 8, in X. tzacualtipantecus) and dorsal surface of the limbs barred (black-edged, cream bars on mid upper arm, forearm, thigh, and shank; versus limbs usually not barred in X. tzacualtipantecus [upper arm, forearm, thigh, and shank specked with black; specks usually not forming a distinct pattern; coalescing into narrow lines, bordering ill-defined bars and showing a tendency to anastomose, on thigh and shank in one specimen; n = 8]).

Etymology: The specific epithet is an adjective in the nominative case (masculine, singular declension) derived from the Latin verb frangō (“to break”), meaning “broken” or “fragmented.” The name is in reference to the broken dark crossband on the nape in this species. A continuous dark crossband on the nape, or collar, is present in most species of Xenosaurus, and represented in the new species only by black stripes on the sides of the nape, widely separated by posterior extensions of the dark lines on the canthi temporales and the cream subocular stripes.

 Adrián Nieto-Montes de Oca, Helder Sánchez-Vega and Itzel Durán-Fuentes. 2018. A New Species of Knob-scaled Lizard (Xenosauridae, Xenosaurus) from the Sierra Madre Oriental of Puebla, Mexico. ZooKeys. 737; 141-160.  DOI: 10.3897/zookeys.737.15095

Resumen: Se describe una nueva especie de Xenosaurus del clado X. tzacualtipantecus de la Sierra Madre Oriental del norte de Puebla, México. La nueva especie difiere de todos sus congéneres por poseer una combinación única de caracteres. La nueva especie parece ser alopátrica y llena el hueco geográfico entre las distribuciones geográficas de X. tzacualtipantecus y las especies del clado newmanorum hacia el norte y noroeste, y aquellas de las especies de los clados grandis y rackhami hacia el sur y sureste. La nueva especie se ha encontrado en elevaciones entre aproximadamente 880 m y 1470 m y parece estar restringida al bosque mesófilo de montaña, el cual ha sido reemplazado por cafetales en muchas áreas. También se ofrece una clave actualizada para las especies de Xenosaurus.

[Ichthyology • 2018] Enneapterygius velatus • A New Deepwater Triplefin (Perciformes: Tripterygiidae) from the Ryukyu Islands, southern Japan

Enneapterygius velatus
Tashiro, Senou & Motomura, 2018

A new deepwater speciesEnneapterygius velatus sp. nov. (Perciformes: Tripterygiidae), is described from two male specimens from Ryukyu Island, southern Japan, the holotype having been collected at a depth of 55 m and an underwater photograph taken between 30 and 41 m depth. The new species is characterized by an extremely long first dorsal-fin spine (length 31.6–34.0 % of SL), the first dorsal-fin spine bases close together, first dorsal-fin base length less than half the distance between the base of the third spine of the first dorsal-fin and origin of second dorsal-fin, first dorsal-fin spine base with developed inclinator muscles, long pelvic fins (tip of second ray extending beyond anal-fin origin), large body scales (8 circumpeduncular scales), the supratemporal sensory canals deeply U-shaped in dorsal view, snout profile weakly rounded, abdomen from between pelvic-fin bases to anal-fin origin covered by cycloid scales, body lacking significant blackish blotches and caudal-fin base with scattered melanophores in preserved specimens.

Keywords: Description, Enneapterygius mirabilis, Enneapterygius tutuilae, Deep-reef, Morphology 

Fig. 4 Underwater photograph of Enneapterygius velatus sp. nov. from Okinawa-jima Island, Japan, 30–41 m depth, 14 May 2012. Photo by T. Katano 

Enneapterygius velatus sp. nov.
(New English name: Sail Triplefin; new Japanese name: Hotate-hebigimpo) 

Distribution. Currently known only from the Ryukyu Islands, southern Japan [Amami-oshima Island (Amami Islands), and Okinawa-jima and Kume-jima islands (Okinawa Islands)], the Okinawa-jima record being based on an underwater photograph taken at a depth between 30–41 m (Fig. 4). The species inhabits relatively deep reefs. The holotype was collected from a rubble bottom in the outer edge of coral reefs at a depth of 55 m.

Etymology. The specific name “velatus” is derived from Latin meaning “sail”, in reference to the high first dorsal-fin of the species.

Satokuni Tashiro, Hiroshi Senou and Hiroyuki Motomura. 2018. Enneapterygius velatus, A New Deepwater Triplefin (Perciformes: Tripterygiidae) from the Ryukyu Islands, southern Japan. Ichthyological Research. DOI: 10.1007/s10228-018-0617-8

Saturday, February 17, 2018

[Entomology • 2018] Comprehensive and Dated Phylogenomic Analysis of Butterflies

in Espeland, Breinholt, Willmott, et al. 2018.

• Phylogenomic data provide a novel view of broad butterfly evolutionary relationships
• Most current diversity originated after the K-Pg mass extinction
• Many accepted higher taxa are para- or polyphyletic
• Ant association originated three times independently in blues and metalmarks

Butterflies (Papilionoidea), with over 18,000 described species, have captivated naturalists and scientists for centuries. They play a central role in the study of speciation, community ecology, biogeography, climate change, and plant-insect interactions and include many model organisms and pest species. However, a robust higher-level phylogenetic framework is lacking. To fill this gap, we inferred a dated phylogeny by analyzing the first phylogenomic dataset, including 352 loci (> 150,000 bp) from 207 species representing 98% of tribes, a 35-fold increase in gene sampling and 3-fold increase in taxon sampling over previous studies. Most data were generated with a new anchored hybrid enrichment (AHE) gene kit (BUTTERFLY1.0) that includes both new and frequently used (e.g., [6]) informative loci, enabling direct comparison and future dataset merging with previous studies. Butterflies originated around 119 million years ago (mya) in the late Cretaceous, but most extant lineages diverged after the Cretaceous-Paleogene (K-Pg) mass-extinction 65 mya. Our analyses support swallowtails (Papilionidae) as sister to all other butterflies, followed by skippers (Hesperiidae) + the nocturnal butterflies (Hedylidae) as sister to the remainder, indicating a secondary reversal from diurnality to nocturnality. The whites (Pieridae) were strongly supported as sister to brush-footed butterflies (Nymphalidae) and blues + metalmarks (Lycaenidae and Riodinidae). Ant association independently evolved once in Lycaenidae and twice in Riodinidae. This study overturns prior notions of the taxon’s evolutionary history, as many long-recognized subfamilies and tribes are para- or polyphyletic. It also provides a much-needed backbone for a revised classification of butterflies and for future comparative studies including genome evolution and ecology.

Our study confirms the power of phylogenomic approaches to resolve challenging arthropod phylogenetic relationships. Adding more than 340 genes to the 10 used previously and tripling the number of taxa included in previous studies confirmed some formerly poorly supported nodes and indicated many novel relationships. A well-supported phylogeny with broad coverage across tribes enables tests of existing hypotheses about higher-level relationships and identification of areas needing further study. Critically, it also serves as a needed scaffold for testing entirely new questions about the tempo and mode of butterfly evolution, such as associations between butterfly and plant clades and the impact of the K-Pg mass-extinction event. Moreover, the phylogeny provides the needed framework for broad comparative studies of the origins of key innovations, such as caterpillar-ant symbioses and other hypothesized drivers of lineage diversification, that have shaped the evolution of this highly studied insect group.

Marianne Espeland, Jesse Breinholt, Keith R. Willmott, Andrew D. Warren, Roger Vila, Emmanuel F.A. Toussaint, Sarah C. Maunsell, Kwaku Aduse-Poku, Gerard Talavera, Rod Eastwood, Marta A. Jarzyna, Robert Guralnick, David J. Lohman, Naomi E. Pierce and Akito Y. Kawahara. 2018. A Comprehensive and Dated Phylogenomic Analysis of Butterflies. Current Biology. In Press.  DOI: 10.1016/j.cub.2018.01.061

At last, butterflies get a bigger, better evolutionary tree via @physorg_com