Tuesday, June 27, 2017

[Herpetology • 2017] Rediscovery and Range Extension of the Guinean Skink Trachylepis keroanensis (Chabanaud, 1921) (Squamata: Scincidae)

Trachylepis keroanensis  (Chabanaud, 1921)


 We report the rediscovery of the skink Trachylepis keroanensis (Chabanaud, 1921) 90 years after its description. For the first time pictures of live specimens are shown and the known, now extended, distribution is presented. The clear morphological differences (body shape, colouration and most notably ratio tail length to body length) towards Trachylepis perrotetii (Duméril & Bibron, 1839), which justify the species status, are confirmed.

Fig. 1. Photographs of live specimens Trachylepis perrotetii (ZMB 83362: A & B) and Trachylepis keroanensis (ZFMK 96261: C & D).

Photographs of live specimens Trachylepis keroanensis (ZFMK 96261: C & D; ZMB 82943: E & F).

 Johannes Penner, Joseph Doumbia, N’Goran Germain Kouamé, Laurent Chirio, Laura Sandberger-Loua, Wolfgang Böhme and Michael F. Barej. 2017 Rediscovery and Range Extension of the Guinean Skink Trachylepis keroanensis (Chabanaud, 1921) (Reptilia: Squamata: Scincidae).  
 Bonn zoological Bulletin. 66(1); 55–60. 


[Herpetology • 2017] Sphaerotheca pashchima • A New Species of Burrowing Frog (Anura: Dicroglossidae) from western India

Sphaerotheca pashchima
Padhye, Dahanukar, Sulakhe, Dandekar, Limaye & Jamdade, 2017  

Sphaerotheca pashchima, a new species of burrowing frog, is described from western India. It can be diagnosed from all its congeners based on a combination of characters including interorbital width less than upper eyelid width, snout to nostril distance less than half of eye diameter, nostril nearer to snout than to eye, internarial distance greater than inter orbital distance, snout rounded, dorsum rough and warty, finger 2 length equal to or less than finger 4 length, finger 1 less finger 3 length, outer metatarsal tubercle absent, tibio tarsal tubercle absent, length of inner metatarsal tubercle more than three times the inner toe length and reduced webbing. We also provide 16S rRNA gene sequence for S. pashchima sp. nov. and show that it is genetically distinct from species of Sphaerotheca for which genetic data is available.

Keywords: Amphibia, molecular phylogeny, taxonomy.



Image 2. Sphaerotheca pashchima sp. nov.  in life.
(a) holotype (BNHS 6000, male, 41.0mm SUL) from Ambodi Village, (b) from Kutwalwadi (specimen not collected), (c) from Mayureshwar Wildlife Sanctuary (specimen not collected), and (d) from Akole near Sangamner (BNHS 6015, male, 40.8mm SUL).

Sphaerotheca pashchima sp. nov.
 Suggested common name: Western Burrowing Frog

Holotype: BNHS 6000, male (41.0mm SUL), 05.vi.2016, India: Maharashtra: Saswad-Waghapur Road, Ambodi Village (18.3500N, 74.0410E, 747m), coll. S. Sulakhe et al.

Diagnosis: Sphaerotheca pashchima sp. nov. differs from all other congeners based on the following combination of characters: interorbital width less than upper eyelid width; snout to nostril distance less than half of eye diameter; nostril nearer to snout than to eye; internarial distance greater than inter orbital distance; snout rounded; dorsum rough and warty; finger 2 length equal to or less than finger 4 length; finger 1 less finger 3 length; outer metatarsal tubercle absent; tibio tarsal tubercle absent; length of inner metatarsal tubercle more than three times the inner toe length; and webbing formula I1--2-II1-3-III2-3½IV3½-2+V.

Etymology: Pashchim’ (Sanskrit), means ‘west’ and is used to signify the distribution of the species in western India. Name is noun in apposition.

Habitat and ecology: S. pashchima is found widely distributed in western India. It inhabits variety of habitats from high to low rainfall areas. In high rainfall areas it is sympatric to S. dobsonii. It is also found in semi arid and arid parts of Deccan plateau. In semi arid and arid areas it breeds in temporary rain water pools immediately after the first flash rains. Adults gather in large numbers at potential breeding habitats. Tadpoles are bottom dwelling and frequently come to the surface of water for breathing. Juveniles are cannibalistic; a larger one devours the smaller one of its own species.

Distribution: Western parts of peninsular India from the states Gujarat, Maharashtra and Karnataka (Image 3).

Image 3. Distribution of Sphaerotheca paschima sp. nov. Western Ghats mountafn ranges are shown fn green.
Dahanukar et al. (2017) provide a review of the species under the genus Sphaerotheca and identify three morphological groups for eight valid species in the genus. They also assign genetic barcode for S. breviceps, S. dobsonii and S. pluvialis so as to aid future studies in unambiguous identification of these three species. We describe S. pashchima sp. nov. from the S. breviceps group, which is morphologically distinct from all its congeners. We also provide genetic barcode as identity of the new species.
It is essential to note that earlier reports of S. breviceps by Padhye & Ghate (2002), Padhye et al. (2002), Dharne et al. (2004), Dahanukar & Padhye (2005), and Padhye & Ghate (2012) should be attributed to S. pashchima sp. nov. based on current study.
Dahanukar et al. (2017) mention that the sequence GU191122 for specimen identity as S. rolandae from Rajasthan is not of good quality and with several gaps; however, partial sequence comparison suggests that the species is misidentified and is likely to be S. pashchima sp. nov. indicating its presence in Rajastan.

Anand Padhye, Neelesh Dahanukar, Shauri Sulakhe, Nikhil Dandekar, Sunil Limaye and Kirti Jamdade. 2017. Sphaerotheca pashchima, A New Species of Burrowing Frog (Anura: Dicroglossidae) from western India. Journal of Threatened Taxa. 9(6); 10286–10296. DOI: 10.11609/jott.2877.9.6.10286-10296 


[Botany • 2017] Warneckea albiflora • A New Species of Warneckea subgenus Carnosae (Melastomataceae—Olisbeoideae) from Coastal Dry Forest in northern Mozambique

Warneckea albiflora  R.D. Stone & N.P. Tenza


Described and illustrated is Warneckea albiflora R.D. Stone & N.P. Tenza, another localized endemic of coastal dry forest near Quiterajo in Mozambique’s Cabo Delgado Province. In Flora Zambesiaca the new species would key to Memecylon sansibaricum Taub. [≡Warneckea sansibarica (Taub.) Jacq.-Fél.], but is distinguished by its elliptic-lanceolate, attenuate–acuminate leaves and white flowers borne on pedicels 3.5–4 mm long (versus leaves elliptic and rounded to shortly and obtusely acuminate, pedicels 6–15 mm long, and flowers pale blue to deep blue in Warneckea  sansibarica). Because of its evidently very limited occurrence as well as on-going anthropogenic threats, Warneckea albiflora is provisionally assessed as Critically Endangered (CR) B1ab(iii) according to IUCN criteria. A key is provided to the Mozambican species of Warneckea.

Keywords: Africa, Melastomataceae, Mozambique, new species, plant conservation, plant taxonomy, Warneckea, Eudicots

 Living material of Warneckea albiflora (same individual as the type collection), Flowering branchlet
Photograph by John E. Burrows.

Warneckea albiflora R.D. Stone & N.P. Tenza, sp. nov.
Type:— MOZAMBIQUE. Cabo Delgado: Quiterajo, track through middle of Namacubi (Banana) Forest, elev. 125 m, 27 Nov 2008, J.E. Burrows & S.M. Burrows 10833 (holotype BNRH!, isotype K[K000738569]!).

Distribution and habitat:— Known only from the Namacubi (Banana) Forest west of Quiterajo, Cabo Delgado province, northern Mozambique (for maps see Fig. 2 in Timberlake et al. 2011 and Fig. 2 in Stone 2013). According to data provided on specimen labels, the habitat is in dry, semi-deciduous coastal forest dominated by Guibourtia schliebenii (Harms) J. Léonard and Pteleopsis myrtifolia (M.A. Lawson) Engl. & Diels, on sandy soil at elevations of 90–120 m. 

 Phenology:— Flowers in late November. Fruiting period unknown. 

 Conservation status:— Warneckea albiflora is known from a single location that is not in a protected area. The EOO is estimated as 12 km2 and the AOO as 16 km2 (assuming a 4 km2 grid-cell size). Ongoing threats include continued clearing for subsistence agriculture, cutting of poles, uncontrolled fires, and possible road construction for oil-and-gas development which would increase access to and clearance of the forest (Timberlake et al. 2011; Cheek & Darbyshire 2014). Accordingly, W. albiflora is provisionally assessed as Critically Endangered, CR B1ab(iii). 

 Etymology:— The epithet albiflora is an adjective referring to the white flowers of this species, this being the main diagnostic feature separating it from the closely related W. sansibarica

Discussion:—Warneckea albiflora is placed in W. subgenus Carnosae 

Robert Douglas Stone and Ntombiphumile Perceverence Tenza. 2017. Warneckea albiflora, A New Species of Warneckea subgenus Carnosae (Melastomataceae—Olisbeoideae) from coastal dry forest in northern Mozambique. Phytotaxa. 311(2); 168–174. DOI:  10.11646/phytotaxa.311.2.4

[PaleoIchthyology • 2017] Scalacurvichthys naishi • A New Pycnodont Fish from the Late Cretaceous of Israel

Scalacurvithys naishi 
Cawley & Kriwet, 2017


A new pycnodont fish from the early–mid Cenomanian, Late Cretaceous, of the ‘Ein Yabrud quarry near the village of Beit Eil in Israel is the first pycnodont fish to be described from this locality. Due to the locality where it was found, Scalacurvithys naishi gen. et sp. nov. is considered an inhabitant of reefal waters interspersed with lagoons in the eastern Tethys Sea. Scalacurvichthys naishi is notable for its protruding, hook-shaped first dorsal ridge scale above a large triangular dermatocranium, a deeply sloped and antero-posteriorly shortened skull and bifurcated cloacal scales. The bifurcating scales are a new character previously unknown in pycnodontomorph fishes but have been discovered in two more taxa, which indicates a new type of character that will be useful for future phylogenetic analyses of pycnodontomorph fishes. The new taxon is a member of Pycnodontidae and we conducted a phylogenetic analysis to establish its relationships to other pycnodont fishes. Our results reveal that Scalacurvichthys naishi is a well-resolved member of the subfamily Pycnodontinae.

Keywords: Tethys, Cenomanian, Pycnodontomorpha, phylogeny, morphology, taxonomy

Systematic palaeontology

Class Osteichthyes Huxley, 1880
Subclass Actinopterygii Cope, 1887

Series Neopterygii Regan, 1923 
Division Halecostomi Regan, 1923 sensu Patterson, 1973 

Order Pycnodontiformes Berg, 1937
Family Pycnodontidae sensu Nursall, 1996
cf. Subfamily Pycnodontinae Poyato-Ariza & Wenz, 2002 

Genus Scalacurvichthys gen. nov.

Type species: Scalacurvichthys naishi sp. nov.

Age: Early–middle Cenomanian, Late Cretaceous.

Diagnosis: Pycnodontid fish with the following autapomorphic characters: large triangular dermocranium; large anteriorly curved first dorsal ridge scale which protrudes above the skull roof; 11 dorsal axonosts; single post-cloacal ventral ridge scale; position of anal fin (preanal length/standard length) being at 70–79%; large, anterior and posterior bifurcating cloacal scales. Unique combination of plesiomorphic and derived characters: body outline intermediate between discoid and fusiform; body height 50% of standard length (SL); dermocranial fenestra absent; premaxillary bone with two teeth and no olfactory fenestra; 21 neural vertebrae excluding the caudal peduncle; 30–31 caudal fin rays; four epurals and 10 hypochordals in the caudal endoskeleton; hypochordals six, seven and eight seem to be fused into a large fan-shaped ossification.

Derivation of name: The genus name is derived from the Latin noun ‘scala’ meaning ‘scale’, the Latin adjective ‘curva’ meaning ‘curved’ in allusion to the raised, anterior-facing first dorsal ridge scale protruding above the skull roof, characteristic of this genus, and the Greek noun ‘ἰχθύς’ meaning ‘fish’.

Figure 1. A, Scalacurvichthys naishi  gen. et sp. nov., holotype (SMNK-PAL. 8613).
B, camera lucida drawing of Scalacurvichthys naishi gen. et sp. nov.; dashed lines indicate the restoration of incompletely preserved structures; bones shaded in grey are reconstructions while the rest of the drawing is the original specimen. Scale bars = 1 cm.

Scalacurvichthys naishi sp. nov.

Age: Bet Meir or the slightly younger Amminadava Formation, middle part of the Judea Group, early to middle Cenomanian, early Late Cretaceous.

Type locality: Limestone quarry near the village of Beit El, Binyamin Region, West Bank, Israel.

Stratigraphical range: Early–middle Cenomanian, Late Cretaceous.

Derivation of name: The name of the new species is dedicated to Dr Darren Naish who is currently writing a book on the entire vertebrate fossil record and is prolific in publishing research on dinosaurs, pterosaurs and marine reptiles amongst many other groups of tetrapods.

John J. Cawley and Jürgen Kriwet. 2017. A New Pycnodont Fish, Scalacurvichthys naishi gen. et sp. nov., from the Late Cretaceous of Israel. Journal of Systematic Palaeontology. Online edition.   DOI: 10.1080/14772019.2017.1330772

[Botany • 2017] Roscoea megalantha • A New Species (Zingiberaceae) from eastern Bhutan and India

Roscoea megalantha  Tosh.Yoshida & R.Yangzom

A new species of Roscoea is described and illustrated. Roscoea megalantha Tosh.Yoshida & R.Yangzom occurs in the Eastern Zone of Bhutan and neighbouring Arunachal Pradesh in India. A distribution map and an IUCN conservation assessment are given. A key to the three species of Roscoea found in Bhutan is provided.

Keywords. Arunachal Pradesh, Bhutan, IUCN conservation assessment, new species, Roscoea.

Roscoea megalantha Tosh.Yoshida & R.Yangzom, sp. nov. 

Roscoeae purpureae Sm. affinis, sed dorsali petalo reflexo, labelli ungue distincto et profunde canaliculato, labelli limbo late ovato vel rotundato, atque calcaribus connectivi praeditis projectris reflexis filiformibus differt.  

Etymology. The epithet comes from the Greek for large flower.

T. Yoshida, R. Yangzom and M. F. Newman. 2017. Roscoea megalantha (Zingiberaceae), A New Species from eastern Bhutan and India.  Edinburgh Journal of Botany.  DOI: 10.1017/S0960428617000142 

[Fungi • 2017] Gymnosporangium przewalskii (Pucciniales, Basidiomycota) from China and Its Life Cycle

Gymnosporangium przewalskii  Y. M. Liang & B. Cao


In an investigation of rust fungi in Qinghai Province, northwestern China, the novel rust species Gymnosporangium przewalskii was identified based on morphology and phylogenetic analyses. Phylogenetic analyses using the internal transcribed spacers (ITS) and the large subunit (LSU) rRNA partial gene revealed that G. przewalskii is monophyletic and distinct from other Gymnosporangium species. The life cycle of this new taxon was clarified based on molecular data. Its spermogonial and aecial stages occurred on Sorbus koehneana, and its telial stage was found on Juniperus przewalskii.

Keywords: phylogeny, rust, systematics, taxonomy, Fungi

 Gymnosporangium przewalskii on Juniperus przewalskii (holotype, BJFC-R01859). Telia emerge from the branches in saffron yellow gelatinous form under moist conditions.

Gymnosporangium przewalskii Y. M. Liang and B. Cao, sp. nov. 

Etymology:— The epithet “przewalskii”, referring to the telial host “Juniperus przewalskii”.

 Hosts:— 0, I on Sorbus koehneana C. K. Schneider; III on Juniperus przewalskii.
 Distribution:— China (Qinghai and Sichuan Prov.).

Bin Cao, Fu-Zhong Han, Cheng-Ming Tian and Ying-Mei Liang. 2017. Gymnosporangium przewalskii sp. nov. (Pucciniales, Basidiomycota) from China and Its Life Cycle.  Phytotaxa. 311(1); 67–76.  DOI:  10.11646/phytotaxa.311.1.6

Monday, June 26, 2017

[Botany • 2017] Sedum danjoense • A New Species of Succulent Plants (Crassulaceae) from the Danjo Islands in Japan

Sedum danjoense 
Takuro Ito, H. Nakanishi & G. Kokub. 


We compared Sedum formosanum with related species using morphological traits and molecular phylogenetic analysis of nrITS sequences. Morphological comparisons revealed that the plants historically treated as S. formosanum in the Danjo Islands of Japan had 4-merous flower; 8 stamens; narrow triangular sepals of equal size; horizontal carpels when matured; and an irregular branching form. These traits differed from those of S. formosanum in other regions, which has 5-merous flowers; 10 stamens, thick spatulate sepals of unequal size; erect carpels when matured; and a trichotomous branching form. Phylogenetic analysis indicated that plants known as S. formosanum in the Danjo Islands were sister group to S. tetractinum, which are endemic to China and belong to a different clade than S. formosanum, which are found in other regions. Based on the present morphological comparisons and phylogenetical analyses, we describe plants from the Danjo Islands as a new speciesSedum danjoense, which is distinct from S. formosanum.

Keywords: East Asia, ITS, Phylogeny, Sedum formosanum, Succulent, Eudicots

FIGURE 3. Sedum danjoense Takuro Ito, H. Nakanishi & G. Kokub.
 A. Habitat and habit. B. Inflorescence. C. Adaxial surface. D. Abaxial surface. E. Flower. F. Sepals. G. Carpels. H. Branching.

Scale bars are 25 mm for A, 5 mm for B–H [A. Wild individuals in Yorishima island photo by Yoshiro Chichibu in May 1989; B. Cultivated in Nagasaki Subtropical Botanical Garden photo by Kiyotaka Minota in Sep. 2011; C-H. Takuro Ito 3658 in Oct. 2016] 

Sedum danjoense Takuro Ito, H. Nakanishi & G. Kokub., sp. nov.  
 Type:— JAPAN. The Kyusyu, the Danjo Islands, Yorishima Island, 25 October 2016 (cultivated in Nagasaki Subtropical Botanical Garden after collecting its natural habit in 1989), Takuro Ito 3658. (holotype TNS!).

Etymology:— The epithet refers to the Japanese name of type locality of the Danjo Islands.
Japanese common name:—Danjo-mannen-gusa (nov.).

 Distribution and habitat:— Endemic to the Danjo Islands (Kyusyu), on sunny, coastal rocky slopes exposed to direct sunlight; in typical coastal vegetation within “a community of Miscanthus condensatus Hackel (1899: 639)– Crepidiastrum lanceolatum (Houtt.) Nakai (1920: 150)” similar to those in other regions of Japan, Taiwan and the Philippines. Itow & Nakanishi (1990) mentioned that this species was distributed throughout the Danjo Islands (as S. formosanum), and thus further field surveys are required on the islands.

Takuro Ito, Hiroki Nakanishi, Yoshiro Chichibu, Kiyotaka Minoda and Goro Kokubugata. 2017. Sedum danjoense (Crassulaceae), A New Species of Succulent Plants from the Danjo Islands in Japan. Phytotaxa. 309(1); 23–34. DOI:  10.11646/phytotaxa.309.1.2

[Ornithology • 2017] Zosterops White-eyes in Continental South-East Asia. 1: Proposed Refinements to the Regional Definition of Oriental White-eye Z. palpebrosus

Zosterops erwini  (Chasen, 1934)

Grounds exist for accepting that the previously unrecognised paratypes of Zosterops (palpebrosusauriventer Hume in Hume & Davison, 1878, from a population inhabiting the coastal lowlands of the Malacca Straits, are all still held by the Natural History Museum, Tring, and that the overall type series is a taxonomic composite. Comparative morphology and a re-reading of original collecting details combine to revise Hume’s identifcation of his paratypes. Their population is re-named and its geographical range redefned, with suggested outcomes for species limits. The term ‘continental’ here includes the islands of South-East Asian shelf waters, i.e., as far the Greater Sundas and their satellites.

Figure 1. Zosterops (palpebrosus) ‘auriventer’ (= erwini), mangrove zone, Khlong Thom district, Krabi Province, peninsular Thailand, i.e., at the proven end-point of erwini range closest to the type locality of nominate auriventer 
(© P. D. Round / Wetlands Trust)

Zosterops palpebrosus erwini Chasen, 1934: holotype NHMUK 1947.60.60, adult male (label data), collected by P. M. de Fontaine on Panjang Island (02° 45’N, 108° 54’E), South Natuna archipelago, South China Sea, on 19 August 1931. Described on pages 96–97 of Chasen, F. N. 1934. Nine new races of Natuna birds. Bull. Rafes Mus. 9: 92–97. 


 Moyle et al. (2009) published genetic evidence of one or more species boundaries between the Indian Subcontinent and Lesser Sundas range extremes of conventionally identifed Z. palpebrosus. One proposal draws on morphology and habitat-based arguments for uncoupling the name auriventer from supposed Oriental White-eyes inhabiting the Malacca Straits and neighbouring coasts, and the consequent retraction of the re-named population’s mainland range southward. This opens a large, terrestrial range gap between inner tropical, mangrove-haunting erwini and williamsoni, and northern, mainly upland forest siamensis. Atention is also drawn to likely habitat-based parapatry between mainly coastal erwini and inland forest buxtoni ‘subspecies’ in eastern Sumatra, and to previously undescribed morphological diferences between erwini and the neighbouring coastal whiteeye population of western mainland Borneo.

 These potential taxonomic boundaries all require more data from the feld, particularly on vocalisations, especially song; also sampling for more phylogenetic analysis—to be undertaken before degradation of habitats that could be crucial to understanding fnally eliminates such opportunities. It is proposed that sampling be broad enough to address at least: (1) the level of relatedness of coastal erwini and williamsoni, and of this pair with siamensis, the nearest neighbouring mainland taxon currently accepted as part of true western and northern continental Z. palpebrosus, against the proposition that they are not conspecifc; (2) relatedness of erwini and buxtoni on Sumatra, against the proposition that they are not conspecifc; and (3) status of the coastal Bornean population, relative to both erwini and buxtoni.

D. R. Wells. 2017. Zosterops White-eyes in Continental South-East Asia. 1: Proposed Refinements to the Regional Definition of Oriental White-eye Z. palpebrosus.
 Bull. B.O.C. 137(2); 100-109. 

[Entomology • 2017] New Species in the Treehopper Genus Bocydium Latreille, with Description of Nymphal Stages and Observations on their Natural History

Bocydium mae Flórez-V, 2017


Six new species of Bocydium Latreille are described, and life history notes are provided based on field data from the Central and Western Cordilleras of the Colombian Andes. Information on host plants, treehopper-ant mutualisms, and behavior of adults and nymphs are provided for most newly discovered species (B. bilobum Flórez-V sp. nov.B. hadronotum Flórez-V sp. nov.B. mae Flórez-V sp. nov.B. sakakibarai Flórez-V sp. nov.B. sanmiguelense Flórez-V sp. nov., and B. tatamaense Flórez-V sp. nov.) in addition to two previously known species of Bocydium. A key to species of the genus is presented, along with photographs of primary type specimens for all species described by Dr. Albino M. Sakakibara. A nomenclatural change is proposed for B. cubitale Richter, 1954 syn. nov., herein considered junior synonym of B. bullife-rum Goding, 1930.

Keywords: Hemiptera, Stegaspidini, taxonomy, biology, host plant

nymphs of Bocydium mae sp. nov. 
(Photo by Kenji Nishida)

 Camilo Flórez-V and Olivia Evangelista. 2017. New Species in the Treehopper Genus Bocydium Latreille, with Description of Nymphal Stages and Observations on their Natural History. Zootaxa.  4281(1) ; 22–57. DOI:  10.11646/zootaxa.4281.1.4

[Mammalogy • 2017] Caribbean Myotis (Chiroptera, Vespertilionidae), with Description of A New Species, Myotis attenboroughi, from Trinidad and Tobago

Myotis attenboroughi
Moratelli, Wilson, Novaes, Helgen & Gutiérrez, 2017 

We describe a new species of Myotis (Vespertilionidae, Myotinae) from the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, Tobago Island. The new species (Myotis attenboroughi sp. nov.) can be distinguished from all other Neotropical congeners by cranial features and cytochrome-b gene sequences. Myotis attenboroughi sp. nov. is allied morphologically with species in the albescens group (like M. nigricans), and is sister to a clade including M. cf. handleyi, M. nesopolus, and 3 possibly undescribed species from Central and South America. A review of Myotis collections from the Caribbean confirms M. nyctor for Barbados and Grenada; M. dominicensis for Dominica and Guadeloupe; M. martiniquensis for Martinique; M. pilosatibialis and M. riparius for Trinidad; and M. attenboroughi for Tobago. The occurrence of M. attenboroughi on Trinidad is still an open question.

Keywords: Caribbean, Lesser Antilles, Myotis attenboroughi, Myotis nigricans, Neotropics, Sir David Attenborough’s Myotis

The newly described, Sir David Attenborough's Myotis —Myotis attenboroughi—(Moratelli et al.,2017), represents the first, and only known, endemic mammalian species on the islands of Trinidad and Tobago. Molecular, morphological and morphometric analyses conducted by Moratelli et al., now confirms that the Black Myotis on Tobago (see photo), traditionally assigned, Myotis nigricans, is actually a previously unknown species now named, Myotis attenboroughi, in honour of famed naturalist, Sir David Attenborough. This tiny bat, the Sir David Attenborough's Myotis, Trinidad and Tobago's only known endemic mammalian species, consumes moths and other small flying insects. This species is known to roost in caves, tree-hollows, and if neither of these is available, the attics of buildings.
 Photo: Geoffrey Gomes (Trinibats) 

Why isn't the bat named for Tobago? In this particular case, this new designation is a result of a species split (simply put). In zoological nomenclature, this occurs when new findings warrant a species being split into subspecies or new species, which is the case here. If this specimen described for Tobago was indeed an originally described, nominal species, as distinct from a species or subspecies subsequently distinguished from it, then it may be named Tobagoi or Trinitatis (as some local bats are named), or something along those lines.
Photo: Steve Parker


Ricardo Moratelli, Don E. Wilson, Roberto L. M. Novaes, Kristofer M. Helgen and Eliécer E. Gutiérrez. 2017. Caribbean Myotis (Chiroptera, Vespertilionidae), with Description of A New Species from Trinidad and Tobago.
 J Mammal. gyx062.  DOI: 10.1093/jmammal/gyx062 
T&T goes batty over first endemic mammalian species | Loop News http://www.looptt.com/content/tt-goes-batty-over-first-endemic-mammalian-species

Describimos una nueva especie de Myotis (Vespertilionidae, Myotinae) de la República de Trinidad y Tobago, isla de Tobago. La nueva especie (Myotis attenboroughi sp. nov.) se distingue de otros congéneres Neotropicales en sus rasgos craneanos y secuencias del gen citocromo b. Myotis attenboroughi sp. nov. es morfológicamente similar a especies del grupo albescens (tal como M. nigricans) y es hermana de un clado que incluye a M. cf. handleyi, M. nesopolus, y tres especies, posiblemente no descritas, de Centro y Sud América. Una revisión de las series de Myotis del Caribe confirma a M. nyctor para Barbados y Granada; M. dominicensis para Dominica y Guadalupe; M. martiniquensis para Martinica; M. pilosatibialis y M. riparius para Trinidad; y M. attenboroughi para Tobago. La presencia de M. attenboroughi en Trinidad sigue siendo hoy un enigma.

Singular bat Zoologists have named a newly discovered species of bat after the veteran British naturalist and broadcaster David Attenborough. Scientists analysed museum records of specimens of 377 Caribbean bats, and found that a species apparently endemic to the island of Tobago is morphologically and genetically different from the mainland species (Myotis nigricans) to which it had been assigned taxonomically for almost a century. Taxonomist Ricardo Moratelli and his team named the bat (pictured) Myotis attenboroughi in honour of the naturalist, who has inspired generations of wildlife biologists. The findings were published on 7 June (R. Moratelli et al. J. Mammal. http://doi.org/b78; 2017).


[Entomology • 2017] Taxonomic Revision of the Genus Protorhoe Herbulot, 1951 (Lepidoptera, Geometridae, Larentiinae), New Taxonomic Changes and Description of Two New Species; Protorhoe drechseli & P. beshkovi

Protorhoe drechseli
 Rajaei, Stadie & Hausmann, 2017 


We highlight the diagnostic characters of the genus Protorhoe Herbulot, 1951. Wing pattern and genitalia of all known Protorhoe species are illustrated and their distribution data are shown on maps. Cidaria avetianae Vardikian, 1974 is synonymized with P. unicata (Guenée, 1858) (syn. n.), Cidaria unicata centralisata Staudinger, 1892 is raised from subspecies (of P. unicata) to species rank (stat. n.), and P. tangaba (Wiltshire, 1952) is transferred from Catarhoe to the genus Protorhoe (comb. n.). Two species are described as new to the science from Turkey: Protorhoe drechseli sp. n. and Protorhoe beshkovi sp. n. As result, the number of species in the genus Protorhoe was raised from six to nine.

Keywords: Lepidoptera, Catarhoe, host plant, Iran, Middle East, new combination, new species, new synonymy, Protorhoe, Turkey

 Hossein Rajaei, Dirk Stadie and Axel Hausmann. 2017. Taxonomic Revision of the Genus Protorhoe Herbulot, 1951 (Lepidoptera, Geometridae, Larentiinae), New Taxonomic Changes and Description of Two New Species.
4282(2); 269–291.  DOI:  10.11646/zootaxa.4282.2.3

Sunday, June 25, 2017

[Ichthyology • 2017] Trichomycterus ytororo • Living in the Waterfalls: A New Species of Trichomycterus (Siluriformes: Trichomycteridae) from Tabay Stream, Misiones, Argentina

Trichomycterus ytororo
Terán, Ferrer, Benitez, Alonso, Aguilera & Mirande, 2017

live specimens (A). holotype CI–FML 7241, 94.2 mm. (B–D). paratype CI–FML 7241, 60.9 mm SL.
Argentina, Misiones, Jardín América, Tabay stream, Paraná River basin. 


A new species assigned to the genus Trichomycterus from the area of the waterfalls of Tabay stream, Paraná River basin, Misiones, Argentina, is described. Trichomycterus ytororo sp. nov. is distinguished from all other species in the genus by the presence of 31–35 dorsal procurrent caudal-fin rays and the combination of some external characters such as: coloration, number of pectoral–fin rays and pores of the laterosensory canals. The new taxon belongs to a presumably monophyletic group of species composed of T. crassicaudatus, T. igobi, and T. stawiarski based on the presence of 24 or more thickly ossified and rigid procurrent caudal-fin rays with a slender distal tip extending along the tips of at least ten neural spines.

Fig 4. Geographic distribution of the species assigned to the Trichomycterus stawiarski group: T. crassicaudatus (green symbols), T. igobi (white symbols), T. stawiarski (yellow symbols) and T. ytororo (red symbol). Stars represent the type localities. Some triangles symbols represent more than one collection locality. Numbers 1, 2, 3 indicate the Paraguay, Paraná and Iguazú Rivers, respectively.

Fig 5. Type locality of Trichomycterus ytororo; Tabay waterfalls, Tabay stream, Jardín América, Misiones, Argentina.

Ecological notes: The Tabay stream basin through 192 km from its headwaters at Campo Viera to its mouth on the Paraná River, at Jardín América (Fig 4). The stream bed is mainly composed of basaltic bedrock, in which sections with waterfalls and pools alternates all along its run. At the type locality (Tabay waterfall; Fig 5), the stream is surrounded by remnants of the Paranaense riparian forest, with its left margin degraded due to a camping site. This waterfall consists of three consecutive falls, the main one is 10m high and 20–50m wide, which drains into a narrow gorge. All specimens of Trichomycterus ytororo were captured above the waterfalls at shallow areas (about 1 meter depth or less) or in rapids witha predominantly rocky bottom and strong current. Trichomycterus davisi was the single congener recorded at the type locality, which was not collected syntopically with T. ytororo.

 Distribution: Trichomycterus ytororo is so far known only from its type locality, the Tabay waterfalls in the Tabay stream (Fig 5), a tributary of the left bank of the Paraná River, province of Misiones, northeast of Argentina (Fig 4).

Etymology: The specific epithet ytororo derived from the indigenous language Guaraní (“ytororõ”) which means “waterfall” in reference to the habitat occupied by the new species. A noun in apposition.

Guillermo Enrique Terán, Juliano Ferrer, Mauricio Benitez, Felipe Alonso, Gastón Aguilera and Juan Marcos Mirande. 2017. Living in the Waterfalls: A New Species of Trichomycterus (Siluriformes: Trichomycteridae) from Tabay Stream, Misiones, Argentina.
 PLoS ONE. 12(6); e0179594.  DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0179594

[Herpetology • 2017] Isthmura corrugata • A New Species of Isthmura (Caudata: Plethodontidae) from the Montane Cloud Forest of Central Veracruz, Mexico

Isthmura corrugata
Comte, Pineda, Rovito & Manzano, 2017

DOI: 10.11646/zootaxa.4277.4.7 


We describe a new plethodontid salamander species of the genus Isthmura, known only from one locality in the mountainous region of central Veracruz, Mexico. Like its congeners, Isthmura corrugata sp. nov. has a large and robust body, but it is easily distinguished from the other species in the genus by the absence of any spot or mark on the dorsum (except by dull reddish brown coloration on eyelids) and by extremely well-marked costal grooves separated by very pronounced costal folds. Based on an mtDNA phylogeny, the new species is most closely related to the geographically distant I. boneti and I. maxima but occurs very near I. naucampatepetl and I. gigantea on the eastern slope of Cofre de Perote, Veracruz. The region where I. corrugata occurs contains a high number of plethodontid salamander species and is threatened by human activity.

Keywords: Amphibia, Isthmura corrugata sp. nov., morphology, Neotropics, phylogeny, salamander

FIGURE 2. Holotype of Isthmura corrugata.
A) Lateral and B) Ventral view. C) Coloration and form of costal grooves. D) Left hand (up) and left foot (down). E) Details of the head. F) Dorsal view.
Photographs by A. Sandoval-Comte.

Isthmura corrugata sp. nov. 
Suggested English name: Corrugated Salamander.
Suggested Spanish name: Salamandra corrugada.

Etymology. The specific epithet makes reference to the extremely pronounced grooves along the body, giving these salamanders a corrugated appearance

Adriana Sandoval Comte, Eduardo Pineda, Sean M. Rovito and Ricardo Luria Manzano. 2017. A New Species of Isthmura (Caudata: Plethodontidae) from the Montane Cloud Forest of Central Veracruz, Mexico. Zootaxa. 4277(4); 573–582. DOI: 10.11646/zootaxa.4277.4.7