Thursday, August 17, 2017

[Mammalogy • 2017] Reconstructing the Molecular Phylogeny of Giant Sengis (Macroscelidea; Macroscelididae; Rhynchocyon)


Rhynchocyon stuhlmanni  Matschie, 1893

photo: Jabruson/NPL/Minden Pictures  calacademy.org

Giant sengis (Macroscelidea; Macroscelididae; Rhynchocyon), also known as giant elephant-shrews, are small-bodied mammals that range from central through eastern Africa. Previous research on giant sengi systematics has relied primarily on pelage color and geographic distribution. Because some species have complex phenotypic variation and large geographic ranges, we used molecular markers to evaluate the phylogeny and taxonomy of the genus, which currently includes four species: R. chrysopygus, R. cirnei (six subspecies), R. petersi (two subspecies), and R. udzungwensis. We extracted DNA from fresh and historical museum samples from all taxa except one R. cirnei subspecies, and we generated and analyzed approximately 4700 aligned nucleotides (2685 bases of mitochondrial DNA and 2019 bases of nuclear DNA) to reconstruct a molecular phylogeny. We genetically evaluate Rhynchocyon spp. sequences previously published on GenBank, propose that the captive R. petersi population in North American zoos is likely R. p. adersi, and suggest that hybridization among taxa is not widespread in Rhynchocyon. The DNA sample we have from the distinctive but undescribed giant sengi from the Boni forest of northern coastal Kenya is unexpectedly nearly identical to R. chrysopygus, which will require further study. Our analyses support the current morphology-based taxonomy, with each recognized species forming a monophyletic clade, but we propose elevating Rhynchocyon cirnei stuhlmanni to a full species [Rhynchocyon stuhlmanni].

Keywords: Rhynchocyon, Giant sengis, Elephant-shrews, Africa, Macroscelididae, Phylogenetics, Taxonomy




 Elizabeth J. Carlen, Galen B. Rathbun, Link E. Olson, Christopher A. Sabuni, William T. Stanley and John P. Dumbacher. 2017. Reconstructing the Molecular Phylogeny of Giant Sengis (Macroscelidea; Macroscelididae; Rhynchocyon). Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution. 113; 150–160.  DOI: 10.1016/j.ympev.2017.05.012

Collections at the California Academy of Sciences [@calacademy] aid researchers in revising a mammal branch on tree of life http://phy.so/420885974 via @physorg_com

[Entomology • 2017] Anisogomphus yingsaki • A New Gomphid Species (Odonata: Gomphidae) from Thailand


 Anisogomphus yingsaki  Makbun‎, 2017

แมลงปอเสือต่างลายขาว | DOI:  10.11646/zootaxa.4306.3.10 

Abstract

Anisogomphus yingsaki sp. nov. (holotype male: Ban Na Kha, Ban Muang, Sakon Nakhon province, Thailand, altitude 170–175 m, 22-vi-2016) is described and illustrated. The new species is most similar to A. bivittatus from India and Nepal, and also A. flavifacies, and A. resortus from China in the shape of anal appendages. However, it can be separated from all of these by a combination of the following characters: shape of antehumeral stripes, abdominal pattern, shape of vesica spermalis and female valvula vulvae. The behavior of the new species, including crepuscular activity, is briefly discussed.

Keywords: Odonata, dragonfly, Odonata, Anisoptera, Gomphidae, Anisogomphus, new species, Thailand




Noppadon Makbun‎. 2017. Anisogomphus yingsaki (Odonata: Gomphidae) sp. nov., A New Gomphid Species from Thailand. Zootaxa. 4306(3); 437–443. DOI:  10.11646/zootaxa.4306.3.10

[Entomology • 2017] Protohermes burmanus • New Species and Records of Corydalidae (Insecta: Megaloptera) from Myanmar


Protohermes burmanus  Liu & Dvorak, 2017

   DOI:  10.11646/zootaxa.4306.3.9 

Abstract

Seven species of the family Corydalidae (Insecta: Megaloptera) are newly recorded from Myanmar, including a new species of the dobsonfly genus Protohermes van der Weele, 1907, Protohermes burmanus sp. nov. A total of 18 species of Megaloptera are now known from Myanmar.

Keywords: Megaloptera, Corydalinae, Chauliodinae, Protohermes, taxonomy, Burma



 Xingyue Liu and Libor Dvorak. 2017. New Species and Records of Corydalidae (Insecta: Megaloptera) from Myanmar. Zootaxa. 4306(3); 428–436. DOI:  10.11646/zootaxa.4306.3.9


[Gastropoda • 2017] Attenborougharion gen. nov. (Mollusca: Pulmonata: Helicarionidae): A Likely Case of Convergent Evolution in southeastern Tasmania


Attenborougharion rubicundus (Dartnall & Kershaw, 1978)

Hyman & Köhler, 2017  

Abstract
Helicarion Férussac, 1821 from southeastern Australia currently comprises five species of endemic semislugs. Analyses of comparative morphological data and partial sequences of the mitochondrial genes cytochrome c oxidase subunit I (COI) and 16S rRNA (16S) reveal that one of these species, Helicarion rubicundus Dartnall & Kershaw, 1978, which is restricted to southeastern Tasmania, is not closely related to the other known species of this genus. This species is distinguished from Helicarion in several key morphological characters, such as the bright two-toned red and green colouration of its larger body with a flattened tail that is keeled only at the tip, the triangular shape of the pneumostome, the degree and type of folding present in the spermoviduct and free oviduct, the presence of a longer, more slender bursa copulatrix, the presence of a small epiphallic caecum and a hooked flagellum, and the presence of irregular longitudinal pilasters in the penial interior in contrast to the v-shaped rows of papillose lamellae seen in Helicarion. Moreover, the mitochondrial phylogeny provides evidence that this species is phylogenetically distinct from Helicarion as well as any other currently described genus from southeastern Australia. Based on these findings, we here describe a new genusAttenborougharion, for this species.

Keywords: Helicarionoidea; morphology; mitochondrial DNA; land snail; taxonomy.



Figure 1. Living animal of Attenborougharion rubicundus from Forestier Peninsula (QVM 9:15514).
photo: Simon Grove, TMAG. 

Systematics 

Attenborougharion gen. nov.
 Type species. Helicarion rubicundus Dartnall & Kershaw, 1978.

Etymology. Named for Sir David Attenborough, Lifetime Patron of the Australian Museum, in recognition of his lifetime’s contribution to the fields of natural science and conservation. The Latin noun arion refers to a “kind of snail or slug”; masculine.

A new genus of snail has been named Attenborougharion in honour of Sir David Attenborough.
Photographer: James Morgan /  AustralianMuseum.net.au 

Diagnosis External appearance. Large, shell ear-shaped, flattened, thin, golden, glossy, whorls rounded, base membraneous. Protoconch with radial wrinkles near suture; otherwise sculptured with very faint beading and indistinct to absent spiral grooves; teleoconch with very fine, indistinct spiral grooves and more prominent radial growth lines. Body colour green and burgundy. Mantle lobes and shell lappets of moderate size, none fused; shell lappets elongate, lacking pigmented warts; slime network prominent; caudal horn well-developed. Keel confined to very tip of tail; most of tail dorsally

Attenborougharion rubicundus (Dartnall & Kershaw, 1978) comb. nov. 
Helicarion rubicundus Dartnall & Kershaw, 1978: 2; Kershaw, 1980: 213.

Distribution and conservation status: Attenborougharion rubicundus is found only on the Tasman and Forestier Peninsulas in Tasmania (Taylor, 1991; Otley et al., 1999). The total known extent of occurrence of this species is 85 sq.km., leading to its listing as Vulnerable on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. In addition to its restricted range, within this area Attenborougharion rubicundus inhabits only closed wet forests and is not found in dry forests or damp sclerophyll forests (Otley eal., 1999), making it vulnerable to habitat loss through the effects of climate change as well as habitat destruction through changed land use.




  Isabel T. Hyman and Frank Köhler. 2017. Attenborougharion gen. nov. (Mollusca: Pulmonata: Helicarionidae): A Likely Case of Convergent Evolution in southeastern Tasmania. Records of the Australian Museum. 69(2): 65–72.  DOI: 10.3853/j.2201-4349.69.2017.1676

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

[PaleoEntomology • 2017] Mesosticta davidattenboroughi • Mesostictinae subfam. nov., An Archaic Group of Platystictid Damselflies (Odonata: Zygoptera) from mid-Cretaceous Burmese Amber


Mesosticta davidattenboroughi
 Zheng, Wang, Nel, Jarzembowski, Zhang & Chang, 2017

Abstract

Odonatans are quite rare in the fossil record compared with the other insects, especially in Cretaceous amber inclusions. The extant family Platystictidae is one of the most diverse Zygoptera, but short of fossil records. In this paper, a new species, Mesosticta davidattenboroughi sp. nov., is described from mid-Cretaceous Burmese amber, representing the third-known fossil species of Platystictidae. Mesosticta davidattenboroughi sp. nov. has a long IR1 beginning one cell distal of the base of RP2, confirming the previous attribution of Mesosticta Huang, Azar, Cai & Nel, 2015 to Platystictidae. It differs from other species of Mesosticta in having a long IR1 and a basally crossed subdiscoidal cell. The fossil genus Mesosticta shares the diagnostic characters of the modern platystictid genera, viz. a basally recessed ‘CuP’ (shared by all species), a very long IR1 (only in Mesosticta davidattenboroughi sp. nov.), and a specialized subdiscoidal area mostly rhomboidal in shape (only in Mesosticta electronica Zheng, Zhang, Chang & Wang, 2016). Based on the platystictid damselflies from Burmese amber, a new subfamily Mesostictinae subfam. nov. is established. Mesostictinae subfam. nov. represents the first fossil group of modern platystictid damselflies, documenting the appearance of Platystictidae as early as mid-Cretaceous. It differs from modern Platystictidae by the presence of fewer postnodal and postsubnodal crossveins, a short MP, the base of RP2 being nearer to the subnodus and the nodus lying more distally.

Keywords: Platystictidae, Zygoptera, Odonata, Cenomanian, Cretaceous, Burmese amber


Figure 1. Mesosticta davidattenboroughi sp. nov., holotype, NIGP164541, photograph of specimen. 

Order Odonata Fabricius, 1793
Suborder Zygoptera Selys-Longchamps, 1854
Superfamily Platystictoidea Kennedy, 1920
Family Platystictidae Kennedy, 1920
Subfamily Mesostictinae subfam. nov.
Type genus. Mesosticta Huang, Azar, Cai & Nel, 2015.

Mesosticta Huang, Azar, Cai & Nel, 2015 
Type species. Mesosticta burmatica Huang, Azar, Cai & Nel, 2015. 
Included species. Mesosticta electronica Zheng, Zhang, Chang & Wang, 2016; Mesosticta davidattenboroughi sp. nov. 

Mesosticta davidattenboroughi sp. nov. 

Type species. NIGP164541, two complete forewings attached to body.

 Diagnosis. Forewing characters: IR1 long, originating one cell distal of base of RP2, nearer to N than to Pt; Arc aligned with Ax2; subdiscoidal cell basally crossed by one vein. 

Etymology. In honour of Sir David Attenborough, on his 90th birthday, for his appreciation of dragonflies. 

Locality and horizon. Hukawng Valley, Kachin Province, Myanmar; lowermost Cenomanian, lowermost Upper Cretaceous.

Figure 7. Hypothetical position of Mesosticta davidattenboroughi sp. nov. in phylogenetic tree of Zygoptera. All line drawings are based on forewings (phylogeny based on Dijkstra et al. 2014; line drawing of Sinosticta ogatai Matsuki & Saito, 1996 after Wilson 1997; line drawing of Palaemnema picicaudata Kennedy, 1938 after Kennedy 1938; line drawings of Platysticta deccanensis Laidlaw, 1915 and Protosticta himalaiaca Laidlaw, 1917 after Fraser 1933).


Daran Zheng, Bo Wang, André Nel, Edmund A. Jarzembowski, Haichun Zhang & Su-Chin Chang. 2017. Mesostictinae subfam. nov., An Archaic Group of Platystictid Damselflies (Odonata: Zygoptera) from mid-Cretaceous Burmese Amber.  Journal of Systematic Palaeontology.   DOI: 10.1080/14772019.2017.1348395

David Attenborough gains new species namesake  phy.so/422069741 @physorg_com


[Botany • 2017] Phanera larseniana | เครือศักดิ์สุวรรณ • A New Species (Leguminosae: Cercidoideae) from northeastern Thailand


Phanera larseniana Chantaranothai, Mattapha & Wangwasit


Abstract

Phanera larseniana, a new species from north–eastern Thailand, is described and illustrated.  It most closely resembles P. rubro-villosa but differs in the length of the floral parts, and in the number and position of the staminodes. The species is known only from a single locality in north-eastern Thailand. An illustration and photos of the new species are provided.

Keywords: Bauhinia, Cercideae, Fabaceae, IUCN Red List, Phu Phan National Park, woody climber, Eudicots




Phanera larseniana Chantaranothai, Mattapha & Wangwasit, sp. nov. 
Phanera larseniana is similar to P. rubro-villosa but differs in having a shorter hypanthium, smaller calyces and petals, longer fertile filaments, longer ovary and style. Fertile filaments and style are much exserted (vs. inserted in P. rubro-villosa).

Etymology:— The species is named after Supee Saksuwan Larsen and the late Professor Kai Larsen, prominent botanists who contributed the account of the genus Bauhinia to the Flora of Thailand. 
 Vernacular name:— Khruea Saksuwan (เครือศักดิ์สุวรรณ), "เสี้ยวกำมะหยี่".



Distribution:— Only known from north–eastern Thailand (Fig. 3). 
Habitat and Ecology:— Dry evergreen forest, elevation of ca. 200 m.
 Phenology:— Flowering March–April. Fruiting April–May.

......

ดร.คณิต แวงวาสิต รักษาการหัวหน้าสวนพฤกษศาสตร์ขอนแก่น เปิดเผยว่า สวนพฤกษศาสตร์ขอนแก่น ได้ดำเนินการศึกษาวิจัยและรวบรวมข้อมูลด้านพฤกษศาสตร์และความหลากหลายของพันธุ์พืช ในภาคตะวันออกเฉียงเหนือ ซึ่งในการดำเนินการดังกล่าว ได้ค้นพบพันธุ์ไม้ชนิดใหม่ของโลกเพิ่ม อีก 1 ชนิด มีลักษณะเป็นไม้เลื้อยที่มีเนื้อไม้ ดอกมีกลิ่นหอมอ่อน ๆ ออกดอกในช่วงเดือนมีนาคม - เมษายน ใบมีลักษณะคล้ายกับใบเสี้ยวฝักมีลักษณะมีขนนุ่มคล้ายกำมะหยี่ จึงเรียกชื่อง่ายๆ ว่า "เสี้ยวกำมะหยี่" โดยพบเพียงกลุ่มเดียว จำนวน 8 - 9 ต้น ที่บริเวณเทือกเขาภูพาน เมื่อปี 2542 ต่อมาได้ตั้งชื่อใหม่ว่า "เครือศักดิ์สุวรรณ” มีชื่อวิทยาศาสตร์ว่า Phanera larseniana Chantaranothai, Mattapha & Wangwasit เพื่อเป็นเกียรติให้แก่ ศาสตราจารย์ ไค ลาร์เซน (Professor Kai Larsen) นักพฤกษศาสตร์ชาวเดนมาร์ก ที่เป็นผู้ก่อตั้งโครงการพรรณพฤกษชาติแห่งประเทศไทย และภรรยา ทั้งนี้ ปัจจุบัน สวนพฤกษศาสตร์ขอนแก่น ได้รวบรวมต้นพันธุ์จากธรรมชาติซึ่งอยู่ในภาวะใกล้สูญพันธุ์มาเพาะขยายและปลูกลงแปลงที่สวนพฤกษศาสตร์ขอนแก่น เพื่อศึกษาวิจัยด้านพฤกษศาสตร์และต่อยอดในการใช้ประโยชน์ต่อไป


Pranom Chantaranothai, Sawai Mattapha and Khanit Wangwasit. 2017. Phanera larseniana (Leguminosae: Cercidoideae), A New Species from Thailand. Phytotaxa. 303(2); 187–193. DOI:  10.11646/phytotaxa.303.2.9

  


[Ichthyology • 2017] Sacura sanguinea • A New Species of the Anthiadin Genus Sacura (Perciformes: Serranidae) from the Andaman Sea


Sacura sanguinea
Motomura, Yoshida & Vilasri, 2017


Abstract

Sacura sanguinea n. sp. (Serranidae: Anthiadinae) is described on the basis of two male and one female specimens from the Andaman Sea. The new species is characterized by the following characters: dorsal-fin rays X, 15; pored lateral-line scales 34; gill rakers 8 + 23 = 31; body depth 42.6–44.7% of SL; head length 39.5–41.4% of SL; pectoral-fin length 32.4–33.1% of SL; poorly defined broad yellow band from anterior profile of head to middle of body, the band gradually becoming red around middle of body and ending at caudal-fin base; caudal fin with distinct red spots centrally; and large dark red blotch posteriorly on spinous portion of dorsal fin in females.

Keywords: Pisces, Perciformes, Serranidae



Hiroyuki Motomura, Tomohiro Yoshida and Veera Vilasri. 2017. New Species of the Anthiadin Genus Sacura (Perciformes: Serranidae) from the Andaman Sea.
 Zootaxa. 4306(2); 291–295. DOI:  10.11646/zootaxa.4306.2.10

[Herpetology • 2017] On The Taxonomic Status of Eurylepis poonaensis (Squamata: Scincidae): Resolving A Long-standing Conundrum


Eurylepis poonaensis (Sharma, 1970) 

SALAMANDRA. 53(3) 

Abstract

 The scincid genus Eurylepis was split off from the cosmopolitan genus Eumeces sensu lato, with Eurylepis taeniolatus being the type species, which is taxonomically poorly understood. The other nominate species in this genus is Eurylepis poonaensis, which was known only from its type locality and original description, and is the only known member of the subfamily Scincinae from near the Western Ghats. However, earlier studies raised doubts about its specific validity, often without examining type or other specimens. We collected fresh samples of this species from the type locality and nearby areas. Based on the examination of the holotype and the new material, we provide a detailed redescription of E. poonaensis, additional data on its skeletal structure, habitat, and natural history. We also provide a detailed redescription of E. taeniolatus based on the holotype to avoid further taxonomic ambiguity. 

Key words. Taxonomic resolution, species redescription, Eurylepis taeniolatus, India. 


Eurylepis Blyth, 1854
Eumeces Wiegmann, 1834 (in part).
Eurylepis Blyth, 1854. Type-species: E. taeniolatus Blyth, 1854.
Plestiodon Theobald, 1866, by synonymy of E. taeniolatus
Mabouia Anderson, 1871 (in part), by synonymy of E. taeniolatus

Figure 4. Eurylepis poonaensis (BNHS 2283) in life. Photograph by V. Giri. 

Redescription of Eurylepis poonaensis (Sharma, 1970) 
Eurylepis poonaensis (Sharma, 1970) 

Eumeces poonaensis Sharma, 1970 
Eurylepis poonaensis Griffith et al. 2000 
Eurylepis poonaensis Schmitz et al. 2004 

Holotype: ZSIK 21159. Type locality: Katrajghat, Poona (= Pune), Maharashtra, India.


Redescription of Eurylepis taeniolatus Blyth, 1854 
Eurylepis taeniolatus Blyth, 1854 

Eumeces taeniolatus Stoliczka, 1872 
Mabouia taeniolata Anderson, 1871 
Plestiodon scutatus Theobald, 1868 
Eumeces scutatus Boulenger, 1887 
Eumeces taeniolatus Smith 1935 
Eumeces taeniolatus Taylor 1936 
Eurylepis taeniolatus Griffith et al. 2000 
Eurylepis taeniolatus Schmitz et al. 2004 

Holotype: ZSI 2382. Type locality ‘Alpine Punjab’


Aniruddha Datta-Roy, Veerappan Deepak, R. Chaitanya, Channakeshva Murthy, Harshal Bhosale, Aparna Lajmi, Praveen Karanth, Krushnamegh Kunte and Varad Giri. 2017.   On The Taxonomic Status of Eurylepis poonaensis (Squamata: Scincidae): Resolving A Long-standing Conundrum.  SALAMANDRA. 53(3); 389–397. 


[Botany • 2017] Argostemma cordatum • A New Species (Rubiaceae) from southern Vietnam


Argostemma cordatum Nuraliev


Abstract

Argostemma cordatum, a new species of Rubiaceae, is described and illustrated. The species was discovered in 2014 during a botanical survey of the Chu Yang Sin National Park (Dak Lak province, Southern Vietnam). Argostemma cordatum possesses a solitary large leaf per plant (along with one very small leaf). The new species differs from morphologically similar species mainly by the small size of the enlarged leaf and cordate base of the enlarged leaf. It is also characterized by the following features: plant completely glabrous, stipules minute and reduced to papillate warts, inflorescence with all axes elongated, anthers coherent into anther cone and dehiscent by longitudinal slits, style slightly exserted. An extended description of the vegetation in the area inhabited by A. cordatum is provided.

Keywords: Argostemma, taxonomy, Southern Vietnam, Chu Yang Sin National Park, flora, biodiversity, Eudicots

  
FIGURE 2. Argostemma cordatum at type locality.
A. General view of population. B. Flowering individual. D. Dichasium with flower buds. E. Flower, apical and oblique view.
Nuraliev, Kuznetsov, Kuznetsova 960. All photos by M. Nuraliev.  

Argostemma cordatum Nuraliev, sp. nov.

Etymology:— The specific epithet “cordatum” refers to the prominently cordate base of large leaf which distinguishes the new species from its relatives.  


Maxim S. Nuraliev, Anton S. Beer, Andrey N. Kuznetsov and Svetlana P. Kuznetsova. 2017. 
Argostemma cordatum (Rubiaceae), A New Species from Vietnam.
 Phytotaxa. 317(1); 42–52. DOI:  10.11646/phytotaxa.317.1.4

[Ichthyology • 2017] Taxonomic Revision of the Seasonal Killifish Genus Nothobranchius (Cyprinodontoidei: Aplocheilidae) from Zanzibar, East Africa



ABSTRACT
Nothobranchius guentheri and Nothobranchius melanospilus, the two seasonal killifishes of the genus Nothobranchius occurring in Zanzibar Island, Tanzania, were involved in past taxonomical mistakes and are still misidentified in museum collections. A historical review is herein presented and both species are redescribed on the basis of type material and recent collections. Nothobranchius guentheri, a popular aquarium fish, is endemic to Zanzibar, and N. melanospilus, geographically widespread in East Africa, occurring both in Zanzibar and in continental river basins. These species are distinguished by a series of morphological features not previously reported in the literature, including pre-dorsal length and relative position of the anterior portion of the dorsal-fin skeletal support and vertebrae; number of gill-rakers of the first branchial arch, caudal-fin rays, scales of the longitudinal series, series of scales around caudal peduncle, and vertebrae; frontal squamation; and arrangement and number of neuromasts of the supraorbital series. The present taxonomic revision comprising N. guentheri and N. melanospilus, the oldest species names of the genus in the East African biodiversity hotspot, is important to improve the knowledge of the genus in a region where its taxonomy is still problematic

KEYWORDS: Biodiversity hotspot, East African coastal forests, systematics, Unguja Island


Figure 2. Nothobranchius guentheri (Pfeffer 1893), live exemplars: (a) UFRJ 8420, male, 33.1 mm SL; (b) UFRJ 8420, female, 29.3 mm SL.
Figure 6. Nothobranchius melanospilus (Pfeffer 1896), live exemplars: (a) UFRJ 6515, male, 32.6 mm SL; (b) UFRJ 6515, female, 31.1 mm SL.



Wilson J. E. M. Costa. 2017. Taxonomic Revision of the Seasonal Killifish Genus Nothobranchius from Zanzibar, East Africa (Cyprinodontoidei: Aplocheilidae). Journal of Natural History. 51(27-28); 1069-1624.  DOI: 10.1080/00222933.2017.1330976

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

[Ichthyology • 2017] Parapercis binotata • A New Species of Parapercis (Teleostei: Pinguipedidae) from the Solomon Islands


Parapercis binotata Allen & Erdmann, 2017

Abstract

A new species of pinguipedid fish, Parapercis binotata, is described from the Solomon Islands on the basis of six adult specimens, 46.5–56.5.5 mm SL. The new taxon belongs to the Parapercis cylindrica complex, which contains five other western Pacific Ocean species: P. australis, P. cylindrica, P. haackei, P. lineopunctata, and P. snyderi. It is most similar to P. lineopunctata from the East Indian Archipelago, but adult males are clearly distinguished by the presence of two short black bands, one on the cheek and another on the lower pectoral fin. Although lacking these markings, females differ from those of P. lineopunctata by the presence of a curved black band below the eye. The only known habitat of the new species consists of a nearly enclosed lagoon in 4-8 m depth. Analyses of the mtDNA “barcode” marker COI sequences for the P. cylindrica species complex show exceptionally deep divergences between most species, about 15–20% divergence between all but one pair of species, with P. binotata 14.52% different from its nearest relative, P. lineopunctata.
  
Key words: taxonomy, systematics, ichthyology, coral-reef fishes, Indo-Pacific Ocean, sandperch, DNA barcoding. 

Figure 2. Parapercis binotata, underwater photographs at Mbanika Island, Russell Group, Solomon Islands.
A & B: adult males, approximately 50–55 mm SL; C & D: females, approximately 35–40 mm SL (G.R. Allen).

Parapercis binotata, n. sp. 
Solomons Sandperch

Diagnosis. Dorsal-fin rays V,21; anal-fin rays I,16–17; pectoral-fin rays 14–16; lateral-line scales 46–48; four, progressively larger, recurved canine teeth on each side at front of lower jaw; scales on body ctenoid except cycloid on prepelvic area; opercle and cheek covered with ctenoid scales; body depth 4.7–5.5 in SL; caudal fin truncate to slightly rounded; pelvic fins reaching beyond anal-fin origin; color of head and body generally white, 7–8 short brown bars on back, above lateral line and lower side with corresponding narrow yellow-orange to brown bars; adult with conspicuous black band on rear edge of cheek and short black band on lower pectoral-fin rays; females with curved black band under eye along lower edge of suborbital; found on sand substrates in depths of less than 10 m.

Etymology. The species is named binotata (Latin: two markings), with reference to the diagnostic dark bands on the cheek and pectoral fins of males. It is treated as a feminine singular compound adjective.

Distribution and habitat. The new species is known only from the Solomon Islands type locality. The relatively unusual habitat consisted of a nearly enclosed, narrow, dead-end lagoon (Fig. 3) with a gradually sloping, white sand bottom with scattered, mainly low-profile, coral formations. The fish was common at depths between about 4–8 m, generally occurring as solitary individuals

   
Gerald R. Allen and Mark V. Erdmann. 2017. A New Species of Parapercis (Teleostei: Pinguipedidae) from the Solomon Islands.  Journal of the Ocean Science Foundation. 27, 8–19. http://www.oceansciencefoundation.org/josf27b.html


[Herpetology • 2017] Thamnodynastes phoenix • A New Species of Thamnodynastes (Serpentes: Dipsadidae: Tachymenini) from the Open Areas of central and northeastern Brazil


Thamnodynastes phoenix
Franco, Trevine, Montingelli & Zaher, 2017 

SALAMANDRA. 53(3)

Abstract
 The genus Thamnodynastes Wagler, 1830 is currently composed by nineteen species of viviparous and opistoglyphous snakes, largely distributed in South America, from Colombia to Argentina. The analyses of a large data set of specimens from South American collections evidenced one unknown species from the open formations of central and northeastern Brazil, which is described here. The new species is distinguished from all its congeners by a unique combination of characters, including 19 dorsal rows of smooth scales on the midbody, the smallest number of subcaudals in the genus, and a distinct hemipenial morphology and coloration pattern. To define this new species we present robust diagnostic characters and discuss comparisons with other species of this diverse and taxonomically complex genus of Neotropical snakes. 

Key words. Neotropical region, Caatinga, Cerrado, Squamata, taxonomy, Xenodontinae.


Figure 2. Detail view of the preserved holotype of Thamnodynastes phoenix sp. n. (IBSP 87527): (A) dorsal, (B) ventral, and (C) dextral view of the head. Scale bar: 1 cm. 

Thamnodynastes phoenix sp. n. 
Thamnodynastes sp. 2 – Franco & Ferreira, 2002
Thamnodynastes sp. 2 – Hamdan & Lira-da-Silva, 2012
Thamnodynastes sp. 2 – Coelho, Souza, Weider, Pereira & Ribeiro, 2013
Thamnodynastes sp. – Guedes, Nogueira & Sawaya, 2014

Diagnosis: Thamnodynastes phoenix sp. n. differs from all other species of the genus by the following combination of characters: 19/19/15 dorsal rows with smooth scales; maximum SVL 495 mm; maximum TL 136 mm; ventral scales 133 to 159; subcaudals 40 to 66; coloration of the ventral portion of the head extremely spotted with dark-brown dots, infralabials and chin shields with a white centre. Darkening intensifies on the infralabial borders, outlining a clear contrast of lateral and dark margins (Fig. 2). Two pairs of noncontinuous longitudinal dark ventral stripes, darker at the transition of the venter and the lateral sides, with a more conspicuous black spot on the apex of each ventral scale; tip of the tail lighter than the overall body coloration without blotches or dots, almost white in juvenile specimens.

Distribution: Thamnodynastes phoenix sp. n. occurs on open savannas of Brazil, predominantly the Caatinga formation of northeastern Brazil, in the states of Alagoas, Bahia, Ceará, Paraíba, Pernambuco, Piauí, Rio Grande do Norte, and Sergipe, extending to the Caatinga enclaves of the region of Jaíba, Minas Gerais. It also encompasses the Cerrado in central Brazil, in the states of Goiás, Tocantins and Minas Gerais (Fig. 6).

 Natural History: The inspection of a few dissected specimens confirmed the viviparous reproductive mode of this species, as expected for members of the tribe Tachymenini. The specimen MZUSP 10462 (SVL 407 mm) exhibited eight well-developed embryos. The species is predominately terrestrial and nocturnal, feeds on frogs, and is associated with different types of Caatinga and Cerrado vegetation (Guedes et al. 2014).

Etymology: The specific epithet phoenix (Greek: φοῖνιξ phoinix; Latin: phoenix, phœnix, fenix) refers to the mythological bird that dies in combustion and subsequently rises from ashes in a cycle of life and death. This name acknowledges the fact that the previously selected holotype, used originally for the species description, was lost in the fire that consumed 90% of the Herpetological Collection “Alphonse Richard Hoge” of the Instituto Butantan, on March 15, 2010. Some specimens, including two paratypes, were rescued from the fire, and the data previously collected from the lost specimens were kept and used herein.

Figure 2. Detail view of the preserved holotype of Thamnodynastes phoenix sp. n. (IBSP 87527): (A) dorsal, (B) ventral, and (C) dextral view of the head. Scale bar: 1 cm.
Figure 1. Dorsal pattern of the preserved holotype (IBSP 87527). Scale bar: 1 cm. 


Francisco L. Franco, Vivian C. Trevine, Giovanna G. Montingelli and Hussam Zaher. 2017. A New Species of Thamnodynastes from the Open Areas of central and northeastern Brazil (Serpentes: Dipsadidae: Tachymenini). SALAMANDRA. 53(3); 339-350.