Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Discoveries of the week

It is Tuesday again, time for some new species accounts.

We propose the name Bumba as a new name for Maraca, preoccupied by Maraca Hebard, 1926 (Orthoptera). We describe and illustrate Bumba lennoni, a new theraphosid species from Caxiuanã, Pará, Brazil. This species differs from the other species of the genus in the extremely reduced keel on male palpal organ and in the higher number of labial and maxillary cuspules. Females additionally differ in the spermathecal morphology. As a consequence of the name replacement, three new combinations are established.

The name of the new species came across when the authors of the study found out that they are all great fans of Beatles music. The new tarantula species from Western Brazilian Amazonia was named Bumba lennoni in honor of John Lennon. The genus name, Bumba, which is a proposed replacement of the former name Maraca, already taken and used within the order Orthoptera, is taken from the Brazilian theatrical folk tradition of the popular festival called Boi-bumbá (hit my bull), which takes place annually in North and Northeastern Brazil.
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Angulobaloghia rutra
Three new species of the family Rotundabaloghiidae are discovered and described from Sabah, Malaysia. The unusual Angulobaloghia rutra sp. n. differs from the other known Angulobaloghia Hirschmann, 1979 species in the long anterior process of the female’s genital shield. Rotundabaloghia (Circobaloghia) tobiasi sp. n. has very long and apically pilose dorsal setae and two pairs of bulbiform setae, which are unique in the subgenus Rotundabaloghia (Circobaloghia) Hirschmann, 1975. The long, serrate and curved setae in the big ventral cavity of Depressorotunda (Depressorotunda) serrata sp. n. is a so far unknown character in the subgenus Depressorotunda (Depressorotunda) Kontschán, 2010.

These are all tiny mites that live in soil, leaf litter and moss.The maximum of their diversity is found in tropical rain forests and these new species from Sabah, Malaysia are the first reported from this region.
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Pseudapanteles is a moderately diverse genus of Microgastrinae parasitoid wasps (Hymenoptera: Braconidae), endemic to the New World and with the vast majority of its species (including many undescribed) in the Neotropical region. We describe here 25 new species from Area de Conservación Guanacaste (ACG), northwestern Costa Rica, based on 400 studied specimens. A key to all 36 known species of Pseudapanteles is provided (except for P. brunneus, only known from a single male), and species are placed in three newly created species-groups. Host records are known for only 25% of the species; most are solitary parasitoids of the caterpillars of several families of small Lepidoptera (Crambidae, Elachistidae, Gelechiidae, Incurvariidae, Sesiidae, Tineidae). DNA barcodes (part of the CO1 gene) were obtained for 30 species (83%), and provide a start for future study of the genus beyond ACG. Brief descriptions (generated by Lucid 3.5 software) and extensive illustrations are provided for all species. The following new taxonomic and nomenclatural acts are proposed: Pseudapanteles moerens (Nixon, 1965), comb. n., Pseudapanteles brunneus Ashmead, 1900, comb. rev., a lectotype is designated for Pseudapanteles ruficollis (Cameron, 1911), and the following 25 species nova of Pseudapanteles (all authored by Fernández-Triana and Whitfield): alfiopivai, alvaroumanai, analorenaguevarae, carlosespinachi, carlosrodriguezi, christianafigueresae, hernanbravoi, jorgerodriguezi, josefigueresi, laurachinchillae, luisguillermosolisi, margaritapenonae, mariobozai, mariocarvajali, maureenballesteroae, munifigueresae, oscarariasi, ottonsolisi, pedroleoni, raulsolorzanoi, renecastroi, rodrigogamezi, rosemarykarpinskiae, soniapicadoae, teofilodelatorrei.

This genus consists of solitary parasitoids of caterpillars of several families of small Lepidoptera. The publication is solely focusing on one area in Costa Rica (albeit the best studied one available) and already it provides 25 new members of a single genus. Experts for parasitoid wasps claim that there are likely thousands of species especially in the families Braconidae and Ichneumonidae awaiting discovery and descriptions.

A new species of the genus Isoperla (Plecoptera, Perlodidae), belonging to the oxylepis species-group is described, and the male mating call is characterized. Its range falls within a small region of the Southern Limestone Alps which is well known to be one endemism-centre of aquatic insects.

This new stone fly was collected was collected from the Karawanken Alps in southern Austria and the nearby Kamnik Alps in northern Slovenia. The species is named in honour of the second author’s wife Claudia. 
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To assess the taxonomic relationship between G. nipponensis and G. sobaegensis, morphological features and molecular phylogenetic relationships using the nuclear 28S rRNA and the mitochondrial COI genes were examined. Detailed morphological observations revealed that G. nipponensis and G. sobaegensis were clearly distinguishable. In addition to the morphological differences, these two species were genetically diverged. In the course of this study, an undescribed species was found from Tsushima and Iki Islands and described here as G. mukudai. In the molecular phylogenetic analyses, monophyletic relationships of G. nipponensis, G. sobaegensis, and G. mukudai were shown but relationships among three species were unclear due to low statistical supports. Phylogeography of G. nipponensis, G. sobaegensis, and G. mukudai were discussed.

The genus Gammarus contains about 200 species mostly recorded from fresh, estuarine, and marine waters of the northern hemisphere. This new species is named in honour of Dr. Takao Mukuda of Hiroshima University who supported the work of one of the authors.

Exacum zygomorpha
Exacum affine
The paper provides a key for identification and a checklist of mycoheterotrophic species of the genus Exacum, representing a well-defined group of achlorophyllous members of Gentianaceae regarded sometimes in the limits of a separate genus Cotylanthera. One novel species, E. zygomorpha, discovered in northern Vietnam, is described and illustrated as new for science. Among other features the discovered species strikingly differs from its congeners in having distinctly zygomorphic flowers.

According to the authors all members of the genus are very rare unattractive plants easily overlooked in botanical surveys and poorly represented in the world's herbarium collections. Probably the best known species is Exacum affine, known as Persian violet. No image of the new species as the paper is hiding behind a pay-wall. So I chose its famous relative.
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