Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Discoveries of the week #30

Diancta macrostoma
The minute (adult size 1.3–4.8 mm) land snail species of the family Diplommatinidae in the Fiji archipelago are revised based on historical material and modern (1998–99) collections targeting limestone outcrops on the largest island, Viti Levu, and several smaller islands in the Lau group. The forty-two species (including 30 new species) belong to the genera Moussonia Semper, 1865, Palaina Semper, 1865 and Diancta Martens, 1867, which are briefly characterized and keyed. The diagnostic structure of the inner lamellar system of each species is illustrated. All species except one are endemic to Fiji. In Viti Levu, the 12 localities surveyed each had 1–13 (average 5) species of Diplommatinidae; ten species were each found at a single site only. In the Lau islands, five islands were visited, with 1–4 species per island; four species are known from single islands. The number of historically known species not recollected in 1998–99 (7 species), the number of single-site occurrences (14 species), and the numerous islands — including limestone islands — that have not been surveyed at all, indicate that the 42 species of Diplommatinidae currently known from Fiji represent perhaps only half of the Fiji diplommatinid fauna. Such numbers approach the diplommatinid diversity of Palau (39 described and more than 60 undescribed species), and surpasses by far the diversity of other South Pacific archipelagos of comparable land area (New Caledonia, Vanuatu, Samoa).

Lots of new species of microsnails and all of them from Fiji. Given their size and limited dispersal capabilities many of these species are likely endemics.
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We describe Scolopocryptops troglocaudatus sp. n., a new troglobitic scolopocryptopine centipede species. The species was found in a remarkable siliciclastic karst area of Eastern Brazil, in three caves of the Chapada da Diamantina, in the state of Bahia. S. troglocaudatus sp. n. is close to S. miersii Newport, 1845 and S. ferrugineus macrodon (Kraepelin, 1903) but differs from them by troglomorphic features, such as depigmentation, long appendages and a thin cuticle. This new species is the second troglobitic scolopocryptopine described and is the first discovered in Brazil.
This is a newly discovered blind centipede living in caves in Brazil. The species name is in allusion to the fact that the species lives in caves and that it has the longest ultimate legs in its subfamily. The name is derived from Latin troglo, meaning “cave”, and caudatus, meaning “with a tail”.
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Six species of the genus Mocyta Mulsant & Rey are reported from Canada: Mocyta amblystegii (Brundin), M. breviuscula (Mäklin), M. discreta (Casey), M. fungi (Gravenhorst), M. luteola (Erichson), and M. sphagnorum Klimaszewski & Webster, sp. n. New provincial and state records include: M. breviuscula – Saskatchewan and Oregon; M. discreta – Quebec, Ontario and Saskatchewan; M. luteola – New Brunswick, Quebec, Ontario, Massachusetts and Minnesota; and M. fungi – Saskatchewan. Mocyta sphagnorum is described from eastern Canada from specimens captured in Newfoundland, New Brunswick, Quebec and Ontario. Mocyta negligens Mulsant and Rey, a native European species suspected of occurring in Canada, is excluded from the Nearctic fauna based on comparison of European types with similarly coloured Canadian specimens, which are now identified as M. luteola. The European species, Mocyta gilvicollis (Scheerpeltz), is synonymized with another European nominal species, M. negligens, based on examination of type material of the two species. Lectotypes are designated for Eurypronota discreta Casey, Atheta gilvicollis Scheerpeltz, Homalota luteola Erichson, Colpodota negligens Mulsant and Rey, Acrotona prudens Casey and Dolosota redundans Casey. The latter species is here synonymized with M. luteola. A review of the six Nearctic species is provided, including keys to species and closely related genera, colour habitus images, images of genitalia, biological information and maps of their distributions in Canada.

It is always nice to be able to report newly found species a little closer to home. Most of what I report here in this column usually comes from some tropical regions or elsewhere far away. The only thing that is a little disappointing is that no DNA Barcodes have been generated for this. It is very likely that most of these species (even the new one) have been collected as part of our National Park Malaiseprogram activities. Too bad we can't match the types to anything. The species name of the new member refers to a dominant plant species in the habitat the beetle was collected.
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The gobiid genus Trimma currently contains 75 valid species, with another 20–30 known but undescribed species. There are 29 species in Australian waters (six undescribed). This paper describes the six new species, and provides redescriptions of most of the 23 previously described species known from the region, as well as a key for all the species. The six new species are: T. insularum (endemic to Cocos (Keeling) Islands), T. kitrinum (Fiji to Great Barrier Reef), T. meristum (Cape York to the Bismark Archipelago and Fiji), T. pentherum (Great Barrier Reef to Fiji and the South-West Islands of Palau), T. readerae (Australia to Japan), and T. xanthum (Palau to Fiji, Great Barrier Reef to Christmas Island). The following 23 species have been recorded from Australian waters, and most are redescribed here: T. anaima (Comores to Fiji), T. annosum (Maldives to the Phoenix Islands, Taiwan to the southern Great Barrier Reef), T. benjamini (southern Vietnam to the Marshall Islands, Samoa and southern Barrier Reef), T. caesiura (Ryukyus through the Marshall Islands to Samoa and Elizabeth Reef on the Lord Howe Rise), T. capostriatum (New Caledonia to eastern Australia and Papua New Guinea), T. maiandros (Java to the Ryukyus, Marshalls to Great Barrier Reef), T. emeryi (Comores to Ryukyus and Samoa), T. fangi (western South China Sea through to the Solomons), T. flavatrum (Ryukyu Islands to Western Australia and Samoa), T. hoesei (Chagos Archipelago, central Indian Ocean to Palau and Solomons), T. lantana (Australia, Solomons, northern New Guinea, South-West Islands of Palau), T. macrophthalmus (Ryukyu Islands to Cocos (Keeling) Islands and Samoa), T. milta (Taiwan to Western Australia, Society Islands and Hawaii), T. nasa (Sumbawa, Indonesia to Fiji), T. necopinum (northern tip of Cape York to Sydney), T. nomurai (Japan to northern Australia and New Caledonia), T. okinawae (western Thailand to Japan and the Phoenix Islands, north-west Australia to the Great Barrier Reef), T. preclarum (Palau to Fiji, Great Barrier Reef), T. stobbsi (Maldives to New Caledonia), T. striatum (Maldives to Palau, to northern Australia), T. taylori (Red Sea to Hawaii and Society Islands), T. tevegae (Red Sea to Ryukyu Islands, Marshall Islands to Samoa), and T. unisquame (Comores to Hawaii and Easter Island).

A 100 page volume on about a third of the known species of the genus Trimma. These are small often very colorful gobies. Earlier barcoding studies have shown that this genus is perhaps much more speciouse than previously found. This publication can therefore just be the beginning of a series of new descriptions.

 Solanum amorimii
Two additions and four new species are described from Brazil for the large Geminata clade (Solanum: Solanaceae) bringing the total diversity in the group to 149 species, with 44 of these occurring in Brazil. New species are described from Brazil: S. amorimii S.Knapp & Giacomin, sp. nov. from Bahia and adjacent Minas Gerais states, S. filirhachis Giacomin & Stehmann, sp. nov. from Espirito Santo, S. psilophyllum Stehmann & Giacomin, sp. nov. from Minas Gerais and S. verticillatum S.Knapp & Stehmann, sp. nov. from São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro and Minas Gerais. Modern character-rich descriptions and lectotypifications are provided for S. apiahyense Witasek and Solanum lacteum Vell. All are illustrated, mapped and assessed for conservation status. We also provide a brief analysis of the diversity and endemism of the Geminata clade in Brazil and a key to all 44 Brazilian species.

Solanum is another one of those huge plant genera including about 1400 known species, one of which is the famous Solanum tuberosum, better known as potato.  However, there actually about 180 species of what is currently thought of being potatoes and their relatives. The new species here are only remotely related to potatoes.
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During the preparation of the Vascular Flora of the Marquesas Islands a new endemic species of Heliotropium L. (Boraginaceae) has come to light and is described herein: Heliotropium perlmanii Lorence & W. L. Wagner. It is known only from the island of Eiao and appears most closely related to H. marchionicum Decne., also endemic to the Marquesas and known from Nuku Hiva. An amended description of H. marchionicum and key to separate the Marquesan species are given and their differences discussed.

The new species is named in honor of the botanist Steven P. Perlman (National Tropical Botanical Garden) who collected the type specimen.
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