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  • Attenuated evolution of mammals through the Cenozoic

    Goswami, Anjali; Noirault, Eve; Coombs, Ellen J; Clavel, Julien; Fabre, Anne-Claire; Halliday, Thomas JD; Churchill, Morgan; Curtis, Abigail; Watanabe, Akinobu; Simmons, Nancy B; et al. (American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), 2022-10-28)
    The Cenozoic diversification of placental mammals is the archetypal adaptive radiation. Yet, discrepancies between molecular divergence estimates and the fossil record fuel ongoing debate around the timing, tempo, and drivers of this radiation. Analysis of a three-dimensional skull dataset for living and extinct placental mammals demonstrates that evolutionary rates peak early and attenuate quickly. This long-term decline in tempo is punctuated by bursts of innovation that decreased in amplitude over the past 66 million years. Social, precocial, aquatic, and herbivorous species evolve fastest, especially whales, elephants, sirenians, and extinct ungulates. Slow rates in rodents and bats indicate dissociation of taxonomic and morphological diversification. Frustratingly, highly similar ancestral shape estimates for placental mammal superorders suggest that their earliest representatives may continue to elude unequivocal identification.
  • The rangeomorph Pectinifrons abyssalis: Hydrodynamic function at the dawn of animal life

    Darroch, Simon AF; Gutarra Diaz, Susana V.; Masaki, Hale; Olaru, Andrei; Gibson, Brandt M; Dunn, Frances S; Mitchell, Emily G; Racicot, Rachel A; Burzynski, Gregory; Rahman, Imran (Elsevier BV, 2023-02-17)
    Rangeomorphs are among the oldest putative eumetazoans known from the fossil record. Establishing how they fed is thus key to understanding the structure and function of the earliest animal ecosystems. Here, we use computational fluid dynamicstotesthypothesizedfeedingmodesforthefence-likerangeomorphPectinifrons abyssalis, comparing this to the morphologically similar extant carnivorous sponge Chondrocladia lyra. Our results reveal complex patterns of flow around P. abyssalis unlike those previously reconstructed for any other Ediacaran taxon. Comparisons with C. lyra reveal substantial differences between the two organisms, suggesting they converged on a similar fence-like morphology for different functions. We argue that the flow patterns recovered for P. abyssalis do not support either a suspension feeding or osmotrophic feeding habit. Instead, our results indicate that rangeomorph fronds may represent organs adapted for gas exchange. If correct, this interpretation could require a dramatic reinterpretation of the oldest macroscopic animals.
  • Range extension of the Macroglossum pyrrhosticta Butler, 1875, in Northwestern India (Lepidoptera: Sphingidae)

    Farooqui, Shahabab A; Kitching, I; Parwez, Hina; Joshi, Rahul (Sociedad Hispano-Luso-Americana de Lepidopterologia, 2022-12-30)
    <During a faunistic survey of Lepidoptera in Sasni (27.7063º N, 78.0823º E; 181 m), Uttar Pradesh, a specimen of Macroglossum pyrrhosticta Butler, 1875, was collected and thus the species reported for the first time from the Gangetic Plains Biogeographic Zone of India, as well as North-West India as a whole. Details of the known larval host plants of M. pyrrhosticta are also provided, together with a checklist of the Indian species of genus Macroglossum Scopoli, 1777.
  • The Big Seaweed Search: Evaluating a citizen science project for a difficult to identify group of organisms

    Brodie, J; Kunzig, Sarah; Agate, Jules; Yesson, Chris; Robinson, Lucy (Wiley, 2023-01-04)
    1. The Big Seaweed Search invites people to survey UK seashores for 14 conspicuous seaweeds. The science investigates: (i) impact of sea temperature rise; (ii) spread of non-native species; and (iii) impact of ocean acidification. Survey data submitted between June 2016 and May 2020 were analysed to evaluate and explore project directions in relation to citizen science project development. 2. Of the 378 surveys submitted, 1,414 people participated, contributing 1,531 person hours. Surveys were undertaken around the UK, with the highest proportion (46.7%) in the south west and the lowest (3.7%) in the north east. After data verification, 1,007 (54%) records were accepted. Fucus serratus had the highest number of entries correctly identified (66%) and Undaria pinnatifida the lowest (5%), inferring that at least some seaweeds can be difficult to identify, although the overall misidentification rate was relatively low (c. 15%). 3. Apart from Alaria esculenta, U. pinnatifida and Saccharina latissima, the large brown seaweeds were abundant on at least some shores. Non-natives Sargassum muticum and Asparagopsis armata, were band-forming but in low numbers. Coralline algae, whilst band-forming on some shores, were most commonly patchy or sparse in abundance. Revisits, i.e. repeat surveys, at the same site with an interval of at least 1 year, are relatively low, with 18 sites revisited once and three sites revisited twice. 4. Currently, data are insufficient to determine whether any changes in abundance could be detected. 5. This study highlights areas where project developments can enhance data quality and quantity, e.g. better identification resources, training programmes for dedicated volunteers, and an annual focus week of activities. The project framed around climate change impacts, aims to raise awareness of the ecological importance of, and threats faced by, this understudied habitat and introduce conservation concepts including the need to protect common species showing signs of decline.
  • Land use and soil characteristics affect soil organisms differently from above-ground assemblages

    Burton, VJ; Contu, Sara; De Palma, A; Hill, Samantha LL; Albrecht, Harald; Bone, James S; Carpenter, Daniel; Corstanje, Ronald; De Smedt, Pallieter; Farrell, Mark; et al. (Springer Science and Business Media LLC, 2022-11-17)
    Background Land-use is a major driver of changes in biodiversity worldwide, but studies have overwhelmingly focused on above-ground taxa: the effects on soil biodiversity are less well known, despite the importance of soil organisms in ecosystem functioning. We modelled data from a global biodiversity database to compare how the abundance of soil-dwelling and above-ground organisms responded to land use and soil properties. Results We found that land use affects overall abundance differently in soil and above-ground assemblages. The abundance of soil organisms was markedly lower in cropland and plantation habitats than in primary vegetation and pasture. Soil properties influenced the abundance of soil biota in ways that differed among land uses, suggesting they shape both abundance and its response to land use. Conclusions Our results caution against assuming models or indicators derived from above-ground data can apply to soil assemblages and highlight the potential value of incorporating soil properties into biodiversity models.
  • What’s the catch with lumpsuckers? A North Atlantic study of seabird bycatch in lumpsucker gillnet fisheries

    Christensen-Dalsgaard, Signe; Anker-Nilssen, Tycho; Crawford, Rory; Bond, AL; Sigurðsson, Guðjón Már; Glemarec, Gildas; Hansen, Erpur Snær; Kadin, Martina; Kindt-Larsen, Lotte; Mallory, Mark; et al. (Elsevier BV, 2019-12)
    Worldwide, incidental bycatch in fisheries is a conservation threat to many seabird species. Although knowledge on bycatch of seabirds has increased in the last decade, most stems from longline fisheries and the impacts of coastal gillnet fisheries are poorly understood. Gillnet fishing for North Atlantic lumpsucker (Cyclopterus lumpus) is one such fishery. We collated and synthesized the available information on seabird bycatch in lumpsucker gillnet fisheries across the entire geographical range to estimate and infer the magnitude of their impact on the affected seabird populations. Most birds killed were diving ducks, cormorants and auks, and each year locally high numbers of seabirds were taken as bycatch. We found large differences in bycatch rates among countries. The estimated mean bycatch in Iceland was 2.43 birds/trip, while the estimates in Norway was 0.44 and 0.39 birds/trip, respectively. The large disparities between estimates might reflect large spatial differences in bycatch rates, but could partly also arise due to distinctions in data recorded by onboard inspectors (Iceland), selfadministered registration (Norway) and direct observations by cameras (Denmark). We show that lumpsucker gillnet fisheries might pose a significant risk to some populations of diving seabirds. However, a distinct data deficiency on seabird bycatch in terms of spatio-temporal coverage and the age and origins of the birds killed, limited our abilities to fully assess the extent and population consequences of the bycatch. Our results highlight the need for a joint effort among countries to standardize monitoring methods to better document the impact of these fisheries on seabirds.
  • Important marine areas for the conservation of northern rockhopper penguins within the Tristan da Cunha Exclusive Economic Zone

    Steinfurth, A; Oppel, S; Dias, MP; Starnes, T; Pearmain, EJ; Dilley, BJ; Davies, D; Nydegger, M; Bell, C; Le Bouard, F; et al. (Inter-Research Science Center, 2020-12-03)
    The designation of Marine Protected Areas has become an important approach to conserving marine ecosystems that relies on robust information on the spatial distribution of biodiversity. We used GPS tracking data to identify marine Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas (IBAs) for the Endangered northern rockhopper penguin Eudyptes moseleyi within the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) of Tristan da Cunha in the South Atlantic. Penguins were tracked throughout their breeding season from 3 of the 4 main islands in the Tristan da Cunha group. Foraging trips remained largely within the EEZ, with the exception of those from Gough Island during the incubation stage. We found substantial variability in trip duration and foraging range among breeding stages and islands, consistent use of areas among years and spatial segregation of the areas used by neighbouring islands. For colonies with no or insufficient tracking data, we defined marine IBAs based on the mean maximum foraging range and merged the areas identified to propose IBAs around the Tristan da Cunha archipelago and Gough Island. The 2 proposed marine IBAs encompass 2% of Tristan da Cunha’s EEZ, and are used by all northern rockhopper penguins breeding in the Tristan da Cunha group, representing ~90% of the global population. Currently, one of the main threats to northern rockhopper penguins within the Tristan da Cunha EEZ is marine pollution from shipping, and the risk of this would be reduced by declaring waters within 50 nautical miles of the coast as ‘areas to be avoided’.
  • Global population and conservation status of the Great Black-backed Gull Larus marinus

    Langlois Lopez, Samuel; Bond, AL; O’Hanlon, Nina J; Wilson, Jared M; Vitz, Andrew; Mostello, Carolyn S; Hamilton, Frederick; Rail, Jean-François; Welch, Linda; Boettcher, Ruth; et al. (Cambridge University Press (CUP), 2022-05-13)
    The Great Black-backed Gull Larus marinus is a generalist species that inhabits temperate and arctic coasts of the north Atlantic Ocean. In recent years, there has been growing concern about population declines at local and regional scales; however, there has been no attempt to robustly assess Great Black-backed Gull population trends across its global range. We obtained the most recent population counts across the species’ range and analysed population trends at a global, continental, and national scale over the most recent three-generation period (1985–2021) following IUCN Red List criteria. We found that, globally, the species has declined by 43%–48% over this period (1.2–1.3% per annum, respectively), from an estimated 291,000 breeding pairs to 152,000–165,000 breeding pairs under two different scenarios. North American populations declined more steeply than European ones (68% and 28%, respectively). We recommend that Great Black-backed Gull should be uplisted from ‘Least Concern’ to ‘Vulnerable’ on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species under criterion A2 (an estimated reduction in population size >30% over three generations).
  • Tracking the impacts of COVID-19 pandemic-related debris on wildlife using digital platforms

    Ammendolia, Justine; Saturno, Jacquelyn; Bond, AL; O'Hanlon, Nina J; Masden, Elizabeth A; James, Neil A; Jacobs, Shoshanah (Elsevier BV, 2022-07-25)
    Since the start of the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2; COVID-19) pandemic in December 2019, there have been global surges of single-use plastic use. Due to the importance of personal protective equipment (PPE) and sanitation items in protecting against virus transmission and from testing, facemasks, respirators, disposable gloves and disposable wet wipes have become global staples in households and institutions. Widespread use and insufficient infrastructure, combined with improper waste management have resulted in an emerging category of litter. With widespread presence in the environment, such items pose a direct threat to wildlife as animals can interact with them in a series of ways. We examined the scope of COVID-19 pandemic-related debris, including PPE and sanitation items, on wildlife from April 2020 to December 2021. We document the geographic occurrence of incidents, debris types, and consequences of incidents that were obtained from social media searches, unpublished reports from colleagues, and reports available from the citizen science database "Birds and Debris". There were 114 unique sightings of wildlife interactions with pandemic-related debris (38 from 2020 and 76 from 2021). Within the context of this dataset, most incidents involved birds (83.3 %), while fewer affected mammals (10.5 %), invertebrates (3.5 %), fish (1.8 %), and sea turtles (0.9 %). Sightings originated in 23 countries, and consisted mostly of entanglements (42.1 %) and nest incorporations (40.4 %). We verified sightings by contacting the original observers and were able to identify replicated sightings and increase the resolution of the data collected compared with previously published results. Due to the complexities associated with global use and accessibility of digital platforms, we likely underestimate the number of animals harmed by debris. Overall, the global scope of this study demonstrates that online and social media platforms are a valuable way to collect biologically relevant citizen science data and track rapidly emerging environmental challenges.
  • Temporal trends and interannual variation in plastic ingestion by Flesh-footed Shearwaters (Ardenna carneipes) using different sampling strategies

    Lavers, Jennifer L; Hutton, Ian; Bond, AL (Elsevier BV, 2021-12)
    The world's oceans are under increasing pressure from anthropogenic activities, including significant and rapidly increasing inputs of plastic pollution. Seabirds have long been considered sentinels of ocean health, providing data on physical and chemical pollutants in their marine habitats. However, long-term data that can elucidate important patterns and changes in seabird exposure to marine pollutants are relatively limited but are urgently needed to identify and support effective policy measures to reduce plastic waste. Using up to 12 years of data, we examined the benefits and challenges of different approaches to monitoring plastic in seabirds, and the relationship between plastic and body size parameters. We found the mass and number of ingested plastics per bird varied by sample type, with lavage and road-kill birds containing less plastic (9.17-9.33 pieces/bird) than beach-washed or otherwise dead birds (27.62-32.22 pieces/bird). Beached birds therefore provide data for only a particular subset of the population, mostly individuals in poorer body condition, including those severely impacted by plastics. In addition, the mass and number of plastics in beached birds were more variable, therefore the sample sizes required to detect a change in plastic over time were significantly larger than for lavaged birds. The use of lavaged birds is rare in studies of plastic ingestion due to ethical and methodological implications, and we recommend future work on ingested plastics should focus on sampling this group to ensure data are more representative of a population's overall exposure to plastics.
  • Evaluation and recommendations for greater accessibility of colour figures in ornithology

    Pollet, Ingrid L; Bond, AL (Wiley, 2020-09-30)
    People who are colour-blind or have some form of colour vision deficiency form an invisible minority and scientists should strive to be as inclusive as possible. We reviewed 2873 figures published in 2019 from 1031 scientific papers in 27 ornithological journals to determine those that were colour-blind compatible, and those that were black-and-white printer friendly. About 26% of the published figures were in colour, and while most were colour-blind compatible, only ~ 60% of them were black-and-white printer friendly. Ensuring figures in all forms of scientific communication can be interpreted by readers who are colour-blind, and can be printed in black-and-white will improve the accessibility of ornithological research.
  • The one-two punch of plastic exposure: Macro- and micro-plastics induce multi-organ damage in seabirds

    Rivers-Auty, Jack; Bond, AL; Grant, Megan L; Lavers, Jennifer (Elsevier BV, 2022-10-02)
    Plastic pollution in the world's oceans is ubiquitous and increasing. The environment is inundated with microplastics (< 1 mm), and the health effects of these less conspicuous pollutants is poorly known. In addition, there is now evidence that macroplastics can release microplastics in the form of shedding or digestive fragmentation, meaning there is potential for macroplastic exposure to induce direct and indirect pathology through microplastics. Therefore, there is an urgent need for data from wild populations on the relationship between macro- and microplastic exposure and the potential compounding pathological effects of these forms of plastics. We investigated the presence and impact of microplastics in multiple tissues from Flesh-footed Shearwaters Ardenna carneipes, a species that ingests considerable quantities of plastics, and used histopathological techniques to measure physiological responses and inflammation from the plastics. All organs examined (kidney, spleen, proventriculus) had embedded microplastic particles and this correlated with macroplastic exposure. Considerable tissue damage was recorded, including a significant reduction in tubular glands and rugae in the proventriculus, and evidence of inflammation, fibrosis, and loss of organ structures in the kidney and spleen. This indicates macroplastics can induce damage directly at the site of exposure, while microplastics can be mobilised throughout the body causing widespread pathology. Collectively, these results indicate the scope and severity of the health impacts of plastic pollution may be grossly underestimated.
  • Potential for redistribution of post‐moult habitat for Eudyptes penguins in the Southern Ocean under future climate conditions

    Green, Cara‐Paige; Green, David B; Ratcliffe, Norman; Thompson, David; Lea, Mary‐Anne; Baylis, Alastair MM; Bond, AL; Bost, Charles‐André; Crofts, Sarah; Cuthbert, Richard J; et al. (Wiley, 2022-10-24)
    Anthropogenic climate change is resulting in spatial redistributions of many species. We assessed the potential effects of climate change on an abundant and widely distributed group of diving birds, Eudyptes penguins, which are the main avian consumers in the Southern Ocean in terms of biomass consumption. Despite their abundance, several of these species have undergone population declines over the past century, potentially due to changing oceanography and prey availability over the important winter months. We used light-based geolocation tracking data for 485 individuals deployed between 2006 and 2020 across 10 of the major breeding locations for five taxa of Eudyptes penguins. We used boosted regression tree modelling to quantify post-moult habitat preference for southern rockhopper (E. chrysocome), eastern rockhopper (E. filholi), northern rockhopper (E. moseleyi) and macaroni/royal (E. chrysolophus and E. schlegeli) penguins. We then modelled their redistribution under two climate change scenarios, representative concentration pathways RCP4.5 and RCP8.5 (for the end of the century, 2071-2100). As climate forcings differ regionally, we quantified redistribution in the Atlantic, Central Indian, East Indian, West Pacific and East Pacific regions. We found sea surface temperature and sea surface height to be the most important predictors of current habitat for these penguins; physical features that are changing rapidly in the Southern Ocean. Our results indicated that the less severe RCP4.5 would lead to less habitat loss than the more severe RCP8.5. The five taxa of penguin may experience a general poleward redistribution of their preferred habitat, but with contrasting effects in the (i) change in total area of preferred habitat under climate change (ii) according to geographic region and (iii) the species (macaroni/royal vs. rockhopper populations). Our results provide further understanding on the regional impacts and vulnerability of species to climate change.
  • Long-term stability in the volume of Atlantic Puffin (Fratercula arctica) eggs in the western North Atlantic

    Lefort, Kyle J; Major, Heather L; Bond, AL; Diamond, Antony W; Jones, Ian L; Montevecchi, William A; Provencher, Jennifer F; Robertson, Gregory J (Canadian Science Publishing, 2021-04-29)
    In the eastern North Atlantic, declines in the volume of Atlantic Puffin (Fratercula arctica (Linnaeus, 1758)) eggs have been associated with shifts in the marine ecosystem, such as changes in the abundance of forage fishes and increasing sea-surface temperatures. In the western North Atlantic, where similar shifts in oceanographic conditions and changes in the abundance of forage fishes have presumably occurred, trends in the volume of Atlantic Puffin eggs remain unknown. In this study, we investigate Atlantic Puffin egg volume in the western North Atlantic. We compiled 140 years (1877–2016) of egg volume measurements (n = 1805) and used general additive mixed-effects models to investigate temporal trends and regional variation. Our findings indicate that Atlantic Puffin egg volume differs regionally but has remained unchanged temporally in the western North Atlantic since at least the 1980s.
  • A standardised method for estimating the level of visible debris in bird nests

    Grant, Megan L; O'Hanlon, Nina J; Lavers, Jennifer L; Masden, Elizabeth A; James, Neil A; Bond, AL (Elsevier BV, 2021-11)
    Unlike records of plastic ingestion and entanglement in seabirds which date back to the 1960s, the literature regarding debris in bird nests is comparatively limited. It is important to identify standardised methods early so that data are collected in a consistent manner, ensuring that future studies can be comparable. Here, we outline a method that can be applied to photographs for estimating the proportion of visible debris at the surface of a nest. This method uses ImageJ software to superimpose a grid onto a photograph of a nest/s. The number of cells with and without debris are then counted. Our proposed method is repeatable, straightforward, and accessible. We optimised the method to estimate the level of visible debris in Northern Gannet (Morus bassanus) nests, however, with some modification (i.e., adjustment of grid cell size), it could be applied to other seabird species, and terrestrial birds, that incorporate debris within nests.
  • The two extinctions of the Carolina Parakeet Conuropsis carolinensis

    BURGIO, KEVIN R; CARLSON, COLIN J; Bond, AL; RUBEGA, MARGARET A; TINGLEY, MORGAN W (Cambridge University Press (CUP), 2021-07)
    Due to climate change and habitat conversion, estimates of the resulting levels of species extinction over the next century are alarming. Devising conservation solutions will require many different approaches, including examining the extinction processes of recently extinct species. Given that parrots are one of the most threatened groups of birds, information regarding parrot extinction is pressing. While most recent parrot extinctions have been island endemics, the Carolina Parakeet Conuropsis carolinensis had an 18th-century range covering nearly half of the present-day United States, yet mostly disappeared by the end of the 19th century. Despite a great deal of speculation, the major cause of its extinction remains unknown. Establishing the date when a species went extinct is one of the first steps in determining what caused their extinction. While there have been estimates of their extinction date, these analyses used a limited dataset and did not include observational data. We used a recently published, extensive dataset of Carolina Parakeet specimens and observations combined with a Bayesian extinction estimating model to determine the most likely extinction dates. By considering each of the two subspecies independently, we found that they went extinct ˜30 years apart: the western subspecies C. c. ludovicianus going extinct around 1914 and the eastern subspecies C. c. carolinensis either in the late 1930s or mid-1940s. Had we only considered all observations together, this pattern would have been obscured, possibly missing a major clue in solving the mystery of the parakeet’s extinction. Since the Carolina Parakeet was a wide-ranging species that went extinct during a period of rapid agricultural and industrial expansion, conditions that mirror those occurring in many parts of the world where parrot diversity is highest, any progress we make in unraveling the mystery of their disappearance may be vital to modern conservation efforts.
  • Larval morphology of the avian parasitic genus Passeromyia: playing hide and seek with a parastomal bar

    Walczak, Kinga; Szpila, Krzysztof; Nelson, Leanne; Pape, Thomas; Hall, MJR; Alves, Fernanda; Grzywacz, Andrzej (Wiley, 2022-08-05)
    The enigmatic larvae of the Old World genus Passeromyia Rodhain & Villeneuve, 1915 (Diptera: Muscidae) inhabit the nests of birds as saprophages or as haematophagous agents of myiasis among nestlings. Using light microscopy, confocal laser scanning microscopy and scanning electron microscopy, we provide the first morphological descriptions of the first, second and third instar of P. longicornis (Macquart, 1851) (Diptera: Muscidae), the first and third instar of P. indecora (Walker, 1858) (Diptera: Muscidae), and we revise the larval morphology of P. heterochaeta (Villenueve, 1915) (Diptera: Muscidae) and P. steini Pont, 1970 (Diptera: Muscidae). We provide a key to the third instar of examined species (excluding P. steini and P. veitchi Bezzi, 1928 (Diptera: Muscidae)). Examination of the cephaloskeleton revealed paired rod-like sclerites, named 'rami', between the lateral arms of the intermediate sclerite in the second and third instar larva. We reveal parastomal bars fused apically with the intermediate sclerite, the absence of which has so far been considered as apomorphic for second and third instar muscid larvae. Examination of additional material suggests that modified parastomal bars are not exclusive features of Passeromyia but occur widespread in the Muscidae, and rami may occur widespread in the Cyclorrhapha.
  • Benthic megafauna of the western Clarion-Clipperton Zone, Pacific Ocean

    Bribiesca-Contreras, Guadalupe; Dahlgren, Thomas G; Amon, Diva J; Cairns, Stephen; Drennan, Regan; Durden, Jennifer M; Eléaume, Marc P; Hosie, Andrew M; Kremenetskaia, Antonina; McQuaid, Kirsty; et al. (Pensoft Publishers, 2022-07-18)
    There is a growing interest in the exploitation of deep-sea mineral deposits, particularly on the abyssal seafloor of the central Pacific Clarion-Clipperton Zone (CCZ), which is rich in polymetallic nodules. In order to effectively manage potential exploitation activities, a thorough understanding of the biodiversity, community structure, species ranges, connectivity, and ecosystem functions across a range of scales is needed. The benthic megafauna plays an important role in the functioning of deep-sea ecosystems and represents an important component of the biodiversity. While megafaunal surveys using video and still images have provided insight into CCZ biodiversity, the collection of faunal samples is needed to confirm species identifications to accurately estimate species richness and species ranges, but faunal collections are very rarely carried out. Using a Remotely Operated Vehicle, 55 specimens of benthic megafauna were collected from seamounts and abyssal plains in three Areas of Particular Environmental Interest (APEI 1, APEI 4, and APEI 7) at 3100–5100 m depth in the western CCZ. Using both morphological and molecular evidence, 48 different morphotypes belonging to five phyla were found, only nine referrable to known species, and 39 species potentially new to science. This work highlights the need for detailed taxonomic studies incorporating genetic data, not only within the CCZ, but in other bathyal, abyssal, and hadal regions, as representative genetic reference libraries that could facilitate the generation of species inventories.
  • Kleurenkennis

    van Grouw, Hein (Roots Vogelmagazine, 2021-04-01)
  • A revision of Discodon tricolor (Guérin-Méneville) and its mimics from the Atlantic forests of Brazil (Coleoptera: Cantharidae)

    Biffi, Gabriel; Geiser, Michael (Museum National D'Histoire Naturelle, 2022-08-23)
    Discodon tricolor (Guérin-Méneville, 1832) was thought to be a common species widely distributed in the Atlantic Forests of Brazil, yet showing morphological and chromatic variations. After examination of a large number of specimens from different regions of the Atlantic Forest biome, we found that Discodon tricolor actually represents a complex of many similar and sometimes sympatric species. Thirteen species in this complex are recognised as valid: Discodon tricolor, D. neoteutonum sp. nov., D. vanini sp. nov., D. obscurior Pic, 1906 stat. nov., D. lineaticorne sp. nov., D. aurimaculatum sp. nov., D. marginicolle sp. nov., D. tenuecostatum sp. nov., D. nigrocephalum Pic, 1949, D. tamoio sp. nov., D. viridimontanum sp. nov., D. crassipes Wittmer, 1952, and D. testaceipes Pic, 1930 stat. nov. The species Discodon albonotatum Pic, 1906 is confirmed as a synonym of D. tricolor, while the subspecies D. albonotatum obscurior and D. albonotatum testaceipes are elevated to specific status. The subgenus Acanthodiscodon Wittmer, 1952 is synonymised with Discodon Gorham, 1881. All the species are described and illustrated in detail and an identification key is provided. Despite being chromatically similar, the species show major morphological differences in their aedeagus and antennal structures, suggesting that they do not form a monophyletic clade. A potential mimicry ring involving these species of Discodon as well as other members of Cantharidae, Lampyridae, Cerambycidae and Belidae is discussed. Comments are made on the conservation of these species and their habitats within the Atlantic Forest biome.

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