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Garofalo L.,University of Rome Tor Vergata | Garofalo L.,Instituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale delle Regioni Lazio e Toscana | Mastrogiacomo A.,University of Rome La Sapienza | Casale P.,University of Rome La Sapienza | And 12 more authors.
Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems | Year: 2013

In migratory species female- and male-mediated gene flow are important for defining relevant Management Units, and for evaluating connectivity between these and their respective foraging grounds. The stock composition at five Mediterranean foraging areas was investigated by analysing variation in the mitochondrial D-loop and six microsatellite loci in a sample of 268 loggerhead turtles (Caretta caretta) stranded or accidentally caught by fisheries. This involved a comprehensive Mixed Stock Analysis which considers also recent data from major rookeries in Libya and Turkey, and the generation of a standardized nomenclature of allele sizes at the microsatellite loci. The results indicate: that the north Adriatic, the Tunisian continental shelf, the waters around Malta and the Italian Ionian Sea represent important areas for the conservation of rookeries in Greece, Libya and Turkey, respectively; that waters off the Italian peninsula and the islands of Lampedusa and Malta are mainly inhabited by individuals of Mediterranean origin, with a major contribution from the nearest and largest colonies, while Atlantic turtles are restricted to the western areas; that specific migratory routes exist from rookeries to foraging grounds; a poor bi-parental genetic structuring, which suggests a high male-mediated gene flow in the Mediterranean; mixing of small turtles in waters distant from natal rookeries, and recovery of structuring for large-sized individuals; and that uncommon mtDNA haplotypes are more powerful markers than microsatellite alleles in assessing an individual's origin, owing to their higher geographic specificity. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.


Keith D.,Museum des science Naturelles et de Prehistoire | Sabatinelli G.,Route de la Fontaine | Uliana M.,Museo di Storia Naturale di Venezia
Zootaxa | Year: 2015

An overview of the genus Pharaonus Blanchard, 1851 is presented. Pharaonus farsensis new species and P. adelphus new species are described from Iran, P. lederi turcmenius Ohaus, 1941 is recognized as new synonym of P. lederi (Reitter, 1888), and the subgenus Tamerlanius new subgenus is proposed for the two central-Asian species. New distribution records and systematic notes are presented: P. caucasicus (Reitter, 1888) is removed from the fauna of Iran and P. varicoloreus (Burmeister, 1844) from that of Israel; P. fasciculatus (Burmeister, 1844) is reported for the first time from Israel, P. semenowi (Reitter, 1888) from Tajikistan. All known species are illustrated and a key to species is presented. Copyright © 2015 Magnolia Press.


PubMed | Museum des science Naturelles et de Prehistoire, Museo di Storia Naturale di Venezia and Route de la Fontaine
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Zootaxa | Year: 2015

An overview of the genus Pharaonus Blanchard, 1851 is presented. Pharaonus farsensis new species and P. adelphus new species are described from Iran, P. lederi turcmenius Ohaus, 1941 is recognized as new synonym of P. lederi (Reitter, 1888), and the subgenus Tamerlanius new subgenus is proposed for the two central-Asian species. New distribution records and systematic notes are presented: P. caucasicus (Reitter, 1888) is removed from the fauna of Iran and P. varicoloreus (Burmeister, 1844) from that of Israel; P. fasciculatus (Burmeister, 1844) is reported for the first time from Israel, P. semenowi (Reitter, 1888) from Tajikistan. All known species are illustrated and a key to species is presented.


PubMed | Museo di Storia Naturale di Venezia and University of Florence
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Zootaxa | Year: 2015

Osphyoplesius is an obscure Palearctic genus tentatively placed in Pythidae, comprising one species from Crimea and one from Greece, each of them collected only once. A third species is here described from Sicily, based on recently collected specimens. Despite the poor sample, statistic analysis of morphometrical data allowed to confirm the differentiation between the new species and its closest relative, and revealed the existence of sexual dimorphism in the genus.


Magrini P.,University of Florence | Uliana M.,Museo di Storia Naturale di Venezia
Zootaxa | Year: 2015

Osphyoplesius is an obscure Palearctic genus tentatively placed in Pythidae, comprising one species from Crimea and one from Greece, each of them collected only once. A third species is here described from Sicily, based on recently collected specimens. Despite the poor sample, statistic analysis of morphometrical data allowed to confirm the differentiation between the new species and its closest relative, and revealed the existence of sexual dimorphism in the genus. Copyright © 2015 Magnolia Press.


Brunetti R.,Museo di Storia Naturale di Venezia | Gissi C.,University of Milan | Pennati R.,University of Milan | Caicci F.,University of Padua | And 2 more authors.
Journal of Zoological Systematics and Evolutionary Research | Year: 2015

Ciona intestinalis is considered a widespread and easily recognizable tunicate, the sister group of vertebrates. In recent years, molecular studies suggested that C. intestinalis includes at least two cryptic species, named 'type A' and 'type B', morphologically indistinguishable. It is dramatic to certify that two different species may be hidden under the name of a species widely used as a model species in biological researches. This raised the problem of identifying diagnostic morphological characters capable of distinguishing these types. We compared the morphology of specimens belonging to the two types and found that only type A specimens possess tunic tubercular prominences, allowing unambiguous discrimination. Remarkably, these structures were already described as distinctive of the Japanese species Ciona robusta, Hoshino and Tokioka, 1967; later synonymized under C. intestinalis (sensu Millar, 1953). In this study, we have confirmed that C. intestinalis type A corresponds to C. robusta. Based on the geographic distribution of C. intestinalis type B, and considering that the original C. intestinalis species was described from North European waters, we determined that C. intestinalis type B corresponds to C. intestinalis as described by Millar in 1953 and possibly to Linnaeus' Ascidia intestinalis L., 1767 for which we have deposited a neotype (from Roscoff, France) and for which we retain the name Ciona intestinalis (Linnaeus, 1767). © 2015 Blackwell Verlag GmbH.


Recent molecular investigations on Eurasian green toads led to the recognition of distinct lineages and to the establishment of new taxa within the former Bufo viridis; as a consequence, significant range-wide nomenclatural changes have been proposed, although some uncertainties remained on the available names applicable within the Italian territory. In order to contribute to clarify the matter, we evaluated, under the provisions of the International Code of Zoological Nomenclature, the nomenclatural availability of all the names that have been applied to infrasubspecific entities of the Bufo viridis subgroup within the Italian territory. We also provided a historical overview of the usage of all these names, as well as detailed information on the original material upon which the variety lineata of A.P. Ninni was established. Our analysis supports the view that only the names crucigera Eichwald, 1831 and balearica Boettger, 1880 are available, the former being however junior synonym of B. viridis Laurenti, 1768, whereas the names acutirostris and obtusirostris of Lessona, lineata of Ninni, concolor and maculata of Camerano, and nardoi of Paolucci, Fuhn and Bruno are all not available. © Firenze University Press.


Dufresnes C.,University of Lausanne | Bonato L.,University of Padua | Novarini N.,Museo di Storia Naturale di Venezia | Betto-Colliard C.,University of Lausanne | And 2 more authors.
Heredity | Year: 2014

Reproductive isolation between lineages is expected to accumulate with divergence time, but the time taken to speciate may strongly vary between different groups of organisms. In anuran amphibians, laboratory crosses can still produce viable hybrid offspring >20 My after separation, but the speed of speciation in closely related anuran lineages under natural conditions is poorly studied. Palearctic green toads (Bufo viridis subgroup) offer an excellent system to address this question, comprising several lineages that arose at different times and form secondary contact zones. Using mitochondrial and nuclear markers, we previously demonstrated that in Sicily, B. siculus and B. balearicus developed advanced reproductive isolation after Plio-Pleistocene divergence (2.6 My, 3.3-1.9), with limited historic mtDNA introgression, scarce nuclear admixture, but low, if any, current gene flow. Here, we study genetic interactions between younger lineages of early Pleistocene divergence (1.9 My, 2.5-1.3) in northeastern Italy (B. balearicus, B. viridis). We find significantly more, asymmetric nuclear and wider, differential mtDNA introgression. The population structure seems to be molded by geographic distance and barriers (rivers), much more than by intrinsic genomic incompatibilities. These differences of hybridization between zones may be partly explained by differences in the duration of previous isolation. Scattered research on other anurans suggests that wide hybrid zones with strong introgression may develop when secondary contacts occur <2 My after divergence, whereas narrower zones with restricted gene flow form when divergence exceeds 3 My. Our study strengthens support for this rule of thumb by comparing lineages with different divergence times within the same radiation. © 2014 Macmillan Publishers Limited.


Eulasia daccordii new species is described from Jordan, West Bank, and Israel, where it is known from the Jordan Valley and the Negev. It was previously confused with E. pietschmanni Breit, to which it is very similar and from which it can be recognized mainly for the structure and distribution of the pronotal setae and the shape of the protibia of males. Remarks on distribution and colour range of E. pietschmanni Breit are provided, and its year of description is corrected from 1919 to 1920. In addition, taxonomic and diagnostic remarks on the poorly known sympatric species E. baumanni Mitter are presented: it is clarified that this poorly known taxon is related to E. papaveris (Sturm), whose Levantine populations require a taxonomic reassessment. Copyright © 2013 Magnolia Press.


Uliana M.,Museo di Storia Naturale di Venezia | Sabatinelli G.,University of Rome La Sapienza
Zootaxa | Year: 2010

This paper presents a revision of the species Eulasia genei Truqui, 1848. A total of 773 specimens, including all type series of the involved taxa, were examined. Nominal species currently in synonymy with E. genei are discussed. All the current synonyms proved to be wrongly attributed, and the following new synonyms are proposed: Eulasia pretiosa Truqui, 1848 = E. genei chaifensis (Reitter, 1890) = E. japhoensis (Petrovitz, 1972). Eulasia hybrida agricola (Reitter, 1890) is no longer considered a synonym of E. genei Truqui and Amphicoma genei ab. nobilissima Balthasar, 1929 is an unavailable name. Eulasia rittneri n. sp., a species close to and parapatric to E. genei, is described and illustrated. The diagnostic characters are discussed in relation to their discriminating value, with special consideration for the morphology of the aedeagus. A technique for observing the volumetric shape of the endophallus has been modified and used for the first time as such for the study of Scarabaeoidea. On the basis of the large number of specimens gathered, the distribution range of both species is defined and notes on their ecology and phenology are presented. Copyright © 2010 Magnolia Press.

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