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Van Vondel B.J.,Natuurhistorisch Museum Rotterdam | Ostovan H.,Islamic Azad University at Shiraz | Ghahari H.,Islamic Azad University at Tehran
Zootaxa | Year: 2017

An annotated checklist of Myxophaga (Hydroscaphidae and Sphaeriusidae) and Adephaga (including Gyrinidae, Haliplidae, Noteridae, Rhysodidae) from Iran is compiled. The total number of taxa include 39 species of 15 genera. The family Haliplidae is represented by 15 species, Gyrinidae by 12 species, Noteridae by seven species, Rhysodidae by three species, and Hydroscaphidae and Sphaeriusidae by one species each. Two species, Gyrinus (Gyrinus) dejeani Brullé 1832 (Gyrinidae) and Haliplus (Haliplidius) confinis Stephens 1828 (Haliplidae) are new records for the fauna of Iran. Copyright © 2017 Magnolia Press.


Foote A.D.,Copenhagen University | Newton J.,NERC Life science Mass Spectrometry Facility | Avila-Arcos M.C.,Copenhagen University | Kampmann M.-L.,Copenhagen University | And 6 more authors.
Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences | Year: 2013

Niche variation owing to individual differences in ecology has been hypothesized to be an early stage of sympatric speciation. Yet to date, no study has tracked niche width over more than a few generations. In this study, we show the presence of isotopic niche variation over millennial timescales and investigate the evolutionary outcomes. Isotopic ratios were measured from tissue samples of sympatric killer whale Orcinus orca lineages from the North Sea, spanning over 10 000 years. Isotopic ratios spanned a range similar to the difference in isotopic values of two known prey items, herring Clupea harengus and harbour seal Phoca vitulina. Two proxies of the stage of speciation, lineage sorting of mitogenomes and genotypic clustering, were both weak to intermediate indicating that speciation has made little progress. Thus, our study confirms that even with the necessary ecological conditions, i.e. among-individual variation in ecology, it is difficult for sympatric speciation to progress in the face of gene flow. In contrast to some theoretical models, our empirical results suggest that sympatric speciation driven by among-individual differences in ecological niche is a slow process and may not reach completion. We argue that sympatric speciation is constrained in this system owing to the plastic nature of the behavioural traits under selection when hunting either mammals or fish. © 2013 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.


Bianucci G.,University of Pisa | Mijan I.,Sociedade Galega de Historia Natural | Lambert O.,French Natural History Museum | Lambert O.,Institute Royal Des Science Naturelles Of Belgique | And 2 more authors.
Geodiversitas | Year: 2013

Forty partial fossil skulls belonging to beaked whales (Cetacea, Odontoceti, Ziphiidae) were collected by trawling and long-line fishing on Neogene (probably Late Early to Middle Miocene) layers of the Atlantic floor off the coasts of Portugal and Spain (Asturias and Galicia). e systematic study of the most diagnostic Iberian specimens, those preserving the rostrum and the dorsal part of the cranium, led to the recognition of two new genera (Globicetus n. gen. and Imocetus n. gen.) and four new species (Choneziphius leidyi n. sp., G. hiberus n. gen., n. sp., I. piscatus n. gen., n. sp., and Tusciziphius atlanticus n. sp.). Based on the matrix of a previous work, the phylogenetic analysis places all the new taxa in the subfamily Ziphiinae Gray, 1850. More fragmentary specimens are tentatively referred to the genera Caviziphius Bianucci & Post, 2005 and Ziphirostrum du Bus, 1868. Among these new ziphiids, extremely bizarre skull morphologies are observed. In G. hiberus n. gen., n. sp. the proximal portion of the rostrum bears a voluminous premaxillary spheroid. In T. atlanticus n. sp. a medial premaxillary bulge is present on the rostrum; together with asymmetric rostral maxillary eminences at the rostrum base, this bulge displays various degrees of elevation in different specimens, which may be interpreted as sexual dimorphism. Specimens of I. piscatus n. gen., n. sp. bear two sets of even crests: spur-like rostral maxillary crests and longitudinal maxillary crests laterally bordering a wide and long facial basin. A preliminary macroscopic observation of these elements indicates very dense bones, with a compactness comparable with that of cetacean ear bones. Questioning their function, the high medial rostral elements (the premaxillary spheroid of G. hiberus n. gen., n. sp. and the medial bulge of T. atlanticus n. sp.) remind the huge rostral maxillary crests of adult males of the extant Hyperoodon ampullatus (Forster, 1770). In the latter, the crests are very likely related to head-butting. However, they are made of much more spongy bone than in the fossil taxa studied here, and therefore possibly better mechanically suited for facing impacts. Other interpretations of these unusual bone specializations, related to deep-diving (ballast) and echolocation (sound reflection), fail to explain the diversity of shapes and the hypothetical sexual dimorphism observed in at least part of the taxa. The spur-like rostral maxillary crests and long maxillary crests limiting the large facial basin in I. piscatus n. gen., n. sp. and the excrescences on the maxilla at the rostrum base in Choneziphius spp. are instead interpreted as areas of origin for rostral and facial muscles, acting on the nasal passages, blowhole, and melon. From a palaeobiogeographic point of view, the newly described taxa further emphasize the differences in the North Atlantic (including Iberian Peninsula) and South African Neogene ziphiid faunal lists. Even if the stratigraphic context is poorly understood, leaving open the question of the geological age for most of the dredged specimens, these differences in the composition of cold to temperate northern and southern hemisphere fossil ziphiid faunas may be explained by a warm-water equatorial barrier. © Publications Scientifiques du Muséum national d'Histoire naturelle, Paris.


Sayali D.S.,Abasaheb Garware College | Ghate H.V.,Modern College | Van Vondel Bernhard J.,Natuurhistorisch Museum Rotterdam
Zootaxa | Year: 2016

In an ongoing survey of aquatic beetles, the crawling water beetles Haliplus (Liaphlus) arrowi Guignot, 1936 and Haliplus (Liaphlus) angustifrons Régimbart, 1892 were found only from four (three localities for H. arrowi and one locality for H. angustifrons) out of 85 localities sampled in and around the Western Ghats of Maharashtra. Digital images and scanning electron micrographs of diagnostic characters are provided for the first time for both the species. Intraspecific and interspecific variation in the elytral maculation of H. arrowi and H. angustifrons is illustrated. Copyright © 2016 Magnolia Press.


PubMed | Modern College, Natuurhistorisch Museum Rotterdam and Abasaheb Garware College
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Zootaxa | Year: 2016

In an ongoing survey of aquatic beetles, the crawling water beetles Haliplus (Liaphlus) arrowi Guignot, 1936 and Haliplus (Liaphlus) angustifrons Rgimbart, 1892 were found only from four (three localities for H. arrowi and one locality for H. angustifrons) out of 85 localities sampled in and around the Western Ghats of Maharashtra. Digital images and scanning electron micrographs of diagnostic characters are provided for the first time for both the species. Intraspecific and interspecific variation in the elytral maculation of H. arrowi and H. angustifrons is illustrated.


Lambert O.,Institute Royal Des Science Naturelles Of Belgique | Bianucci G.,University of Pisa | Post K.,Natuurhistorisch Museum Rotterdam
Journal of Mammalogy | Year: 2010

New well-preserved fossils from Peru reveal details of the dentition and morphology of the mandible and rostrum in 2 late middle to early late Miocene beaked whales (Cetacea, Odontoceti, Ziphiidae). Apical mandibular tusks are present in both Nazcacetus urbinai and Messapicetus sp. In the former the tusks are associated with a strong reduction of the postapical dentition, whereas in Messapicetus sp. a complete series of functional upper and lower teeth is retained. The larger sample of Messapicetus sp. from a single locality and age reveals intraspecific variation in size and shape of the tusks and surrounding structures. In addition, the rostrum of Messapicetus displays thickened premaxillae, dorsally closing the mesorostral groove. By comparison with modern beaked whales, most of them highly sexually dimorphic at the level of the tusks and rostrum, we propose that the tusks of Messapicetus were used in intraspecific fights between adult males. Strengthening of the rostrum through the dorsal closure of its transverse section would have reduced the risk of fractures when facing impacts. © 2010 American Society of Mammalogists.


Mayhew D.F.,Natuurhistorisch Museum Rotterdam
Quaternary International | Year: 2013

Early Pleistocene arvicolid faunas from the Norwich Crag Formation of the UK contain species found across Eurasia, indicating that this was then a single faunal province. Several examples of arvicolid evidence for intercontinental connections are discussed, with reference particularly to new material from the locality Easton Wood, Suffolk, UK. This includes teeth referred to Mimomys glendae sp.nov., apparently closely related to Siberian and North American species. The locality also provides the earliest UK occurrences of Lemmus kowalskii and Mimomys tigliensis, a wide ranging and biostratigraphically important species. The immigration of M. tigliensis to West Europe took place in arvicolid zone MNR2 at a time apparently close to its appearance in Russian faunas. The faunas from Easton Wood and the Netherlands support the current arvicolid Early Pleistocene biozonation of South East Europe suggesting that it is applicable to at least the northern part of West Europe. The age of the Norwich Crag deposits at Easton Wood is estimated according to this scheme at between 2.25 and 2.35 Ma, indicating that palaeomagnetic inferences previously used to support a younger age require review. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd and INQUA.


Foote A.D.,Copenhagen University | Kaschner K.,Albert Ludwigs University of Freiburg | Schultze S.E.,Copenhagen University | Garilao C.,Leibniz Institute of Marine Science | And 11 more authors.
Nature Communications | Year: 2013

The climatic changes of the glacial cycles are thought to have been a major driver of population declines and species extinctions. However, studies to date have focused on terrestrial fauna and there is little understanding of how marine species responded to past climate change. Here we show that a true Arctic species, the bowhead whale (Balaena mysticetus), shifted its range and tracked its core suitable habitat northwards during the rapid climate change of the Pleistocene-Holocene transition. Late Pleistocene lineages survived into the Holocene and effective female population size increased rapidly, concurrent with a threefold increase in core suitable habitat. This study highlights that responses to climate change are likely to be species specific and difficult to predict. We estimate that the core suitable habitat of bowhead whales will be almost halved by the end of this century, potentially influencing future population dynamics. © 2013 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved.


Bianucci G.,University of Pisa | Lambert O.,Institute Royal Des Science Naturelles Of Belgique | Lambert O.,French Natural History Museum | Post K.,Natuurhistorisch Museum Rotterdam
Palaeontology | Year: 2010

Eight skulls of beaked whales (Cetacea, Odontoceti, Ziphiidae), in six cases associated with elements of the mandible, were collected from a limited area (about 1.5 km2) and roughly from the same stratigraphic horizon at Cerro Colorado, 35 km south-south-west of the city of Ica (Peru), where the late Middle Miocene basal strata of the Pisco Formation crop out. They represent the highest concentration reported of fossil Ziphiidae. These finely preserved Cerro Colorado fossils are described and assigned to a new species Messapicetus gregarius, together with another specimen collected from sediments of the same age at Cerro la Bruja (33 km south-east to Cerro Colorado). Messapicetus gregarius shares with M. longirostris Bianucci, Landini and Varola, 1992 (Tortonian of Italy), an extremely elongated rostrum, but is clearly different from the Italian species in the more distinct maxillary tubercle and prominential notch, the more robust premaxillary crest, and the abrupt ventrolateral descent of the medial margin of the maxilla from the vertex. A parsimony analysis reveals that Messapicetus belongs to a basal clade, which includes other ziphiids with a dorsally closed mesorostral groove and prenarial basin. The high concentration of specimens belonging to the same species (some of them tentatively identified as adult males and females), combined with the presence of a calf, supports the hypothesis of site fidelity; these cetaceans might have lived in a limited region for a long period for both breeding and feeding. Besides the eight specimens of M. gregarius, strata at Cerro Colorado include many other cetacean remains (with several specimens of the pontoporiid Brachydelphis including a foetus), pinnipeds, turtles, fishes, and birds. © The Palaeontological Association.


A fossil rorqual - Diunatans luctoretemergo n. gen., n. sp. - is described based on two specimens from the early Pliocene of The Netherlands and is compared to all previously described rorquals. The morphology of the new species, especially that of the elements of the petrotympanic complex, is described in detail. Main discriminating characters are: very short nasal; mediolaterally wide pterygoid fossa; large, robust and prominent occipital condyle; mediolaterally wide squamosal body lateral to the supraoccipital; dorsal bulge on squamosal; tympanic bulla very large compared to zygomatic width; wide tympanic bulla (L/W ratio: 1.24) with the sigmoid process perpendicular to the long axis of the bulla; rounded and bulbous pars cochlearis (L/W ratio: 1.23-1.26); long, slender and curved stapes; massive and square basioccipital process; wide basioccipital. A phylogenetic analysis has been undertaken based on a recently published matrix. In the consensus tree the new taxon has a basal position with respect to the Balaenoptera + Megaptera clade and constitutes therefore a stem-balaenopterid. Taxonomic controversies surrounding nominal rorqual species described during the 19th century from North Sea strata are addressed. Our analysis of the type material of the species Balaenoptera borealina, B. musculoides, B. rostratella, Megaptera affinis, Megapteropsis robusta and Plesiocetus goropii lead us to declare them nomina dubia. © Publications Scientifiques du Muséum national d'Histoire naturelle, Paris.

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