Monthly Archives: April 2015

Climate change and conservation priorities

An interesting paper was just published by Beltramino et al., in which they suggest that with the application of species distribution modeling insights may be obtained that could help to set priorities for conservation of areas for land snails.

The abstract reads “Many land snails are vulnerable to climate change as a consequence of small distribution ranges and poor dispersal. South America is a diverse region in terms of land snail fauna, but studies about the impacts of climate change on molluscan biodiversity are virtually nonexistent. Bioclimatic models provide an important tool to assess how habitat suitability may change in a warming planet. In this study, we examine potential impacts of climate change on a giant land snail (Megalobulimus sanctipauli) from the Atlantic Forest to predict future shifts in its potential distribution, and to identify protected areas that may contain suitable habitat for setting conservation priorities. Using a maximum entropy algorithm, we modeled the species’ potential distribution across South America under current climatic conditions and projected the results onto two climate change scenarios for two time frames. A 2.17 % of South America on the Atlantic Forest was predicted to be currently suitable for the species, comprising the border area among Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay. Prognosis of future distribution showed a trend to a northern retraction, but a southern expansion of current potential range. More than 150 protected areas were identified to contain climatically suitable habitat for the species, but on the less optimistic outlook only ~1545 km2 of protected areas (0.009 % of South America) would remain suitable for the species by the end of the century. Our findings are expected to improve understanding of climate change impacts on native giant land snails and to contribute in conservation efforts on this malacofauna”.

Beltramino et al 2015

It would be interesting to see if similar research using other Neotropical species leads to comparable results.

BELTRAMINO, A.A., VOGLER, R.E., GUTIÉRREZ GREGORIC, D.E. & RUMI, A., 2015. Impact of climatic change on the distribution of giant land snail from South America: predicting future trends for setting conservation priorities on native malacofauna. – Climatic Change 130 (Advance online published: doi:10.1007/s10584-015-1405-3.

New literature

Some new papers came to my attention, briefly mentioned here.

In a paper published at the begging of this month, Commissioner Frank Krell has scrutinized the publication models of major academic publishers and identified those whose early online publications are nomenclaturally available, and those which do not fulfill the requirements of the Code. A crucial issue is the definition of preliminary and final version of an article which is not clear from the Amendment. Frank Krell follows the publishers’ “Code”, the NISO guidelines on journal article versions, to define the final version as the Version of Record. Please read the paper here to inform yourself about this not particularly exciting, but important issue in modern publishing.

And now ‘retour au moutons’… (and a wink to the Genevan colleagues). A malacological paper, a revolving update of the inventory of Santa Catarina state molluscs (Agudo-Padrón, 2015). On page 5 he mentions Protoglyptus (= Rhinus) dejectus (Fulton, 1907). Be aware that Protoglyptus (family Bulimulidae) and Rhinus (family Simpulopsidae) are two distinct genera and not synonyms!

Another revolving subject is dealt by a paper on land shells from north-eaters Brazil (Salvador & Simone, 2015). The abstract reads: A sample of land snails, mainly pulmonates, was recently (August 2012) collected in a fragment of Atlantic rainforest, in the vicinity of the city of Alcobaça (south of Bahia state, Brazil); its study is urgent both from a taxonomical as well as from an environmental point of view. The geographical ranges of Beckianum beckianum (Subulinidae), and possibly also of Rectartemon piquetensis (Streptaxidae), are extended to Bahia. Specimens of Helicina angulifera (Helicinidae), Gastrocopta oblonga (Gastrocoptidae), Bulimulus tenuissimus and Leiostracus vimineus (Bulimulidae), and Burringtonia pantagruelina (Odontostomidae), already known to Bahia, were also found. Moreover, Solaropsis alcobacensis n. sp. (Pleurodontidae) is described herein [figured below]. The finding of this new species is a stark reminder of how little the Brazilian terrestrial snail fauna is known and of how such forest fragments may serve as refuges for endemic species and should therefore be properly preserved.


AGUDO-PADRÓN, A.I. 2015. Molluscs of Santa Catarina State/ SC, Central Southern Brazil: increments to species inventory, new geographical records and additional informations. – International Journal of Aquaculture 5(2): 1-8. Available online at:
SALVADOR, R.B. & SIMONE, L.R.L. 2015. Taxonomical study on a sample of land snails from Alcobaça (Bahia, Brazil), with description of a new species. – Stuttgart Beiträge zur Naturkunde A, n.s. 8: 1–7.