Category Archives: Uncategorized

Peruvian inventory in Amazonia

An interesting paper appeared recently, although only as ‘advance online’ and not yet in the final paginated version. It concerns an inventory of a protected are in Peruvian Amazonia.
The abstract reads “We investigated the land snail fauna of the Panguana conservation area on the western rim of the Amazonas basin in Peru. A total of 2,322 individuals assigned to 65 land snail species were collected in 32 plots. Ten additional species were found in collections made on previous expeditions to Panguana. On the basis of avail- able data, Panguana is the most species rich locality for land snails in South America. The species density of 75 land snail species in c. 2 km2 of rather homogeneous rainforest is also high on a global scale. The land snail fauna of Panguana is characterized by a very high proportion of species belonging to the carnivorous family Scolodontidae, many of which are likely to be new to science. The fauna includes seven species that are new records for Peru, and the species Hirtudiscus sp., Xenodiscula venezuelensis, Geostilbia aperta, Guppya gundlachii and Thysanophora plagioptycha represent genera not previously recorded from the country. The synanthropic species Allopeas gracile, Opeas hannense, Subulina octona, Geostilbia aperta and Gastrocopta servilis form an ecologically distinct group that occurs mainly in sites strongly modified by humans. The presence of these species on the margin of the Amazon rainforest is evidence of the ongoing homogenization of the global fauna”.

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Both the absolute number and the composition of the fauna is quite outstanding. It also shows that a thorough search by competent malacologists still can bring many new novelties for the Neotropics to the surface. Both as new records for a country and supposedly new species to science.

Reference:
Wendebourg, B. & Hausdorf, B., 2019. The land snail fauna of a South American rainforest biodiversity hotspot: the Panguana conservation area in the Peruvian Amazon. – Journal of Molluscan Studies: 8 pp. doi:10.1093/mollus/eyz014

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New book on Cuba

Just received the announcement that a new book has been published on the non-marine molluscs of the Isla de la Juventud, Cuba. It is written by Modesto Correoso, a Cuban malacologist who already lives for years in Ecuador. He has privately published the book under the label of Editorial Académica Española, an imprint of International Book Market Service Ltd.

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Since the copy I received is clearly for promotional purposes, having many blank pages or the text ‘no copiar’ printed in a large font, I cannot say much about its content. Apart from the introduction and some words on methodology, there are 3 chapters. The first highlights the historical collecting on the island, chapter 2 is on the geography, and the largest chapter is devoted on the land and freshwater species. For each species a description is given and several photos are supplied; habitat and conservation issues are also discussed. The book seems (as far as I can judge due to the many blanks) poor in taxonomic references, nor in mentioning type material. Many photos have been modified by the author from web sources, literature or sometimes have been taken from his personal collection. There is no index on the taxonomic names, nor are the genera or species listed in the contents.

Reference:
Correoso, M., 2019. Contribución a la malacología pinera. Los Moluscos terrestres y fluviales de Isla de la Juventud (Isla de Pinos), Cuba. Editorial Académica Española, Mauritius, 298 pp. ISBN 9786139465736.

Update:
The price is € 82.90 at the publisher. Link here.

New Cuban species

A while ago (December 2017) Espinosa et al. published a paper which only now surfaced. Its abstract is extremely short, even not mentioning the names of the new species they described. “A commented and illustrated catalog of 37 land an freshwater mollusks species from Cupeyal del Norte, Alejandro de Humboldt National Park, Guantánamo, Cuba, is presented, 18 of them are new records to the park and 8 are described as new species, and data’s about others land mollusks species of the Park are included”.

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The new taxa introduced are:

[Helicinidae:] Emoda poeyana

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[Annulariidae:] Diplopoma (Subannularia) mucaralense

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Annularisca (Annularella) haylerae

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[Urocoptidae:] Arangia humboldtiana

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Carcinostemma silvai

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[Achatinidae:] Obeliscus (Stenogyra) diegoi

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[Cepolidae:] Coryda thierryi

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Coryda carabelloi

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Reference:
Espinosa J., Herrera-Uría J. & Ortea J., 2017. Moluscos terrestres y fluviales del Sector Cupeyal del Norte, Parque Nacional Alejandro de Humboldt, Guantánamo, Cuba, con la descripción de nuevas especies. – Revista de la Academia Canaria de Ciencias, 29: 61-110.

New records for Brazilian Helicina

A new paper just appeared by Silva et al. “New records for Helicina schereri Baker, 1913, are reported. It was a species previously restricted to the states of Ceará, Rio Grande do Norte, Paraíba, Alagoas and Tocantins in Northeastern Brazil, and State of Santa Catarina, much further south. The new occurrences reported herein fill distribution gaps and also significantly expand the range of the species ca. 970 km westwards. The new records are from the following locations: Bahia State (Ituaçu and Itaquara municipalities) in Northeast Brazil; Mato Grosso do Sul State (Bonito Municipality) in the Midwest; and Minas Gerais (Lagoa Santa municipality) in the Southeast”.

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Reference:
Silva, F. dos Santos et al., 2019. New records of Helicina schereri (Gastropoda: Helicinidae) from the states of Bahia, Minas Gerais, and Mato Grosso do Sul, Brazil. – Papéis Avulsos de Zoologia, 59: e20195903 (3 pp.).

Ecology and conservation of Plectostylus

A recent paper by Barahona-Segovia et al. discusses the details of the ecology of a Chilean Plectostylus species. Their abstract is “Terrestrial mollusks are one of the least studied groups of terrestrial invertebrates, especially in the Neotropics. In Chile, there is scarce biological and ecological information about many genera, even though the group is quite diverse and occupies different habitats along the country. Plectostylus araucanus is the most recently described species and one of the few arboreal species found only in the coastal native forest of central-south of Chile. In this study, we recorded a new locality for P. araucanus in the del Maule Region and described ecological and physiological characteristics. The new locality is placed 204 km northwards of the type locality. Based on different records, Plectostylus araucanus is proposed as an endangered (EN) species under the distribution criterion of IUCN. Most of the specimens of P. araucanus were found living in tree cavities and away from the edge of native forest fragments. Physiological measures showed monthly differences, especially between some months of summer and fall and between months of the same season (i.e., summer). We discuss the implications of our results in the microhabitat selection, thermoregulation and habitat use by this tree snail, and the importance of this data in management and conservation for other native malacofauna”.

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This is an interesting study, as detailed ecological research on Neotropical snails is scarce and the available data gives a very partial view on the requirements of the malacofauna; the handles for conservation management are thus also extremely limited, which is a concern with the increasing threats of anthropogenic influences.

Reference:
Barahona-Segovia, R.M. et al., 2019. Shelter, ecophysiology and conservation status of Plectostylus araucanus (Pulmonata: Bothriembryontidae) in the fragmented Bosque Maulino, central Chile. – Revista Mexicana de Biodiversidad, 90: e902703 (12 pp.).

Megalobulimus in Brazil

A short paper by Fontanelle et al. just appeared on one of the Brazilian species of this genus. “The taxonomical status of Megalobulimus toriii Morretes, 1937 from southeastern Brazil is reassessed herein. A large series of shells of M. toriii and M. yporanganus (Ihering & Pilsbry, 1901) were analysed for conchological features and measured for a principal component analysis. The material included recent shells and sub-fossil specimens (no living specimens or ethanol-preserved specimens could be procured). Megalobulimus toriii falls within the spectrum of morphological variation of M. yporanganus and is thus considered its synonym. Megalobulimus yporanganus was originally described from the Ribeira Valley in São Paulo state and its present distribution includes only other localities in this valley. However, the species is also known from Holocene archaeological contexts (shell mounds) and karst outcrops, with the oldest records dating from circa 10,800–9,200 YBP. Its past distribution extended southwards to the coast of Santa Catarina state”.

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Reference:
Fontanelle, J.H. et al., 2019. Taxonomic reassessment of Megalobulimus toriii (Gastropoda, Strophocheilidae). – Journal of Conchology, 43 (3): 313-320.

Land snail holotypes in the IES, Havana

More and more institutions are making their holdings of type material available, either through publications or on the web. This is very useful as it greatly helps researchers to find the original material which may be needed for comparison.

Hernández Q. et al. have recently made an addition. “We present the first list of holotypes of terrestrial molluscs housed in the collection of the Institute of Ecology and Systematics, Cuba. The majority of holotype specimens come from collections belonging to Miguel L. Jaume, Oscar L. Alcalde, Alfredo de la Torre and Raúl P. Guitar. The type material of the collection has 66 taxa including species and subspecies. The genera represented in this type collection are Liguus, Farcimen, Cerion, Cryptelasmus, Idiostemma, Cubadamsiella and Opisthosiphon”.

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Although it is unfortunate that no pictures of these holotypes are included, which would eliminate the need for (possibly difficult) inquiries, the listing may be applauded as a first step.

Reference:
Hernández Q., M, et al., 2018. Catalogue of holotypes of terrestrial molluscs (Mollusca, Gastropoda) of the Institute of Ecology and Systematics, Havana, Cuba. – Poeyana, 507: 44-49.