Nov 14, 2019

Molecular systematics of the heteronemertean genus Dushia (Nemertea, Pilidiophora), with descriptions of D. wijnhoffae sp. nov. and D. nigra species complex comb. nov

Natsumi HookabeJon L Norenburg


The heteronemertean genus Dushia Corrêa, 1963 was established for what was identified as D. atra (Girard, 1851) (originally Meckelia atra) based on material from littoral, shallow waters in Curaçao, while the nominal species Meckelia atra was originally described from deep water off Florida Cape. In this paper, we conclude that the type species for Dushia has been misidentified. Based on specimens from the Caribbean, we establish D. wijnhoffae Schwartz Norenburg sp. nov. to represent the true identity of the genus, according to Article 70.3.2 of the International Code of Zoological Nomenclature; Meckelia atra should be regarded as a nomen dubium. While the genus has remained monotypic since its establishment, our molecular analysis discovered a second member-or rather a group of members-from the West Pacific. This 'group of members', herein termed Dushia nigra (Stimpson, 1855) species complex comb. nov., involves i) at least two genetically separated biological entities, 0.136-0.148 (p-distance) and 0.152-0.168 (K2P) apart in terms of 513-bp COI sequences, which we interpret as likely to represent cryptic species, ii) three color forms, orange, brown, and black, with the last one occurring most frequently, and iii) four nominal...Continue Reading

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Mentioned in this Paper

Naja naja atra
Cerebratulus leucopsis
Ribosomal RNA

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