Are you the publisher? Claim or contact us about this channel

Embed this content in your HTML


Report adult content:

click to rate:

Account: (login)

More Channels

Channel Catalog

Channel Description:

new & recent described Flora & Fauna species from all over the World esp. Asia, Oriental, Indomalayan & Malesiana region

older | 1 | .... | 15 | 16 | (Page 17) | 18 | 19 | .... | 182 | newer

    0 0

    Sub-adult male White-faced Saki Pithecia pithecia Photo: Russell A. Mittermeier, Conservation International |

    For more than 200 years, the taxonomy of Pithecia has been floating on the misunderstanding of a few species, in particular P. pithecia and P. monachus. In this revision, historical names and descriptions are addressed and original type material is examined. For every museum specimen, all location, collection, and museum data were recorded, and photographs and measurements of each skin, skull, mount, or fluid specimen were taken. The revision is based on work conducted in 36 museums in 28 cities from 17 countries in North America, South America, Europe, and Japan, resulting in the examination of 876 skins (including mounts and fluids), 690 skulls, and hundreds of photographs taken by the author and by colleagues in the field of living captive and wild sakis of all species, and through internet searches. Per this revision, there are 16 species of Pithecia: five currently recognized, three reinstated, three elevated from subspecies level, and five newly described.

    Key Words:Pithecia, saki, taxonomy, revision, new species, P. pithecia, P. monachus

    Male Buffy Saki Pithecia albicans
    Photo: Russell A. Mittermeier, Conservation International

    Equatorial saki, Pitheciaaequatorialis(Hershkovitz, 1987) 
    White-footed saki or Buffy saki, Pitheciaalbicans (Gray, 1860)
    Cazuza's saki, PitheciacazuzaiMarsh, 2014 
    Golden-faced saki, Pitheciachrysocephala(I. Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire, 1850) 
    Hairy saki, Pitheciahirsuta (Spix, 1823) 
    Burnished saki, Pitheciainusta (Spix, 1823) 
    Rio Tapajós saki or Gray's bald-faced saki,Pitheciairrorata (Gray, 1842) 
    Isabel's saki, Pitheciaisabela Marsh, 2014 
    Monk saki, Pitheciamonachus (É. Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire, 1812) 
    Miller's saki, Pitheciamilleri (J. A. Allen, 1914) 
    Mittermeier's Tapajós saki, Pitheciamittermeieri Marsh, 2014 
    Napo saki, Pithecianapensis(Lönnberg, 1938) 
    White-faced saki, Pitheciapithecia (Linnaeus 1766) 
    Pissinatti’s bald-faced saki, Pitheciapissinattii Marsh, 2014 
    Rylands' bald-faced saki,Pitheciarylandsi Marsh, 2014 
    Vanzolini's bald-faced saki, Pitheciavanzolinii(Hershkovitz, 1987) 

    Mittermeier's Tapajos Saki Pithecia mittermeieri:: Ryland's Bold-faced SakiPithecia rylandsi
    Illustration: Stephen Nash, Conservation International 

    Cazuza's saki, Pithecia cazuzai Marsh, 2014

    Isabel's saki, Pithecia isabela Marsh, 2014

     Laura K. Marsh. 2014. A Taxonomic Revision of the Saki Monkeys, Pithecia Desmarest, 1804. Neotropical Primates. 21(1); 1-163.

    Study describes five new species of Amazonian Saki Monkey
    A major taxonomic revision of the saki monkeys (genus Pithecia) has revealed the existence of five new saki species.

    Por más de 200 años, la taxonomía de Pithecia ha estado flotando en la confusión de unas pocas especies, en particular P. pithecia y P. monachus. En esta revisión, los nombres históricos y descripciones son abordadas y el material tipo original es examinado. Para cada espécimen de museo, todos los datos de localidad, colección y museo fueron registrados, y fotografías y medidas de cada piel, cráneo, montaje, o especímenes conservados en fluido fueron tomadas. La revisión está basada en trabajo llevado a cabo en 36 museos en 28 ciudades de 17 países en Norte América, Sur América, Europa, y Japón, resultando en la examinación de 876 pieles (incluyendo montajes y fluidos), 690 cráneos, y cientos de fotografías tomadas por la autora y por colegas en el campo, de individuos vivos en cautiverio o estado silvestre de todas las especies de Pithecia, y mediante búsquedas en internet. Con base en esta revisión, hay 16 especies de Pithecia: cinco actualmente conocidas, tres reclasificadas, tres elevadas del nivel de subespecie y cinco nuevas descritas. 
    Palabras Clave: Pithecia, saki, taxonomía, revisión, nueva especie, P. pithecia, P. monachus

    0 0

    Dreadnoughtus schrani 
    Lacovara, Lamanna, Ibiricu, Poole, Schroeter, Ullmann, Voegele, Boles, Carter, Fowler, Egerton, Moyer, Coughenour, Schein, Harris, Martínez & Novas, 2014 | doi: 10.1038/srep06196

    Titanosaurian sauropod dinosaurs were the most diverse and abundant large-bodied herbivores in the southern continents during the final 30 million years of the Mesozoic Era. Several titanosaur species are regarded as the most massive land-living animals yet discovered; nevertheless, nearly all of these giant titanosaurs are known only from very incomplete fossils, hindering a detailed understanding of their anatomy. Here we describe a new and gigantic titanosaur, Dreadnoughtus schrani, from Upper Cretaceous sediments in southern Patagonia, Argentina. Represented by approximately 70% of the postcranial skeleton, plus craniodental remains, Dreadnoughtus is the most complete giant titanosaur yet discovered, and provides new insight into the morphology and evolutionary history of these colossal animals. Furthermore, despite its estimated mass of about 59.3 metric tons, the bone histology of the Dreadnoughtus type specimen reveals that this individual was still growing at the time of death.

    Figure 2: Reconstruction, appendicular skeletal anatomy, and bone histology of Dreadnoughtus schrani.
    (A) Reconstructed skeleton and body silhouette in left lateral view with preserved elements in white. (B) Left scapula and coracoid in lateral view. (C) Sternal plates in ventral view. (D) Left forelimb (metacarpus reconstructed) in anterior view. (E) Left pelvis (ilium partially reconstructed) in lateral view. (F) Left hind limb in anterior view (metatarsus and pes partially reconstructed and reversed from right). (G) Transverse ground thin section of humeral shaft, showing heavy secondary remodelling (arrow indicates extent of dense osteon formation), a thick layer of well-vascularized fibrolamellar bone, and a lack of lines of arrested growth or an external fundamental system.

    Systematic Palaeontology
    Dinosauria Owen 1842. Saurischia Seeley 1887.
     Sauropoda Marsh 1878. Titanosauriformes Salgado, Coria, and Calvo 1997.
    Titanosauria Bonaparte and Coria 1993.
    Dreadnoughtus schrani nov. gen. nov. sp.

    Dreadnought (Old English), fearing nothing; genus name alludes to the gigantic body size of the taxon (which presumably rendered healthy adult individuals nearly impervious to attack) and the predominant battleships of the early 20th century (two of which, ARA [Armada de la República Argentina] Rivadavia and ARA Moreno, were part of the Argentinean navy). Species name honours the American entrepreneur Adam Schran for his support of this research. 

    Figure 3: Time-calibrated hypothesis of phylogenetic relationships of Dreadnoughtus schrani (Consistency Index = 0.42, Retention Index = 0.76, Rescaled Consistency Index = 0.32) with relevant clades labelled.

    Kenneth J. Lacovara, Matthew C. Lamanna, Lucio M. Ibiricu, Jason C. Poole, Elena R. Schroeter, Paul V. Ullmann, Kristyn K. Voegele, Zachary M. Boles, Aja M. Carter, Emma K. Fowler, Victoria M. Egerton, Alison E. Moyer, Christopher L. Coughenour, Jason P. Schein, Jerald D. Harris, Rubén D. Martínez and Fernando E. Novas. 2014. A Gigantic, Exceptionally Complete Titanosaurian Sauropod Dinosaur from Southern Patagonia, Argentina. Scientific Reports. doi:

    0 0

    Figure 1: Male pufferfish, Torquigener sp. >> T. albomaculosus
    The male is digging a valley with its fins and body. Photograph by K. Ito at Seisui on 23 April 2012.

    We report that male pufferfishes (Torquigener sp., Tetraodontidae) constructed large geometric circular structures on the seabed that played an important role in female mate choice. Males dug valleys at various angles in a radial direction, constructing nests surrounded by radially aligned peaks and valleys. Furthermore, they created irregular patterns in the nest comprising fine sand particles. The circular structure not only influences female mate choice but also functions to gather fine sand particles in nests, which are important in female mate choice. Strangely enough, the males never reuse the nest, always constructing a new circular structure at the huge cost of construction. This is because the valleys may not contain sufficient fine sand particles for multiple reproductive cycles.

    Figure 3: Changes in the circular structure constructed by male pufferfish.
    (a) Early stage; (b) middle stage; (c) final stage; and (d) after spawning of the same circular structure of K1 in Figure 2. Photograph by Y. Okata on 23, 27, 29 June, and 6 July 2012, respectively.

    Hiroshi Kawase, Yoji Okata and Kimiaki Ito. 2013. Role of Huge Geometric Circular Structures in the Reproduction of a Marine Pufferfish. Scientific Reports. 3[2106]

    0 0

    Torquigener albomaculosus Matsuura, 2014

    Torquigener albomaculosus sp. nov. is described based on two specimens collected from sandy bottoms at depths of 15 and 18 m along the south coast of Amami-oshima Island in the Ryukyu Islands. This new species is distinguished from all other species of Torquigener by the following unique combination of characters: dorsal-fin rays 9 (10); anal-fin rays 6; pectoral-fin rays 16 (dorsalmost ray nubbin-like and rudimentary); vertebrae 8 + 11 = 19; no solid, dark, longitudinal stripe nor longitudinal rows of dark spots on the mid-side of body from behind pectoral fin to caudal-fin base; no vertical markings on cheek; dorsal half of head and body covered with fine brown reticulations and many white spots; ventral half of head and body silvery white covered by many white spots from chin to above anal-fin origin; dorsal rim of eye light yellow; and many two-rooted spinules on head and body. Males of T. albomaculosus build unique circles as spawning nests, these being 2 m in diameter on sandy bottoms at depths from 10 to 30 m at Amami-oshima Island.

    Keywords: New pufferfish, Torquigener, Tetraodontiformes, mystery circles, Ryukyu Islands

    Keiichi Matsuura. 2014. A New Pufferfish of the Genus Torquigener that builds “Mystery Circles” on Sandy Bottoms in the Ryukyu Islands, Japan (Actinopterygii: Tetraodontiformes: Tetraodontidae). Ichthyological Research. DOI:

    0 0

     deceased Rukwatitan bisepultus individual and the initial floodplain depositional setting from which the holotypic skeleton was recovered, from the Rukwa Rift Basin, Tanzania.
    illustration: Mark Witton [markwitton-com], University of Portsmouth

    Ohio University paleontologists have identified a new species of titanosaurian, a member of the large-bodied sauropods that thrived during the final period of the dinosaur age, in Tanzania. This image shows a silhouette of Rukwatitan bisepultus and the skeleton segments recovered from the Rukwa Rift Basin site. The scale bar represents 1 meter.
    photo: Eric Gorscak, Ohio University

    Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology

    New species of titanosaurian dinosaur found in Tanzania

    0 0

    Sabinaria magnificaGaleano & R. Bernal 

    The new palm genus Sabinaria (Cryosophileae, Coryphoideae, Arecaceae) and the new species Sabinaria magnifica from the Colombia-Panama border are described and illustrated. Sabinaria differs from other genera in the tribe in the leaf blades with a single deep, medial, abaxial split, and short abaxial splits in each segment, mostly unisexual flowers with biseriate perianth, calyx connate with the corolla at a single place on its margin, large, tightly appressed, persistent rachis bracts that hide the pistillate flowers, and fruits tightly packed and hidden among leaf bases, often covered by litter.
     Keywords: Arecaceae; Cryosophileae

    Type species: Sabinaria magnifica Galeano & R. Bernal

    Etymology:— Named after our daughter Sabina Bernal Galeano, with the suffix –ria arbitrarily chosen, in accordance with Art. 20 of the International Code of Nomenclature (McNeill et al. 2012). 

    Se describen e ilustran el nuevo género de palmas Sabinaria (Cryosophileae, Coryphoideae, Arecaceae) y la nueva especie Sabinaria magnifica, de la frontera entre Colombia y Panamá. Sabinaria difiere de otros géneros en la tribu por la lámina foliar con una sola división abaxial central y cortas divisiones abaxiales en cada uno de los segmentos, flores principalmente unisexuales con perianto biseriado, cáliz connato con la corola en un solo punto en su margen, grandes brácteas del raquis fuertemente adpresas y persistentes, que ocultan las flores pistiladas, y frutos apiñados, ocultos entre las bases de las hojas y a menudo cubiertos por hojarasca. 

    Rodrigo Bernal and Gloria Galeano. 2013. Sabinaria, A New Genus of Palms (Cryosophileae, Coryphoideae, Arecaceae) from the Colombia-Panama border. Phytotaxa 144 (2): 27–44. [1]

    0 0

    Figure 6 Potential mimicry of spectacled cobras in Javan and Bengal slow lorises
    (1). Javan slow loris (2) Spectacled cobra (rear view) (3) Spectacled cobra (front view) (4) Bengal slow loris.
    Only seven types of mammals are known to be venomous, including slow lorises (Nycticebus spp.). Despite the evolutionary significance of this unique adaptation amongst Nycticebus, the structure and function of slow loris venom is only just beginning to be understood. Here we review what is known about the chemical structure of slow loris venom. Research on a handful of captive samples from three of eight slow loris species reveals that the protein within slow loris venom resembles the disulphide-bridged heterodimeric structure of Fel-d1, more commonly known as cat allergen. In a comparison of N. pygmaeus and N. coucang, 212 and 68 compounds were found, respectively. Venom is activated by combining the oil from the brachial arm gland with saliva, and can cause death in small mammals and anaphylactic shock and death in humans. We examine four hypotheses for the function of slow loris venom. The least evidence is found for the hypothesis that loris venom evolved to kill prey. Although the venom's primary function in nature seems to be as a defense against parasites and conspecifics, it may also serve to thwart olfactory-orientated predators. Combined with numerous other serpentine features of slow lorises, including extra vertebra in the spine leading to snake-like movement, serpentine aggressive vocalisations, a long dark dorsal stripe and the venom itself, we propose that venom may have evolved to mimic cobras (Naja sp.). During the Miocene when both slow lorises and cobras migrated throughout Southeast Asia, the evolution of venom may have been an adaptive strategy against predators used by slow lorises as a form of Mullerian mimicry with spectacled cobras.
     Keywords: Venoms, Ecology, Primates, Intraspecific competition, Predation, Ectoparasite, Naja naja

    Figure 1 The slow loris Nycticebus brachial gland (dark oblong area on the inside of the elbow region).

    Figure 2 Slow lorises in defensive posture, whereby the arms are raised above the head to combine saliva with brachial gland exudate: Nycticebus menagensis, N. javanicus and N. coucang.  
    Figure 5 Male wild Nycticebus javanicus, from Cipaganti near Garut, Java, during three successive captures in April 2012, November 2012 and February 2013, showing his appearance before receiving a severe conspecific bite wound, just afterwards, and 3 months afterwards.

     Anne-Isola Nekaris, Richard S Moore, Johanna Rode and Bryan G Fry. 2013. Mad, Bad and Dangerous to Know: the Biochemistry, Ecology and Evolution of Slow Loris Venom. Journal of Venomous Animals and Toxins including Tropical Diseases. 19(1):21. DOI:

    0 0

     skull and partial mandible of the new squalodelphinid species Huaridelphis raimondii, with an outline of the head and potential fish prey.
    photo: G. Bianucci | DOI:10.1080/02724634.2014.858050

    The fossil record of odontocetes (toothed cetaceans) is relatively scarce during the Oligocene and early Miocene compared with later in the Miocene and Pliocene; most of the odontocete families from these epochs are known by a limited number of species and specimens. Among those, Squalodelphinidae is a family of small- to medium-sized platanistoids with single-rooted teeth, which until now has included only four genera based on diagnostic material, from the early Miocene of Europe, Argentina, and North America. Recent field work in the Pisco-Ica desert, southern coast of Peru, has resulted in the discovery of several marine vertebrate-rich localities in various levels of the late Oligocene–early Miocene Chilcatay Formation. Based on three specimens from Ullujaya and Zamaca, including two well-preserved skulls with periotics, we describe a new squalodelphinid genus and species, Huaridelphis raimondii. This new species increases the early Miocene diversity of the family and is also its smallest known member. It further differs from other squalodelphinids by its thin antorbital process of the frontal, abruptly tapering rostrum, and higher tooth count. A more fragmentary skull, from Zamaca, is referred to Squalodelphinidae aff. H. raimondii. This skull provides information on the morphology of the tympanic, malleus, and incus, currently unknown in H. raimondii. Focusing on platanistoids with single-rooted teeth, our phylogenetic analysis suggests that Squalodelphinidae are monophyletic and confirms the sister-group relationship between the latter and Platanistidae. The relationships within Squalodelphinidae are not fully resolved, but H. raimondii might be one of the earliest diverging taxa.

     the skull of the new squalodelphinid species Huaridelphis raimondii in dorsal and lateral view.
    photo: G. Bianucci 

    Etymology— From ‘Huari,’ ancient culture of the south-central Andes and coastal area of Peru (500–1000 AD), and from ‘delphis,’ the Latin word for dolphin. Gender masculine. The species name honors Antonio Raimondi (1826–1890), an Italian scientist who first documented fossil whales from Peru (Bianucci, 2010).

    The examination of fossil cetacean remains in the locality of Ullujaya, Pisco Basin, Peru.
    photo: G. Bianucci 

    Based on three specimens, including two well-preserved skulls, from early Miocene localities of the Chilcatay Formation (Ullujaya and Zamaca), Pisco-Ica desert, southern coast of Peru, we describe a new genus and species of Squalodelphinidae, Huaridelphis raimondii. In addition to periotic characters, H. raimondii differs from other known squalodelphinids in, among others, its smaller size, the thin antorbital process of the frontal, the more abrupt tapering of the rostrum, and the higher tooth count. Another fragmentary skull from the Chilcatay Formation in Zamaca is referred to Squalodelphinidae aff. Huaridelphis raimondii. It brings additional information on the morphology of the tympanic, malleus, and incus, not yet known in H.raimondii. Our phylogenetic analysis of platanistoids with single-rooted teeth suggests that the family Squalodelphinidae is monophyletic; the analysis also confirms the sister-group relationship between the latter and Platanistidae. The relationships within Squalodelphinidae are not fully resolved, but H. raimondii might be one of the first diverging taxa of the family.

    Olivier Lambert, Giovanni Bianucci & Mario Urbina. 2014. Huaridelphis raimondii, A New early Miocene Squalodelphinidae (Cetacea, Odontoceti) from the Chilcatay Formation, Peru
     Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology. 34(5); 987-1004.
    DOI: 10.1080/02724634.2014.858050 

    New species of extinct dolphin sheds light on river dolphin history

    0 0

    Arboreal Mammals in a Jurassic forest.
    The three animals on the left side represent the three new species of euharamiyidan mammals. The other two represent a gliding species and another euharamiyidan, respectively, that were reported earlier.
    reconstruction: Zhao Chuang

    The phylogeny of Allotheria, including Multituberculata and Haramiyida, remains unsolved and has generated contentious views on the origin and earliest evolution of mammals. Here we report three new species of a new clade, Euharamiyida, based on six well-preserved fossils from the Jurassic period of China. These fossils reveal many craniodental and postcranial features of euharamiyidans and clarify several ambiguous structures that are currently the topic of debate. Our phylogenetic analyses recognize Euharamiyida as the sister group of Multituberculata, and place Allotheria within the Mammalia. The phylogeny suggests that allotherian mammals evolved from a Late Triassic (approximately 208 million years ago) Haramiyavia-like ancestor and diversified into euharamiyidans and multituberculates with a cosmopolitan distribution, implying homologous acquisition of many craniodental and postcranial features in the two groups. Our findings also favour a Late Triassic origin of mammals in Laurasia and two independent detachment events of the middle ear bones during mammalian evolution.

    Xianshou songae, mouse-sized animal was a tree dweller in the Jurassic forests and belonged to an extinct group of Mesozoic mammals called Euharamiyida.
    reconstruction: Zhao Chuang

    Figure 1: The holotypes of three euharamiyidan species.
     a, Holotype (LDNHMF2001) of Shenshou lui. b, Holotype (IVPP V16707A) of Xianshou linglong. c, Holotype specimen (BMNHC-PM003253) of Xianshou songae.

    Mammalia Linnaeus, 1758

    Allotheria Marsh, 1880

    Euharamiyida (new clade)

    Shenshou lui gen. et sp. nov. Bi, Wang, Guan, Sheng and Meng

    Etymology. Shen, from pinyin of the Chinese word, meaning deity, divinity or cleaver; shou, from pinyin of the Chinese word for creature, animal or beast; specific name after Lu Jianhua, the collector of the holotype.

    Eleutherodontidae Kermack et al., 1998

    Xianshou gen. nov. Wang, Meng, Bi, Guan and Sheng

    Etymology. Xian, from pinyin of the Chinese word meaning celestial being or immortal.

    Xianshou linglong sp. nov. Wang, Meng, Bi, Guan and Sheng

    Etymology. linglong, from pinyin of the Chinese word, meaning ‘exquisite’, and also after the town name Linglongta where the specimen came from.

    Xianshou songae sp. nov. Meng, Guan, Wang, Bi and Sheng

    Etymology. The specific name is after Rufeng Song, the collector of the holotype specimen.

     Bi, Shundong; Wang, Yuanqing; Sheng, Xia and Meng, Jin 2014. Three New Jurassic euharamiyidan Species Reinforce early Divergence of Mammals. Nature. doi:

    Fossils of New Squirrel-like Species Support Earlier Origin of Mammals

    0 0

     Jaggermeryx naida
    Top and side views of a fossilized jaw bone of an ancient creature recently named after Mick Jagger, in honor of the animal's big, sensitive lips and snout. The animal's jaw bones suggest it was roughly the size of a small deer.
    Photo: Gregg Gunnell, Duke Lemur Center | DOI: 10.1666/13-122

    The early Miocene site of Wadi Moghra, Qattara Depression, Egypt, is important for interpreting anthracothere (Mammalia, Artiodactyla) evolution, because the Moghra sediments preserve a higher diversity of anthracotheres than any other pene-contemporaneous site. New specimens from Moghra are described and form the basis for the systematic revision of Moghra anthracotheres provided here. Among the important discoveries recently made at Moghra is the first complete skull of Sivameryx moneyi. Other new specimens described here include two new species of Afromeryx, and a new genus and species, all of which are unique to Moghra. A review of biogeographic information supports the conclusion that three of the Moghra anthracotheres (Brachyodus depereti, B. mogharensis, and Jaggermeryx naida, n. gen. n. sp.) are members of late surviving lineages with a long history in Africa, while three other species (Afromeryx grex, n. sp., A. palustris, n. sp., and Sivameryx moneyi) represent more recent immigrants from Eurasia.

    Ellen R. Miller, Gregg F. Gunnell, Mohamed Abdel Gawad, Mohamed Hamdan, Ahmed N. El-Barkooky, Mark T. Clementz and Safiya M. Hassan. 2014. Anthracotheres from Wadi Moghra, early Miocene, Egypt. Journal of Paleontology. 88(5); 967-981.  DOI: 10.1666/13-122

    UW Researcher Contributes to Discovery of Mick Jagger-Like Swamp Creature

    Ancient swamp creature had lips like Mick Jagger
    A swamp-dwelling, plant-munching creature that lived 19 million years ago in Africa has been named after Rolling Stones lead singer Sir Mick Jagger, because of its big, sensitive lips and snout. The name of the animal, Jaggermeryx naida, translates to 'Jagger's water nymph.'

    0 0

    Cretaceous Leviathan
    The only known dinosaur adapted to life in water, Spinosaurus swam the rivers of North Africa a hundred million years ago. The massive predator lived in a region mostly devoid of large, terrestrial plant-eaters, subsisting mainly on huge fish.
    Art: Davide Bonadonna. Sources: Nizar Ibrahim, University of Chicago; Cristiano Dal Sasso and Simone Maganuco, Natural History Museum of Milan

    We describe adaptations for a semiaquatic lifestyle in the dinosaur Spinosaurus aegyptiacus. These adaptations include retraction of the fleshy nostrils to a position near the mid-region of the skull and an elongate neck and trunk that shift the center of body mass anterior to the knee joint. Unlike terrestrial theropods, the pelvic girdle is downsized, the hind limbs are short, and all of the limb bones are solid without an open medullary cavity, for buoyancy control in water. The short, robust femur with hypertrophied flexor attachment and the low, flat-bottomed pedal claws are consistent with aquatic foot-propelled locomotion. Surface striations and bone microstructure suggest that the dorsal “sail” may have been enveloped in skin that functioned primarily for display on land and in water.

    Ibrahim, N., Sereno, P., Dal Sasso, C., Maganuco, M., Martill, D., Zouhri, S., Myhrvold, N., Iurino, D. 2014. Semiaquatic Adaptations in a Giant Predatory Dinosaur. Science.

    Digital skeletal reconstruction and transparent flesh outline of Spinosaurus aegyptiacus
    Color codes are used to show the origin of different parts of the digital skeletal model.
    Bones of the neotype and for Suchomimus tenerensis were CT-scanned, surfaced and size-adjusted before being added to the model.
    Color coding: red, neotype (FSAC-KK 11888); orange, Stromer’s bones; yellow, isolated bones from the Kem Kem; green, surrogate bones modeled or taken from the spinosaurids Suchomimus, Baryonyx, Irritator or Ichthyovenator; blue, inferred bones from adjacent bones. A red dot below the posterior dorsal centra shows the approximate position of the center of mass.
    Model by Tyler Keillor, Lauren Conroy, and Erin Fitzgerald. |

    A reconstruction of the skull of Spinosaurus, with known elements in blue.
    Art by Davide Bonadonna.

    Scientists Report First Semiaquatic Dinosaur, Spinosaurus
    Massive Predator Was More Than 9 Feet Longer Than Largest Tyrannosaurus rex
    Spinosaurus: The First Semi-Aquatic Dinosaur via @science2_0

    0 0

    Ikrandraco avatar
    Wang, Rodrigues, Jiang, Cheng & Kellner, 2014

    The Aptian Jiufotang Formation of northeast China is a Konservat Lagerstätte particularly rich in pterosaurs, notably azhdarchoids. Here we describe a new genus and species of toothed pteranodontoid pterosaur, Ikrandraco avatar gen. et sp. nov., based on two laterally flattened specimens. Ikrandraco avatar is diagnosed by a suite of features, including a very low and elongate skull, strongly inclined quadrate, and a deep, blade-like bony mandibular crest with a hook-like process on its posterior edge, an unusual structure so far unique to this taxon. The particular skull shape hints at a distinct feeding habit for pterosaurs that potentially includes temporary skimming and an extensible skin acting as a throat pouch that was more developed than in any other pterosaur known so far. The presence of two other taxa of purported piscivorous pterosaurs in the Jiufotang Formation suggests distinct resource exploitation in this part of China during the Early Cretaceous.

    ancient pterosaur Ikrandraco avatar had at least 40 pairs of small teeth and possibly a throat pouch for catching fish.
    illustration: Chuang Zhao

    Systematic paleontology

    Pterosauria Kaup, 1834
    Pterodactyloidea Plieninger, 1901

    Dsungaripteroidea Young, 1964
    Pteranodontoidea Marsh, 1876

    Ikrandraco gen. nov.

    Type species: Ikrandraco avatar, type by monotypy.
    Etymology: Ikran, from the fictional flying creature portrayed in the movie Avatar that shows a well developed dentary crest, and draco, from the Latin meaning dragon.

    Diagnosis: The same for the type species.

    Ikrandraco avatar sp. nov.
    Etymology: Avatar, in allusion to the homonymous science fiction movie.

    The remains of an extinct flying reptile (shown here in a reconstruction) that lived some 120 million years ago reveal the creature had a wingspan of 4.9 feet (1.5 meters). The pterosaur now called Ikrandraco avatar may have stored food in a throat pouch similar to a pelican.
    illustration: Chuang Zhao

    Xiaolin Wang, Taissa Rodrigues, Shunxing Jiang, Xin Cheng & Alexander W. A. Kellner. 2014. An Early Cretaceous Pterosaur with an unusual Mandibular Crest from China and A Potential Novel Feeding Strategy. Scientific Reports 4, Article number: 6329 doi:

    Citation: Humphries S, Bonser RHC, Witton MP, Martill DM (2007) Did Pterosaurs Feed by Skimming? Physical Modelling and Anatomical Evaluation of an Unusual Feeding Method. PLoS Biol. 5(8): e204. doi:

    Ancient Flying Reptile Ate Like a Toothy Pelican via @NatGeo

    0 0

    Nordic J Botany | DOI:10.1111/njb.00498

    The present review includes keys for identification and summary data on the nomenclature, morphology, ecology and distribution for all 33 species of gymnosperms hitherto recorded in the flora of Laos. They belong to 8 families and 15 genera. Important additions to these data were obtained during fieldwork in 2009–2013, when 58 localities containing 25 species from 14 genera and 8 families were explored and initially studied. Two species, Cycas laoticaand Pinus cernua, are described as new species for science. Seven species, Cycas dolichophylla, C. inermis, C.macrocarpa, C. micholitzii, C. nongnoochiae, C. petraea and Taxus wallichiana, are found in Laos and represent new records for the flora of the country. Maps of the distribution and illustrations for the newly discovered gymnosperm species are provided. All observations, records and discoveries are based on reliable scientific literature and collected voucher herbarium specimens housed in main regional herbaria.

    Leonid V. Averyanov, Tien Hiep Nguyen, Khang Nguyen Sinh, The Van Pham, Vichith Lamxay, Somchanh Bounphanmy, Shengvilai Lorphengsy, Loc Ke Phan, Soulivanh Lanorsavanh and Khamfa Chantthavongsa. 2014. Gymnosperms of Laos.
    Nordic Journal of Botany.

    0 0

    Fig. 2. The distribution of fossil records of Nelumbo on modern world map.

    • This paper provides additional descriptions to Nelumbo changchangensisHe et Jin.
    • The historical biogeography of Nelumbo is reconstructed by fossil records.
    Nelumbo distributions in geologic past are linked to climatic changes.
    • The origin of lotus tubers is related to cooling climate and increasing seasonality.

    The historical reconstruction of the origin and dispersal of plant taxa in space and time facilitates a better understanding of their modern distribution patterns. However, most studies of paleobiogeography have focused on terrestrial plants, and the distribution changes of aquatic plants are less well understood. Here we study the lotus plant Nelumbo (Nelumbonaceae), an aquatic perennial herb, with a disjunctive distribution across East, South and Southeast Asia-North Australia and North America. The reproductive organs of Nelumbo changchangensis He et Jin from the Eocene of Hainan, China are supplementarily described. Analysis of the spatial and temporal distributions of Nelumbo in the geologic past indicates that the genus first occurs in mid-latitude area of Laurasia in the Early Cretaceous, then becomes widespread in North America and Eurasia and expands into South America during the Late Cretaceous, and reaches its maximum northern limit during the Eocene. The genus persists and thrives in North America and Eurasia until the Pliocene. The Pleistocene ice age causes the extinction of Nelumbo in Europe and central Asia, and its populations in North American and Asia are also restricted to refuges of lower latitude. Like the terrestrial plants Metasequoia (Cupressaceae) and Nordenskioeldia (Trochodendraceae), the fluctuations of Nelumbo distribution ranges are also linked to climatic changes in the Cenozoic. The cooling climate and increasing seasonality in the Eocene of East Asia may favor the origin of tubers and the differentiating of the ecotypes in lotus, which allow the deciduous type to survive in cold winters.

    Keywords: Paleobiogeography; Paleoclimatic change; Lotus; Nelumbo; Nelumbonaceae

    Fig. 1. The present disjunctive distribution of Nelumbo.

    Ya Li, Thierry Smith, Popova Svetlana, Jian Yang, Jian-Hua Jin and Cheng-Sen Li. 2014. Paleobiogeography of the Lotus Plant (Nelumbonaceae: Nelumbo) and Its Bearing on the Paleoclimatic Changes. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology. 399; 284–293. DOI:

    0 0

      Datanglong guangxiensis
    Mo, Zhou, Li, Hunag & Cao, 2014
    illustration: EloyManzaneroon @deviantART 
    A new large-bodied theropod dinosaur, Datanglong guangxiensis gen. et sp. nov., was recovered from the Lower Cretaceous Xinlong Formation of the Datang Basin, Guangxi. It is unique in several features including: posteriormost dorsal vertebra with teardrop-shaped pneumatic foramen confined by enlarged pcdl, acpl and the centrum; posteriormost dorsal with well-developed, horizontal prpl; posteriormost dorsal with a parapophysis projecting more laterally than the diapophysis; brevis fossa shallow with short, ridge-like medial blade; and iliac pubic peduncle with posteroventrally expanded margin. Cladistic analysis supports the idea that this new taxon Datanglong guangxiensis is a primitive member of the Carcharodontosauria in possessing two unambiguous synapomorphies: large external pneumatic foramina and internal spaces present in the lateral surface of ilium, and a peg-and-socket ischiac articulation with the ilium. The presence of the new taxon from Guangxi further confirms that Carcharodontosauria were cosmopolitan large-bodied predators during the Early-mid Cretaceous.

    Keywords: Theropoda; Carcharodontosauria; Lower Cretaceous; Xinlong Formation; Guangxi

    MO, J., ZHOU, F., LI, G., HUANG, Z. and CAO, C. 2014, A New Carcharodontosauria (Theropoda) from the Early Cretaceous of Guangxi, Southern China. Acta Geologica Sinica, 88: 1051–1059. doi:
    Cau, Andrea. 2014. "Datanglong: un nuovo carcharodontosauriano?" [Datanlong: a new carcharodontosaur?]. Theropoda (in Italian)

    0 0

    Buffy Helmetcrest Oxypogon stubelii by Juan José Arango
    Blue-bearded Helmetcrest Oxypogon cyanolaemus by John Gould,
    White-bearded Helmetcrest Oxypogon lindenii by Hugo Arnal, and 
    Green-bearded Helmetcrest Oxypogon guerinii by Jacob Drucker.

    Morphological variation in the genus Oxypogon was studied using biometrics and plumage data, and available sound recordings were inspected. Four distinct populations of Bearded Helmetcrest Oxypogon guerinii (cyanolaemus in the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta, lindenii in the Venezuelan Andes, guerinii in the East Andes of Colombia, and stubelii in the Central Andes of Colombia) were lumped without justification in the 1940s but are highly distinct in multiple plumage and morphometric characters. Species rank is suggested for all four taxa, following species scoring tests. We draw special attention to O. cyanolaemus of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta, which has not been reported since 1946. It is recommended for the IUCN criteria of Critically Endangered, although it may possibly already be extinct.

    Key words: Oxypogon, Bearded helmetcrests, taxonomy, conservation, Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta, paramo

    Collar, N.J. & Salaman, P. 2013. The Taxonomic and Conservation Status of the Oxypogon Helmetcrests. Conservación Colombiana. 19: 31-38.

    Proposed splits are accepted of Oxypogon Helmetcrests into four species (three in Colombia)
    Green-bearded Helmetcrest Oxypogon guerinii 
    Blue-bearded Helmetcrest O. cyanolaemus 
    Buffy Helmetcrest O. stubelii 
    We accept the splits set out in Collar & Salaman (2013), resulting in recognition of three species occurring in Colombia, guerinii in the Central Andes, cyanolaemus in Santa Marta and stubelii in the East Andes. All are known from specimen records in Colombia so can be considered confirmed for the country.

    0 0

     Jelawang Bent-toed Gecko | Cyrtodactylus jelawangensis
    Grismer, Wood, Anuar, Quah, Muin, Mohamed, Onn, Sumarli, Loredo & Heinz, 2014
    FIGURE 4. Upper: adult female paratype (LSUHC 11063) of Cyrtodactylus jelawangensis sp. nov. from Kem Baha, Hutan Lipur Jelawang, Kelantan, Peninsular Malaysia. Lower: microhabitat at the type locality

    An integrative taxonomic analysis of three newly discovered populations of the gekkonid genus Cyrtodactylus Gray from Merapoh, Pahang; Gunung Stong, Kelantan; and Gunung Tebu, Terengganu indicate they are part of the C. pulchellus complex and each is a new species and thusly namedCyrtodactylus sharkari sp. nov., C. jelawangensis sp. nov., and C. timur sp. nov., respectively. Each species bears a unique suite of morphological and color pattern characters separating them from each other and all other nominal species in the C. pulchellus complex. Their phylogenetic relationships to each other and other species in the C. pulchellus complex were unexpected in that they are not in accordance with the general distribution of the species in this complex, underscoring the intricate historical biogeography of the Thai-Malay Peninsula. These descriptions highlight our current lack of knowledge concerning the herpetological diversity and distribution of species in northeastern Peninsular Malaysia.

    Key words: Conservation, Integrative taxonomy, Molecular systematics, Southeast Asia, Sundaland, Conservation

    Sharkari’s Bent-toed Gecko | Cyrtodactylus sharkari
    Grismer, Wood, Anuar, Quah, Muin, Mohamed, Onn, Sumarli, Loredo & Heinz, 2014
    FIGURE 3. Upper: adult male holotype (LSUHC 11022) of Cyrtodactylus sharkari sp. nov. from Gua Gunting, Merapoh, Pahang, Peninsular Malaysia. Microhabitat of Cyrtodactylus sharkari sp. nov. at Gua Gunting (lower right) that is contiguous with Gua Goya (lower left) where this species is also expected to occur.

    Sharkari’s Bent-toed Gecko | Cyrtodactylus sharkari 

    Distribution. This species is known only from the type locality at Gua Gunting, Merapoh, Pahang, Peninsular Malaysia (Fig. 1). It is expected that its distribution is more extensive throughout the limestone forest of this region.

    Etymology. The specific epithet sharkari is a patronym honoring Dato Mohd. Sharkar Shamsudin Chairman of the Pahang State Tourism and Culture Committee for his persistence in ensuring the cancellation of the proposed cement plant in Merapoh.

    Natural History. The holotype was collected at 2100 hrs approximately 2 m above the ground on a vertical surface of the perimeter of an extensive karst system surrounded by a limestone forest (Fig. 3). 

     Jelawang Bent-toed Gecko | Cyrtodactylus jelawangensis

    Distribution.Cyrtodactylus jelawangensis sp. nov. is known only from the type locality at Kem Baha, Gunung Stong, Kelantan, Peninsular Malaysia (Fig. 1). It is expected that its distribution is more extensive throughout Gunung Stong both above and below the type locality. Norhayati et al. (2005) recorded a specimen that was identified as C. pulchellus from around a stream near the Pergau River in the Gunung Basor Forest Reserve, Kelantan. Due to the close proximity of the location to Gunung Stong, we believe those specimens were incorrectly identified and should be assigned to this new species.

    Etymology. The specific epithet jelawangensis is an adjective in reference to Hutan Lipur Jelawang, the recreational forest at the base of Gunung Stong near the type locality. 

    Natural History.Cyrtodactylus jelawangensis sp. nov. was collected at night along a fast-flowing stream strewn with granite boulders coursing through hill dipterocarp forest (Fig. 4) between 455 m and 470 m in elevation. Lizards were most common on large granite boulders in areas where they could easily escape into a nearby crack or between boulders. Others were seen on roots beneath an earthen overhang and one specimen was found on a tree trunk

    Banjaran Timur Bent-toed Gecko | Cyrtodactylus timur
    Grismer, Wood, Anuar, Quah, Muin, Mohamed, Onn, Sumarli, Loredo & Heinz, 2014
    FIGURE 5. Upper left: adult male holotype (LSUHC 11207) of Cyrtotdactylus timur sp. nov. from Punca Air, Gunung Tebu, Terengganu, Peninsular Malaysia. Upper right: female paratype LSUHC 11185. Middle left: uncataloged hatching LSUDPC 8249. Lower left: adult male paratype LSUHC 11183. Lower right: juvenile female paratype LSUHC 11184.

    Banjaran Timur Bent-toed Gecko | Cyrtodactylus timur

    Distribution. This species may be endemic to Gunung Tebu, Terengganu, Peninsular Malaysia. It is expected that its distribution is more extensive both above and below the type locality at Punca Air.

    Etymology. The specific epithet “timur” is an invariable noun in apposition in reference to this species being found in the Banjaran Timur of northeastern Peninsular Malaysia. “Timur” means east in the Malay language and is in reference to the mountain range being on the east coast of Peninsular Malaysia.

    Natural History. All adults were collected at night in hill dipterocarp forest in the vicinity of a rocky stream (Fig. 6) between 640 m and 700 m in elevation. Lizards were most common on the granite boulders along the stream but others were seen on the bases of trees and one individual was observed on an earthen bank. A small juvenile (LSUHC 10886, SVL 60.3 mm) was found on a twig at the base of a large tree deep in the forest and not along the stream.

     L Lee Grismer, Perry L Wood, Shahrul Anuar, Evan S H Quah, Mohd Abdul Muin, Maketab Mohamed, Chan Kin Onn, Alexandra X Sumarli, Ariel I Loredo and Heather M Heinz. 2014. The Phylogenetic Relationships of Three New Species of the Cyrtodactylus pulchellus complex (Squamata: Gekkonidae) from poorly explored regions in northeastern Peninsular Malaysia. Zootaxa. 3786(3):359-81.

    0 0

    Limnonectes cintalubang
     Matsui, Nishikawa & Eto, 2014

     We found a unique, burrow-utilising dicroglossid frog of the genus Limnonectes from western Sarawak, East Malaysia. This frog is always found near burrows on the ground, into which it escapes when disturbed. It is much divergent from other congeners in morphology and mtDNA sequences. This species is nested using molecular phylogeny in a clade with Bornean populations of L. kuhlii complex and L. hikidai, but differs completely from the others by having relatively smooth skin, distinct tympanum, and chocolate brown dorsum with tiny blue spots laterally. We thus describe it as a new species and discuss its unique habit of burrow utilisation.

    Key words. New Limnonectes, MtDNA phylogeny, burrow utilisation, Sarawak, taxonomy

    Fig. 3. Dorsolateral view of a male holotype of Limnonectes cintalubang, new species (KUHE 47859).

    Etymology. The species name is from the Malay words “cintai”, meaning to love, and “lubang”, meaning a hole, alluding burrow-utilising habits of the new species.

     Masafumi Matsui, Kanto Nishikawa & Koshiro Eto. 2014. A New Burrow-utilising Fanged Frog from Sarawak, East Malaysia (Anura: Dicroglossidae). RAFFLES BULLETINOF ZOOLOGY.62: 679–687.

    0 0

    Rhinorex condrupus Gates & Scheetz, 2014
    Rhinorex attacked by Deinosuchus, a Cretaceous crocodile
    illustration: Julius Csotonyi

    A new hadrosaurid is described from the Upper Cretaceous Neslen Formation of central Utah. Rhinorexcondrupus gen. et sp. nov. is diagnosed on the basis of two unique traits, a hook-shaped projection of the nasal anteroventral process and dorsal projection of the posteroventral process of the premaxilla, and is further differentiated from other hadrosaurid species based on the morphology of the nasal (large nasal boss on the posterodorsal corner of the circumnarial fossa, small protuberences on the anterior process, absence of nasal arch), jugal (vertical postorbital process), postorbital (high degree of flexion present on posterior process), and squamosal (inclined anterolateral processes). This new taxon was discovered in estuarine sediments dated at approximately 75 Ma and just 250 km north of the prolific dinosaur-bearing strata of the Kaiparowits Formation, possibly overlapping in time with Gryposaurus monumentensis. Phylogenetic parsimony and Bayesian analyses associate this new taxon with the Gryposaurus clade, even though the type specimen does not possess the diagnostic nasal hump of the latter genus. Comparisons with phylogenetic analyses from other studies show that a current consensus exists between the general structure of the hadrosaurid evolutionary tree, but on closer examination there is little agreement among species relationships.

    Keywords: Hadrosauridae, ornithopod, Cretaceous, Utah, Book Cliffs, Neslen Formation, biogeography, phylogenetics Related arti

    Terry A. Gates & Rodney Scheetz. 2014. A New saurolophine hadrosaurid (Dinosauria: Ornithopoda) from the Campanian of Utah, North America.
    Journal of Systematic Paleontology. doi: 10.1080/14772019.2014.950614

    0 0

    Scytalopus gonzagai Maurício, Belmonte-Lopes, Pacheco, Silveira,
    Whitney & Bornschein, 2014
     Bahian Mouse-colored Tapaculo, an adult male at Boa Nova, Bahia.
    photo: Ciro Albano.

    An isolated population of tapaculos attributed to Scytalopus speluncae has been known from the mountains of southeastern Bahia state, Brazil, since the early 1990s, and a second isolated population was discovered in 1999. Morphological and bioacoustic analyses of 11 specimens and several tape recordings indicated that these populations represent a new species, in agreement with a previous molecular phylogenetic study. This species is unambiguously distinguished from its closest relatives by 4 suites of characters: (1) morphometrics–body proportions, (2) plumage color, (3) vocalizations, and (4) genetics. Using each of these character sets, separately or in combination, one can distinguish with 100% confidence the new species from its sister lineages. The new species is known from only 5 localities distributed in 2 distinct mountain ranges, 1 on the eastern slopes of the Planalto da Conquista, between the municipalities of Boa Nova and Iguaí, and another in the Serra das Lontras, ∼100 km to the southeast and only 37 km from the coast. The new species primarily inhabits undisturbed montane forest, from 660 to 1,140 m a.s.l. We estimated an area of occupancy of the species of only 5,885 ha and a density of 0.49 individuals ha−1, resulting in a total estimated population of 2,883 individuals. Forest remnants are under severe pressure from clandestine timber extraction and outright deforestation. Under IUCN criteria, this new species should be classified as “Endangered.”

    Keywords: biogeography, conservation, endangered species, montane Atlantic Forest, Scytalopus, taxonomic revision, vocalizations

    Giovanni Nachtigall Maurício, Ricardo Belmonte-Lopes, José Fernando Pacheco, Luís Fábio Silveira, Bret M. Whitney, and Marcos Ricardo Bornschein. 2014. Taxonomy of “Mouse-colored Tapaculos” (II): An Endangered New Species from the Montane Atlantic Forest of southern Bahia, Brazil (Passeriformes: Rhinocryptidae: Scytalopus). The Auk. 131 (4): 643-659; doi:

    Uma população isolada, atribuída a Scytalopus speluncae, foi encontrada no início da década de 1990 em montanhas* do sudeste da Bahia, Brasil; posteriormente, uma segunda população foi encontrada em 1999. Análises morfológicas de 11 espécimes de museu e bioacústicas de várias gravações indicam que estas aves representam uma nova espécie, concordando com um estudo molecular anterior. A nova espécie é inequivocamente distinta de seus parentes mais próximos em quatro conjuntos de caracteres: (1) morfometria/proporções do corpo, (2) coloração da plumagem, (3) vocalizações, e (4) aspectos genéticos. É possível distinguir com 100% de confiança a nova espécie de suas linhagens irmãs usando estes caracteres, separadamente ou em combinação. A nova espécie é encontrada em apenas cinco localidades distribuídas em dois complexos montanhosos, um na vertente leste do Planalto da Conquista, entre os municípios de Boa Nova e Iguaí, e outro na Serra das Lontras, cerca de 100 km a sudeste e somente a 37 km da costa. Esta nova espécie ocorre principalmente em floresta primária montana entre 660 e 1.140 m de altitude. Estimamos uma área de ocupação de apenas 5.885 ha e uma densidade de 0,49 indivíduos por ha para esta espécie, resultando em uma população estimada em 2.883 indivíduos. Os remanescentes florestais na área de ocorrência da espécie estão sob forte pressão de atividades ilegais de desmatamento e extração de madeira. De acordo com os critérios da IUCN, esta nova espécie deve ser classificada como Em Perigo.

    Palavras-chave: biogeografia, conservação, espécie ameaçada, floresta atlântica montana, Scytalopus, revisão taxonômica, vocalizações

    New Bird Species Discovered in Brazil - Bahian Mouse-Colored Tapaculo

older | 1 | .... | 15 | 16 | (Page 17) | 18 | 19 | .... | 182 | newer