On Tue, 5 Dec 1995 10:59:03 +0000, Dani Martinez wrote:
>I had the opportunity to describe a
>new capitellid genus from a brackish, shallow-water, enclosed Bay of the
>Ebro's Delta in the Iberian peninsula which I named "Pseudomastus
>deltaicus". It was very abundant there (about 2000 individuals per square
REPLY: new species continue to be currently described from the
Mediterranean. Take the example of the 12th brachiopod species - thus even
in a group that generally catches attention and that is not speciose in the
Logan A., Zibrowius H., 1994. A new genus and species of rhynchonellid
(Brachiopoda, Recent) from submarine caves in the Mediterranean Sea.
Marine ecology [P.S.Z.N.I], 15 (1): 77-88.
Or take the case of a new benthic ctenophore (also a group less speciose
Carre C., Carre D., 1993. Ctenella aurantia, genre et espece nouveaux
de ctenophore tentacul (Ctenellidae fam. nov.) mediterraneen, sans
colloblastes et avec ventouses labiales. Can. J. Zool. 71 (9): 1804-1810.
>As Mediterranean waters have been (and are being) largely explored,
>I thought the species was endemic.
REPLY: That's a rather naive view. For some groups the Mediterranean
may indeed be better explored than other areas, but that does not garantee
that any new species therein is an endemic. See the above cited cases: the
authors were cautious enough to not appoint those species endemics.
Given Martinez' strong believe that (nearly) everything is well known in
the Mediterranean, it would even be more logical to see in each newly
discovered form a recent immigrant from elsewhere...
There are indeed many aliens of various origins successful in the
Mediterranean. See the following compilation:
Zibrowius H., 1992. Ongoing modification of the Mediterranean fauna and
flora by the establishment of exotic species. Mesogee [Bulletin du Museum
d'histoire naturelle de Marseille], 51, 1991: 83-107.
>do not know whether this could be a case of recent migration,
>previous misleading identifications, hazard of looking now at the right
>zones, or whatever.
REPLY: Recent migration is another explanation often proposed without
detailed arguments. But the personal hazard of looking at special biota
and areas and the ability of being interested in some type of organism may
generally be a more likely explanation of the discovery.
>The main point is that the name of the species, directly linked to the type
>locality, may induce to erroneous identifications if people do not expect
>to find a "deltaic" species out of a delta.
REPLY: No, that's really NOT the main point. A name once given with
reference to the first collecting site can evidently not cover all
situations to be discovered lateron. All somewhat experienced taxonomists,
biogeographers, etc. should be aware of that. Nevertheless, names
totally incorrect with reference to the origin should preferably have been
avoided: such as Posidonia oceanica (that seagrass appears to be a true
endemic of the Mediterranean - never duely reported from the - Atlantic -
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