Contents of Proceedings of the Zoological Institute

Volume 324 (4), 2020

Date of publication — December 25, 2020

Vertical distribution, seasonal differentiation and trajectory of movement of zooplankton and pelagic fish of Lake Baikal

In Lake Baikal, the majority (87%) of fish biomass is generated in the pelagic zone. Two species of Comephorus, three species of Cottocomephorus and Coregonus migratorius inhabit in the pelagic zone of the lake. Currently, only C. migratorius is considered a resource species, the harvest of which accounts for about 50% of the total fish harvest. Food items for pelagic fish are copepods Epischura baikalensis and pelagic amphipods Macrohectopus branickii. The seasonal distribution and formation of zooplankton concentrations determine the food migrations of fish. The patterns of the seasonal distribution of zooplankton and pelagic fish were described by M.M.Kozhov (1954, 1964). Comparative analysis of the abundance of zooplankton in South Baikal over time, showed that during the period of maximum development of E. baikalensis in the months of July, August, and October, zooplankton concentration in the decade 1997 to 2007 was twice more than in 1951 (Kozhov 1954; Kiprushina 2010). The distribution of E. baikalensis is directly dependent on the water temperature. Yet there is an inverse relationship in the surface layer 0–25 meters. During warming up of the surface water layers, which had been observed in 2002 year E. baikalensis left the upper zone and migrated deeper, to a layer of 50–100 meters. In other months of the year, no changes in the average values of the E. baikalensis abundance were revealed. At present, when the ecosystem of Lake Baikal is changing, there is a need to restart such complex studies, and to use the results obtained by M.M. Kozhov for comparative analysis.

Distribution and population characteristics of the invasive tubenose goby Proterorhinus marmoratus (Pallas, 1814) in the eastern Gulf of Finland

The article examines the characteristics of the invasive tubenose goby population that has become established in the eastern Gulf of Finland in the last 15 years. The species inhabits the most part of the studied area, and mainly occurs in waters with salinity equal to or lower than 3 ‰. Abundance of the tubenose goby is positively correlated with the density of filamentous algae, but not with other estimated parameters (substrates, macrophytes, water characteristics). The tubenose goby in the Gulf of Finland reached 62 mm Sl and age 1+. Age composition changed from mature female predominance to the male predominance during the season. Numerous juveniles and spawning adults were observed. The tubenose goby demonstrates successful naturalization in the new conditions and was numerically dominant in the coastal fish assemblage in summer.

First record of the Deepsea pigfish Congiopodus coriaceus (Scorpaeniformes: Congiopodidae) in the Great Australian Bight with new data on morphology

The Deepsea pigfish Congiopodus coriaceus Paulin et Moreland, 1979 is recorded from the waters off the southern coast of Australia, Great Australian Bight for the first time, based on a juvenile specimen SL 64 mm collected in 1966. This is the westernmost known locality of the species, 3500 km from the type locality off New Zealand. The lack of published data after the original description of the species revealed the need to clarify a number of meristic and morphometric parameters. Based on x-ray images of 28 ZIN specimens of C. coriaceus from New Zealand, the range of individual variability in the number of vertebrae, the number of rays of the dorsal and anal fins is shown. The number of procurrent and principal rays in the caudal fin has been clarified. In some cases, the range of morphometric parameters published in the original description has been expanded, for example, the maximum body height and head length. The original description was supplemented with 16 new measurements. For the first time, data on the lengths of the ventral and caudal fins, the length and height of the caudal peduncle, and the interorbital distance were published. Because of contradictory published data on the number of gill rakers on the first branchial arch, their number was clarified; the diagnostic value of this parameter was confirmed.

Redescription of the unicorn icefish Channichthys rhinoceratus Richardson (Notothenioidei: Channichthyidae) with synonymization of three similar species

On the basis of a comprehensive study of the external morphology, seismosensory system and gill apparatus, a revision of the Kerguelen icefishes of the genus Channichthys Richardson, 1844 (Notothenioidei: Channichthyidae) was carried out in order to confirm or refute the validity of a questionable species of this genus. The need for the presented study arose due to the lack of an unambiguous accepted opinion of various specialists about the exact species composition of this genus of Antarctic fish. The studied sample included 40 specimens of the type species of this genus, unicorn icefish Channichthys rhinoceratus Richardson, 1844 from the collection of the Zoological Institute RAS and holotypes of 3 species, Aelita icefish Ch. aelitae Shandikov, 1995, green icefish Ch. mithridatis Shandikov, 2008 and robust icefish Ch. richardsoni Shandikov, 2011, from the Zoological collection of the National Museum of Natural History NAS of Ukraine. The classical technique was used for the morphological study of fish with subsequent comparative analysis of the data obtained. As a result, Ch. rhinoceratus is redescribed, highlighting the most important diagnostic characters. Three similar species (Ch. aelitae, Ch. mithridatis and Ch. richardsoni) are place in synonymy of the latter. Basing on the results of this and our previous species revisions of Channichthys, a key for identification has been compiled, which includes diagnostic features of all four valid icefishes, Ch. rhinoceratus, Ch. velifer, Ch. rugosus and Ch. panticapaei.

Remains of mammals from the Antique settlement of Golubitskaya 2

The article presents the results of the study of osteological material from the Antique settlement of Golubitskaya 2 (Krasnodar Territory, Taman Peninsula, Russia) from the excavations of 2007–2019. Archaeological investigations of the settlement have been directed by PhD D.V. Zhuravlev (State Historical Museum, Moscow). In total, 5996 mammalian bones were identified from cultural layers of the 6th–3rd centuries BC cultural layers. The osteological material that has been accumulating at the Antique settlement for almost three centuries is relatively well preserved. We present here a series of new facts, elaborating our ideas about the economic life, customs and traditions of the local Antique population. Wild game animals are represented by adult individuals of brown hare, wolf, fox, brown bear, wild boar and red deer. These animals still live in Ciscaucasia. Hunting here acted only as an additional source of food and was conducted in the immediate vicinity of the site. As a result of the analysis, it was shown that the inhabitants of Golubitskaya 2 led a settled agricultural lifestyle — herds were most likely grazed in the immediate vicinity. Excavations revealed forty-two full or partial skeletons of dogs, the study of which showed the presence of numerous healed injuries in individual animals. Possible ritual burials of dogs in the settlement were also recorded. Our analyses indicate that the bones of large mammals were often used here as a raw material in the manufacture of artefacts. We also compare here our results with the data of colleagues working at other settlements of Eastern Crimea and the Taman Peninsula.

Review of type specimens of lizards (Sauria: Lacertidae) described by Georgy Fedorovich Sukhov

The paper provides data on the current location of the type specimens of lacertid lizard's taxa described by herpetologist Georgy F. Sukhov (1899–1942), as at July 1, 2020: Lacerta agilis tauridica Suchow, 1927 (lectotype [here designated] — ZISP No 12620, paralectotypes — ZISP No 3226, 3235, 3238, 3856, 10366в, 12230, 12231, 12520, 12619, 14110, NMNH No 2152 (14599–14600), 2163 (14621–14622), 2172 (14705–14712), 2184 (14772–14773), 2184 (14774–14777), 2188 (14872–14893), 2279 (15983–16037), 2279 (16038–16074), 2518 (16621)), Lacerta boemica Suchow, 1929 (lectotype [here designated] — ZISP No 30363, paralectotypes — ZISP No 16210, 30358-30362, 30364-30398.1, NHM No 1960.1.4.26–30, 1965.337–342, NMNO no No), Apathya cappadocica urmiana Lantz et Suchow, 1934 (holotype — ZISP No 12657b, paratypes — ZISP No 11444, 12657а, с, 12658), Lacerta princeps kurdistanica Suchow, 1936 (holotype — ZISP No 11441.1, paratypes — ZISP No 11440, 11441.2–4, 11442, 11443). According to the International Code of Zoological Nomenclature (4th edition), the name Lacerta agilis caucasica Suchow, 1927 should be considered as a junior primary homonym of Lacerta caucasica Méhely, 1909, and the designation of the neotype of L. a. tauridica by Kalyabina-Hauf et al. must be rejected. The history of description of taxa as well as a list of Sukhov’s publications (12 articles published in 1927–1948) are given. Localities, collector’s names and dates of capture of the type specimens are clarified. Anderson and Šmíd et al. indicated that Eiselt restricted the type locality of L. princeps kurdistanica; this is not true.

New species Semitobrilus filipjevi sp. n. from Laos and taxonomic structure of the genus Semitobrilus Tsalolikhin, 1981 (Nematoda: Tobrilida, Tobrilidae, Neotobrilinae)

A description of the new species Semitobrilus filipjevi sp. n. from Laos is given. The new species differs from the other species of the genus by its long head setae. The new species differs from S. pellucidus in the length of the head setae (more than 50% of the head width) and the presence of crystalloids in the body cavity. The new species was discovered in the silty-sandy soil from a forest pond in southern Laos. An identification key of the species and a refined diagnosis of the genus Semitobrilus is provided. The species characters and species composition of the genus Semitobrilus are discussed. It is proposed to synonymize the species S. closlongicaudatus (Gagarin, 1971) with the species S. longicaudatus (Hofmaenner, 1913). The species S. gagarini (Ebsary, 1982) is transferred to the category sp. inq. The length of the head setae is the main character of the species. The presence of crystalloids in the body cavity is an unreliable character. Errors in the descriptions of S. ebsaryi, S. gagarini, and S. pellucidus are discussed. The work used the materials from the collection of the Zoological Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences, including the original slides by I. N. Filipjev.

New data on Roxania Leach, 1847 (Gastropoda: Heterobranchia) from the Sea of Marmara based on materials of the Russian expedition in 1894

Heterobranch specimens of the genus Roxania collected during the Russian expedition (1894) aboard the Turkish steamship Selânik to the Sea of Marmara are found in the collection of the Zoological Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences (Saint Petersburg). One of the aims of the expedition was investigation of the fauna of the Sea of Marmara including its deepest zone to compare with the Black Sea. In 1896 A.A. Ostroumoff published a report on the expedition. Heterobranch mollusks of the genus Roxania are represented in our material by two lots from the first voyage of the expedition to the archipelago of the Prince Islands. The specimens were identified by K.O. Milaschewitsch as Roxania utriculus (Brocchi, 1814) and “Cryptaxis imperforatus n. sp.”, but a description of the last taxon has not been published. In this study, the specimens labeled by Milachewitch as Cryptaxis imperforatus n. sp. were identified as belonging to Roxania monterosatoi Dautzenberg et H. Fischer, 1896. The species is recorded for the Sea of Marmara for the first time; the description and illustrations of the species are presented. Most species of gastropod mollusks collected during the expedition including all samples of Roxania were represented by empty shells. Taxonomical value of the columella morphology in Roxania species is discussed. Based on this character the species of the genus can be divided into two groups: R. utriculus species group (mouth channeled) and R. monterosatoi species group (mouth without a channel). Morphological and molecular phylogenetic investigations are needed to clarify the status of these two groups.

The species composition and distribution of hydropolyps (Hydrozoa) in the Barents Sea and the adjacent section of the Norwegian Sea based on the results of samples from expeditions of PINRO in 2003–2008

In this work we reported data on the biodiversity, distribution, and biogeographic composition of the Hydrozoa fauna of the Barents Sea. The analysis used materials collected in the Barents Sea on expeditions from 2003 to 2008. Totally 78 species of hydropolyps belonging to 37 genera, 16 families and 3 orders were found. But 7 species had been found in more than 10% of all stations and formed about 75% of the total biomass. According to biogeographic characteristics, they can be combined into 6 large groups, but the basis of the Hydrozoa fauna was consisted by boreal-arctic and boreal species entering the Arctic. The richest species diversity was found in the fauna of the southwestern, northwestern, and southeastern regions, and the poorest in the northeastern region. Theoretically, the limiting number of hydroid species living in the Barents Sea can reach ~ 130. Hydropolyps are not evenly distributed across the sea, depending on a number of abiotic factors. As was shown by the results of constructing multiple regression, the greatest influence on the hydroid biodiversity was exerted by depth, degree of siltation of bottom sediments, temperature of the bottom layer of water, gravel and coarse fractions in sediments, and gradient of the bottom slope. Biomass indicators depended on depth, degree of siltation of sediments and gravel and larger fractions.

A review of the genus Mecopoda (Orthoptera: Tettigoniidae: Mecopodinae) from Indo-Malayan and Papuan Regions

The genus Mecopoda A.-Serv. is divided into three subgenera: Eumecopoda Heb., stat. nov., Mecopoda s. str. and Paramecopoda subgen. nov. The following species and subspecies are described or briefly redescribed: M. (E.) cyrtoscelis Karsch; M. (E.) c. moresby subsp. nov.; M. (E.) c. aru subsp. nov.; M. (E.) spinosa sp. nov.; M. (E.) s. tuberculata subsp. nov.; M. (E.) s. supiori subsp. nov.; M. (E.) superba Bol.; M. (E.) moluccarum Griff.; M. (P.) granulosa sp. nov.; M. (M.) kerinci sp. nov.; M. (M.) angusta sp. nov.; M. (M.) a. borealis subsp. nov.; M. (M.) dilatata Redt.; M. (M.) d. basimaculata subsp. nov.; M. (M.) ampla sp. nov.; M. (M.) a. malayensis subsp. nov.; M. (M.) a. javaensis subsp. nov.; M. (M.) niponensis continentalis subsp. nov.; M. (M.) fallax He; M. (M.) f. sulawesi subsp. nov.; M. (M.) f. macassariensis (Haan), stat. nov.; M. (M.) f. aequatorialis subsp. nov.; M. (M.) f. oceanica subsp. nov.; M. (M.) tibetensis Liu; M. (M.) prominens sp. nov.; M. (M.) stridulata sp. nov.; M. (M.) s. latiuscula subsp. nov.; M. (M.) elongata (L.); M. (M.) e. minahasa subsp. nov.; M. (M.) e. darevskyi subsp. nov.; M. (M.) e. buru subsp. nov.; M. (M.) e. maculata A.-Serv., stat. nov.; M. (M.) tenebrosa (Walk.), sp. resurr.; M. (M.) shveri sp. nov.; M. (M.) hainanensis He. The keys to subgenera and subspecies of some species as well as new geographical records are also given.

Volume 324 (3), 2020

Date of publication — September 25, 2020

New genus and species of the tribe Gryllini (Orthoptera: Gryllidae: Gryllinae) from Peru

A new genus with a new species (Itarogryllus proprius gen. et sp. nov.) from the tribe Gryllini are described from Peru. Possible belonging of this genus to the subtribe Brachytripina is discussed. The genus is similar to Brachytrupina in the structure of its male ectoparameres but differs from all other genera of this subtribe in its small body size in combination with the following characters: male tegmen wide and having a wide mirror; epiphallus characteristic, having a pair of arcuate posterior lobes; ectoparamere with a complete fusion of the apical and proximal parts, with a developed but very narrow and completely isolated mesal lobe, and with poserodorsal sclerite having a very short and rounded “spine-like process” at the apex.

A review of the genus Chrastoblatta Saussure et Zehntner, 1895 (Dictyoptera: Ectobiidae: Blattellinae)

This paper gives a review of the insufficiently studied genus Chrastoblatta Saussure et Zehntner, 1895. The genus Chrastoblatta was described from Madagascar (environs of Antananarivo) and includes two species: Ch. tricolor Saussure et Zehntner, 1895 and Ch. dimidiata (Saussure, 1863). This contribution is based on the study of a series of paralectotypes of Ch. tricolor and syntypes of Ch. dimidiata from The Muséum d’histoire naturelle in Geneva. Additional specimens of Ch. tricolor were found in the collection of the Zoological Institute of the Russian Academy of  Sciences  in  Saint  Petersburg.  Detailed  morphological description of the type species, Ch. tricolor, is given. Particular attention is paid to the structure of the male and female genitalia, which are described for the first time. Chrastoblatta dimidiata is briefly described due to insufficient and damaged material, but it is probably closely related to the type species. The genus Chrastoblatta is characterized by a peculiar structure of the wide and flat head, hind tibiae with concavity at the apex, a distinctly reduced 4th segment of the tarsi, an asymmetrical hypandrium, and robust, curved styli. The presence of not inverted genitalia suggests the placement of Chrastoblatta in the subfamily Blattellinae. At the present time, the differential diagnosis of the genus Chrastoblatta based on characters of the male and female genitalia cannot be compiled due to insufficient knowledge of other Madagascan ectobiid.

New tribe, new genera, and new species of the family Issidae (Hemiptera: Fulgoroidea) from Southeastern Asia and New Guinea, with notes on morphology and evolution of the family

Eupilisini trib. nov. is erected for the genera Eupilis Walker, 1857, Gabaloeca Walker, 1870, Syrgis Stål 1870, and Bornepilis gen. nov. (type species: Bornepilis longipennis sp. nov.) in the subfamily Issinae of the family Issidae. Bornepilis longipennis sp. nov. is described from Sabah State of Malaysia in northern Borneo. Two new species of the genus Eupilis are described from northwestern Borneo – E. borneoensis sp. nov. and E. walkeri sp. nov. Eupilis hyalinocosta Melichar, 1914 is redescribed and together with E. rubrovenosa Melichar, 1914 is transferred to Bornepilis gen. nov. Eupilis albilineola Walker, 1857, E. hebes Walker, 1857, and Gabaloeca retifera Walker, 1870 are redescribed. Eupilis nigrinervis Stål, 1870 is redescribed and transferred to the genus Gabaloeca. Three new combinations are formed: Bornepilis hyalinocosta (Melichar, 1914), comb. nov., B. rubrovenosa (Melichar, 1914), comb. nov., and Gabaloeca nigrinervis (Stål, 1870), comb. nov. Paguinella ramosa gen. et sp. nov. is described from the canopies of Madang Province in Papua New Guinea. This new genus is closely related to New Guinean genus Papunega Gnezdilov et Bourgoin, 2015, but well distinguished by ventral aedeagal hooks each with two long branches and wide neck of capitulum of style. Morphology of hind wing and male genitalia of the members of issid tribes Eupilisini trib. nov., Issini, Sarimini, Chimetopini, and Kodaianellini are discussed and illustrated in accordance to evolution and historic distribution of the family Issidae from southeastern Asia to America and tropical Africa. New data on distribution of Bornepilis hyalinocosta and Gabaloeca nigrinervis in the Philippines are given.

New species of the genus Phlugiolopsis from its subgenus Omkoiana stat. nov. (Orthoptera: Tettigoniidae: Meconematinae)

The genus Phlugiolopsis Zeuner, 1940 is considered: its brief comparison with some similar genera is given, and its subgeneric composition is discussed. This genus is tentatively subdivided into two subgenera: Phlugiolopsis s. str. with three possible species; the subgenus Omkoiana Sänger et Helfert, 2002, stat. nov. with all the other species of this genus including three “subgenera” with unclear status (Longiloba Bian et Shi, 2018; Tribranchis Bian et Shi, 2018; Uncinata Bian et Shi, 2018). Two new species, Ph. (O.) trilobulata sp. nov. with three lobes on the male cercus and Ph. (O.) bilobulata sp. nov. with two such lobes, are described from Vietnam and Indonesia, respectively; these species additionally differ from each other in the male genital plate with specialized apical hooks (Ph. trilobulata sp. nov.) or with a slightly bilobate apex (Ph. bilobulata sp. nov.). From the other congeners, these species are distinguished by the same characters as well as some other features connected mainly with shape of the male cercal lobes and of the female genital plate.

Species richness and the level of knowledge of the bryozoan fauna of the Arctic region

The publication presents the results of the analysis of retrospective data and samples of bryozoans collected in different seas and areas of the Arctic region during recent 30 years. To date, 518 species of bryozoans have been recorded in the Arctic, which is on 26.4% more than previously registered. The level of increase in species numbers in the species lists of the regional faunas was different in different areas. In the waters of Greenland, the found species diversity of bryozoans was on 12% higher; in the Barents and Kara Seas – on 18 and 19%, respectively; in the Laptev and East Siberian seas – on 30%; in the Faroe Islands waters on 30% than it was previously marked. In the Icelandic waters and the Chukchi Sea, the number of bryozoan species is richer by five and two times respectively than it was considered earlier. Our assessment of the modern knowledge of the fauna of this group using the method of rarefaction showed that the bryozoan fauna is still underexplored. The Chao metric calculations also indicate that expected species richness would increase by 10–30% in different areas of the Arctic in case of additional sampling efforts. At the same time, a measure of taxonomic distinguish of the fauna allows to conclude that the species composition of bryozoans has already been sufficiently studied in most of the considered areas of the Arctic zone except in the waters of the Canadian Arctic Archipelago.

Podarcis siculus (Reptilia: Sauria: Lacertidae), a new alien species for Russian fauna

Podarcis siculus (Rafinesque-Schmaltz, 1810) or Italian wall lizard is one of the most invasive reptile-species. Recently, this lacertid lizard has been introduced to Mediterranean areas of southern Europe, South-West Asia (Turkey) and North America (USA). An abundant population of P. siculus was discovered on one of the sites of the Natural Ornithological Park in the Imeretinskaya Lowland, on an area of over 0.22 km2 (Sochi, Russia). The data were collected in the May of 2020 in a strip survey method in the Imeretinskaya Lowland. To identify the colonization area of the invader, we examined all 8 sections of the Natural Ornithological Park in the Imeretinskaya Lowland and adjacent urbanized areas. More than 150 animals were observed. These Italian wall lizards, undoubtedly, belong to the northern-central Italian morphotype (presumably P. s. campestris). This is the first record of this species in the former USSR area and, also, this is the species’ north-easternmost locality. The population inhabits secondary natural biotopes and urban area. Among them are the banks of artificial water bodies, areas with cultivated trees and shrubs, as well as parks, and house lawns in the urban area. Population density was estimated from eight to 40 specimens per 100 m of the transect. A moderate proportion of young specimens (more than a 40%) would indicate a healthy and continued growth of the emerging population. To determine the possible period of the species introduction, space images of the Imeretinskaya Lowland were analyzed beginning from the transformation of its landscape for the Winter Olympic Games of Sochi 2014 until the May of 2020. The introduction of the species presumably occurred with the delivery of large-sized ornamental trees and shrubs from Italy in 2012–2013. Podarcis siculus should be included in the list of herpetofauna of Russia and particularly of the Caucasus. This is an alien species with a proven ability to become an invasive species, what will lead to a greater undesirable and unavoidable contact with native small lizards of the genus Darevskia Arribas, 1997. On the other hand, as it is often observed with new invaders, a sudden rise in population abundance could be followed by a sharp decline. A continuous monitoring of the area in question and of  the number of local Italian wall lizards is necessary to confirm or refute the assumed scenarios of further invasion of P. siculus on the Black Sea Coast of the Caucasus. Further action plans for this population should be developed depending on supposed future trends.

Diagnostic characters of two rare zoarcids, Krusensterniella multispinosa and K. pavlovskii (Pisces: Zoarcidae), with new data for the Sea of Okhotsk

Diagnostic characters and taxonomic descriptions of two rare zoarcid fishes, Krusensterniella multispinosa Soldatov, 1922 and K. pavlovskii Andriashev, 1955 (family Zoarcidae), have been updated using the type and additional specimens. The type locality of K. multispinosa is located in the northwestern part of the Sea of Okhotsk (55°57ʹN, 138°13ʹE, depth 87 m). The lectotype (ZIN No 19961) was designated by P.Yu. Schmidt (1950). The morphological variability of the species is described, diagnosis is expanded. Additional differences from the species of related genus Gymnelopsis are specified. The distribution of K. multispinosa is limited to the Sea of Okhotsk and depths of 78–160 m. Krusensterniella pavlovskii was known by three type specimens from the Cape Africa, eastern Kamchatka (holotype ZIN No 33748, paratypes ZIN No 56576). Additional specimen derives from the north-eastern part of the Sea of Okhotsk (58°50ʹN, 157°02ʹE), which extends the known range of the species. The description of K. pavlovskii was updated, the diagnosis supplemented. Krusensterniella multispinosa and K. pavlovskii (subgenus Schantarella Andriashev, 1938) differ from other congeners in a larger number of pungent spines in the middle section of the dorsal fin D (XV–XXVI vs. I-XI). The both have 100–112 vertebrae, 95–110 dorsal-fin rays, and 81–94 anal-fin rays. In Krusensterniella pavlovskii unlike K. multispinosa, there are XXIII–XXVI pungent spines D (vs. XV–XX), 71–74 spiny rays in the anterior and middle parts of the dorsal fin (vs. 60–69), and 7 preoperculomandibular pores (vs. 6); the middle section of D with pungent spines is 83-112% of the length of the posterior section of D (43–72% in K. multispinosa) and 26–31% of the tail length, measured from the anal-fin origin to the caudal-fi n en d (vs. 17–22%); the scale cover reaching forward to the pectoral fins (in K. multispinosa not reaching the anal-fin origin.

Late Pleistocene and Holocene remains of carnivorous mammals (Carnivora) from the Bliznets Cave in southern part of the Russian Far East

For the first time, the fauna of carnivorous mammals (Carnivora) of the final Pleistocene and Holocene of the southern part of the Russian Far East was studied in detail. The well-preserved paleontological collections from the Bliznets Cave, located in South Sikhote Alin and representing a karst well, were examined. Fourteen species were identified, which are currently found in the region, with the exception of the steppe polecat (Mustela eversmanii) and a small cat similar to the Pallas cat (Otocolobus manul). Two stratigraphic complexes are distinguished. The first, judging by radiocarbon dating (11–12 thousand years), refers to the end of the Late Pleistocene. The remains of small mustelids, including Mustela eversmanii, are found almost exclusively here. The entrance to the cave was small or difficult to access for large mammals, and a bone cluster was formed as a result of the activity of birds of prey (probably owls). The second stratigraphic complex dates from the Holocene. There is no steppe polecat in it, but finds of Pallas cat are recorded. Judging by the composition of the remaining parts of the skeleton, the entrance to the cave increased and whole animals of large and medium size fell down into the cave well, which died there. Our analysis confirms that in the south of the Far East there was a shift of the ranges of the thermophilic species of carnivorous mammals to the south in the cold climatic phases and their movement to the north in warm epochs. In addition, species came from the arid territories of Central Asia (steppe polecat, Pallas cat), which dispersed there during the spread of steppe landscapes in the cold phases of the final Pleistocene and Early Holocene.

Volume 324 (2), 2020

Date of publication — June 25, 2020

From the functional ecology of animals to the theory of the functioning of aquatic ecosystems. On the scientific heritage of A.F. Alimov

The article is devoted to the scientific heritage of the outstanding Russian hydrobiologist A.F. Alimov. Showing a deep scientific interest not only in the problems of aquatic ecology, but also in zoology, he laid the foundations of the functional ecology of animals as a common area of interest for ecology and zoology. Further, his views were successfully used in studying functional ecology of different groups of aquatic animals and on their basis important generalizations were carried out on productivity and energy flows through aquatic ecosystems and communities. An important stage in his scientific work was the development of a structurally functional approach to the study of the functioning of ecological systems of water bodies and watercourses. He showed that their structural and functional parameters are naturally interdependent. This approach allowed quantification of changes in the ecosystems of water bodies exposed to various types of environmental stress. To describe the response of aquatic ecosystems to external factors, A.F. Alimov proposed an original interpretation of the steadiness and endurance of ecological systems. As a result, he laid the foundation for a quantitative assessment of the influence of various factors, including anthropogenic, on aquatic ecosystems. The proposed measures of steadiness and endurance of populations, communities, and ecosystems made it possible to assess quantitatively the degree of influence of factors on aquatic communities and the ecosystem as a whole. A.F. Alimov made a great contribution to the development of theoretical ecology. He gave an original definition of the ecosystem and formulated the main provisions of the theory of the functioning of aquatic ecosystems. Of great importance for ecology and biology in general are the works of A.F. Alimov on the territoriality of animals and on mechanisms that determine the number of species in aquatic ecosystems depending on the morphometry of water bodies, their trophic status, geographical location and degree of water mineralization. Of crucial importance for theoretical biology is a series of his works devoted to the biological (physiological) time of organisms. Based on strict mathematical analysis, he convincingly showed that organisms exist in their own internal time, the speed of which depends on the rate of the processes occurring in the body and is closely related to its mass.

Systematics of the American Katydids (Orthoptera: Tettigoniidae). Communication 9

The Neotropical genus Anaulacomera Stål, 1873 is tentatively divided into six subgenera: Anaulacomera s. str.; Anallomes Stål, 1875, stat. nov.; Oecella Kirby, 1890, stat. nov.; Bovicercora subgen. nov.; Cervicercora subgen. nov. and Munticercora subgen. nov. A new material on the two latter subgenera as well as on Oecella, stat. nov. are considered with description of 25 new species and 9 new species groups from Peru, Ecuador and Bolivia: Bispinosa Species Group of Cervicercora subgen. nov. with A. (C.) bispinosa sp. nov. and A. (C.) eubispinosa sp. nov.; Superapex Species Group of Cervicercora subgen. nov. with A. (C.) superapex sp. nov.; Schunkei Species Group of Cervicercora subgen. nov. with A. (C.) unispinosa sp. nov. and A. (C.) forceps sp. nov.; Cercalis Species Group of Cervicercora subgen. nov. with A. (C.) paracercalis sp. nov., A. (C.) spinulata sp. nov., A. (C.) abbreviata sp. nov., A. (C.) neohirsuta sp. nov., A. (C.) apicalis sp. nov. and A. (C.) denticulata sp. nov.; Daedala Species Group of Cervicercora subgen. nov. with A. (C.) daedala sp. nov.; Mariposa Species Group of Cervicercora subgen. nov. with A. (C.) mariposa sp. nov., possibly A. (C.) rectiapex sp. nov. and A. (C.) aenigma sp. nov.; Virgula Species Group of Cervicercora subgen. nov. with A. (C.) virgula sp. nov., possibly A. (C.) grandiramus sp. nov. and A. (C.) parviramus sp. nov.; Bellator Species Group of Cervicercora subgen. nov.; Сonfusa Species Group of Oecella; A. (O.) appendiculosa sp. nov.; A. (O.) tuberculosa sp. nov.; A. (O.) lobulosa sp. nov.; A. (O.) redunca sp. nov.; A. (M.) sclerogenitalis sp. nov.; A. (M.) pseudoepiproctalis sp. nov. and A. (M.) spinolobata sp. nov. All the species from “Grupo Didieri” of Anaulacomera s. l. (sensu Cadena-Castañeda) are included in the subgenus Deragramma Ebner, 1953 of the genus Grammadera Brunner-Wattenwyl, 1878: G. (D.) impudica (Piza, 1952), comb. nov. and G. (D.) didieri (Cadena-Castañeda, 2012), comb. nov.

Six new genera of the subtribe Thioniina (Hemiptera: Auchenorrhyncha: Issidae) based on type material of L. Melichar and E. Schmidt in the Museum für Naturkunde in Berlin

Six new genera are erected in the subtribe Thioniina of the tribe Issini to accommodate seven American species of the family Issidae, six of which were described by L. Melichar and E. Schmidt in early 20th century from Bolivia, Brazil, Mexico, and Peru, and one new species is described from Paraguay as follows: Carimeta gen. nov. (type species: Carimeta maculipennis sp. nov.); Metopasius gen. nov. (type species: Thionia proxima Melichar, 1906); Cophteroma gen. nov. (type species: Thionia truncatella Melichar, 1906); Cyclometa gen. nov. (type species: Thionia bifasciatifrons Melichar, 1906); Memusta gen. nov. (type species: Thionia obtusa Melichar, 1906); Thiopara gen. nov. (type species: Thionia fusca Melichar, 1906). Thionia sinuata Schmidt, 1910 is transferred to the genus Carimeta gen. nov. Six new combinations are formed: Carimeta sinuata (Schmidt, 1910), comb. nov.; Metopasius proximus (Melichar, 1906), comb. nov.; Cophteroma truncatella (Melichar, 1906), comb. nov.; Cyclometa bifasciatifrons (Melichar, 1906), comb. nov.; Memusta obtusa (Melichar, 1906), comb. nov.; Thiopara fusca (Melichar, 1906), comb. nov. The lectotypes are designated for Thionia fusca Melichar, T. proxima Melichar, and T. sinuata Schmidt to stabilize the nomenclature in the studied group according to the International Code of Zoological Nomenclature. New record for Cyclometa bifasciatifrons from Brasil is provided. Photographs of the type specimens with original labels including Melichar’s and Schmidt’s autographs as well as drawings of all studied species are given.

Larval and juvenile development of the Iceland cockle Ciliatocardium ciliatum (Fabricius, 1780) (Bivalvia: Cardiidae)

The paper considers the development of Ciliatocardium ciliatum from the stage of straight hinge to juvenile. In the White Sea the spawning of C. ciliatum begins at the end of June, larvae at different stages of development occur in plankton until the end of September. The earliest of the larvae found had shell lengths of 123–130 µm. The paper first examined the anatomy and  structure of the larval shell of C. ciliatum. During the development, the main stages of organogenesis were described and special attention was paid to the formation of the digestive and muscular systems. The digestive system begins to function when the larva reaches a size of 170–180 µm. The digestive gland has a two-blade shape and is shifted to the right side. The foot is formed at a size of 230 µm, the gill rudiments appear when the larva reaches 270 µm. The development of the larval shell and larval hinge of the mollusc is considered in detail. The development of the larval shell of C. ciliatum is similar to the development of other family members. Throughout all the larval stages, the shell has a rounded shape with a low umbos, and the prodissoconch II has a clearly visible concentric structure. The C. ciliatum larval hinge is characterized by weak differentiation and the absence of pronounced cardinal teeth typical for other Cardiidae. However, the lateral structures of the castle – ridges and flanges – are well developed. The ligament begins to form at a size of 240–250 µm and occupies a lateral position. The settlement of the cockle takes place in September in the subtidal zone. After the metamorphosis, a large radial sculpture is formed on the dissoconch and a number of small spikes are formed at the rib of the posterior shoulder.

Behavior of “arvalis” and “obscurus” chromosomal forms of common vole males in the forced swim test

To determine the difference in stress response between two chromosomal forms of a common vole, the “arvalis” and “obscurus”, the behavior of adult (6–12 months) lab-born vole males were evaluated in a forced swim test. During the test, they were carefully placed into glass cylinders (d=12 cm, h=20 cm) filled with water (h=15 cm, 24±1°C) and remained there for up to 6 min. Their behavioral patterns were video recorded and continuously monitored (Ethograph, ver. 2.7, RITEC, Russia) to document the duration of swimming and paddling (orientation), floating (immobility) and climbing (escape). Two series of experiments were performed, in May 2016 and June 2017, with independent groups: “arvalis” (N=9 each year) and “obscurus” (N=9 and 22 each year, respectively). The «arvalis» and «obscurus» significantly differed in their responses to the stress test. Over 35% of obscurus males (2 of 9 in 2016 and 9 of 22 in 2017) failed to complete the test, within 3 min these animals had to be rescued to prevent drowning (significant differences from “arvalis” according to Fisher's exact test). “Arvalis” voles displayed higher duration of escape attempts (F(1.14)=3.5; P=0.08 – for first; F(1.20)=15.6; P<0.001 – for second series of experiment), shorter duration of swimming and paddling (significantly in the first series – F(1.14)=14.3; P<0.005), and shorter duration of immobility (significantly in the second series – (F(1.20)=6.1; P<0.001). The results suggest that two chromosomal forms of common vole have major differences in stress response behavior. In the forced swim test, the “arvalis” voles are displaying higher endurance, associated with active escape behavior, when compared to “obscurus” animals. Further studies need to address their responses to other stress paradigms and to water environment, in general. The latter may play a major role in vole migration when they meet water barriers in their natural environment.

On the type locality of the steppe ribbon racer, Psammophis lineolatus (Brandt, 1838) (Serpentes: Lamprophiidae)

The article specifies the type locality of the Steppe Ribbon Racer. The holotype Coluber (Taphrometopon) lineolatus Brandt, 1838 is stored in the reptile collection of the Zoological Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences (ZISP No 2042). Literature sources provide different information about the type locality. A mistake has been made in the title of the work with the original species description: the western coast of the sea was indicated instead of the eastern one. The place of capture was indicated as “M. Caspium” (Caspian Sea) on the label and in the reptile inventory book of the Zoological Museum of the Academy of Sciences. The specimen was sent to the museum by G.S. Karelin. The “1842” indicated on the labels and in the inventory book cannot be the year of capture of the type specimen, just as the “1837” indicated by A.M. Nikolsky. In 1837, Karelin was in Saint Petersburg and in 1842 in Siberia. Most likely, 1837 is the year when the collection arrived at the Museum, and 1842 is the year when the information about the specimen was recorded in the inventory book (catalog) of the Zoological Museum of the Academy of Sciences. In our opinion, the holotype was caught in 1832. From Karelin’s travel notes of the expedition to the Caspian Sea in 1832, follows that the snake was recorded in two regions adjacent to the eastern coast of the Caspian Sea – Ungoza Mountain (“Mangyshlak Mountains”) and site of the Western Chink of Ustyurt between Zhamanairakty and Kyzyltas Mountains (inclusive) on the northeast coast of Kaydak Sor (“Misty Mountains”). In our article, Karelin’s route to the northeastern coast of the Caspian Sea in 1832 and photographs of these localities are given. The type locality of Psammophis lineolatus (Brandt, 1838) should be restricted to the Mangystau Region of the Kazakhstan: Ungoza Mountain south of Sarytash Gulf, Mangystau (Mangyshlak) Penninsula (44°26´ N, 51°12´ E).

Estimation of amphibian and reptile diversity in the Kurghalsky Wildlife Sanctuary

Kurghalsky Wildlife Sanctuary occupies an extreme western position in the Leningrad Region (with the main city of St. Petersburg). The fauna of the Kurghalsky Wildlife Sanctuary is quite diverse and includes 6 species of amphibians and 5 species of reptiles. The core of herpetofauna is formed by several species (Lissotriton vulgaris, Bufo bufo, Rana arvalis, Rana temporaria, Anguis fragilis, Zootoca vivipara, Vipera berus) widely distributed in the boreal zone of Eurasia. It is enriched by a few subboreal species (Pelobates fuscus, Pelophylax ridibundus, Lacerta agilis, Natrix natrix), regionally rare in the taiga zone. The highest diversity of amphibians and reptiles (8 species) was registered in the boreal and intrazonal groups of plant communities such as the forb-grassy meadows, greenmoss and light pine heath forests. The greatest similarity of herpetofaunas is characteristic for communities of spruce and small-leaved forests (93%), small-leaved forests and meadows (93%), broad-leaved forests and bogs (89%), pine and spruce forests (88%) and small-leaved forests and bogs (83%). Differences in the species composition of the local herpetofaunas are associated with a tendency to depletion of the number of species in boreal communities: from coniferous and mixed forests to bogs, reed communities and beaches. The general depletion of herpetofauna of the north is associated primarily with the loss of subboreal elements. The diversity and relatively high density of amphibian and reptile populations indicate the good preservation of forest and coastal ecosystems.

Factors affecting the morphometric parameters of eggs of Trichocephalus suis Schrank, 1788, Ascaris suum Goeze, 1782 and Oesophagostomum dentatum Rudolphi, 1803 in the Republic of Crimea

The publication presents the results of the morphometric parameters of eggs of the most common intestinal nematodes of pigs in the Republic of Crimea that were measured using a computer program ImageJ. It was found that the sizes of eggs of Trichocephalus suis Schrank, 1788, Ascaris suum Goeze, 1782 and Oesophagostomum dentatum Rudolphi, 1803 differed significantly within the species in a fairly wide range. Also, the factors affecting the morphometric parameters of eggs of these nematodes were determined. Their changes depended significantly on the intensity of invasion, the season of the year and the stage of the biological cycle. Thus, it was found that with an increasing intensity of invasion the sizes of the eggs of these parasites decreased. Also, in the process of their maturation and development in the environment under the influence of favorable conditions of the time of year the sizes of the eggs of these species changed in different ways – they decreased in some species (A. suum, O. dentatum) and increased in the others (T. suis). Thus, the combined effect of certain specific factors in a particular area will contribute to a faster or slower maturation and development of the eggs of a particular type of helminth in the environment. Consequently, the period of the biological cycle of the same species of parasites in different areas will span a different interval of time. This issue was covered poorly in both domestic and foreign literature and will require further study and systematization.

Volume 324 (1), 2020

Date of publication — March 24, 2020

100th Anniversary of the Department of Herpetology of the Zoological Institute RAS
(instead of the foreword)

Sergey Alexandrovich Chernov (1903–1964): biography of herpetologist

The scientific biography of the outstanding herpetologist and specialist in zoogeography Sergei Alexandrovich Chernov (1903–1964) was reconstructed on the base the study of archival materials and literature sources. The text is divided into four parts, reflecting the main stages of his biography: 1903–1930 – Kharkiv, the beginning of the scientific career; 1930–1941 – relocation to Leningrad, Tajik-Pamir expedition; 1941–1945 – Great Patriotic War and evacuation; 1945–1964 – period after the Great Patriotic War. In the paper, we emphasize the line of teacher–student continuity begun by A.M. Nikolsky and S.A. Chernov in the herpetology department of the Zoological Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences. The appendix contains a list of his publications (52 titles), taxa, described by him (11) and named in his honor (6). In majority of his publications, Chernov was the sole author; most of them were published in Russian; only one paper was written in a foreign (German) language. One of the main achievements of Chernov should be recognized a publication of the Guide of amphibians and reptiles of the USSR together with P.V. Terentyev. He made the greatest contribution to the study of the systematics of lizards and snakes, composition, zoogeography, and the history of the formation of the herpetofauna of Central Asia. According to his studies, the fauna of Central and Central Asia are subsidiaries of the once united region, what contradicted the views of his teacher Nikolsky, who developed the concept of M.A. Menzbir about the young postglacial origin of the Aral-Caspian deserts and the ancient, Eocene origin of the deserts of Central Asia.

Taxonomy of the Lonchodectidae (Pterosauria, Pterodactyloidea)

The pterodactyloid family Lonchodectidae includes three genera, Lonchodectes Hooley, 1914, Lonchodraco Rodrigues et Kellner, 2013, and Ikrandraco Wang et al., 2014, and four species, Lonchodectes compressirostris (Owen, 1851), Lonchodraco giganteus (Bowerbank, 1846), Ikrandraco avatar Wang et al., 2014, and Ikrandraco machaerorhynchus (Seeley, 1870) comb. nov. [=Ornithocheirus microdon Seeley, 1870 syn. nov.]. The holotype of Lonchodectes compressirostris (NHMUK PV 39410) consists of two fragments of the anterior rostrum, not the mandibular and rostrum fragments as was supposed previously. The difference between Lonchodectes and Ikrandraco is not clear and the taxa could be synonyms. The diagnostic characters for the Lonchodectidae are the presence of the palatal ridge, elevated alveolar margin of the upper and lower jaws, small teeth that are not varying in size, and a prominent mandibular crest (unknown for Lonchodectes). The family includes taxa with long and low rostrum and prominent mandibular crest (Ikrandraco and, possibly, Lonchodectes), or with both premaxil­lary and mandibular crests (Lonchodraco). Various phylogenetic analyses place the Lonchodectidae within the Ornithocheiroidea, frequently as a sister taxon to the Anhangueria. The family is known from the mid-Cretaceous (Albian-Turonian) of England (Lonchodectes compressirostris, Lonchodraco giganteus, Ikrandracomachaero­rhynchus), the Lower Cretaceous (Aptian) of China (Ikrandraco avatar), and the Late Cretaceous (Cenomanian) of European Russia (Lonchodraco (?) sp.). The putative records of the Lonchodectidae from the Lower Cretaceous of England (Serradraco sagittirostris (Owen, 1874), BEXHM 2015.18, and Palaeornis cliftii Mantell, 1844), Spain (Prejanopterus curvirostris Fuentes Vidarte et Meijide Calvo, 2010), and Brazil (Unwindia trigonus Martill, 2011) are reviewed. None of them can be attributed to that group.

Cytochrome b mitochondrial gene analysis-based phylogeography of a Sand lizard in the Crimea: ancient refugium at the peninsula, late expansion from the North, and first evidence of Lacerta agilis tauridica and L. a. exigua (Lacertidae: Sauria) hybridization

The contact zones of the distribution ranges of closely related reptile taxa are the source of valuable data on the microevolutionary processes in populations, the history of regional faunas origin, and the environmental preferences of the studied forms. Our study is focused on the genetic structure of the populations of sand lizard, Lacerta agilis Linnaeus, 1758, at the Crimean peninsula. This lacertid species inhabits the mountain (afforested) and plain (steppe) parts of the Crimea, being abundant or common in many areas. Lacerta agilis is represented in the Crimea by two subspecies: the widely distributed Eastern (L. a. exigua Eichwald, 1831) inhabiting a large part of Northern Eurasia, and the endemic (L. a. tauridica Suchow, 1927) residing in the Crimean mountains. Mitochondrial haplogroup affiliation corresponding to one of the subspecies (L. a. tauridica, L. a. exigua or L. a. chersonensis) was established for 225 L. agilis individuals from 81 localities in the Crimea and adjacent mainland territories. The nucleotide sequences of the complete cytochrome b gene of mitochondrial DNA (1143 bp) were studied in 75 L. agilis individuals from 68 localities. The genetic distance between both subspecies inhabiting the Crimea revealed by used molecular marker comprised 2.8%, which indicates their early divergence approximately at the transition of Early to Middle Pleistocene (ca. 1 Mya). L. a. tauridica is characterized by a comparatively deep genetic structure. Haplotypes occupying isolated positions on the phylogenetic tree of this subspecies were found in the south-western part of the Crimean Mountains, what might be explained by the localization of L. agilis microrefugia in areas least affected by the Late Pleistocene cooling. Genetic structure of L. a. exigua is more homogeneous. Another important result of our study was an identification of zones of haplogroups «exigua» and «tauridica» coexistence localized along the northern and eastern margins of the Crimean Mountains. The portion of the «exigua» haplogroup in local populations decreases southward and westward. The observed pattern of the spatial distribution of haplogroups seems to be a result of the hybridization zone formation between the sand lizard subspecies during the Holocene expansion of L. a. exigua. Ecological niches modeling for L. agilis subspecies and analysis of morphological variability of the lizards support the hypothesis of L. a. exigua and L. a. tauridica hybridization in the area of contact of their ranges in the eastern part of the Crimean Mountains.

Results and perspectives of cyto- and genetic studying of “cryptic” group of the Lacertidae

Results of chromosomal and molecular studies of the lizard Zootoca vivipara (Lichtenstein, 1823) (Lacertidae) from many geographically separate populations of Europe and Asia have been generalized. The questions of ka­ryotype differences within the species, of diversity of its Zw and multiple Z1Z2W sex chromosome, their reorganizations and evolutionary consequences have been briefly considered. Stability of forming karyotypes is as an integrating factor which allow to identify the specimens and unite them into the groups possessing the distinct distribution areas. There are a correlation between chromosomal, mt DNA and nuclear DNA data. Finally all data obtained allow to draw a conclusion that Z. vivipara represents a cryptic group of cryptic taxa. Besides new data about the behavior of multiple sex chromosomes (SC, synaptonemal complexes) in early meiosis and molecular-cytogenetic data on transposable elements (TE) in the genome of Z. vivipara, their localization in the definite regions of chromosomes may suggest that they play a role in active speciation process by formation of cryptic taxa.

The anomaly P syndrome in green frogs: the history of discovery, morphological features and possible causes

The anomaly P in green frogs was firstly found in 1952 in France by French writer and scientist Jean Rostand. Mild form of anomaly P manifestation includes polydactyly, while complex morphological transformations affect the fore and hindlimbs and include combinations of traits: polydactyly, brachymely, hind limb flexion, small additional limbs, bone outgrowths, tumors and edema in the hind limbs. Rostand experimentally showed that this anomaly is not inherited and is caused by some environmental factors. It was recorded only in Western Palearctic green frogs of the genus Pelophylax and was absent in other amphibian species, despite their syntopic occurrence. The severe cases of anomaly P were not found for a long time by researchers and were re-discovered after half a century since its last observation. A new record was made in 2016 in the central part of Russia in the Privolzhskaya Lesostep’ nature reserve. The morphological features of the anomalous frogs in the study area turned out to be similar to those described by Rostand. Symmetric polydactyly, brachymely, hind limb flexion, edema of hind limbs, small additional limbs in thighs, outgrowths, and concomitant anomalies – mandibular hypoplasia, unmoved hind limb, open opercular chamber. The frequency of occurrence of the anomaly in the studied population reached 24.7% (n = 384). Moreover, the “severe forms” of the anomaly P were noted in 4.7% of cases, and the “light” (polydactyly) in 20.0%. Growing tadpoles together with freshwater mollusks allowed us to obtain the anomaly P in the laboratory. It was revealed that the mollusks Planorbarius corneus are the intermediate hosts (vectors) for the “infectious agent” of this anomaly. As the most possible cause of the anomaly, the infection by trematodes species is considered.

Late Pleistocene and Holocene small mammal (Lipotyphla, Rodentia, Lagomorpha) remains from Medvezhyi Klyk Cave in the Southern Russian Far East

Late Pleistocene-Holocene faunal complexes of small mammals (Lipotyphla, Rodentia, and Lagomorpha) from the Russian Far East are described for the first time. We used material from the Medvezhyi Klyk Cave, located in Southern Sikhote-Alin. The numerous fossil findings from the cave display a remarkable taxonomic diversity and high degree of preservation. AMS 14C dating used for determination of deposits age. The Holocene sediments were divided into three periods: Early, Middle, and Late. The Pleistocene deposits age was not exactly determined, but under approximately estimation it can reach 50–60 ka. Thirty-nine species were found, including one member of the extinct genus of arvicolins. There are six faunal complexes identified from the studied Late Pleistocene and Holocene deposits. In general, the faunal complexes characterized by the dominance of Craseomys rufocanus within rodents, Sorex caecutiens within lipotyphlans; and relatively stability composition of most number of the dominant, codominant and subdominant species. Accordingly, the faunal complexes were described by means of two determining criteria only: relative number of species; and presence or absence of certain species. The dominant species are eurytopic and so they cannot use for reconstruction of the paleoenvironment.

New insights into the molecular phylogeny and taxonomy of the family Issidae (Hemiptera: Auchenorrhyncha: Fulgoroidea)

The phylogenetic relationships among major lineages of the planthopper family Issidae were explored by analyzing a molecular dataset of nine fragments (COI, CytB, 12S, H3, 16S, 18SII, 18SIII, 28S D3–D5, 28S D6–D7) and 48 terminal taxa. Bayesian and Maximum likelihood analyses yielded similar and mostly well-resolved trees with moderate to high support for most branches. The obtained results suggest subdivision of the family Issidae Spinola into two subfamilies, Issinae Spinola, 1839 (= Thioniinae Melichar, 1906, = Hemisphaeriinae Melichar, 1906) and Hysteropterinae Melichar, 1906. The Issinae was clustered into the tribes Issini Spinola, 1839, with the subtribes Issina Spinola, 1839 and Thioniina Melichar, 1906, Sarimini Wang, Zhang et Bourgoin, 2016, Parahiraciini Cheng et Yang, 1991, Hemisphaeriini Melichar, 1906, and Kodaianellini Wang, Zhang et Bourgoin, 2016. The Hysteropterinae incorporates the rest of Western Palaearctic taxa except Issina. Chimetopini Gnezdilov, 2017, stat. nov. is elevated to tribe from the subtribal level. Most well-supported clades showed clear geographical pattering. Newly obtained data contradicts the scenario of an early split of American Thioniinae from other Issidae and possible origin of the family in the New World, while the combination of Palaearctic Issus Fabricius and Latissus Dlabola with Oriental and American taxa in one well supported clade may serve as an evidence for a common ancestor for extant Oriental, American, and Palaearctic issids.

Structure and functioning of phytoplankton in the Neva estuary in 2011–2016

Long-term observations (since 1982), which had been carried out in the Neva River estuary, have shown that in 2011–2016 the general nature of distribution, species composition and abundance of phytoplankton differed from those that were recorded earlier. The greatest changes are noted in the central part close by northern coast of the Neva Bay. With observed eutrophication in the Neva Bay (st. 12) and in the eastern part of the Gulf of Finland (st. 19), different groups of algae dominated in the summer phytoplankton (late July – early August). The main mechanism regulating the species composition of phytoplankton were hydrological conditions observed in different parts of the estuary. Also Shallow water, wind activity, oxygen deficiency and temperature stratification, nutrient supply were favorable conditions for development of chlorococcal green, cryptophyte, euglenic and other algae groups. With a high Shannon index (3.8–4.0) in the Neva Bay, the largest share to the total biomass was given by chlorococcal algae. In the resort area of the Gulf of Finland at the end of July – early August, direct temperature stratification was usually established, with enough nutrients creating conditions for the development of stagnophilic planktonic algae with a predominance of cyanobacteria in the epilimion. Here, more often, were periods of surface “blooms”. For the most eutrophied areas of the Neva Bay and the inner estuary the average structural, functional, and relative indicators of plankton were compared with average values for the entire water area. The main characteristics of phytoplankton: biomass, primary production, chlorophyll concentration and total phosphorus content in the northern zone of the Neva Bay, were 2–3 times higher than the average values on the Gulf. The species composition of algae corresponded to a sufficiently high trophic state. In the resort area of inner estuary of the Gulf of Finland (st. 19), the observed mean values also slightly exceeded the average values for the estuary, but the relative indicators differed little from those calculated for the rest of the water area. The structural and functional characteristics of phytoplankton indicated that during eutrophication in different parts of the estuary, in Summer, conditions wer favorable to promote the development of different groups plankton algae.

 

 

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