Zoologica Scripta (Zoolog Scripta )

Publisher: Kungl. Svenska vetenskapsakademien; Norske videnskaps-akademi i Oslo, Blackwell Publishing


An International Journal of Systematic Zoology published for the Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters and the Royal Swedish Academy of SciencesZoologica Scripta provides a unique publishing medium for original research in the fields of taxonomy, systematics, phylogeny and biogeography. Established over 20 years ago, Zoologica Scripta is one of the leading journals for the publication of descriptions of new species and taxonomic revisions.The journal also welcomes contributions dealing with evolutionary aspects of morphology, physiology, ecology, ethology and palaeontology. Backed by an international advisory council, Zoologica Scripta publishes the research of zoologists, marine biologists, systematicists, ecologists and taxonomists from all parts of the world.

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    Zoologica Scripta website
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    Zoologica scripta (Online)
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    Internet Resource, Journal / Magazine / Newspaper

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Blackwell Publishing

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Publications in this journal

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: This study represents a thorough analysis of Codoma, a monotypic genus endemic to north-western Mexico. A previous morphological analysis of the species concluded that there exists several morphological groups in Codoma ornata, suggesting diversity in Codoma could be underestimated. No studies have examined the genetic diversity in Codoma ornata to test this hypothesis and identify independent lineages. We present a phylogeographic analysis using one mitochondrial and two nuclear genes, and specimens from across nine major drainages in both the Chihuahuan Desert and the Sierra Madre Occidental of western Mexico. All genes and analyses recovered populations of Codoma in a well-supported clade and sister to Tampichthys, and this clade sister to Cyprinella. Analyses of both mitochondrial and nuclear genes indicated Codoma is not monotypic and recover more diversity in the genus than currently recognized. The four (mitochondrial) and five (nuclear) genetically distinct lineages are consistent with those groups outlined in the prior morphological study of the genus. Composition and distribution of these major lineages is also consistent with prior biogeographic hypothesis for other fishes in the region, supporting an ancestral Rio Grande system extending south towards central Mexico. Fragmentation of this paleosystem was followed by allopatric speciation in the Chihuahuan Desert. These results suggest a scenario of long-term isolation in four major regions (upper Conchos, lower Conchos, Nazas, upper Mezquital). Resolution of the diversity and biogeography of these lineages has many implications for various biological disciplines, especially for evolutionary and conservation studies.
    Zoologica Scripta 01/2015; 44:11-28.
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    ABSTRACT: The xanthid subfamily Chlorodiellinae is one of the most ubiquitous coral reef crab taxa in the Indo-West Pacific region. Many species are common in coral rubble and rocky shores from Hawaii to eastern Africa, often dominating reef cryptofauna in terms of biomass. Phylogenetic analyses of mitochondrial (COX1, 12S rRNA and 16S rRNA) and nuclear (histone H3) gene sequences of 202 specimens indicate that the Chlorodiellinae is polyphyletic as presently defined. Three genera, Pilodius, Cyclodius and Chlorodiella, and two previously undescribed lineages were recovered as a well-supported clade. In combination with morphological data, the subfamily is redefined and restricted to this clade. Two new genera, Soliella gen. n., and Luniella gen. n., are described based on features of the carapace, male thoracic sternum and male gonopods. The remaining chlorodielline genera and members of the Etisinae, a subfamily with supposedly close morphological affinities to the Chlorodiellinae, were recovered at various positions throughout the xanthid phylogeny, although with relatively low support values. These results reiterate the unresolved status of xanthid subfamilial relationships, but nevertheless provide progress for xanthid systematics.
    Zoologica Scripta 12/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: In this study, the competing hypotheses of single vs. double colonisation events for freshwater Pachyurinae (Sciaenidae) in South America is tested and the historical biogeography of the expansion of this clade within the continent is reconstructed based on phylogenetic analysis. Parsimony and Bayesian inference (BI) for 19 marine and freshwater species assigned to Sciaenidae, Haemulidae and Polypteridae were determined based on partial sequences of the mitochondrial 16S and cytochrome b genes and fragments of the nuclear Tmo-4C4 and rhodopsin genes. A parsimonious ancestral character reconstruction of euryhalinity was performed on a clade of families of closely related fishes to evaluate the role of ecological fitting in the colonisation of freshwater by a marine sciaenid. The parsimony and BI phylogenetic hypotheses for the concatenated sequences supported the monophyly of the freshwater Sciaenidae. Divergence of the two freshwater clades of Sciaenidae, Pachyurinae and Plagioscion, occurred within the Amazon Basin. Within Pachyurinae, two clades were recovered: one composed of species from the Amazon and the Paraná Basin and a second with representatives from the São Francisco and south-eastern Atlantic basins. The results were compatible with the hypothesis of a single colonisation event of South American freshwater habitats by a marine lineage. The hypothesis of gradual adaptation to freshwater was rejected in favour of the hypothesis of ecological fitting. Sciaenidae, or a subordinate lineage within the family, is ancestrally capable of withstanding exposure to low-salinity habitats, which putatively facilitated the colonisation of freshwater habitats. The subsequent diversification and expansion of Pachyurinae across South America followed this colonisation and replicated the general pattern of the area relationships of South American river basins for several other fish groups.
    Zoologica Scripta 12/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: The late early to early middle Eocene Zegdoumyidae are the oldest representatives of the order Rodentia to be known in Africa thus far. Despite the fragmentary nature of their fossil record, these early African rodents have been central in discussions surrounding the early evolutionary history of the Anomaluroidea clade (the living forms of which are the ‘scaly-tailed squirrels’, i.e. Anomaluridae). Here, we describe new dental remains attributable to Zegdoumys sbeitlai, a zegdoumyid from Tunisia (Djebel Chambi, CBI-1) dated at ca 50-45 Ma. The original material referred to this taxon was limited to four teeth documenting few dental loci. The new gathered material comprises practically all dental loci (except P4), thereby allowing a better description and characterization of this taxon. This Tunisian species is clearly distinct from its roughly coeval Algerian counterpart (Z. lavocati) or from the younger species recorded from Namibia (Z. namibiensis). We investigated the phylogenetic positions of Z. sbeitlai and the Zegdoumyidae in a high-level rodent phylogeny with a cladistic assessment of the dental evidence. Our results show that zegdoumyids represent the earliest offshoots (pectinately arranged) of a large clade that also encompasses the more advanced Eocene anomaluroids (here named Nementchamyidae), the Miocene Nonanomaluridae, and the stem and crown Anomaluridae. In this phylogenetic context, the species of Zegdoumys are the basalmost members of this large Anomaluroidea clade. Zegdoumyid taxa are therefore the oldest stem anomaluroid candidates, a statement which strengthens support for the hypothesis of the great antiquity of the Anomaluroidea clade in Africa. From a historical biogeography perspective, this assumption suggests that anomaluroids invaded Asia from Afro-Arabia sometime during the middle Eocene, a dispersal event which was likely concomitant but opposite to the dispersals envisaged for the hystricognathous rodents and anthropoid primates from Asia to Afro-Arabia.
    Zoologica Scripta 12/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Members of the genus Clinostomum Leidy, 1856 are parasites that mature in birds, with occasional reports in humans. Because morphological characters for reliable discrimination of species are lacking, the number of species considered valid has varied by an order of magnitude. In this study, sequences from the DNA barcode region of cytochrome c oxidase I (CO1) and/or internal transcribed spacer (ITS) from specimens from Mexico, Bolivia, Peru, Brazil, Kenya, China and Thailand were analysed together with published sequences from Europe, Africa, Indonesia and North America. Although ITS and CO1 distances among specimens were strongly correlated, distance-based analysis of each marker yielded different groups. Putative species indicated by CO1 distances were consistent with available morphological identifications, while those indicated by ITS conflicted with morphological identifications in three cases. There was little overlap in sequence variation within and between species, particularly for CO1. Although ITS and CO1 distances tended to increase in specimens that were further apart geographically, this did not impair distance-based species delineation. Phylogenetic analysis suggests a deep division between clades of Clinostomum inhabiting the New World and Old World, which parallels the distribution of their principal definitive hosts, the Ardeidae.
    Zoologica Scripta 12/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: The commercial deep-sea penaeid shrimp genus Parapenaeus contains 15 species, three subspecies and two forms in the Indo-West Pacific and the Atlantic. Novel nucleotide sequence data from five different genes (COI, 16S, 12S, NaK and PEPCK) were collected to estimate phylogenetic relationships and taxonomic status among all but one subspecies in this genus. The phylogenetic results only support two of the four species groups previously proposed for this genus and indicate an evolution direction of the genital organs from simple to complex. The present results suggest that Parapenaeus originated in the shallow waters of the West Pacific with subsequent migration to the deep sea and the Atlantic. The molecular data reveal that there was probably misidentification of females between P. australiensis and P. ruberoculatus, with females previously assigned as P. australiensis likely being the females of P. ruberoculatus while material identified as P. australiensis forma nodosa being the true P. australiensis females. On the other hand, P. longipes forma denticulata truly represents a variation of the same species while the subspecies P. fissuroides indicus warrants a specific rank.
    Zoologica Scripta 12/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: The fossil record of storks (Aves, Ciconiidae) includes a relatively large number of specimens from the Middle Eocene onwards, but no taxon is as well represented as Grallavis edwardsi form the Early Miocene of the Allier region in central France. Despite this, the phylogenetic placement of G. edwardsi among other storks has remained elusive not least because of the lack of a robust phylogenetic framework for living storks. To find out how G. edwardsi relates to recent Ciconiidae, we performed a phylogenetic analysis based on osteological features including all living genus-level taxa of the Ciconiidae. We show that the previously reported similarities to the extant taxa Ephippiorhynchus and Jabiru are based on plesiomorphic features, and our analysis supports a sister group relationship between Grallavis edwardsi and Leptoptilos. Our results are also consistent with a basal divergence within Ciconiidae between Mycteria and Anastomus, which are among the smallest storks, and all other storks. A sister group relationship between storks of the genus Ciconia and all large storks (Leptoptilini) is recovered albeit with weak support, which may be due to homoplastic features linked to their large size. Grallavis edwardsi possessed several osteological adaptations suited for scavenging, and despite lacking some derived traits characteristic of Leptoptilos, it is likely to have been a precursor of large marabou and adjutant storks.
    Zoologica Scripta 11/2014; 43(6):576–585.
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    ABSTRACT: The monophyly of Agrotis Ochsenheimer in addition to the relationships among the South American species of the genus and the relationship between Agrotis and Feltia Walker are examined. A cladistic analysis was performed based on 45 terminals, with 28 ingroup and 17 outgroup taxa, and 126 characters (two continuous and 124 discrete) from adult morphology, including male and female genitalia. Parsimony analyses were performed under equal and implied weighting. Results support Agrotis as a monophyletic group, sister to the South American species of Feltia (Feltia tent.), and the latter being more closely related to Agrotis than to the ‘true’ Feltia. Species of Agrotis that branched off first (including the type species) have characters shared with both Feltia and Agrotis. South American species of Agrotis (with some proviso) form a clade that branched off later, with some weakly supported species groups that had been proposed in previous works. Biogeographical aspects of the group are discussed after optimizing species distributions on the tree. Trees obtained after analyses using implied weights show similar relationships to those under equal weights, particularly regarding Feltia tent., showing Feltia tent. plus Agrotis forming a monophyletic group, sister to the ‘true’ Feltia.
    Zoologica Scripta 11/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: We assessed the genetic variability of the Siberian spined loach Cobitis melanoleuca across its unusually broad distribution that encompasses areas greatly affected by Pleistocene glaciations. Due to extensive morphological variation among their populations, the taxonomic status of C. melanoleuca is complicated. It is unclear whether C. melanoleuca represents a single taxonomic unit or contains several species or subspecies. Our analyses showed low genetic variability in all populations without any phylogenetic structure. The absence of molecular distinctiveness indicates the conspecificity of all C. melanoleuca populations. Only a few common haplotypes shared by East Asian, Siberian and European populations were found at high frequency in the nuclear genes analysed. At the mitochondrial level, Siberian populations shared haplotypes with populations located at both extremes of the species’ range suggesting central populations as a source of current mitochondrial variability. Unimodal mismatch distributions and significant values from neutrality tests support a recent expansion of C. melanoleuca. Our time estimates suggest a postglacial colonisation of European waters around 1.0 MYA, indicating that C. melanoleuca may represent the last cobitid immigrant in Europe that used the northern route across Siberia to expand its range.
    Zoologica Scripta 10/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: We used both highly variable mitochondrial and nuclear loci to investigate the large mouse-eared bat species complex in the Western Palaearctic to clarify their systematic position. Although mitochondrial lineages show no species segregation and some haplotypes are shared between Myotis myotis and Myotis blythii sensu lato, Bayesian clustering methods based on multilocus genotypes indicate highly concordant nuclear and morphological species assignment. These multilocus, nuclear analyses detected only a single putative F1 hybrid in the extensive areas of sympatry sampled, thus confirming the biological species status of M. myotis and M. blythii s.l. We propose that the strong cytonuclear discordance in these species complex results from a combination of prior spatial isolation of the two species in different glacial refugia, followed by a succession of mitochondrial introgression events that occurred during the eastward and westward expansions of M. myotis and of M. blythii, respectively. The nuclear markers further indicate the presence of a notable genetic discontinuity within M. myotis that broadly separates populations into an eastern and a western component with an overlap zone in the Balkans. This eastern and western discontinuity is also apparent in the mitochondrial lineages with the D haplogroup largely confined to samples found in Thrace and Asia Minor. None of these genetic discontinuities correspond to the distribution of the two commonly recognized M. myotis subspecies (myotis and macrocephalicus). We also show that distinct morphological subspecies within M. blythii (oxygnathus, omari, risorius and lesviacus) in Europe and the near-East do not correlate with significant evolutionarily units, whether identified by mitochondrial or nuclear data and thus only represent local morphological variants with little taxonomic relevance.
    Zoologica Scripta 09/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Hydroids in the genus Zanclea are a recently discovered component of the fauna associated with reef-building corals. The phylogenetic relationships among these species are not well known. The present work is based on field surveys in the Republic of Maldives, and for the first time, morphological and molecular analyses are integrated to distinguish a new hydroid species and provide new information on the ecology of this symbiosis. This new hydroid, Zanclea gallii sp. n., was associated with the scleractinian Acropora muricata; it was living sympatrically with its congener Zanclea sango, which was observed for the first time at this locality on the new scleractinian host Pavona varians. The relationships between these two hydroids and other available scleractinian-associated Zanclea were investigated using two molecular markers, nuclear 28S rDNA and mitochondrial 16S rRNA. Zanclea gallii sp. n. and Z. sango were recovered as distinct lineages within a monophyletic group of scleractinian-associated Zanclea based on both molecular and morphological data. All Zanclea species that were observed living in association with scleractinians belong to the ‘polymorpha group’ and share the morphological characteristic ‘polymorphic colony’. The genus Leptoseris is the 16th host coral identified for Zanclea. Compared with the frequency of the Z. gallii sp. n. association with A. muricata and Z. sango with the scleractinian P. varians, the latter is twice as common; however, the former exhibited higher Zanclea polyps concentrations over the colony surface. Overall, the Zanclea survey indicates that these diminutive hydroids are more commonly associated with coral than previously known.
    Zoologica Scripta 08/2014;