Posts Tagged ‘New Mexico’


Blog title update:  Expanding  into news with general arachnids relevant to North America all in one place.  Mexico and the western states in the U.S. presents various transitions zones and micro habitats and is thus unique in arachnid taxa.

Hope you enjoy the site for educational and regional informations !

Sincerely,

Chad Lee B.Sc. 1995.

Biology and Natural Resource Management.  Texas Certified Applicator

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Tarantulas in the North American genus Aphonopelma are poorly known due to their challenging patterns of morphological variation and questionable taxonomy; few specimens can be confidently identified using existing keys or comparisons to original descriptions. In an effort to identify new strategies for resolving what has been characterized as a “taxonomic and nomenclatural nightmare”, we employed five different approaches for delimiting species in a group of closely related tarantulas from the Mojave Desert in the southwestern United States. These methods included the application of single techniques (morphology, DNA barcoding, shared genealogical exclusivity among independent loci, and generalized mixed Yule coalescent) and an integrative approach that incorporates genealogical and ecological information. Results demonstrate that the taxonomy of these spiders as presently defined underestimates actual species-level diversity and the group is in need of revision. The number of species delimited by each approach, however, was variable and we argue that it is this discordance that emphasizes the importance of incorporating multiple lines of evidence into an integrative taxonomic framework that can be used for constructing robust taxonomic hypotheses for Aphonopelma species

URL:  http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1055790312004101

 

journal.pone.0052822.g002

Citation:  Bryson RW Jr, Riddle BR, Graham MR, Smith BT, Prendini L (2013) As Old as the Hills: Montane Scorpions in Southwestern North America Reveal Ancient Associations between Biotic Diversification and Landscape History.

Background

The age of lineages has become a fundamental datum in studies exploring the interaction between geological transformation and biotic diversification. However, phylogeographical studies are often biased towards lineages that are younger than the geological features of the landscapes they inhabit. A temporally deeper historical biogeography framework may be required to address episodes of biotic diversification associated with geologically older landscape changes. Signatures of such associations may be retained in the genomes of ecologically specialized (stenotopic) taxa with limited vagility. In the study presented here, genetic data from montane scorpions in the Vaejovis vorhiesi group, restricted to humid rocky habitats in mountains across southwestern North America, were used to explore the relationship between scorpion diversification and regional geological history.

Results

Strong phylogeographical signal was evident within the vorhiesi group, with 27 geographically cohesive lineages inferred from a mitochondrial phylogeny. A time-calibrated multilocus species tree revealed a pattern of Miocene and Pliocene (the Neogene period) lineage diversification. An estimated 21 out of 26 cladogenetic events probably occurred prior to the onset of the Pleistocene, 2.6 million years ago. The best-fit density-dependent model suggested diversification rate in the vorhiesi group gradually decreased through time.

Conclusions

Scorpions of the vorhiesi group have had a long history in the highlands of southwestern North America. Diversification among these stenotopic scorpions appears to have occurred almost entirely within the Neogene period, and is temporally consistent with the dynamic geological history of the Basin and Range, and Colorado Plateau physiographical provinces. The persistence of separate lineages at small spatial scales suggests that a combination of ecological stenotopy and limited vagility may make these scorpions particularly valuable indicators of geomorphological evolution.journal.pone.0052822.g001


Link: http://www.plosone.org/article/info:doi/10.1371/journal.pone.0052822

I received an email (04.21.10) with photos for confirmation of species from Matt L. in Alb. NM.  We confirmed his pictures to Centruroides sculpturatus (gertschi form) from Sierra County, New Mexico.    We compared the various characters between Centruroides sculpturatus and Centruroides vittatus.

Matt was gracious to allow his pictures on the blog.

Recently(09.26.10), Matt sent sent some comparison photos of the sexes and species. Can you guess which species is which? Comments are welcome.

 

Description of site:  Provides a scorpion species list, desert biology, zoogeography, systematics, publications, habitat photos and specimen images.

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