Descriptions of thirty-four
new species of the fish genus Pempheris (Perciformes:
Pempheridae), with a key to the species of the western
John E. Randall & Benjamin
The following thirty-four
new species of the pempherid fish genus Pempheris
are described from the western Indian Ocean, raising
the total number for the region to 47 species: P.
andilana from northwest Madagascar; P. argyrea
from the Seychelles; P. bineeshi from southeast
India; P. bruggemanni from Réunion and Mauritius;
P. connelli from KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa;
P. ellipse from the south coast of Oman; P.
hadra from the Republic of the Maldives; P.
heemstraorum from Rodrigues, Mascarene Islands;
P. hollemani from southeast Madagascar; P.
ibo from Mozambique and South Africa; P. kruppi
from the Gulf of Aden and Socotra; P. kuriamuria
from the south coast of Oman; P. leiolepis
from Chumbe Island, Zanzibar; P. megalops from
the Seychelles; P. micromma from the south
coast of Oman; P. muscat from the Gulf of Oman;
P. orbis from the Red Sea; P. pathirana
from Sri Lanka; P. peza from southern Mozambique;
P. rochai from the south coast of Oman; P.
rubricauda from northwest Madagascar; P. sergey
from the Red Sea; P. shimoni from Kenya; P.
shirleen from the Red Sea; P. smithorum
from Zanzibar; P. tau from the Red Sea;
P. ternay from the Seychelles; P. tilman
from the Gulf of Aqaba, Red Sea; P. tiran from
the Strait of Tiran, Red Sea; P. trinco from
Sri Lanka; P. viridis from the Red Sea; P.
wilsoni from the Gulf of Oman; P. xanthomma
from the Gulf of Aden (Yemen); and P. zajonzi
from the Socotra Archipelago. Many of the new species
are described from single specimens or one location,
indicating a need for more collecting to resolve the
taxonomy of this group: we emphasize that some decisions
are tentative and apply to the state of collections
at present. The barcode mtDNA COI sequences for 21
of the 47 WIO species are analyzed, showing some deep
divergences between species, but also several sibling
species or species complexes that apparently share
COI sequences. The genetic analysis is also limited
by small sample sizes; more extensive genetic surveys
are required to confirm the results. An appendix includes
the description of the hybrid P. malabarica
× P. russellii, a discussion of a complex of
Pempheris in St. Brandon’s Shoals in need of
further study, and underwater photographs of potential
new species of Pempheris for which we have no specimens.
Randall, J.E. & Victor,
B.C. (2015) Descriptions of thirty-four new species
of the fish genus Pempheris (Perciformes: Pempheridae),
with a key to the species of the western Indian Ocean.
Journal of the Ocean Science Foundation 18: 1-77.
publication date: December