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Ptomaphagus thebeatles n. sp., a previously unrecognized beetle from Europe, with remarks on urban taxonomy and recent range expansion (Coleoptera: Leiodidae)

journal contribution
posted on 2020-05-26, 06:44 authored by Menno Schilthuizen, Wesley van Oostenbrugge, Stefan Visser, Marrit van der Meer, Richard Delval, Claudia Dias, Heko Köster, Rudie Maarschall, Norbert Peeters, Peter Venema, Ryan Zaremba, Cristina Beltrami, Marzia Rossato, Leonardo Latella, Florinda Nieuwenhuis, Nicole de Rop, Iva Njunjić, Michel Perreau, Joris M. Koene
Anthropogenic environmental change is leading to changes in distribution for many organisms. While this is frequently discussed for prominent organisms of high conservation value, the same is true for the many cryptic species that rarely figure in debates on the human impact. One such cryptic taxon is the European Ptomaphagus sericatus (Chaudoir, 1845) and related forms. During a citizen science expedition in the Vondelpark, Amsterdam, the Netherlands, we obtained two forms of this species complex. We placed the examination of these specimens in the context of a re-analysis of the species group, and, using DNA barcoding and genital study on material collected thoughout Europe, found that the P. sericatus species complex consists of three distinct, partly sympatric species, one of which was previously undescribed. On the basis of collection data, at least two species, P. medius and P. thebeatles sp. n., show signs of having recently undergone (possibly anthropogenic) range changes, with P. medius even reaching North America.We describe P. thebeatles sp. n.; we raise two subspecies, viz. P. sericatus sericatus (Chaudoir, 1854) and P. sericatus medius (Rey, 1889) to the level of species, and designate a neotype for the former; we identify P. dacicus Jeannel, 1934 and P. pyrenaeus Jeannel, 1934 as junior synonyms of P. sericatus, and P. compressitarsus (Rey, 1889) as a junior synonym of P. subvillosus Goeze, 1777; we identify P. septentrionalis Jeannel, 1934 and P. miser (Rey, 1889) as junior synonyms of P. medius; we designate lectotypes for P. medius and P. miser.


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