Zoological Studies

Vol. 47 No. 5, 2008

Pseudocyclops giussanii (Copepoda: Calanoida: Pseudocyclopidae), a New Species from Lake Faro (Central Mediterranean Sea)

Giacomo Zagami*, Cinzia Brugnano, and Giuseppe Costanzo

Department of Animal Biology and Marine Ecology, University of Messina, 98166, Messina, S. Agata, Salita Sperone 31, Italy

Giacomo Zagami, Cinzia Brugnano, and Giuseppe Costanzo (2008) A new species of the calanoid copepod genus Pseudocyclops is described from a Mediterranean coastal lake on Sicily (Italy).  Out of  34 species comprising the genus Pseudocyclops, the new species and P. mirus are characterized by an unsegmented endopod of leg 1, a very narrow and elongate prosome, similar armature of the female leg 5, and an antennule with 16 segments.  Since a combination of these characters is unique within the genus, these 2 species, together with Pseudocyclops sp., which is as yet undescribed but is very close to P. giussanii sp. nov., should be recognized in a distinct species group, referred to here as the mirus-group, which is geographically distributed around the eastern Atlantic-Mediterranean region.  The record of P. giussanii sp. nov. increases the number of known Mediterranean species of Pseudocyclops to 5, of which P. xiphophorus, P. costanzoi, P. giussanii sp. nov., and Pseudocyclops sp. are so far known to occur exclusively in Lake Faro.  The discovery in Lake Faro of  4 other Pseudocyclops species (P. umbraticus, P. xiphophorus, P. costanzoi, and Pseudocyclops sp.), in addition to the new species, is particularly interesting with regard both to their biogeographic distribution patterns and evolutionary history.  Ecological, biological, and zoogeographical notes are also provided.

Key words: Taxonomy, New species, Pseudocyclops, Lake Faro, Mediterranean coastal lake.

*Correspondence: Fax: 39-09-0393409.  E-mail:giacomo.zagami@unime.it