Vol. 60, 2021
High Mountain Echiniscid (Heterotardigrada) fauna of TaiwanPiotr Gąsiorek1,*, Katarzyna Vončina1, Reinhardt M°bjerg Kristensen2, and Łukasz Michalczyk1
of Invertebrate Evolution, Institute of Zoology and Biomedical
Research, Faculty of Biology, Jagiellonian University, Gronostajowa 9,
30-387 Krakˇw, Poland. *Correspondence: email@example.com
Received 3 August 2021 / Accepted 13 September 2021
lies at the transitional zone between the East Palaearctic and Oriental
regions, which translates into the presence of both Palaearctic and
Indomalayan taxa on this island. Furthermore, large habitat
heterogeneity and high mountains contributed to the rise of conditions
favouring allopatric speciation and the emergence of endemic species.
The tardigrade fauna of Taiwan is poorly studied, and the aim of this
contribution is to provide new data on the members of the family
Echiniscidae, the largest limno-terrestrial group of the class
Heterotardigrada, found at high elevations in central Taiwan. We report
11 species grouped in 5 genera: Claxtonia (1 species), Echiniscus (3 species), Hypechiniscus (1 species), Nebularmis (2 species), and Pseudechiniscus
(4 species). All are new to Taiwan, including 5 species that are new to
science, with 4 of them being described herein by means of integrative
taxonomy as: Hypechiniscus crassus sp. nov. (the exarmatus morphogroup), Pseudechiniscus (Meridioniscus) dreyeri sp. nov., Pseudechiniscus (Pseudechiniscus) formosus sp. nov., and Pseudechiniscus (Pseudechiniscus) totoro sp. nov. The new findings also help to clarify the description of Echiniscus clevelandi Beasley, 1999, and supplement the phylogenies of the Echiniscus virginicus complex and of the genera Hypechiniscus, Nebularmis and Pseudechiniscus.
Key words: Biogeography, Endemism, Integrative taxonomy, Oriental, Palaearctic, Phylogeny.
Gąsiorek P, Vončina K, Kristensen RM, Michalczyk L. 2021. High mountain
echiniscid (Heterotardigrada) fauna of Taiwan. Zool Stud 60:70.