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The genetic diversity, phylogeography and morphology of Elphidiidae (Foraminifera) in the Northeast Atlantic
Darling, K.F.; Schweizer, M.; Knudsen, K.L.; Evans, K.M.; Bird, C.; Roberts, A.; Filipsson, H.L.; Kim, J.-H; Gudmundsson, G.; Wade, C.M.; Sayer, M.D.J.; Austin, W.E.N. (2016). The genetic diversity, phylogeography and morphology of Elphidiidae (Foraminifera) in the Northeast Atlantic. Mar. Micropaleontol. 129: 1-23.
In: Marine Micropaleontology. Elsevier: Amsterdam; New York; Oxford; Tokyo. ISSN 0377-8398; e-ISSN 1872-6186, more
Peer reviewed article  

Available in  Authors 

    Elphidiidae Galloway, 1933 [WoRMS]; Foraminifera [WoRMS]
Author keywords
    Phylogeography; Benthic foraminifera; Elphidiidae; Taxonomy; Northeast Atlantic; Protist diversity

Authors  Top 
  • Darling, K.F.
  • Schweizer, M.
  • Knudsen, K.L.
  • Evans, K.M.
  • Bird, C.
  • Roberts, A.
  • Filipsson, H.L.
  • Kim, J.-H, more
  • Gudmundsson, G.
  • Wade, C.M.
  • Sayer, M.D.J.
  • Austin, W.E.N.

    Genetic characterisation (SSU rRNA genotyping) and Scanning ElectronMicroscope (SEM) imaging of individualtests were used in tandem to determine the modern species richness of the foraminiferal family Elphidiidae(Elphidium, Haynesina and related genera) across the Northeast Atlantic shelf biomes. Specimens were collectedat 25 locations fromthe High Arctic to Iberia, and a total of 1013 individual specimenswere successfully SEMimagedand genotyped. Phylogenetic analyses were carried out in combination with 28 other elphidiid sequencesfrom GenBank and seventeen distinct elphidiid genetic types were identified within the sample set, sevenbeing sequenced for the first time. Genetic types cluster into sevenmain cladeswhich largely represent their generalmorphologicalcharacter. Differences between genetic types at the genetic, morphological and biogeographiclevels are indicative of species level distinction. Their biogeographic distributions, in combination with elphidiidSSU sequences from GenBank and high resolution images from the literature show that each of them exhibitsspecies-specific rather than clade-specific biogeographies. Due to taxonomic uncertainty and divergent taxonomicconcepts between schools, we believe that morphospecies names should not be placed onto molecularphylogenies unless both the morphology and genetic type have been linked to the formally named holotype,or equivalent. Based on strictmorphological criteria,we advocate using only a three-stage approach to taxonomyfor practical application in micropalaeontological studies. It comprises genotyping, the production of a formalmorphological description of the SEM images associated with the genetic type and then the allocation of themost appropriate taxonomic name by comparison with the formal type description. Using this approach, wewere able to apply taxonomic names to fifteen genetic types. One of the remaining two may be potentially cryptic,and one is undescribed in the literature. In general, the phylogeographic distribution is in agreement with ourknowledge of the ecology and biogeographical distribution of the corresponding morphospecies, highlighting thegenerally robust taxonomic framework of the Elphidiidae in time and space.

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