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      Gnathia bermudensis (Crustacea, Isopoda, Gnathiidae), a new species from the mesophotic reefs of Bermuda, with a key to Gnathia from the Greater Caribbean biogeographic region

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          Gnathia bermudensis sp. nov. is described from mesophotic coral ecosystems in Bermuda; it is distinguished by pronounced and pointed supraocular lobes, two superior frontolateral processes and a weak bifid mediofrontal process, pereonite 1 not fused dorsally with the cephalosome, and large eyes. This is the first record of a species of Gnathia from Bermuda. A synopsis and key to the other Gnathia species from the Greater Caribbean biogeographic region is provided.

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          Higher classification of the flabelliferan and related Isopoda based on a reappraisal of relationships

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            The curious life-style of the parasitic stages of Gnathiid isopods.

            Isopods of the family Gnathiidae have free-living adults and parasitic juveniles feeding on the blood and tissue fluids of teleost and elasmobranch fishes. When not feeding on fishes, gnathiids are cryptic and widely distributed, especially among marine habitats. Ten genera are recognized: Bathygnathia, Bythognathia, Caecognathia, Elaphognathia, Euneognathia, Gibbagnathia, Gnathia, Monodgnathia, Paragnathia and Thaumastognathia. Among these are 172 known species, the majority in the genus Gnathia. Species descriptions rely on the morphology of adult male gnathiids. When juveniles or females are found, their identification can be difficult, a problem discussed in this review. Several gnathiids adapt well to laboratory culture and life cycles are generally similar, although variations in moulting behaviour, length of cycle and harem formation are observed. Praniza larvae are the feeding stages, and their mouthparts and digestion processes are examined. The effects of feeding on fishes in aquaria, in fisheries and in the wild are reported, and the role of gnathiids as vectors is assessed. Ecological interactions between gnathiid larvae, client and cleaner fishes are summarized. Identification of juveniles, host-finding behaviour, feeding and the digestion processes in larvae, feeding cycles among gnathiids of elasmobranchs, and the role of gnathiids as vectors, are among areas highlighted for further study.
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              Defining and Dividing the Greater Caribbean: Insights from the Biogeography of Shorefishes

              The Greater Caribbean biogeographic region is the high-diversity heart of the Tropical West Atlantic, one of four global centers of tropical marine biodiversity. The traditional view of the Greater Caribbean is that it is limited to the Caribbean, West Indies, southwest Gulf of Mexico and tip of Florida, and that, due to its faunal homogeneity, lacks major provincial subdivisions. In this scenario the northern 2/3 of the Gulf of Mexico and southeastern USA represent a separate temperate, “Carolinian” biogeographic region. We completed a comprehensive re-assessment of the biogeography of the Greater Caribbean by comparing the distributions of 1,559 shorefish species within 45 sections of shelf waters of the Greater Caribbean and adjacent areas. This analysis shows that that the Greater Caribbean occupies a much larger area than usually thought, extending south to at least Guyana, and north to encompass the entire Carolinian area. Rather than being homogenous, the Greater Caribbean is divided into three major provinces, each with a distinctive, primarily tropical fauna: (1) a central, tropical province comprising the West Indies, Bermuda and Central America; (2) a southern, upwelling-affected province spanning the entire continental shelf of northern South America; and (iii) a northern, subtropical province that includes all of the Gulf of Mexico, Florida and southeastern USA. This three-province pattern holds for both reef- and soft bottom fishes, indicating a general response by demersal fishes to major variation in provincial shelf environments. Such environmental differences include latitudinal variation in sea temperature, availability of major habitats (coral reefs, soft bottom shorelines, and mangroves), and nutrient additions from upwelling areas and large rivers. The three-province arrangement of the Greater Caribbean broadly resembles and has a similar environmental basis to the provincial arrangement of its sister biogeographic region, the Tropical Eastern Pacific.

                Author and article information

                Pensoft Publishers
                21 November 2019
                : 891
                : 1-16
                [1 ] Water Research Group, Unit for Environmental Sciences and Management, North-West University, Private Bag X6001, Potchefstroom, 2520, South Africa North-West University Potchefstroom South Africa
                [2 ] University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez, Department of Marine Sciences, PO Box 9000, Mayagüez, Puerto Rico, 00681, USA University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez Mayagüez Puerto Rico
                [3 ] Crescent International School, Bario, Govindpur, Dhanbad 828109, Jharkhand, India Crescent International School Dhanbad India
                Author notes
                Corresponding author: Kerry A. Hadfield ( kerry.malherbe@ 123456nwu.ac.za )

                Academic editor: T. Horton

                Kerry A. Hadfield, Nikolaos V. Schizas, Tapas Chatterjee, Nico J. Smit

                This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

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