Mollusca Research

Museum scientists describe new species of gastropods from West Africa

Samples of gastropods collected along West Africa during the Nansen Project between 2005–2012 turn out to be new species to Science

West African New Species of Gastropods

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In this paper we have studied shells, anatomy and DNA sequence data of samples obtained by the R/V Dr Fridtjof Nansen (2005–2012) between Morocco and Angola. Twenty species were found to occur in the region, including four new species to Science that described in this work: Laona nanseni sp. nov., Philine cerebralis sp. nov., Philine schrammi sp. nov. and Spiniphiline caboverdensis sp. nov. We have identified a biogeographical break around Cape Verde and the Sahelian upwelling system coinciding with the West African Transition Province, where eight species have their northern geographical limit or are restricted to this Province, while ten species have their southern limit here or just further north. Only one species seems to span across this biogeographical breaking point, but we speculate that this might result from taxonomic misidentifications.