Hippocampus algiricus, Kaup 1856

Sara A. Lourie, Riley A. Pollom & Sarah J. Foster, 2016, A global revision of the Seahorses Hippocampus Rafinesque 1810 (Actinopterygii: Syngnathiformes): Taxonomy and biogeography with recommendations for further research, Zootaxa 4146 (1), pp. 1-66: 14

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Hippocampus algiricus


H. algiricus Kaup 1856 

English common name. West African Seahorse.

Holotype. MNHN 0000-6084.

Type locality. Algeria. 

Synonyms. H. punctulatus Kaup 1856  , H. deanei Duméril 1861  , H. kaupii Duméril 1870  .

Distribution. Angola, Benin, Cabinda, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Congo, Cote d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, The Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Mauritania, Nigeria, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Spain (Canary Islands), Togo, Western Sahara.

Notes. The type specimen was sent from Algiers, Algeria by Guichenot who reported this species occurred, albeit ‘very rarely’, in Béjaïa (formerly Bougie) ( Guichenot 1850)  . No other specimens have been found from Algeria since this time, and we restrict the current distribution of H. algiricus  to West Africa  . H. algiricus  is very closely related to the H. kuda  -complex ( Teske et al. 2005) and is only 1.3% divergent from H. reidi  ( Silveira et al. 2014; Casey et al. 2004; Teske et al. 2004; BOLD 2016), but is here retained as a valid separate species due to the geographic distance between the West African and Brazilian coasts (see Discussion for further explanation). Further research is needed to determine the level of connectivity and gene exchange between the two populations. Synonymies were confirmed by examination of all type specimens ( Lourie et al. 1999).