Talorchestia martensii (Weber, 1892)

Lowry, J. K. & Springthorpe, R. T., 2019, Talitrid amphipods from India, East Africa and the Red Sea (Amphipoda, Senticaudata, Talitroidea, Talitridae), Zootaxa 4638 (3), pp. 351-378 : 356-357

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https://doi.org/ 10.11646/zootaxa.4638.3.3

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Talorchestia martensii


The Talorchestia martensii View in CoL problem

Talorchestia martensii ( Weber, 1892) View in CoL was originally described from the south-western coast of Flores in the Indonesian archipelago. Only the gnathopods were illustrated. Based on this description and comparison with other species in the paper it is possible to identify the species in the genus Talorchestia View in CoL , but it is not possible to identify the species except from the type locality. Nonetheless Chilton (1921) reported T. martensii View in CoL from Chilka Lake, India. Based on his detailed description and illustrations the taxon appears to be an undescribed species described below as Talorchestia View in CoL sp. He subsequently reported T. martensii View in CoL from Talé Sap, Thailand, but without description or illustrations. Gravely (1927), K.H. Barnard (1935) and Nayar (1959, 1967) then reported T. martensii View in CoL from various locations in India, also without descriptions or illustrations except Nayar (1967) who gave simple illustrations of the gnathopods.

Ruffo (1938, 1969) reported T. martensii from the Red Sea without description or illustrations. Ruffo (1948) also had material from Simatobe, on the south coast of Sumatra. At this time Ruffo synonymized Talorchestia franchetti Maccagno, 1936 and T. affinis Maccagno, 1936 with T. martensii which extended its range into East Africa and the Red Sea. Neither species had been adequately described. Ruffo (1969) published a map showing a wide distribution for the species in the Indian Ocean, still not illustrated or described. In the 1960’s, a number of experiments were carried out in the equatorial zone of East Africa in Somalia and Kenya using the amphipod ‘ Talorchestia martensii ’ (based on the determination of Ruffo), and aimed mainly at demonstrating the use of the sun as an orienting factor (see Pardi & Ercolini 1986 for a review). Ercolini (1964 a, 1964b), Pardi & Ercolini 1966, Pardi, 1967, Pardi et al. 1984 and Pardi et al. 1988 studied talitrid behavior in Somalia. Ruffo identified their study animals as T. martensii (Scapini pers. comm.). Later, Ugolini (2001) working in Kenya, followed suit. We examined some of this material, but only females were available in the collections.

Ledoyer (1968, 1986) then reported T. martensii from Nosy Vé, south-western Madagascar. Based on his description and illustrations it appears he had a new species described below as Talorchestia anakao sp. nov. Jones (1986) reported T. martensii from Kuwait in the northern Persian Gulf. If his figure is accurate then the taxon has robust setae on the exopod of uropod 1 and cannot be a Talorchestia . Lyla et al. (1998) reported ‘ T. martensii ’ from Parangipettai, India. It is not possible to know the species, but the record establishes Talorchestia in India in the northern Indian Ocean. Miyamoto & Morino (1999) gave a detailed description and illustrations of T. martensii based on specimens from Taiwan. Lowry, Springthorpe & Azman (2017) accepted the redescription of T. martensii by Miyamoto & Morino (1999) “until new material from the type locality is collected and described”. Finally Ren (2006) reported T. martensii from Hainan Island in a table.

Recently Baldanzi collected two species of talitrids from Gazi Beach, Kenya. Gazi (Maftaha) Bay (4°25’S 39°30’E) is a shallow, tropical coastal water system situated in southern Kenya, approximately 47 km south of Mombasa and near Malindi, Kenya (3°13’S 40°07’E) the site of Ugolini’s (2001) study.

In this paper we describe Gazia gazi gen. nov., sp. nov. and describe Talorchestia affinis Maccagno, 1936 , based on the Baldanzi collections, the collections of Maccagno from southern Eritrea and the collections studied by Ruffo from Port Sudan and Hurghada (as Al Ghardaqa) along the west coast of the Red Sea. This confirms the records of Talorchestia from eastern Africa and the Red Sea and verifies the distribution of the genus from Indonesia to East Africa in the western Indian Ocean. It is almost certainly the same species studied by Ercolini (1964a, b), Pardi & Ercolini (1966), Pardi (1967), Pardi et al. (1984), Pardi et al. (1988) and Ugolini (2001).














Talorchestia martensii

Lowry, J. K. & Springthorpe, R. T. 2019

Talorchestia martensii (

Weber 1892


Dana 1852


Dana 1852
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