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Type: Article
Published: 2018-01-17
Page range: 91–98
Abstract views: 61
PDF downloaded: 25

The taxonomic status of the South African straptail, Macruronus capensis Davies, 1950 (Pisces, Gadiformes, Macruronidae)

Branch Fisheries, Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, Private Bag X2, Roggebaai 8012, South Africa, and MArine REsearch (MA-RE) Institute, University of Cape Town, Private Bag X3, Rondebosch 7701, Cape Town, South Africa.
South African Institute for Aquatic Biodiversity, Private Bag 1015, Grahamstown 6140, South Africa.
South African Institute for Aquatic Biodiversity, Private Bag 1015, Grahamstown 6140, South Africa.
Pisces Macruronus novaezelandiae molecular genetics synonym taxonomy


The first record of the straptail fish, genus Macruronus, from South Africa was based on a single specimen captured off the Atlantic Cape coast and described as a new species, M. capensis Davies 1950. Davies did not examine specimens of the other extant nominal species in the genus, but based his conclusions solely on references to the original descriptions of M. novaezelandiae (Hector 1870) and M. magellanicus Lönnberg 1907. We show that all of the characters used by Davies (1950) to distinguish M. capensis from its congeners are in fact shared by the other nominal species of this genus. We also present molecular evidence from a Macruronus specimen recently caught off South Africa to support the conclusion that M. capensis is a junior synonym of M. novaezelandiae.



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