Zoology in the Middle East
Volume 39, 2006
Covered in the Science Citation Index Expanded (SCIE). Admitted to ISI Master Journal list and covered by the BioSciences Information Service (Biosis Previews) and Biological Abstracts, the Zoological Record and many other review organs.
Price per article: Euro 10.00 (plus Euro 2.00 postage/handling)
Husam El Alqamy, Sherif Baha El Din
Contemporary status and distribution of gazelle species (Gazella dorcas and Gazella leptoceros) in Egypt
Abstract. Only two gazelle species are currently present in a wild state in Egypt. These are Dorcas Gazelle (Gazella dorcas) and Slender-horned Gazelle (Gazella leptoceros). The latest information available about the status and distribution of these two species collected during the period 19972005 indicates that the population size and range of both species continue to shrink at different rates. The conservation status of the two species is reviewed and a quantitative estimation for the range of the two species is provided using IUCNs Area of Occurrence and Area of Occupancy guidelines.
Keywords. Antelopes, gazelles, range, conservation status, distribution, Area of Occurrence, Area of Occupancy.
Mahmoud Hanafy, Mohamed A. Gheny, Anthony B. Rouphael, Ali Salam, Moustafa Fouda
The Dugong, Dugong dugon, in Egyptian waters: distribution, relative abundance and threats
Abstract. This paper presents the results of an interview survey used to identify the distribution and relative abundance of Dugongs (Dugong dugon) in Egypts Red Sea during 2001, 2002 and 2003. The survey area ranged from Hurghada, immediately south of the Gulf of Suez, to El Shalatin, about 200 km north of the Sudan border. Respondents, such as fishermen, were asked pre-prepared questions to determine the number of Dugongs observed per sighting, the length class of individuals, the month of observation and the location. Important feeding habitat, defined in part by the presence of Dugong feeding trails, was identified during a concurrent seagrass survey. Dugongs occurred throughout the survey area, but apparently in very low numbers. The maximum and minimum numbers reported were 17 in 2002 and 12 each in 2001 and 2003. Some individuals may have been counted more than once per annum. There was no evidence of annual change in the number of Dugong sightings, but a statistically greater number of sightings was made in summer compared with winter. Two hypotheses are proposed to explain this variation, but they are not mutually exclusive. The first is that Dugongs undertake winter movements to warmer waters. The second is that winter sea conditions made it harder to observe Dugongs. Important feeding habitat in the Wadi El Gemal Hamata Protected Area was confirmed by the presence of Dugong feeding trails in seagrass meadows. Known and predicted threats to this species in Egypt are loss of seagrass meadows, net entrapment and boat strikes.
Key words. Dugong, Egypt, feeding trails, interview survey approach, Red Sea, endangered species.
Adwan H. Shehab, Ibrahim H. Mamkhair
Notes on two species of horseshoe bats, Rhinolophus ferrumequinum and R. euryale (Rhinolophidae, Chiroptera), from northern Syria
Abstract. Two species of horseshoe bats (Rhinolophus ferrumequinum and R. euryale) were found roosting together at a historic site in Salaheddin Citadel, 30 km east of Lattakia, in the coastal region of northern Syria. The Greater Horseshoe Bat R. ferrumequinum constituted 63.6% of the collected specimens, while the Mediterranean Horseshoe bat R. euryale formed 36.3%. External, dental and cranial characters are discussed, measurements for the collected specimens are given; additionally, the skull structure for both species is illustrated.
Key words. Horseshoe bats, Rhinolophus euryale, Rhinolophus ferrumequinum, Chiroptera, small mammals, Syria, Middle East.
Motti Charter, Yossi Leshem, Ido Izhaki, Moshe Guershon, Yossef Kiat
The diet of the Little Owl, Athene noctua, in Israel
Abstract. The diet of the Little Owl (Athene noctua) was studied in the area around Kibbutz Sde Eliyahu and Kibbutz Shaalvim, Israel. During the study, 1070 and 1271 specimens were identified as food items, of which invertebrates accounted for 76.4% and 84.7% of specimens and 6.5% and 21.8% of biomass. Mammals were found in 93.2% and 73.4 of pellets, respectively, and invertebrates in 69.6% and 92.2 of pellets. Mammals accounted for 21.0% and 12.8% of prey by number, birds for 1.8% and 2.2%, reptiles for 0.7% and 0.3%, and insects for 67.2% and 77.7%. As in other studies from Europe, mammals were the most important prey group when biomass was calculated. Latitudinal trends of birds and Orthoptera in the diet of the Little Owl were found, whereas no trends were found in mammals, reptiles, invertebrates, and the insect orders Coleoptera and Dermaptera.
Key words. Little Owl, Athene noctua, pellet, diet, prey, latitude.
Mohammad Kaboli, Mansour Aliabadian, Michel Thevenot, Claude P. Guillaume, Roger Prodon
Ecological segregation between Iranian wheatears
Abstract. Ecological segregation in the wheatear genus Oenanthe is a complex and intriguing question in which the relationships between species are still uncertain. It also remains to be seen why several species often coexist in arid and apparently simple mono-layered environments and why there is a lack of evident differences between the etho-ecological characters of different species. We studied the patterns of coexistence of 11 species in their breeding grounds in the Zagros Mountains and in arid and semi-arid areas in the north-east of Iran. We focused on the relationship between habitat selection, behavioural characteristics and morphological traits in species with overlapping ranges. During point-censuses, we recorded 19 behavioural characteristics by monitoring each individual during a 20 minute period, using the sit-and-wait method, and measured 36 habitat variables within a 100-m radius around observed birds. We also measured 21 biometric variables in each species from a total of 179 museum skins. Our results showed that spatial overlapping between wheatear species in Iran is greater than has previously been reported. Habitat segregation seems to be more related to geomorphological features than to vegetation cover and/or vegetation type. Behaviour seems to be the most important element of niche segregation between syntopic species. We found no evidence of character displacement, although we did find marked differences between species (syntopic or otherwise) in behavioural characteristics that included feeding tactics, locomotion patterns and the use of perches. Morphological traits are more correlated to behavioural traits (especially foraging behaviour) than to habitat characteristics. Our results support the idea that morphology is an important cue for determining the ecological niche of a wheatear species.
Key words. Ecological segregation, habitat preference, morphological traits, wheatear, Iran.
Aaron M. Bauer, Todd Jackman, Eli Greenbaum, Theodore J. Papenfuss
Confirmation of the occurrence of Hemidactylus robustus Heyden, 1827 (Reptilia: Gekkonidae) in Iran and Pakistan
Abstract. In part because of taxonomic confusion with its congeners, the northeastern extent of the distribution of the gecko Hemidactylus robustus has remained uncertain. Comparison of nuclear and mitochondrial DNA sequences of geckos from Iran and Pakistan with H. robustus from Egypt and the U.A.E. confirms that this species extends at least as far as Sind. The similarity of mitochondrial sequences across great distances suggests a recent, possibly human-mediated, expansion of the species.
Key words. Hemidactylus robustus, Iran, Pakistan, mitochondrial DNA, nuclear DNA, translocation.
Hamed Cheatsazan, Haji Gholi Kami, Bahram H. Kiabi, Vahideh Rabani
Sexual dimorphism in the Caucasian Rock Agama, Laudakia caucasia (Sauria: Agamidae)
Abstract. Fourteen morphometric and 10 meristic characters in 71 males and 38 females of the Caucasian Rock Agama, Laudakia caucasia, from 8 localities on the Iranian Plateau have been examined to quantify sexual dimorphism. Males have larger bodies and limbs, more pointed and more voluminous heads and often more developed callous scales on the midventral and preanal regions, but none of the meristic characters differs significantly between the two sexes. The sexual dimorphism of this species thus agrees with the sexual dimorphism pattern of the agamid and iguanid lizards. Nevertheless, multivariate methods (Multidimensional Scaling and Factor Analysis) cannot generate a fine discrimination between the two sexes, probably because of their slight morphological distance or the overlap of the measured characters in newly-matured individuals.
Key words. Laudakia caucasia, morphometric and meristic analysis, sexual dimorphism, multidimensional Scaling.
Mehdi Rajabizadeh, Nasrullah Rastegar-Pouyani
Additional information on the distribution and morphology of Coluber (s. l.) andreanus (Werner, 1917) (Reptilia: Colubridae) from Iran
Abstract. A review of the reptile collection of the National Museum of Natural History in Tehran (MMTT) revealed one new specimen of the little-known Coluber (s. l.) andreanus. This specimen was collected in the Bushehr Province in south-western Iran. Two more specimens were found in Razi University Zoological Museum (RUZM), Kermanshah. A detailed description of these specimens is given and it is shown that sexual dimorphism in the ventral scale rows is low.
Key words. Colubridae, Coluber (s. l.) andreanus, distribution, morphology, new locality, Iran, Middle East.
Hamid Reza Esmaeili, Zeinab Piravar
On the karyotype of Cyprinion tenuiradius Heckel, 1849 (Pisces: Cyprinidae) from the Southwest of Iran
Abstract. The karyotype of an endemic Iranian fish, Cyprinion tenuiradius Heckel, 1849, has been investigated by examining metaphase chromosome spreads obtained from gill epithelial and kidney cells. The diploid chromosome number is 2n=50. The karyotypes consist of 13 metacentric, 5 submetacentric and 7 subtelocentric chromosome pairs. The arm number is NF=86. Sex chromosomes are cytologically indistinguishable in this species. The chromosome number in this fish is the same as in many other cyprinid fishes, confirming the conservative character of this feature in the family.
Key words. Cyprinion tenuiradius, karyotype, chromosome, idiogram, Iran, Middle East.
D. Michael Ackland, Doreen Werner
Description of a new species of Alliopsis Schnabl & Dziedzicki (Diptera, Anthomyiidae) from Armenia and Georgia that is predaceous on black fly larvae (Diptera, Simuliidae)
Abstract. A new species of Anthomyiidae, Alliopsis simulivora Ackland n.sp., is described from Armenia and Georgia, and observations on the adult flies preying on larvae of the black flies Prosimulium petrosum Rubtsov, 1955 and Simulium (Wilhelmia) group (Diptera, Simuliidae) in Armenia are reported.
Key words. Diptera, Anthomyiidae, new species, Armenia, Georgia, Simuliidae, predation.
Onder Calmasur, Hikmet Ozbek
Check-list of the Argidae fauna (Hymenoptera: Symphyta) of Turkey
Abstract. Thirty-two species in four genera of the sawfly family Argidae have been recorded in Turkey. This paper gives an updated list of species together with distribution records from the literature and from personal observations. New localities are given for many species. Five species are reported as new to Turkey, namely Aprosthema bifurca (Klug, 1834), Aprosthema syrmiense (Mocsry, 1897), Arge pullata (Zaddach, 1859), Arge ustulata (Linnaeus, 1758) and Sterictiphora geminata (Gmelin, 1790). Arge aurata (Zaddach, 1864) is endemic to Turkey.
Key words. Symphyta, Argidae, sawfly, fauna, new records, Turkey, Middle East.
Ozge Ozden, Nedim Uygun, Ulrich Kersting
Ladybird beetles (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) from northern Cyprus, including six new records
Abstract. During 20002001, 21 species of ladybird beetles (Coccinellidae) in 12 genera were recorded in northern Cyprus. Six species are new records for the island of Cyprus, namely: Cheilomenes propinqua, Diomus rubidus, Nephus hiekei, Nephus nigricans, Scymnus pallipediformis and Scymnus rubromaculatus. A noticeably higher number of coccinellid specimens was collected in non-agricultural areas (765 specimens) compared to agricultural areas with only 194 specimens. This difference was mainly caused by the dominance of two abundant species, C. septempunctata and H. variegata, in non-agricultural areas.
Key words. Ladybird beetles, Coccinellidae, Coleoptera, Cyprus, Mediterranean, Middle East.
Sultan Cobanoglu, Miktat Doganlar
A new Pyemotes (Acari: Pyemotidae) reared from larvae of the Almond Seed Wasp, Eurytoma amygdali (Hymenoptera: Eurytomidae) from Hatay, Turkey
Abstract. In almond orchards in Hatay, southern Turkey, during 2004-2005, a new species of parasitic mite was collected on larvae of the Almond Seed Wasp, Eurytoma amygdali, Enderlein 1907 (Hymenoptera: Eurytomidae): Pyemotes amygdali n. sp. (Acari: Pyemotidae). Males and females of the new species are described and illustrated, and a key to the Turkish species of the genus is given. The species may be considered as an important agent for the biological control of Almond Seed Wasp.
Key words. Acari, Pyemotidae, Pyemotes amygdali n. sp., parasite, Eurytoma amygdali, Hymenoptera, Turkey.
Abdolghasem Khaleghizadeh, Mohammed E. Sehhatisabet
Temporal variation in the numbers of the Alexandrine Parakeet, Psittacula eupatria, in Tehran, Iran
Zoology in the Middle East 39, 2006: 107-108.
Pritipal S. Soorae, Himansu S. Das, Hamad Al Mazrouei
Records of sea snakes (subfamily Hydrophiinae) from the coastal waters of the Abu Dhabi Emirate, United Arab Emirates
Zoology in the Middle East 39, 2006: 109-110.
Esmaile Shakman, Ragnar Kinzelbach
The Halfbeak Fish, Hemiramphus far (Forskal, 1775), in the coastal waters of Libya
Zoology in the Middle East 39, 2006: 111-112.
Ugur Yaka, Rikap Yuce
The Rough Ray, Raja radula Delaroche, 1809 (Rajidae), new to the Sea of Marmara, Turkey
Zoology in the Middle East 39, 2006: 112-114.
Bekir Keskin, Julio Ferrer
First record of Xanthomus cf. ovulus Seidlitz, 1895 (Coleoptera: Tenebrionidae) from Turkey
Zoology in the Middle East 39, 2006: 114-116.
Two new records for the fauna of solitary wasps of the subfamily Eumeninae (Hymenoptera: Vespidae) in Iran
Zoology in the Middle East 39, 2006: 117-119.
Mark K. Bayless
A review of the ixodid tick species Amblyomma gervaisi (Ixodoidea) and its host Varanus sp. (Sauria: Varanidae) from Yemen
Zoology in the Middle East 39, 2006: 119-120.