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Biodiversity Journal 2017, 8 (1): 1-312

  • Biodiversity Journal, 8 (1): 001-002
    Alberto Ballerio
    New Caledonia
  • Biodiversity Journal, 8 (1): 003-008

    Antonio Scupola
    Aphaenogaster muelleriana Wolf, 1915 (Hymenoptera Formicidae) in Salento (South East Italy)

    Workers of the ant Aphaenogaster muelleriana Wolf, 1915 (Hymenoptera Formicidae) have been found in Salento (apulia, South East Italy) for the first time. also, this record represents the first citation for the Italian peninsular territory. New Italian localities for A. splendida species-group are given here.

  • Biodiversity Journal, 8 (1): 009-010

    Spartaco Gippoliti & Aldo Oriani
    Does Leptailurus serval (Schreber, 1776) (Mammalia Felidae) occur in Western Egypt?

    The serval cat, Leptailurus serval Schreber, 1776 (Mammalia Felidae), has never been cited from Egypt and Libya in recent time. Here we report the presence of a mounted skin (with skull inside) in a local shop inside the Shiwa Oasis (NW Egypt). The scarcely-spotted pattern exhibited by this skin adds interest to this record. We suggest to secure the specimen to a Natural History Museum and begin an ad hoc investigation in the region.

  • Biodiversity Journal, 8 (1): 011-014

    Riccardo Di Giuseppe & Mauro Grano
    Sightings of Red Squirrels Sciurus vulgaris Linnaeus, 1758 (Mammalia Rodentia) in the Monumento Naturale “Pineta di Fregene” and in the Castel di Guido Oasis (Latium, Italy)

    This note gives news of the sighting of the Red Squirrel Sciurus vulgaris Linnaeus, 1758 (Mammalia Rodentia) in the monumental pine forest of Fregene, nowadays recognized as Federico Fellini Park and of other specimens inside the Oasis Lipu of Castel di Guido. The first sighting is the confirmation of the presence of the species in coastal pinewoods of Latium. The second one constitutes the first report for this area.

  • Biodiversity Journal, 8 (1): 015-018

    Naveen Kumar Nigam & Chelladurai Raghunathan
    New record of an irregular sea urchin, Brissus latecarinatus (Leske, 1778) (Echinoidea Brissidae) from the Andaman Islands

    An irregular sea urchin, Brissus latecarinatus (Leske, 1778) Echinoidea Brissidae, is reported herein for the first time from Andaman Islands. A brief description along with a note on its distribution are provided.

  • Biodiversity Journal, 8 (1): 019-020

    Arnaldo Camilloni, Raffaele Luca, Roberto Casalini & Andrea Corso
    Water Pipit Anthus spinoletta spinoletta (Linnaeus, 1758) (Aves Motacillidae) actively feeding on small fishes

    In this paper, the Authors observed and photographically documented some Water Pipits Anthus spinoletta spinoletta (Linnaeus, 1758) (Aves Motacillidae) feeding on alive small fishes, Aphanius fasciatus (Valenciennes,1821) of the Cyprinodontidae family, at Pantani dell’Inferno, Circeo National Park (Lazio, Italy).

  • Biodiversity Journal, 8 (1): 021-026

    Reginawanti Hindersah, Oviyanti Mulyani & Rafael Osok
    Proliferation and exopolysaccharide production of Azotobacter in the presence of mercury

    Bioremediation is a cheap, easy and effective method to improve the quality of heavy metal-contaminated agricultural land. Plant Growth Promoting Rhizobacteria recently has been proposed to be used in bioremediation of heavy metal. Rhizosphere-inhabitant Azotobacter produce exopolysaccharide (EPS) as a mechanism to avoid heavy metal poisoning; and in other hand EPS mobilize heavy metals in soil. The objective of this study was to get an information about growth and exopolysaccharide production profile of Azotobacter in media with and without mercury chloride. The bacteria were isolated from mercury-contaminated tailing at gold mining area in Maluku Province; and cultured in liquid medium containing 5, 10, 15 and 20 mg/L of HgCl2. Cultures were incubated for 4 days at 115 rpm on gyratory shaker at room temperature. The results showed that all three isolates of Azotobacter enabled to grow in media with lower level of HgCl2 but Azotobacter Buru-1 and Buru-2 did not grow on media with 20 mg/L of HgCl2. Azotobacter bd3a was able to grow on media with 20 mg/L of HgCl2 although the cell density was lower than that of control and lower level of mercury. The presence of mercury affected and generally suppressed the production of EPS; but the effect depend on the isolates. Azotobacter Buru-2 produced more EPS at 2 and 4 days after incubation in the presence of 20 mg/L of HgCl2.

  • Biodiversity Journal, 8 (1): 027-032

    Arajush Payra, Gaurab Nandi Das, Aratrik Pal, Debarun Patra & Ashish D Tiple
    New locality records of a rare Dragonfly Gynacantha khasiaca Maclachlan, 1896 (Odonata Aeshnidae) from India

    Gynacantha khasiaca Maclachlan, 1896 (Odonata Aeshnidae) is a beautiful dragonfly, distributed mainly in South-eastern Asia. During Odonata survey in different parts of North-Eastern and Eastern India from 2014 to 2016, some specimens of this species were observed and photographed from 6 localities. Present record of this species from Purba Medinipur, West Bengal represents its Southernmost distribution in India.

  • Biodiversity Journal, 8 (1): 033-038

    Andrea Corso, Ottavio Janni, Maurizio Pavesi & Michele Viganò
    Update to the status of Pantala flavescens (Fabricius, 1798) and Trithemis kirbyi Selys, 1891 for Italy and Central Mediterranean basin (Odonata Libellulidae)

    An overview of the records of Pantala flavescens and Trithemis kirbyi for the Sicilian Channel islands and mainland Sicily, with comments on their possible status in this area, is provided. In light of the number of observed individuals, P. flavescens is likely to be regular in the studied area, with up to 30 individuals recorded per year since autumn 2012. Trithemis kirbyi, conversely, is only known from few scattered records, so that its status in the area remains to be elucidated. No evidence of reproductive behaviour nor of actual breeding in this area was hitherto found for any of the two species.

  • Biodiversity Journal, 8 (1): 039-044

    Roberto Casalini, Enzo Colonnelli, Andrea Corso & David Mifsud
    Chiloneus hoffmanni (Gonzáles, 1970) (Coleoptera Curculionidae) new to Italy, with a checklist of the species of the genus and ecological notes

    Chiloneus hoffmanni (González, 1970) (Coleoptera Curculionidae) thus far considered a Maltese endemic, is here recorded for the first time from Lampedusa island (Italy). Several adults of this species and of C. solarii Pesarini, 1970 were found feeding on leaves of Charybdis pancration (Asparagaceae). These observations constitute the first data on the ecology of these species. An updated checklist of Chiloneus Schoenherr, 1842 is also provided.

  • Biodiversity Journal, 8 (1): 045-046 - MONOGRAPH
    Pietro Minissale
    Juniperus turbinata Guss. (Cupressaceae)
  • Biodiversity Journal, 8 (1): 047-048 - MONOGRAPH
    Giorgio Sabella
    Introduction. Considerations on the International Congress “Biodiversity, Mediterranean, Society”
  • Biodiversity Journal, 8 (1): 049-058 - MONOGRAPH

    Alessandro Minelli
    Modern taxonomic and biogeographic approaches to biodiversity in the Mediterranean area

    I review here examples of recent progress in the taxonomy and biogeography of Mediterranean taxa. Morphological approaches have still much to offer, as shown by a study of the Sicilian species of the wingless weevil genus Pseudomeira Stierlin, 1881 (Coleoptera Curculionidae). A systematic analysis of molecular markers, however, is revealing a huge number of previously unsuspected cryptic species, as in the scarab genus Pachypus Dejean, 1821 (Coleoptera Pachypodidae). Other molecular studies have revealed very deep phylo- geographic structure in the Corsican brook salamander; the presence of six or more species hitherto lumped under Rumina decollata (Linnaeus, 1758) (Pulmonata Subulinidae), in a snail genus in which biparental and uniparental reproduction coexist; the conservation of the same male pheromone in vicariant species of the scarab beetles of the genus Osmoderma Lepeletier et Serville, 1828 (Coleoptera Cetoniidae); the interplay of vicariance and dispersal events in giving rise to the different taxa of the land snail genus Chilostoma Fitzinger, 1833 (Gastropoda Helicidae) inhabiting the Greek islands. Further examples of modern biogeographic studies are a morphometric analysis revealing the preferential localization of steep slopes of phenetic diversity of seven butterfly species groups in the Tuscan archipelago and across the Strait of Messina; a research on tenebrionid beetles showing that present distribution patterns are not completely explained by postglacial recolonization from Pleistocenic refugia; a comparative analysis of the diversity of patterns (explained in part by vicariance, in part by dispersal) in the biota on the two shores of the Strait of Gibraltar. A study on the ocellated lizards provides a nice analysis of climatic niche evolution throughout speciation. Finally, a comparative study of mtDNA from spurge hawkmoths collected between 1884 and 1986 has demonstrated the complete disappearance, within one century, of a lineage from a former area of sympatry with what now appears as its vicariant.

  • Biodiversity Journal, 8 (1): 059-064 - MONOGRAPH

    Ettore Petralia, Massimo Berico, Teresa La Torretta, Antonella Malaguti, Milena Stracquadanio & Chiara Telloli
    Identification of emission sources from data of PM2.5 chemical speciation measured with automatic monitors: application in a coastal site of the Mediterranean basin

    High-time resolution (1 hour) measurements of 11 species (organic carbon, elemental carbon, chloride, nitrite, nitrate, sulfate, sodium, ammonium, potassium, magnesium, calcium) within the PM2.5 were conducted, from 3rd May to 30th June 2010, in a coastal site of Basilicata (Italy). Acquired data were analysed through Positive Matrix Factorization (PMF) method in order to individuate potential emission sources. This source apportionment evaluation revealed 5 factors separated as Vehicular traffic, Combustion of biomass, Secondary aerosol, Aged marine, Marine fresh and Dust. For each factor were defined profile, temporal trend, 24h-cycle and percentage contribution to measured PM2.5, also emphasizing the relationship between factors and different wind conditions.

  • Biodiversity Journal, 8 (1): 065-072 - MONOGRAPH

    Venera Ferrito & Anna Maria Pappalardo
    Seafood species identification by DNA barcoding, a molecular tool for food traceability

    Traceability contributes to improve food safety giving information on animal species, origin, authenticity, composition and production system. Species identification is an important step of seafood traceability and molecular tools have been proved far superior to all other diagnostic methods previously used. The seafood products are particularly affected by commercial frauds based on unintentional or deliberate species substitutions of low value fish species for high value fish. In this review, we summarize the data concerning the level of fish species misidentification in processed products in the Italian fish markets and strengthen that DNA barcoding is an effective molecular tool to track down mislabeling and food frauds. Furthermore, we highlight the COIBar-RFLP (Cytochrome Oxidase I Barcode-Restriction Fragment Lengh Polymorphism), combining two consolidated techniques (COI barcoding and PCR-RFLP) in a new molecular strategy as a rapid method for routine screening to detect the mislabeling of seafood products.

  • Biodiversity Journal, 8 (1): 073-078 - MONOGRAPH

    Oscar Lisi, Valerio Vaccalluzzo & Vera D’Urso
    Survey on the presence of phlebotominae sandflies in eastern Sicily and connected risk of leishmaniasis

    The authors summarize the results of all the searches for phlebotomes in eastern Sicily, including the connected risk for humans and dogs to contract leishmaniasis, and point out the current situation with new risks, and the main goals for present and future research.

  • Biodiversity Journal, 8 (1): 079-086 - MONOGRAPH

    Giorgio Sabella, Fabio Massimo Viglianisi, Sergio Rotondi & Filadelfo Brogna
    Preliminary observations on the use of drones in the environmental monitoring and in the management of protected areas.  The case study of  “R.N.O. Vendicari”, Syracuse (Italy)

    The possible utilization of UAS (Unmanned Aircraft Systems), also called drones, as means for the environmental monitoring and the management of protected areas has been investigated. The study was carried out in “R.N.O. Vendicari”, Syracuse (Sicily, Italy) in relation to the problems of the fruition's management of the protected area. Some operational proposals on the use of drones for these aims are suggested and the preliminary results are presented.

  • Biodiversity Journal, 8 (1): 087-104 - MONOGRAPH

    Pietro Minissale & Saverio Sciandrello
    The wild vascular flora of the Archaeological Park of Neapolis in Syracuse and surrounding areas (Sicily, Italy)

    This paper presents an updated list of the wild vascular flora growing in the Archaeological Park of Syracuse and surrounding areas. The list of plants is the result of a bibliographic analysis and field surveys carried out in 2013–2015. A total of 343 specific and infraspecific taxa are reported. The families most represented are Poaceae (43), Fabaceae (38) and Asteraceae (35 taxa). The analysis of the biological spectrum of the vascular flora indicate the predominance of therophytes (51%) and hemicryptophytes (20%) while, from a chorological point of view, most of the species show a Mediterranean distribution (134 taxa). The phytogeographical value of some rare species, in particular Origanum onites, Elatine gussonei, Callitriche truncata, Aristolochia altissima and Brassica souliei subsp. amplexicaulis is discussed. The presence of some alien species, such as Vachellia karroo, Lantana camara, Ailanthus altissima is also highlighted, because in this area they represent a serious threat to native plant biodiversity.

  • Biodiversity Journal, 8 (1): 105-112 - MONOGRAPH

    Paolo Balistreri & Anna Maria Mannino
    Preliminary data on the occurrence of alien macroalgae in the vermetid reef along the coasts of Favignana Island (Southern Tyrrhenian Sea)

    Intertidal vermetid reefs are highly diverse systems that provide numerous habitats for animal and vegetal species, leading to an increase of intertidal biodiversity. These habitats, particularly vulnerable to environmental changes and human activities, are now experiencing high mortality in several areas of the Mediterranean Sea. Since alien macroalgae are nowadays considered one of the most serious threats to biodiversity and natural ecosystem functioning, we provide a first baseline assessment of the occurrence of alien species in the vermetid reef along the coasts of the Island of Favignana (Egadi Islands Marine Protected Area). Surveyes carried out in 2015 revealed the only presence of Caulerpa cylindracea Sonder (Bryopsidales Caulerpaceae). The alga, exclusively recorded within the cuvettes, showed low values of abundance (class 1: cover <10%) except for San Giuseppe and Punta Longa localities where the values of abundance fell within the class 3 (cover <40% and >20%). No significant correlations were highlighted between the abundance values of C. cylindracea and those of the dominant macroalgae inhabiting the cuvettes.

  • Biodiversity Journal, 8 (1): 113-118 - MONOGRAPH

    Rosa Termine
    Breeding of Black-necked Grebe Podiceps nigricollis C.L. Brehm, 1831 (Aves Podicipedidae) in the SCI and SPA ITA060002 “Lago di Pergusa” (Sicily, Italy)

    On 2015 breeding season, we censused a high number of Podiceps nigricollis C.L. Brehm, 1831 (Aves Podicipedidae), breeding in the SCI and SPA ITA060002 “Lago di Pergusa”, including the Nature Reserve “Lago di Pergusa”. After 1950 the breeding records of the P. nigricollis in Italy were of approximately twenty and relative to a few pairs. Since 2010, in the Lake Pergusa, the P. nigricollis has changed its status from “migratory, overwintering and irregular breeder” to “regular breeder”. In 2010, and more regularly in 2012–2015, there are in fact documented breeding attempts with relative offspring. This Lake has so far counted the largest number of breeding pairs for Sicily and Italy. We point therefore to the importance of this protected natural area as a breeding site for the P. nigricollis.

  • Biodiversity Journal, 8 (1): 119-121 - MONOGRAPH

    Ilia Gjonov
    Mycterodus arpadi Dlabola, 1977 (Hemiptera Issidae): a new record from Europe

    Mycterodus arpadi Dlabola, 1977 (Hemiptera Issidae) is reported only from Asia Minor (Beikoz, Istanbul Province). In 2012, in the Bulgarian part of the Strandzha Mountain a few specimens of the species were collected and photographed. This is the first record of M. arpadi in Europe.

  • Biodiversity Journal, 8 (1): 123-144 - MONOGRAPH

    Giulio Cuccodoro
    Review of the observations of aggregates of Steninae reported since 1856 (Coleoptera Staphylinidae)

    The nine aggregates of Steninae documented since 1856 are reviewed, completed with seventeen new reports. All the pictures available on the topic are presented. Considering the ubiquity and megadiversity of the subfamily, this total of 26 observations reported over the last 150 years appears strikingly low, clearly indicating that the phenomenom is exceptional. These observations were all made in the Palaearctic and Oriental realms, and refer to both the extant genera of Steninae Dianous and Stenus. Six observations refer to Dianous species, all from China, mainly D. banghaasi and D. freyi. Of the twenty observations referring to Stenus ten were made in the Mediterranean area, mainly on S. cordatus, S. elegans and S. turk. This collection of observations seems a composite of several kinds of behavioural patterns, such as hibernation, aestivation, reproductive swarming, and possibly hilltopping, with some most likely intermixed. Aggregation in compact multilayer masses of individuals as well as occasional recurrence of Stenus aggretates at precise locations over days or year are probably controlled by pheromone signals. The reasons driving these slender, one centimeter long rove beetles to occasionally swarm in compact masses of well over hundred thousand individuals remain nevertheless as enygmatic as how such a spectacular phenomenom performed by members of the second most diverse genus of animals on earth can remain so rarely observed.

  • Biodiversity Journal, 8 (1): 145-150 - MONOGRAPH

    Vera D’Urso, Oscar Lisi & Giorgio Sabella
    The alien leafhopper Balclutha brevis Lindberg, 1954 (Hemiptera, Cicadellidae) and its hostplant, the invasive Poaceae Pennisetum setaceum (Försskal) Chiov.: a real risk in the scenario of Mediterranean land biodiversity?

    The possible effects on Mediterranean biodiversity of the alien leafhopper Balclutha brevis Lindberg, 1954 (Hemiptera Cicadellidae) and its alien hostplant, Pennisetum setaceum (Försskal) Chiov., are discussed; Pennisetum setaceum is a perennial grass of Poaceae spread worldwide and recently colonizing very quickly also Mediterranean countries, it being an invasive species that colonises several environments and is able to modify ecosystems replacing the herbaceous indigenous vegetation. Balclutha brevis, described from the Canary Islands, has been reported in Sicily and Malta Islands. In Sicily, conspicuous populations of this species, with specimens of different generations living together during the whole year, are present. A Wolbachia Hertig, 1936 strain and the Trichogrammatidae Oligosita balcluthae Viggiani et Laudonia, 2015, parasitoid of eggs, affect B. brevis. The aggressiveness of P. setaceum and the speed of colonization of B. brevis could cause a banalization of the flora and also the fauna with modification of the entomocoenosis and possible transmission of disease to wild and cultivated plants.

  • Biodiversity Journal, 8 (1): 151-184 - MONOGRAPH

    Adalgisa Guglielmino, Enrico Scarici, Alessandro De Santis & Christoph Bückle
    Study on flora and Auchenorrhyncha biocenoses (Insecta Hemiptera) in moist areas considered restricted relics of the ancient Lacus Velinus in the provinces of  Terni and Rieti (Umbria and Latium, Italy)

    A research on vascular plants and Auchenorrhyncha biocenoses in moist areas of the provinces of Terni (Umbria) and Rieti (Latium) was conducted from 1999 to 2015. Prevalently four areas were studied: Lago di Piediluco, Lago di Ventina, Lago Lungo and Lago Ripasottile. 267 taxa of vascular plants are recorded on the whole. Species of particular interest are Butomus umbellatus, Carex acutiformis, C. elata, C. pseudocyperus, C. paniculata, Cladium mariscus, Epipactis palustris, Frangula alnus, Glyceria maxima, Hydrocharis morsus-ranae, Nuphar lutea, Oenanthe aquatica, Orchis incarnata, Ranunculus lingua, Rorippa amphibia, Rumex hydrolapathum, Scutellaria galericulata and Viburnum opulus, all included in the Regional Red Lists of Italian Plants of Umbria and Latium. 162 Auchenorrhyncha species were collected. Four species (Cixius remotus, Kelisia punctulum, Anakelisia fasciata and Megamelodes lequesnei) are recorded for the first time for Italy, five (Kelisia praecox, Struebingianella lugubrina, Chloriona smaragdula, Hishimonus cf. hamatus and Metalimnus formosus) are new records for the Apennine Peninsula (“S” in the checklist of the Italian fauna). For some species of special interest, their ecology, life cycle and distribution are discussed. 60 taxa are strictly correlated with moist habitats. The investigated areas are of high relevance for nature conservation as they constitute small relics of the ancient Lacus Velinus, where several stenotopic Auchenorrhyncha species occur, associated particularly with moist vegetation.

  • Biodiversity Journal, 8 (1): 185-192 - MONOGRAPH

    Giorgio Sabella, Rostislav Bekchiev & Rumyana Kostova
    Pselaphinae (Coleoptera Staphylinidae) from Sicily and Calabria (Italy). Results from a short entomological expedition in April, 2015

    The study presents the results from an entomological expedition in Southern Italy. Two rare species, Batrisodes adnexus (C. Hampe, 1863) and Chennium siculum Fiori, 1914, were collected in Sicily and three species, Panaphantus atomus Kiesenwetter, 1858, Bibloplectus pusillus (Denny, 1825), and Bibloplectus delhermi (Guillebeau, 1888), are recorded for the first time from Calabria.

  • Biodiversity Journal, 8 (1): 193-204 - MONOGRAPH

    Alberto Villari & Danilo Scuderi
    Taxonomical notes on some poorly known mollusca species from the Strait of Messina (Italy)

    The finding of some species of Mollusca interesting either for their distributional pattern, taxonomy or simply for the new iconography here presented are reported. Some species represent the first finding in Italian waters or the first record of living specimens. As a consequence, they furnished interesting data on habitat preferences and the external morphology of the living animal, which are hereafter reported. The taxonomy of some problematic taxa is here discussed, reporting new name combinations, while for others the question remains open. Discussions, comparisons and a new iconography are here reported and discussed.

  • Biodiversity Journal, 8 (1): 205-210 - MONOGRAPH

    Francesco Pusateri, Riccardo Giannuzzi-Savelli & Peter Stahlschmidt
    Description of a new species of the genus Raphitoma Bellardi, 1847 from the Mediterranean Sea (Mollusca Neogastropoda Conoidea Raphitomidae)

    The family of Raphitomidae is currently considered a well supported clade of the Conoidea. The type genus Raphitoma Bellardi, 1847 is well known in the mediterranen Seas with about 40 species, some of which are still undescribed. Morphological analyses carried out on the genus Raphitoma Bellardi, 1847 (Mollusca Neogastropoda Conoidea Raphitomidae) from Mediterranean Sea allowed to identify a new species which is described in the present paper.

  • Biodiversity Journal, 8 (1): 211-238 - MONOGRAPH

    Fabio Liberto, Mauro GranoCristina Cattaneo & Salvo Giglio
    Land mollusks of Chalki and Alimia (Dodecanese Archipelago, Greece)

    A check list of land snails of the island of Chalki and the nearby islet of Alimia (South Aegean Greece, Dodecanese Archipelago) is given. The literature concerning the non-marine mollusks living on the two islands is critically reviewed. New data on morphology of some snails species are presented, with particular account to the genus Rhabdoena Kobelt et Mollendorff, 1902, Zebrina Held, 1838 and Albinaria Vest, 1864.

  • Biodiversity Journal, 8 (1): 239-248 - MONOGRAPH

    Vincenzo Di Martino & Bessy Stancanelli
    Benthos communities of Vendicari and Capo Passero, two potential MPA’s in South Eastern Sicily (Italy)

    In the present paper a bionomic study and cartography of the benthos of two potential MPAs in South Eastern Sicily, S.C.I. ITA 090027 “Fondali di Vendicari” and the S.C.I. ITA 090028 “Fondali dell’Isola di Capo Passero”, and surrounding areas are presented. The goals of this particular survey can be summarized as follows: 1) to chart the benthic communities (and the area of each one); 2) to evaluate the benthic diversity of the areas; 3) to produce visual documentation of the distributions of the benthic organisms; 4) to identify human-induced pressures on the benthic environment; 5) to make recommendations for future management based on the visual assessment; and 6) to set up a new methodology for making large biocenosis maps that would help to manage marine protected and non-protected areas. The fauna and flora of the meso- and macrobenthos were studied by a triple sampling procedure: standard, visual and photographic samples were simultaneously taken along underwater transects. These, together with the floristic and faunistic study of each algal and invertebrate group, served as the basis for the bionomic survey of the Vendicari and Capo Passero Island sea bottoms. In a first approach, the supra- and mediolittoral communities were studied. Further work were focused on the infralittoral stages and their communities along representative transects. The survey was conducted from surface (+0.50 m) to 40 metres of depth that is the limit of the study site. During this study were found, also, 41 benthic species and many biocoenoses of high naturalistic value protected by many international law agreements. The study led to a comprehensive review of the main biotope systems of this coastal area, as well as their environmental condition, and this will be an essential element for their future management.

  • Biodiversity Journal, 8 (1): 249-278 - MONOGRAPH

    Calogero Muscarella & Alessandro Baragona
    The endemic fauna of the Sicilian islands

    In this survey we propose an analysis of the endemic fauna (Mollusca, Arthropoda, Chordata) present in the 14 major circum-sicilian islands and in Lampione islet (Strait of Sicily, Pelagie Islands). Overall, 111 endemic taxa between species and subspecies have been identified. The largest taxonomical groups are Tenebrionid Beetles and Curculionids (respectively 18 and 16 taxa) and Gastropods (20 taxa), due to their strong inclination to insular differentiation, which is inversely proportional to their vagility. The number of endemic taxa per island is positively associated to the extent of the surface but not to the distance from the closest continental mass or altitude or geological origin. The most important connection is with the complex paleogeographic history pertaining the different insular complexes.

  • Biodiversity Journal, 8 (1): 279-310 - MONOGRAPH

    Ignazio Sparacio, Tommaso La Mantia, Maria Stella Colomba, Fabio Liberto, Agatino Reitano & Salvo Giglio
    Qanat, Gebbie and water source: the last refuge for the malacologica freshwater fauna in Palermo (Sicily, Italy)

    The surroundings of Palermo were characterized, over the centuries, by the presence of many natural environments of great ecological and faunal importance. These environments were placed in a context characterized by minimal and sustainable urban development and large agriculture areas, dedicated to the development of tree crops such as citrus and orchards. These crops were supported by an imposing irrigation system that, using natural resources such as watercourses, wells and springs, collected and distributed water in soils through tanks, gebbie, qanat, irrigation channels (saje), etc. Fresh water mollusks, like many other animal and vegetable organisms, spread from the natural freshwater environments in this artificial water system, thus creating a unique and varied ecosystem. The subsequent urban development of the city of Palermo and the destruction of many of those natural environments has further enhanced the ecological role of the artificial freshwater systems as an important refuge for the native fauna and flora. In the present study, we report on freshwater molluscs observed in the territory of Micciulla, a large relict area occupied almost entirely by an old citrus, now located inside the city of Palermo. In this area there are some springs, an extensive array of artificial freshwater to irrigate the crops, and the qanat Savagnone located in the “Camera dello Scirocco”. The results obtained by census of different populations of freshwater mollusks confirm the importance of these environments and the growing role they play as the last refuges for fauna and flora originally linked to natural humid environments.