Pacific Science, Volume 65, Number 2, 2011

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    Reptiles of Fais Island, Yap State, Federated States of Micronesia.
    (Honolulu, University of Hawaii, 2011-04) Buden, Donald W.
    Eleven species of reptiles (six skinks, four geckos, one monitor lizard) are recorded from Fais Island, Micronesia, four of them (Gehyra mutilata, Lepidodactylus moestus, L. sp., and Eugongylus albofasciolatus) for the first time. The skinks Emoia caeruleocauda and E. jakati are the most common species; G. mutilate is the most common gecko in edificarian habitats, and L. moestus is the most common outside the areas of human habitation. Nearly all of the species are widespread in the western Pacific region, although Eutropis sp. is at the easternmost limits of its distribution in the Caroline Islands on Fais. The monitor lizard Varanus indicus was introduced during the Japanese administration. The other species may have arrived by natural dispersal, or by human assistance, or a combination of the two.
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    Acanthurus nigros Gunther, a Valid Species of Surgeonfish, Distinct from the Hawaiian A. nigroris Valenciennes.
    (Honolulu, University of Hawaii, 2011-04) Randall, John E. ; DiBattista, Joseph D. ; Wilcox, Christie
    The Blueline Surgeonfish, Acanthurus nigroris Valenciennes, formerly considered as wide-ranging in the central and western Pacific, is restricted to the Hawaiian Islands. Acanthurus nigros Gü nther, type locality Vanuatu, is available for the sister species from the Pitcairn Islands west to the Great Barrier Reef and Caroline Islands. Although these two species are very similar in color, there are fin-ray and gill-raker differences, and the genetic difference (i.e., 4.12% mtDNA cytochrome b sequence divergence) alone warrants species recognition.
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    Newly Collected Specimens of the Sleeper Eleotris acanthopoma (Teleostei: Eleotridae) from French Polynesia Indicate a Wide and Panmictic Distribution in the West and South Pacific.
    (Honolulu, University of Hawaii, 2011-04) Maeda, Ken ; Mukai, Takahiko ; Tachihara, Katsunori
    The morphology of Eleotris acanthopoma collected from Moorea in French Polynesia is described. This is the first record of this species from French Polynesia, greatly expanding the known range, which was previously only considered to extend from southern Japan to New Caledonia. Nucleotide sequences of the mitochondrial ND5 gene of several Eleotris species and related genera indicate that E. acanthopoma from Moorea belongs to the same lineage as E. acanthopoma from Japan and the Philippines. Despite being separated by a distance of approximately 10,000 km, two of the specimens from Moorea and one from the Philippines had identical nucleotide sequences. Results of this study indicate that extensive dispersal occurs during the pelagic larval stage of this species.
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    New Records of Commercially Valuable Black Corals (Cnidaria: Antipatharia) from the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands at Mesophotic Depths.
    (Honolulu, University of Hawaii, 2011-04) Wagner, Daniel ; Papastamatiou, Yannis P. ; Kosaki, Randall K. ; Gleason, Kelly A. ; McFall, Greg B. ; Boland, Raymond C. ; Pyle, Richard L. ; Toonen, Robert J.
    Mesophotic coral reef ecosystems are notoriously undersurveyed worldwide and particularly in remote locations like the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands ( NWHI). A total of 37 mixed-gas technical dives were performed to depths of 80 m across the NWHI to survey for the presence of the invasive octocoral Carijoa sp., the invasive red alga Acanthophora spicifera, and conspicuous megabenthic fauna such as black corals. The two invasive species were not recorded from any of the surveys, but two commercially valuable black coral species, Antipathes griggi and Myriopathes ulex, were found, representing substantial range expansions for these species. Antipathes griggi was recorded from the islands of Necker and Laysan in 58 – 70 m, and Myriopathes ulex was recorded from Necker Island and Pearl and Hermes Atoll in 58 – 70 m. Despite over 30 yr of research in the NWHI, these black coral species had remained undetected. The new records of these conspicuous marine species highlight the utility of deepdiving technologies in surveying the largest part of the depth range of coral reef ecosystems (40 – 150 m), which remains largely unexplored.
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    Community Composition of Elasmobranch Fishes Utilizing Intertidal Sand Flats in Moreton Bay, Queensland, Australia.
    (Honolulu, University of Hawaii, 2011-04) Pierce, Simon J. ; Scott-Holland, Tracey B. ; Bennett, Michael B.
    Thirteen elasmobranch species were collected during a 4-yr survey of the intertidal margins of Moreton Bay, a large subtropical embayment in southeastern Queensland, Australia. Stingrays were the most common large predators in the intertidal zone, with total catch dominated numerically by blue-spotted maskray, Neotrygon kuhlii (53.8%); estuary stingray, Dasyatis fluviorum (22.2%); and brown whipray, Himantura toshi (10.2%). There was a significant female bias within intertidal populations of N. kuhlii and D. fluviorum. Courtship behaviors were observed in July and September in D. fluviorum and in January for whitespotted eagle ray, Aetobatus narinari. Dasyatis fluviorum, a threatened Australian endemic stingray, remains locally abundant within the bay. Overall, the inshore elasmobranch fauna of Moreton Bay is relatively species rich compared with similar studies elsewhere in Australia, emphasizing the regional importance of this ecosystem.