Contributions to Zoology, 86 (1) – 2017Isabel T Hyman; Irantzu de la Iglesia Lamborena; Frank Köhler: Molecular phylogenetics and systematic revision of the south-eastern Australian Helicarionidae (Gastropoda, Stylommatophora)

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Mysticarion hyalinus (Pfeiffer, 1855)

Figs 14E-F, 15D-F, 16E-F, 21

Vitrina hyalina Pfeiffer, 1855: 296-297; Reeve, 1862: pl. 9, sp. 68; Cox, 1868: 85, pl. 14, figs 7, 7a; Pfeiffer, 1876: 24; Smith, 1992: 244 (in Incertae Sedis).

Vitrina hyalinus: Cox, 1909: 6.

Helicarion hyalinus: Tryon, 1885: 172, pl. 39, figs 75-76; Hedley, 1888: 50; Iredale, 1937a: 8.

Mysticarion hyalina: Hyman and Ponder, 2010: 38-40, figs 5C, 7G, 8G, 9G, 12D, 13D, 15G-I.

Mysticarion hyalinus: Stanisic et al., 2010: 308-309.

Fastosarion staffordorum Stanisic, 2010 (in Stanisic et al., 2010): 304-305.


Material examined. Types. Syntype of Vitrina hyalina Pfeiffer, 1855 NHMUK 1983075 (Moreton Bay, leg. Strange, coll. Cuming; Fig. 14E), Holotype of Fastosarion staffordorum Stanisic, 2010 QMMO62372 (Dandabah, Bunya Mts NP, SE Qld, 26°53’S, 151°36’E, notophyll vine forest, leg. Bishop, 5/3/1976; Fig. 14F).

Non-type material. See Table S1.


Diagnosis. Shell. Medium-sized, 3.9-4.6 whorls, thin, glossy, golden amber, globose with a low spire. Protoconch with notched spiral grooves, continuing onto early teleoconch; last whorls with no sculpture (Table 3, Figs 14E-F, 15D-F).

Animal. Body very pale cream with faint brown specks of pigment on shell lappets and mantle edge. Caudal horn moderately large. Right mantle lobe moderately small, other lobes small, none fused. Shell lappets moderately small, wide at base, rapidly tapering (Fig. 16E-F).

Genitalia. Penis moderately long, tubular, slightly swollen proximally, penis and sometimes part of epiphallus enclosed in penial tunica. Penis interior with one main longitudinal pilaster and multiple smaller longitudinal pilasters. Epiphallus long, approx. twice penis length, containing internal cryptae near flagellum; entering penis through verge of about one quarter to one third penis length. Epiphallic flagellum with internal cryptae and slender tail. Spermatophore with 11-13 moderately long, complex branched spines in a spiraling pattern; initial 3-4 spines situated on base of capsule, remainder on tail-pipe; initial 5-6 spines have two major branches; remaining spines are increasingly short and simple (Fig. 21).


Fig. 21. Reproductive anatomy of Mysticarion hyalinus A-C. AM C.512424, Cunninghams Gap, SE Qld: A. Genitalia. B. Penial complex. C. Penial interior. D-G. AM C.512438, Bunya Moutains, SE Qld: D. Genitalia. E. Penial complex. F. Penial interior. G. Spermatophore. Abbreviations: alb, albumen gland; bc, bursa copulatrix; cg, capsule gland; ep, epiphallus; fl, flagellum; her, hermaphroditic duct; ov, ovotestis; p, penis; pp, penial pilasters; pr, prostate; prm, penial retractor muscle; pt, penial tunica; pv, penial verge; ut, uterus; vd, vas deferens. Scale bars: A, D = 2 mm, B-C, E-G = 1 mm.

Remarks. This species was revised by Hyman and Ponder (2010). Here we include another species, Fastosarion staffordorum, in synonymy with Mysticarion porrectus. Three specimens from each species were sequenced, and while the two populations form monophyletic groups in the phylogenetic tree, the genetic distances between them are clearly within the range of intraspecific divergence (Table 1). Dissections revealed that the genitalia of the two taxa are identical; hence F. stafforodum is here considered as a younger synonym of M. hyalinus. This means that like M. porrectus and M. insuetus, M. hyalinus has a disjunct range including populations from Casino in northern NSW to Cunningham’s Gap in southern QLD, and 200 km further north, one population in Bunya Mountains National Park (QLD) (Fig. 18). This species is found in rainforest habitats, living on tree trunks and leaves.

Mysticarion hyalinus is larger than M. insuetus but slightly smaller than M. porrectus (Fig. 1B). It has a globose shell into which it can fully retract and a very pale body. Unique genital features of this species include a longer epiphallus than its congeners, a moderately long penis with a moderately small verge and one main longitudinal pilaster.