Art Garfunkel and his bright eyed crab

Chiromantes garfunkel

Apart from Beyonce’s bootylicious fly and Lady Gaga’s fern, a new species of crab from Christmas Island has been named for Art Garfunkel, in tribute to his song “Bright eyes” and one can certainly see why!

The paper by Peter Davie and Peter Ng is published in the latest issue of Zootaxa and revises the Chiromantes obtusifron complex. From one wide-spread Indo-West Pacific species, there are now five species with discrete distributions. The real C. obitusifrons is now known to be endemic to Hawaii Islands, while C. garfunkel sp. nov. is endemic to Christmas Island, Indian Ocean.  Chiromantes silus sp. nov. is endemic to Guam. Chiromantes leptomerus sp. nov. is known from Taiwan and the Ryukyu Islands, southern Japan while Chiromantes eurymerus sp. nov. is endemic to Taiwan.

We are pushing out more papers from the museum’s expeditions to Christmas Island (see here and here.) Stay tuned!

Davie, P.J.F & P.K.L. Ng, 2013. A review of Chiromantes obtusifrons (Dana, 1851) (Decapoda: Brachyura: Sesarmidae), with descriptions of four new sibling-species from Christmas Island (Indian Ocean), Guam and Taiwan. Zootaxa 3609(1):1-25 (Preview. Subscription required for full article)

Abstract: The identity of Chiromantes obtusifrons (Dana, 1851), previously considered widespread in the tropical West Pacific region to the eastern Indian Ocean, is revised and found to be a species-complex. Chiromantes obtusifrons is now considered endemic to the Hawaiian Is., and four new species are described from Guam, Taiwan and Christmas Island. Two species live sympatrically in Taiwan. Species separation is based on carapace and frontal shape and granulation, leg proportions, abdominal somite proportions, and distinctive live colouration.

Chiromantes obtusifrons

Chiromantes garfunkel


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