Novel Unio spp. populations from Slovenia, the Italian peninsula, Sardinia and Sicily were genetically analysed in orderto define the distribution and diversity of the genus Unio in Italy and neighbouring areas. The presence of two primarilyallopatric autochtonous species, Unio elongatulus Pfeiffer, and Unio mancus Lamarck, is confirmed for the Italian peninsula,Corsica, Sardinia, and Sicily.Autochthonous populations of Unio elongatulus are present in the peri-Adriatic drainages of the Italian and Balkanpeninsulas, south as far as the Ofanto River (Apulia, Italy) and Lake Skadar (Albania), while its presence in the Tyrrhenianrivers of Tuscany is likely due to anthropogenic introduction events. Conversely, Unio mancus turtonii Payraudeau, anendangered peri-Tyrrhenian taxon, was found with autochthonous populations in the Apennine-Tyrrhenian drainages ofpeninsular Italy, eastern Mediterranean France, Corsica, Sardinia and Sicily, while the actual autochthony of the singlepopulation found in the Ionian basin of the Italian peninsula (Bradano River, Basilicata) deserves further investigation.The Italian population of U. mancus requienii Michaud, reported from Lake Montepulciano is to be considered allochthonous.The binomen U. elongatulus, although widely used in the recent scientific literature, was, to date, assigned to a doubtfulspecies, because its type locality includes a large area inhabited by different Unio taxa, which are not clearly distinguishableby their shell alone; furthermore, no type material is present in historical collections. To retain the recently-usedname, a new restricted type locality is established, where only U. elongatulus lives, and a neotype is designated. The validityof the subspecies of Unio mancus is also discussed and confirmed.Finally, hypotheses on the origin of Italian mussels, and considerations on their conservation status are discussed.
|Numero di pagine||36|
|Stato di pubblicazione||Published - 2019|
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes