Tamilokus mabinia, a new, anatomically divergent genus and species of wood-boring bivalve from the Philippines

J. Reuben Shipway, Marvin A. Altamia, Gary Rosenberg, Gisela P. Concepcion, Margo G. Haygood, Daniel L. Distel

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Here we describe an anatomically divergent wood-boring bivalve belonging to the family Teredinidae. Specimens were collected off the coast of Mabini, Batangas, Philippines, in February 2018, from sunken driftwood at a depth of less than 2 m. A combination of characteristics differentiates these specimens from members of previously named teredinid genera and species. Most notable among these include: an enlarged cephalic hood which extends across the posterior slope of the shell valves and integrates into the posterior adductor muscle; a unique structure, which we term the ‘cephalic collar’, formed by protruding folds of the mantle immediately ventral to the foot and extending past the posterior margin of the valves; a large globular stomach located entirely posterior to the posterior adductor muscle and extending substantially beyond the posterior gape of the valves; an elongate crystalline style and style sac extending from the base of the foot, past the posterior adductor muscle, to the posteriorly located stomach; calcareous pallets distinct from those of described genera; a prominently flared mantle collar which extends midway along the stalk of the pallets; and, separated siphons that bear a pigmented pinstripe pattern with highly elaborate compound papillae on the incurrent siphon aperture. We used Micro-Computed Tomography (Micro-CT) to build a virtual 3D anatomical model of this organism, confirming the spatial arrangement of the structures described above. Phylogenetic analysis of the small (18S) and large (28S) nuclear rRNA gene sequences, place this bivalve within the Teredindae on a branch well differentiated from previously named genera and species. We propose the new genus and species Tamilokus mabinia to accommodate these organisms, raising the total number of genera in this economically and environmentally important family to 17. This study demonstrates the efficacy of Micro-CT for anatomical description of a systematically challenging group of bivalves whose highly derived body plans are differentiated predominantly by soft tissue adaptations rather than features of calcareous hard-parts.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere6256
Number of pages18
Publication statusPublished - 7 Feb 2019


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