Acta Ichthyologica et Piscatoria 35(2): 139-145, doi: 10.3750/AIP2005.35.2.11
Taxonomic status of Penicillus Kumar et Hameed, 1993 and its only species, P. indicus Kumar et Hameed, 1993 (Pennellidae, Siphonostomatoida, Copepoda)
expand article infoG.W. Benz
Open Access
It is argued that Penicillus indicus Kumar et Hameed, 1993 represents two species; a member of Pennella Oken, 1815 (Pennellidae, Siphonostomatoida, Copepoda) with lepadid (Lepadidae, Lepadomorpha, Cirripedia) phoronts attached to its abdomen. This conclusion, while not founded on examination of the type and only specimens of P. indicus, seems robust based on observations that: 1) the species description of P. indicus is unquestionably similar to a combination of the aforementioned copepod and barnacle taxa, i.e. one copepod with several attached barnacles, 2) records of Pennella representatives with attached striped goose barnacles, Conchoderma virgatum (Spengler, 1790) (Lepadidae) are well known, and 3) this interpretation explains why the type series of P. indicus exhibits considerable intraspecific variation regarding numbers of appendages and numbers and placement of unusual abdominal organs. Based on this explanation, it is recommended that monotypic Penicillus Kumar et Hameed, 1993 and P. indicus be rejected as legitimate taxa and that the record of P. indicus be considered a unique report of a Pennella sp. infecting several species of sharks.
Penicillus, Pennella, Pennellidae, copepod, Conchoderma, Lepadidae, barnacle, fish parasite, shark parasite