Gerald R. Allen, Mark V. Erdmann, and Muhammad Dailami
A new species of labrid, Cirrhilabrus marinda, is described from 29 type specimens, 17.4–45.9 mm SL, collected at Ayau Atoll, West Papua Province, Indonesia and 7 non-type specimens, 32.0–67.0 mm SL, from Halmahera, Indonesia and the vicinity of Espiritu Santo, Vanuatu. The new taxon is closely related to Cirrhilabrus condei of Indonesia (West Papua), Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Coral Sea, and the northern Great Barrier Reef, mainly differing in the shape and colouration of the male dorsal fin. The spinous dorsal fin of C. marinda is mostly black and noticeably taller than the soft portion in comparison with C. condei, which has a more uniform fin profile with black colouration restricted to the outer fin margin. The population of C. marinda from Ayau Atoll differs from conspecific populations in other regions and from C. condei in having an exceptionally small maximum size of approximately 46 mm SL, with mature females as small as 30.4 mm SL. The two species are broadly sympatric, but do not share the same habitat; C. marinda prefer deeper offshore sand habitats. The barcode (COI) mitochondrial DNA sequences of the new species are the same as C. condei, apparently a case of phenotypic divergence outpacing changes in mitochondrial genotype. As in other reported cases of this phenomenon, the phenotypic differences are in the male mating display, which would be expected in the early stages of species divergence.
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