Rehabilitation of Barbus lorteti Sauvage, 1882, and comments on the validity of the generic names Bertinius Fang, 1943, and Bertinichthys Whitley, 1953 (Pisces: Cyprinidae)
The validity of Barbus lorteti Sauvage, 1882, a cyprinid fish endemic to the lower course of the Orontes river in Syria and Turkey which Karaman synonymized with Barbus longiceps, is reaffirmed. A lectotype is designated and a redescription is given. The most outstanding morphological feature of Barbus lorteti — a pharyngeal formula of 2.3.4–4.3.2, the first tooth of the inner row being enlarged and molariform, which is shared by Barbus subquincunciatus from the Tigris-Euphrates basin and Barbus longiceps from the Jordan river basin — is regarded as an adaptation to a molluscan diet. Its occurrence in the three species in question is due to convergence and does not indicate a monophyletic origin. Modified pharyngeal teeth are the major definitional character of the genus Bertinius, which was erected by Fang (1943) to contain Barbus lorteti and extended to B. subquincunciatus and B. longiceps by Karaman (1971). Consequently, Bertinius is synonymized with Barbus Cuvier, 1817. Whitley's (1953) statement that Bertinius is preoccupied by Bertinia is rejected, the genus Bertinichthys he proposed as a substitute is also placed in the synonymy of Barbus. Molariform pharyngeal teeth, originating from a molluscivorous Barbus, are reported from Pliocene deposits of a former lake in the central course of the Orontes river.
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