Amy L. Curtis, Pauline F. Grierson, Jacqueline Batley, Jeremy Naaykens, Rachael M. Fowler, Anita Severn-Ellis, Kevin R. Thiele
Australian Systematic Botany 35 (1), 1-18, (2 March 2022) https://doi.org/10.1071/SB21005
KEYWORDS: congruence, ddRADseq, Eremophila, herbarium sampling, morphology, Pilbara, taxonomy, Western Australia
Eremophila R.Br. comprises at least 238 species endemic to Australia, with many more having not yet been formally described. Three putative new taxa, namely, E. sp. Hamersley Range (K. Walker KW 136), E. sp. Calvert Range (A. A. Burbidge 738) and E. sp. Rudall River (P. G. Wilson 10512), were segregated from a broadly defined E. tietkensii F.Muell. & Tate by J. Hurter at the Western Australian Herbarium in 2012. Both E. sp. Hamersley Range and E. sp. Rudall River are listed as being of conservation concern in Western Australia, the former occurring in the Pilbara region in areas of prospective interest for mining development. We sought to determine whether these phrase-named entities should be formally described as new species, using multivariate analyses of morphometric and molecular data derived from specimens in the Western Australia Herbarium. Eremophila sp. Rudall River could not be adequately separated from E. tietkensii by either morphological or molecular data, and is here included within that species. By contrast, E. sp. Hamersley Range and E. sp. Calvert Range are clearly morphologically and genetically distinct. We thus describe them here as the new species E. naaykensii A.L.Curtis & K.R.Thiele and E. hurteri A.L.Curtis & K.R.Thiele. The recognition of these taxa will help inform their conservation prioritisation and subsequent management.