cichla wrote:Sparus acara is used by Cuvier & Valenciennes and other authors
Thanks Ingo, I have overlooked this. However, C. & V. (1830) give no more than a list of genera, to which they assign, per footnote, La Cepéde's Sparus. Another reference where it was mentioned is Sonnini (1803), who quotes literally La Cepédes description. None of this authors applies the name to certain specimens. It is not mentioned by Heckel (1840), Gill (1858), Günther (1862), Steindachner (1875), Eigenmann & Bray (1893), Regan (1905), Eigenmann (1910, 1912), Haseman (1911) or Eigenmann & Allen (1942), nor by Kullander (1983: as La Cepéde's work is listed in the references, he seems to have inadvertently omitted the name). In CLOFFSCA (Kullander 2003) it is listed as a species inquirenda. Perca bimaculata Bloch and Acara margarita Heckel have been treated as junior synonyms of Cichlasoma bimaculatum (Linnaeus) (then a catch-all taxon) since Günther (1862), until Kullander (1983) redefined this species.
cichla wrote: It is pretty unlikely that the specimen (type) pictured by Marcgravius (1648) is conspecific with C. santifransiscense, because this species is distributed in the Rio Sao Francisco (and smaller drainages south of the mouth), but with the Cichlasoma from Recife (then Pernambuco).
According to Kullander (1983: 190) it seems possible, that Marcgravius had collected fishes also from the Rio Sao Fransisco drainage. If this is correct, it would also be impossible to apply Perca brasiliensis to a certain species. I have checked the pages relevant in Marcgravius (1648), there are indeed two fishes (a Loricarid and a Knifefish) mentioned as taken in Rio Sao Fransisco.
Marcgravius' book is available here:
cichla wrote:For authors it seems more profitable to create new names instead of using (protecting) old, historic, taxonomically available names. This is the tragedy.
Although you are right that it may be more fruitful to create new names than to do necessary revisional work on older taxa, I think this is not the reason for disregarding the names discussed here. As long no new findings allow their proper identification, they should be reagarded as nomina dubia (names of doubtful application, which seems to be the appropriate term for such names; judging from Ingo's explanation of species inquirenda, this would rather fit to something like Ottoni's Australoheros species or Rocio ocotal). And since the names are not in use (except perhaps for Crenicichla brasiliensis), there is nothing gained from arbitraryly 'reactivating' them.
Willem, your overview is quite comprehensive. It should be noted, however, that Marcgravius (actually Georg Marggraf, a German, born in Liebstadt, Saxony, not very far from were I live ) accompanied Prince Moritz as a Naturalist on his Brazilian expedition.
Willem Heijns wrote:@Rico: the type of Perca bimaculata cannot be the specimens (if any) Marcgravius might have used. In 1648 there were no rules governing this. The Code stretches its influence back to 1758 and of publications before that date only the information (names and descriptions) could be used (article 3.2). Therefore the type can only be associated with the first publication after 1758 and thas is Bloch (1792). He used a drawing (made by Prince Moritz), so that drawing is the type.
Interestingly, even Kullander (1983: 191) stated that "...the type is, accordingly, the drawing used by Bloch". However, see Article 72.5 for what is elegible as name-bearing type, and also the following:
73.1.4. Designation of an illustration of a single specimen as a holotype is to be treated as designation of the specimen illustrated; the fact that the specimen no longer exists or cannot be traced does not of itself invalidate the designation.
73.2.1. Syntypes may include specimens labelled "cotype" or "type" (both used in the meaning of syntype), specimens with no identifying label, and specimens not seen by the author but which form the bases of previously published descriptions or illustrations upon which the author founded the new nominal species-group taxon in whole or in part [Art. 72.5.5].
Willem Heijns wrote:Finally, a general question: what is the use of publishing replacement names if they disappear into (objective) synonymy?
All the replacement names discussed here were used as valid when proposed. The fact that they are objective synonyms of the names they replace does not render them automatically invalid (remember our discussion of what a synonym is), unless the reasons for regarding the original name invalid turn out to be wrong (unneeded replacement names) or another subjective or objective synonym has priority over a replacement name.
Juan Artigas wrote:What is the version of the code we are assuming rules on those nomenclature acts?
Always the one currently in force, International Code of Zoological Nomenclature, Fourth Edition (1999). A Fifth Edition is in preparation and may soon replace the current one.