Scophthalmus Rafinesque, 1810: the valid generic name for the turbot, S. maximus (Linnaeus, 1758) [Pleuronectiformes: Scophthalmidae]

Bailly N., Chanet B.

Published date: September 2010
Volume: 34
Number: 3
Pagination: 257–261
Publisher: Société Française d’Ichtyologie

In the past 50 years, the turbot is referred to either as Scophthalmus maximus (Linnaeus, 1758) or Psetta maxima (Linnaeus, 1758) in the literature. Norman (1931) had argued that the valid name for the turbot was Scophthalmus maximus. However, his recommendation was never universally accepted, and today the confusing situation exists where two generic names are still being used for this species. We address this issue by analysing findings from recently published works on the anatomy, molecular and morphological phylogenetic systematics, and ecology of scophthalmid fishes. The preponderance of evidence supports the strong recommendation to use Scophthalmus as the valid generic name for the turbot. Acceptance of this generic name conveys the best information available concerning the systematic relationships of this species, and also serves to simplify the nomenclature of scophthalmid flatfishes in publications on systematics, fisheries and aquaculture, fishery statistics, ichthyofaunal and field guides for the general public, and in various legal and conservation- related documents. This paper reinforces the conclusions of Chanet (2003) with more arguments.

Keywords: Nomenclature - Psetta - Scophthalmidae - Scophthalmus - Systematics - Turbot
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