Paramoera suchaneki: While documenting the diverse community of organisms associated with Mytilus californianus mussel beds in Washington state, Tom discovered a new species of amphipod crustacean. This new species was subsequently named in his honor as Paramoera suchaneki (by C.P. Staude, 1983). [Published Reference: Staude, C.P. 1995. AmphiPacifica 1(4):61-102]
NEW SPECIES DISCOVERIES:
Glypturus motupore:Studying the influence of burrowing ghost shrimp on near-shore marine ecological communities in Papua New Guinea, Tom discovered a new species of callianassid burrowing shrimp which, based on morphological characteristics, and with co-author Gary Poore, named it Glypturus motuporeafter the island where it was discovered (Motupore Island) (see Poore and Suchanek, 1988 [# 24] in Primary Literature List). However, in future years, after using molecular analyses of mitochondrial genes, this species is being re-designated as a "junior synonym" for Glypturus armatus.
Glypturus motupore = Glypturus armatus
Photo credit: T.Y Chan
TAXONOMY & ZOOGEOGRAPHY
Sibling Species: The mussels Mytilus galloprovincialis and Mytilus trossulus are sibling species found along the Pacific Rim of North America and around to Japan. Because it is not possible to identify these mussel species using morphological traits alone, Tom and several colleagues used PCR amplication of the gene for byssal adhesive protein to identify the zoogeographic distribution of these two species. By comparing their populations along the eastern and western Pacific, the discontinuity between the zoogeographic distributions of these two species at about 40 degrees North latitude (red line) suggests strongly that ocean temperature is a major factor in determining their present distributions and limiting their dispersal to other regions, with M. galloprovincialis above and M. trossulus below.
See Suchanek et al. 1997 (# 37 in Primary Literature List)