We describe here a new species of sphagnicolous testate amoeba found abundantly in the forested part of the Le Cachot peatland (Jura Mountains, Neuchâtel, Switzerland) based on microscopical observations (LM, SEM). The new species, called Nebela gimlii was placed in a phylogenetic tree based on mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase sequences (COI), and branched robustly within the N. collaris complex next to the morphologically similar N. guttata and N. tincta. It is however genetically clearly distinct from these two species, and differs morphologically from them by its smaller size and stouter shape of the shell. This new species completes the phylogeny of the Nebela collaris species complex, with now eight species described, mostly from peatlands and acidic forest litter, and further demonstrates the existence of an unknown diversity within testate amoebae. Improving the taxonomy of testate amoebae in peatlands and clarifying the ecology of newly discovered species should make these organisms even more valuable as bioindicator and for palaeoecological reconstruction.
Keywords: Amoebozoa; Arcellinida; Cytochrome oxidase gene (COI); Peatland; Protist; Testate amoeba.
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