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"We present herein a new classification of the cone shells. This classification uses radular morphology to define most of the suprageneric taxa. However, other features such as shell morphology, morphology of the periostracum and operculum and dietary habits are also factored in. We consider fossil taxa as well as recent taxa whose radular morphology are unknown, using shell morphological traits to place them in appropriate genera.
The classification consists of five families, namely Conorbiidae, Hemiconidae n. fam., Taranteconidae n. fam., Conilithidae n. fam. and Conidae. The family Conidae is by far the most numerous in terms of genera both extinct and living, and comprises at least two subfamilies (Coninae and Puncticuliinae, hereby introduced) and 64 genera, one of them fossil. The next family in number of genera is Conilithidae, with two new subfamilies (Conilithinae and Califomiconinae) and 19 genera, two of them extinct. The remaining three families are basal to the other two, and much less diverse. Hemiconidae has only one fossil genus assigned, whereas Taranteconidae has two extant genera, and Hemiconidae e has only one fossil genus assigned, whereas Taranteconidae has two extant genera, and comprises 89 genera in total, from which 27 are introduced as new taxa, and all the remaining 62 genera were already introduced in the literature.
We also discuss the correct use of the generic name Asprella Schaufuss, 1869. A type species (Conasprella pagoda (Kiener, 1845)) is designated for Conasprella Thiele, 1929 under article 70.3.2 of the ICZN. Thiele (1929) had misidentified C. pagoda as Conus cancellatus (Hwass, 1792, a species of Conasprelloides). Finally, we note that the actual publication date for Fusiconus longurionis (Kiener) is 1850 not 1845. The name was not published in Kiener's plates, which do date from 1845, but instead it was introduced in the text. The text in question dated from 1850. Cladistic analyses were preformed on a data matrix consisting of one behavioral trait (diet), 17 radular morphology traits and 28 shell morphological traits. Results of these provided good support for the Conidae and Conilithidae based on radular synapomorphies. Support for other families was less robust but for all families the results of our morphological analyses mirror clades found in many molecular studies. Our study lends support for phylogenies developed from molecular data."