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      The taxonomic status of two West African Leptopelis species: L. macrotis Schiøtz, 1967 and L. spiritusnoctis Rödel, 2007 (Amphibia: Anura: Arthroleptidae)

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      Zoosystematics and Evolution

      Pensoft Publishers

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          Abstract

          We herein examine the taxonomic status of two West African forest-dwelling Leptopelis species. The small L. spiritusnoctis, described from the Upper Guinean forests of West Africa, was recently synonymized with L. aubryi, described from Gabon. The large L. macrotis, known from Ghana to Sierra Leone, was downgraded to a subspecies of L. millsoni, ranging from the Niger Delta to eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. These taxonomic decisions are in contrast to the general biogeographic pattern of African forest anurans and we consequently tested if the morphologically similar taxon pairs are indeed conspecifics by applying acoustic and molecular techniques. Both techniques confirmed that populations from West Africa differ significantly from their Central African morphological equivalents. Consequently, we herein resurrect L. spiritusnoctis as a valid species. The acoustic data indicate that L. aubryi may comprise a complex of cryptic species. We further advocate using the name L. macrotis for West African and L. millsoni for Central African populations of these larger arboreal frogs. However, we had neither genetic nor acoustic data from the type locality of L. millsoni available and could not clarify if these frogs belong to the more western or eastern taxon or even represent a Nigerian endemic. Thus, it is possible that West African populations need to be termed L. millsoni in the future. For populations east of the Cross River, Nigeria, the name L. guineensis would be available.

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          The CLUSTAL_X windows interface: Flexible strategies for multiple sequence alignment aided by quality analysis tools

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            Vast underestimation of Madagascar's biodiversity evidenced by an integrative amphibian inventory.

            Amphibians are in decline worldwide. However, their patterns of diversity, especially in the tropics, are not well understood, mainly because of incomplete information on taxonomy and distribution. We assess morphological, bioacoustic, and genetic variation of Madagascar's amphibians, one of the first near-complete taxon samplings from a biodiversity hotspot. Based on DNA sequences of 2,850 specimens sampled from over 170 localities, our analyses reveal an extreme proportion of amphibian diversity, projecting an almost 2-fold increase in species numbers from the currently described 244 species to a minimum of 373 and up to 465. This diversity is widespread geographically and across most major phylogenetic lineages except in a few previously well-studied genera, and is not restricted to morphologically cryptic clades. We classify the genealogical lineages in confirmed and unconfirmed candidate species or deeply divergent conspecific lineages based on concordance of genetic divergences with other characters. This integrative approach may be widely applicable to improve estimates of organismal diversity. Our results suggest that in Madagascar the spatial pattern of amphibian richness and endemism must be revisited, and current habitat destruction may be affecting more species than previously thought, in amphibians as well as in other animal groups. This case study suggests that worldwide tropical amphibian diversity is probably underestimated at an unprecedented level and stresses the need for integrated taxonomic surveys as a basis for prioritizing conservation efforts within biodiversity hotspots.
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              Female mate choice in treefrogs: static and dynamic acoustic criteria

               H. Gerhardt (1991)
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Zoosystematics and Evolution
                ZSE
                Pensoft Publishers
                1860-0743
                1435-1935
                March 28 2014
                March 28 2014
                : 90
                : 1
                : 21-31
                Article
                10.3897/zse.90.7120
                © 2014
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