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Type: Article
Published: 2024-04-30
Page range: 205-220
Abstract views: 8
PDF downloaded: 1

Molecular systematics of the subgenus Gephyromantis (Phylacomantis) with description of a new subspecies

Natural History Museum of Denmark; University of Copenhagen; Universitetsparken 15; 2100; Copenhagen Ø; Denmark
Zoologisches Institut; Technische Universität Braunschweig; Mendelssohnstr. 4; 38106 Braunschweig; Germany
The Peregrine Fund’s Project in Madagascar; B. P. 4113; Antananarivo 101; Madagascar
Mention Zoologie et Biodiversité Animale; Université d’Antananarivo; BP 906; Antananarivo 101; Madagascar
CIBIO; Centro de Investigação em Biodiversidade e Recursos Genéticos; InBIO Laboratório Associado; Campus de Vairão; Universidade do Porto; 4485-661 Vairão; Portugal; Departamento de Biologia; Faculdade de Ciências; Universidade do Porto; 4099-002 Porto; Portugal; BIOPOLIS Program in Genomics; Biodiversity and Land Planning; CIBIO; Campus de Vairão; 4485-661 Vairão; Portugal; BIOPOLIS Program in Genomics; Biodiversity and Land Planning; CIBIO; Campus de Vairão; 4485-661 Vairão; Portugal
Museo Regionale di Scienze Naturali; Via G. Giolitti; 36; 10123 Torino; Italy
Zoologische Staatssammlung München (ZSM-SNSB); Münchhausenstr. 21; 81247 München; Germany
Zoologisches Institut; Technische Universität Braunschweig; Mendelssohnstr. 4; 38106 Braunschweig; Germany
Amphibia Mantellidae subspecies G. corvus bakilana ssp. nov. Madagascar-Comoro Gephyromantis species richness biogeographic pattern humid forest fragments


The mantellid subgenus Phylacomantis (genus Gephyromantis) currently contains four species of frogs distributed in the South (G. corvus, G. kintana), West (G. atsingy), North East, North, and Sambirano regions (G. pseudoasper) in Madagascar. We assess the molecular systematics of these amphibians based on extended sampling and analysis of multiple nuclear-encoded and mitochondrial genes. We confirm the delimitation of the four known species, which form monophyletic groups in a mitochondrial tree and separate phylogroups without haplotype sharing in haplotype networks of four nuclear markers. Newly included samples of G. pseudoasper from the North and North East regions confirm a comparatively low genetic variation of this species across its range, with pairwise genetic distance in the 16S gene not exceeding 1.4%. On the contrary, newly collected specimens from three sites in the North East and North West of the island strongly differed from all other Phylacomantis, with genetic distances exceeding 4.8% for the16S gene. Mitochondrial and nuclear markers strongly suggest them to be sister to G. corvus from the South. Due to haplotype sharing in two nuclear genes, absence of detectable morphological differences, and lack of data on bioacoustic differentiation, we describe these populations as a new subspecies, G. corvus bakilana ssp. nov., emphasizing that this taxon may be elevated to species status in the future pending new data. This biogeographic pattern, with apparently disjunct sister lineages in the South vs. North West of Madagascar, is rare among Malagasy anurans and calls for increased exploration of the remaining humid forest fragments in the North West and West of the island.


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