Taxonomy news


1. A new paper proposes novel classification of cottontails in SW USA and N Mexico. I’m attaching the distribution map from the paper. Eastern cottontails from AZ, NM and N Mexico are lumped with Manzano Mts. and Davis Mts. cottontails into a separate species.
2. Nycteris madagascariensis is not a rare Madagascar endemic, but a mislabeled N. macrotis from E Africa.
3. Rhinolophus sedulus of Peninsular Malaysia is split from the ones in Borneo under the name R. yonghoiseni. The same paper suggests species status for Bornean R. luctus foetidus (easy to find at Poring).
4. An interesting paper on palearctic Mus: M. cypriacus is not an ancient introduction to Cyprus but pre-dates human colonization; M. musculus domesticus fossils from Zagros Mts. pre-date sedentary humans so that is one area where this form can be considered strictly native; the same for M. m. musculus in N Iran near the Turkmenistan border.
5. A big review (open-access) of Praomyini rodents with descriptions of a new species/genus and splitting of a few genera.

  1. Bud Lensing 1 year ago

    Hi Vladimir,

    In your opinion how are the Eastern and Desert cottontails separated in the study area?

    thanks for the information

  2. Bud Lensing 1 year ago

    Hi Vladimir,

    In your opinion how are the Eastern and Desert cottontails represented in the study area?

    Thanks for the information.

    • Vladimir Dinets 1 year ago

      Hi Bud,
      DC has slightly longer ears (longer than hindfoot) while EC has more grizzled back and more pronounced difference in tint between the back and the flanks (the flanks more grayish). Usually you need unobscured side view to see those details.

  3. Jim 1 year ago

    Unfortunately the Praomyini paper is not in open access

  4. Matt B. 1 year ago

    The Cottontail paper is morphology-only, which is really insufficient in modern Systematics. The novel species proposed in the paper should only be regarded as tentative at best.

    • Vladimir Dinets 1 year ago

      Sure, that’s what I said in comments to an earlier post. But note that the traditional classification was also entirely morphology-based. I’d love to see a molecular study, but until one comes out, I think the morphological results in this one are sufficiently clear-cut to accept them for the time being.

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