Taxonomic revision of the pampas cat Leopardus colocola complex (Carnivora: Felidae): an integrative approach.
Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society
The pampas cat Leopardus colocola has been subject to conflicting classifications over the years. Currently, one polytypic species with seven subspecies is recognized, but integrative taxonomic study for this debated group has never been done. Here, we combine the broadest morphological coverage of the pampas cat to date with molecular data and ecological niche models to clarify its species composition and test the validity of recently proposed subspecies. The multiple lines of evidence derived from morphology, molecular, biogeography and climatic niche datasets converged on the recognition of five monotypic species: L. braccatus, L. colocola, L. garleppi (including thomasi, budini, steinbachi, crespoi and wolffsohni as synonyms), L. munoai and L. pajeros (including crucina as synonym). These five species are morphologically diagnosable based on skin and skull traits, have evolved in distinct climatic niche spaces and were recovered in molecular species delimitation. Contrary to previous taxonomic arrangements, we do not recognize subspecies in pampas cats. To objectively define the two most controversial species, we designate neotypes for L. colocola and L. pajeros. The diversification of pampas cats is associated with Middle Pleistocene glaciations, but additional genetic samples from the central Andean region are still needed to conclusively reconstruct its evolutionary history.
The Sandy Zebra Shark: A New Color Morph of the Zebra Shark Stegostoma tigrinum, with a Redescription of the Species and a Revision of Its Nomenclature.
Copeia, 107(3):524-541 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1643/CG-18-115
The Zebra Shark, in recent years known as Stegostoma fasciatum (Hermann, 1783), is well known for its dramatic ontogenetic change of color pattern, from striped (“zebra”) juveniles to spotted (“leopard”) adults. Nevertheless, many aspects of the species' biology, ecology, and morphology are still unknown or inadequately described, and its nomenclature is contentious. This study introduces a hitherto undescribed color morph of the Zebra Shark and provides an updated diagnosis and redescription of the species. Firstly, we establish that the Zebra Shark remains a single species based on genetic data from mitochondrial COI and ND4 markers. Secondly, through morphological analyses, we conclude that there are two morphs of the species, the known, zebra striped morph and a new, sandy colored morph. Both morphs were studied morphometrically to expose any ontogenetic changes, such as a decrease in the relative length of the tail with increasing total length (TL). The external coloration pattern clearly differentiates the two morphs, and both morphs can be further divided into three stages based on color pattern and size: juveniles (255–562 mm TL), transitionals (562–1395 mm TL), and adults (>1300 mm TL). The transitional sandy morph is dorsally covered by a swirly pattern of thin, dark brown bands edged with freckle-like brown spots. The adults are a uniform sandy beige, partially covered with brown freckles. A mature male of the zebra morph displayed a yet unknown feature of the claspers: a small, triangular spike extruding from the dorsal terminal of the clasper glands. Finally, we reviewed the nomenclature of the species and suggest that the original name Stegostoma tigrinum Forster, 1781, should be used as the senior synonym for the species.
New observations of the ‘extinct’ Barbary sheep Ammotragus lervia ornata in Egypt.
Oryx 36 (3): 301-304.
The Barbary sheep or aoudad Ammotragus lervia is widely distributed in the mountains of the Sahara and North Africa. The 2000 IUCN Red List assessment of the Egyptian subspecies A. l. ornata categorized this taxon as Extinct in the Wild. We present new evidence, collected during 1997–2000, that this subspecies is extant in both the extreme south-east and south-west of Egypt, and reassess the status of captive aoudad in Egypt. We recommend that the category of A. l. ornata on the IUCN Red List be changed to Critically Endangered, that conservation of wild aoudad in Egypt be prioritized, and that the subspecific status of both the wild and be reassessed.
Larger Carnivores of the African Savannas.
X + 274 Seiten. E-Book https://link.springer.com/book/10.1007/978-3-662-03766-9
Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1999. DOI https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-662-03766-9
The cheetah Acinonyx jubatus has had a long association with man, but its first contact with humans was actually in India and on the plains of southern Africa. Because of their speed and hunting prowess, captive cheetahs have been used by man as food hunters for many centuries. The oldest record of a captive cheetah is depicted on a decorated silver vase from a Scythian burial site at Maikop in the Caucasus Range, which shows the cheetah wearing a collar. This vase dates back to approximately 700 to 300 BC. However, it is likely that early man joined other scavengers in robbing cheetahs of their kills long before the Maikop culture. In doing so, these early hunters probably exploited the cheetah’s relative timidity, daytime hunting habits, and also its open plains habitat. The Moghul Emperor Akbar the Great is also said to have kept up to 3000 cheetahs to hunt antelope, while sketches of a Dionysian procession in Alexandria during the reign of Ptolemy II from 309 to 246 BC show a cheetah on a leash. Even before the ancient Assyrian empire in Mesopotamia and during the reign of the pharaohs in Egypt, captive cheetahs were used for coursing game. During the fifth century and the early Renaissance in Italy cheetahs were also employed for this purpose. Despite its timidity, the ancient Egyptians endowed the cheetah with the spirit of courage, but today it is regarded more as a symbol of elusive grace in a declining wilderness than as a fierce hunter.
Population ecology of the white‐nosed coati (Nasua narica) on Barro Colorado Island, Panama.
Journal of Zoology 241(3): 441-455
The white‐nosed coati, Nasua narica, is a common Neotropical carnivore with a social structure of band‐living adult females and solitary adult males. A coati population on Barro Colorado Island, Panama, was studied over a four‐year period by mark‐recapture, radiotelemetry. and direct observation of habituated individuals. The population density was approximately 51.5 individuals/km2 and the sex ratio was 1:1. Band size varied from six to 26 individuals (mean = 15.3) with extensive fluctuation within and between years. Mean foraging group size was smaller (7.2 individuals) than population group size, and fluctuated with food availability, synchronous parturition, and the emigration of mature males. Mean home‐range size of six bands was 0.33 km2, and ranges of adjacent bands overlapped from 0–66%. One band fissioned during the study; however, the resulting bands did not disperse from the original home range. Seven adult males had a mean home‐range size of 0.37 km2, each extensively overlapping the home ranges of several other males. Observations of 10 adult males whose natal bands were known indicate that when males disperse they do not simultaneously leave the band's home range. Rather, their home ranges remain within or broadly overlapping those of their natal bands. This dispersal pattern is unusual within the order Carnivora.
Predicted distributions and conservation status of two threatened Southeast Asian small carnivores: The banded civet and Hose 's civet.
Mammalia 77(3): 261–271. DOI 10.1515/mammalia-2012-0110
Knowledge of the distribution and habitat preferences of a species is of paramount importance when assessing its conservation status. We used accurately recorded occurrence records and ecological niche modelling to predict the distribution of two threatened and poorly known small carnivore species that occur in Southeast Asia, the banded civet (Hemigalus derbyanus) and Hose’s civet (Diplogale hosei), and analysed their spatial niche differentiation for habitat and elevation. We then identified possible anthropogenic threats, and used our modelling predictions to recommend surveying priorities. The predicted distribution of the banded civet was principally in lowland evergreen forest in southern Myanmar/Thailand, Peninsular Malaysia, Sumatra, Borneo and three Mentawai Islands (Siberut, Sipora and South Pagai), and for Hose ’ s civet in evergreen forest across the higher elevation regions of Borneo. Our niche analyses suggested that there is a tendency for these two species to separate spatially along an elevation gradient: the banded civet is mainly found in lowland areas, whereas Hose ’ s civet primarily occurs at higher elevations. Our study strongly indicated that these two viverrids are forest-dependent species that may be threatened by forest loss, degradation and fragmentation. Field surveys should be prioritised in areas where each species is predicted to occur and no records currently exist.
Distribution, population size and morphometrics of the giant-striped mongoose Galidictis grandidieri Wozencraft 1986 in the sub-arid zone of south-.western Madagascar.
Mammalia 75(4): 353-361
Galidictis grandidieri (Wozencraft 1986) is a nocturnal carnivoran endemic to the threatened spiny forest ecosystem of the Mahafaly Plateau in southern Madagascar. Previous investigations estimated a total population size of about 3000 individuals restricted to an area of 440 squkm, making it one of the geographically most limited and rarest mammalian carnivoran species worldwide. Given the increasing threat through habitat destruction we compiled additional mor- phometric measurements and investigated the distribution and abundance of the species, using grid and transect cap- tures. G. grandidieri were larger than indicated by previous samples and showed signifi cant sexual dimorphism with a mean body mass of 1640 g for males and 1400 g for females (overall mean: 1500 g). The highest densities were found in the littoral forest at the western edge of the Mahafaly Plateau (six to eight individuals/squkm). From there, its abundance declined exponentially towards the east. The distribution of G. grandidieri is probably determined by decreasing water accessibility away from the cliff. We estimate a total distri-bution area of about 1500 squkm and a total population size between 3115 and 4995 animals. Based on these estimates, G. grandidieri occurs in a much larger area than assumed so far, but reaches lower densities.
Mongooses - Their natural history and behaviour.
144 Seiten, 10 s/w Bildtaferln und 26 Strichzeichnungen.
Verlag Oliver & Boyd, Edinburgh und London.
- General natural history
- Snakes and other venomous animals
- Reproduction and parental care
- Life span
- Attack and defence
- Sexual and some other types of behaviour
- In the Hawaiian Islands
- Indian folk tales
- In Ancient Egypt
- Mongooses as pets
- Portraits of some species
- Diseases and parasites
- The kinds of mongooses
Die Säugthiere in Abbildungen nach der Natur mit Beschreibungen.
Verlag Wolfgang Walther, Erlangen
Textbände 3-7, Bildtafeln, 5 Ergänzungsbände von GOLDFUSS, G. A. & WAGNER, J. A.:
The hog-badger is not an edentate: systematics and evolution of the genus Arctonyx (Mammalia: Mustelidae)
Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society 154 (2): 353–385. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1096-3642.2008.00416.x
Hog-badgers (mustelid carnivorans classified in the genus Arctonyx) are distributed throughout East and Southeast Asia, including much of China, the eastern Indian Subcontinent, Indochina and the large continental Asian island of Sumatra. Arctonyx is usually regarded as monotypic, comprising the single species A. collaris F. Cuvier, 1825, but taxonomic boundaries in the genus have never been revised on the basis of sizeable series from throughout this geographical range. Based on a review of most available specimens in world museums, we recognize three distinctive species within the genus, based on craniometric analyses, qualitative craniodental features, external comparisons, and geographical and ecological considerations. Arctonyx albogularis (Blyth, 1853) is a shaggy-coated, medium-sized badger widely distributed in temperate Asia, from Tibet and the Himalayan region to eastern and southern China. Arctonyx collaris F. Cuvier, 1825, is an extremely large, shorter-haired badger, distributed throughout Southeast Asia, from eastern India to Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos. The world's largest extant badger, A. collaris co-occurs with A. albogularis in eastern India and probably in southern China, and fossil comparisons indicate that its geographical range may have extended into central China in the middle Pleistocene. The disjunctly distributed species Arctonyx hoevenii (Hubrecht, 1891), originally described within the order ‘Edentata’ by a remarkable misunderstanding, is the smallest and darkest member of the genus and is endemic to the Barisan mountain chain of Sumatra. Apart from A. hoevenii, no other Arctonyx occurs on the Sunda Shelf below peninsular Thailand. The natural history of each species of Arctonyx, so far as is known, is briefly reviewed.