The British Herpetological Society

The Herpetological Journal is the Society's prestigious quarterly scientific journal. Articles are listed in Biological Abstracts, Current Awareness in Biological Sciences,Current Contents, Science Citation Index, and Zoological Record.

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pdf 02. Deep genetic differentiation within Janetaescincus spp. (Squamata: Scincidae) from the Seychelles Islands


Open Access

pp. 205-213

Authors: D. James Harris, Ana Perera, Joana Valente & Sara Rocha

Abstract: Genetic diversity within the burrowing skink genus Janetaescincus, endemic to the granitic Seychelles Islands, was assessed using mitochondrial and nuclear DNA sequences. Considerable diversity was recovered, up to 15.9% for the partial cytochrome b gene sequences, with at least three groups distinguishable at a level of differentiation more typically observed between species. Even within small islands such as Silhouette and Frégate, multiple clades co-occur, and within Silhouette this seems at least partially related to altitude. Comparisons between markers may indicate some hybridisation between clades. Dating estimates suggest these splits occurred within the Miocene, and were therefore not directly associated with Pleistocene sea level changes. We recommend referring to a species complex pending an integrative taxonomic revision of the group.

Keywords: c-mos, cytochrome b, MC1R, phylogeography, Scincidae, Seychelles

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