Saturday, February 8, 2014

[Testudology • 2009] Leaf Turtle Species Cyclemys gemeli (Testudines: Geoemydidae) | Further Specimens from North-eastern India and Phylogenetic Position

We describe external morphology and habitat of ten specimens of Cyclemys gemeli, a recently discovered leaf turtle species from north-eastern India, previously known only from its incomplete holotype and photos of a live female. Further, we assess the phylogenetic position of C. gemeli using sequence data of the mitochondrial cytochrome b gene as well as of three nuclear DNA fragments (C-mos, Rag2 genes, intron 1 of R35 gene) and confirm its genetic distinctiveness. Mitochondrial data strongly suggest a sister group relationship of C. gemeli and C. fusca, another species occurring in Myanmar. According to our new records, the Naga Hills and the Arakan Mts could constitute the geographical divide between C. gemeli and C. fusca. Morphologically, C. gemeli resembles other dark-bellied Cyclemys species and determination by external morphology alone is quite difficult.
Key words: India, Myanmar, Cyclemys fusca, Cyclemys gemeli, molecular phylogenetics

 Praschag, Peter; Hundsdörfer, Anna K.; Fritz, Uwe. 2009. Further Specimens and Phylogenetic Position of the recently described Leaf Turtle Species Cyclemys gemeli (Testudines: Geoemydidae). Zootaxa. 29 (37).
Fritz, U.; D Guicking, M Auer, R. S Sommer, M Wink, A. K Hundsdörfer. 2008. Diversity of the Southeast Asian Leaf Turtle genus Cyclemys: how many leaves on its tree of life? Zoologica Scripta. 37(4), 367–390. doi:  10.1111/j.1463-6409.2008.00332.x