Monday, 4 March 2013

paper out today: South American salamanders older than the isthmus

Our Bolitoglossa research is out in BMC Evolutionary Biology, finding that South America's salamanders colonized from Central America ca 20MYA. The exciting thing is that such a pattern long precedes the putative ca 3MYA land bridge connection, or isthmus of Panama, and is consistent with some new and controversial research from STRI suggesting that the land bridge may be much older.

These salamanders are another example of cryptic species, with high genetic differentiation between putative "species" in the upper Amazon. This is a picture of a Bolitoglossa cf. peruviana that I caught in the upper Napo region of Ecuador, and which in all likelihood is not B. peruviana and instead a new species. (Descriptions are underway!)
Kathryn Elmer, Ron Bonett, David Wake and Steve Lougheed. 2013 BMC Evol Biol. 13: 59

1 comment:

  1. this work has been highlighted on the University Research page