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We describe a new octoploid species of African clawed frog (Xenopus) from the Lendu Plateau in the northern Albertine Rift of eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo. This species is the sister taxon of Xenopus vestitus (another octoploid), but is distinguished by a unique morphology, vocalization and molecular divergence in mitochondrial and autosomal(More)
Geckos are well known for their extraordinary clinging abilities and many species easily scale vertical or even inverted surfaces. This ability is enabled by a complex digital adhesive mechanism (adhesive toepads) that employs van der Waals based adhesion, augmented by frictional forces. Numerous morphological traits and behaviors have evolved to facilitate(More)
African clawed frogs, genus Xenopus, are extraordinary among vertebrates in the diversity of their polyploid species and the high number of independent polyploidization events that occurred during their diversification. Here we update current understanding of the evolutionary history of this group and describe six new species from west and central(More)
Previous work describing the embryonic stages of turtle development has not included members of the highly derived trionychid turtles. Staging criteria are described for the spiny softshell turtle (Apalone spinifera) to facilitate comparisons between phylogenetically distant taxa of turtles. Embryonic development in A. spinifera is placed in the context of(More)
Over the last ten years we have seen great efforts focused on revising amphibian systematics. Phylogenetic reconstructions derived from DNA sequence data have played a central role in these revisionary studies but have typically under-sampled the diverse frog family Microhylidae. Here, we present a detailed phylogenetic study focused on expanding previous(More)
We examine the systematics of multiple populations of the Albertine Rift endemic amphibian Hyperolius castaneus, which currently incorporates four subspecies. Standard morphometric data were analyzed with principal components analyses and analyses of covariance. Phylogenetic analyses of two mitochondrial (16S, cyt b) and one nuclear (RAG1) genes were(More)
Gliding morphologies occur in diverse vertebrate lineages in Southeast Asian rainforests, including three gecko genera, plus frogs, snakes, agamid lizards and squirrels. It has been hypothesized that repeated evolution of gliding is related to the dominance of Asian rainforest tree floras by dipterocarps. For dipterocarps to have influenced the evolution of(More)
Previous studies of chemoreceptive behavior in vipers suggest that snakes focus on the scent of envenomated tissue to track their prey following envenomation. Other studies have indicated a correlation between qualitative differences in venom biochemistry and geographic variation in diet. The North American copperhead (Agkistrodon contortrix) varies(More)
The species diversity of the frog genus Cardioglossa (family Arthroleptidae) is concentrated in the Lower Guinean Forest Zone of Central Africa with most of the 19 species occurring in Cameroon and neighboring countries (Amiet 1972a,b; Blackburn 2008; Hirschfeld et al. 2015). These small leaf-litter frogs are typically found in primary or secondary forest,(More)
Biodiversity hotspots, which harbor more endemic species than elsewhere on Earth, are increasingly threatened. There is a need to accelerate collection efforts in these regions before threatened or endangered species become extinct. The diverse geographical, ecological, genetic, morphological, and behavioral data generated from the on-site collection of an(More)