- Geographical patterns of deep mitochondrial differentiation in widespread Malagasy reptiles
- Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution
- Volume | Issue number
- 45 | 3
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Science (FNWI)
Using sequences of the mitochondrial 16S rRNA gene, we reconstructed the phylogeography of six widely distributed Malagasy reptiles: two gekkonid lizard species, Phelsuma lineata and Hemidactylus mercatorius; two chameleons, the Calumma brevicorne complex, and Furcifer lateralis; and two skinks, Trachylepis gravenhorstii and Trachylepis elegans. Genetic differentiation among major haplotype lineages was high and in some cases indicates or confirms species status of the divergent populations. Maximum uncorrected sequence divergences were between 2.2% and 8.3% within the various species or species complexes. Haplotype lineages were exclusive to geographic regions, except in the commensal H. mercatorius where in three anthropogenic habitats coexistence of haplotype lineages was observed, possibly due to human translocation. The eastward flowing rivers Mangoro and Mananara may represent barriers to gene flow in the case of three species each. Some species sampled from humid eastern and arid western Madagascar showed no differentiation between populations from these two regions; instead the pattern observed was in several cases more concordant with a differentiation along a north-south axis.
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