Peng GUO,Qin LIU,Edward A. MYERS,et al.Evaluation of the Validity of the Ratsnake Subspecies Elaphe carinata deqenensis (Serpent: Colubridae)[J].Asian Herpetological Research(AHR),2012,3(3):219-226.[doi:10.3724/SP.J.1245.2012.00219]
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Evaluation of the Validity of the Ratsnake Subspecies Elaphe carinata deqenensis (Serpent: Colubridae)
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Asian Herpetological Research[ISSN:2095-0357/CN:51-1735/Q]

2012 VoI.3 No.3
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Original Article
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Evaluation of the Validity of the Ratsnake Subspecies Elaphe carinata deqenensis (Serpent: Colubridae)
Peng GUO1* ** Qin LIU1* Edward A. MYERS2 3 Shaoying LIU4 Yan XU1 5 Yang LIU4 and Y
1 College of Life Sciences and Food Engineering, Yibin University, Yibin 644007, Sichuan, China
2 Department of Biology, Graduate School and University Center, City University of New York, 365 5th Ave., New York, NY 10016, USA
3 Department of Biology, College of Staten Island, City University of New York, 2800 Victory Blvd., Staten Island, NY 10314, USA
4 Sichuan Academy of Forestry, Chengdu 610066, Sichuan, China
5 Chengdu University of Technology, Chengdu 610050, Sichuan, China
6 Chengdu Institute of Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Chengdu 610041, Sichuan, China
snake Colubrinae morphology hemipenis molecular phylogeny Hengduan Mountains
Based on morphological character comparisons and molecular phylogenetic reconstruction, we assessed the validity of the ratsnake subspecies Elaphe carinata deqenensis. Phylogenetic relationships inferred from fragments of two mitochondrial genes (ND2 and ND4) and one nuclear gene (c-mos) revealed a well-supported and minimally divergent sister relationship between putative E. c. deqenensis and E. c. carinata. Morphological comparisons indicated that all diagnostic characters proposed in the original description of E. c. deqenensis are unable to separate this taxon from E. c. carinata. On the basis of these preliminary investigations, we provisionally suggest that E. c. deqenensis is not a valid subspecies, and should henceforth be treated as a synonym of E. c. carinata.


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