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Range extension and genetic structure of the narrowly-restricted slider skink, Lerista rochfordensis Amey and Couper, 2009 (Reptilia: Scincidae)
Published online: 17 May 2018
Amey, A.P., Worthington Wilmer, J., Blomberg, S.P. & Couper, P.J. 2018. Range extension and genetic structure of the narrowly-restricted slider skink, Lerista rochfordensis Amey and Couper, 2009 (Reptilia: Scincidae). Memoirs of the Queensland Museum – Nature 61: 29–41 https://doi.org/10.17082/j.2204-1478.61.2018.2017-09
9 October 2017
17 May 2018
Lerista rochfordensis, slider skink, Queensland
Recent field surveys have collected more information on the poorly known species, Lerista rochfordensis. Previously known only from one dry rainforest patch of around 2,000 hectares in northern Queensland, the species was discovered in a neighbouring patch, 8 km distant, itself about 1,600 hectares in extent. The two populations are separated by cleared grazing land and the Kirk River, an ephemeral tributary of the Burdekin River. Statistically significant but comparatively small genetic and morphological divergence was observed between the two populations, suggesting they should still be considered conspecific under the Evolutionary Species Concept but are undergoing allopatric speciation.
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