Reassessing the systematics of Leptodeira (Serpentes, Dipsadidae) with emphasis in the South American species


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Abstract
Within the diverse subfamily Dipsadinae, Imantodini represents one of the few groups distributed in North, Central and South America. The tribe comprises the genera Leptodeira and Imantodes, from which Leptodeira is the most diverse, including 15 species and 11 subspecies, distributed from southern USA to central Argentina. Taxonomy and affinities among these taxa are poorly resolved, and the phylogenetic relationships among the South American diversity were never properly assessed before. Here, we investigate the phylogenetic relationships and the taxonomic status of Leptodeira spp. based on a comprehensive multilocus dataset with emphasis in the South American radiation. Besides assessing the phylogenetic relationship and species cohesion, we also evaluate the morphological variation among the South American diversity of Leptodeira. Our results support the monophyly of Imatodini and Leptodeira, while indicating that several individuals classified as Leptodeira annulata and L. septentrionalis do not cluster together within their respective species. Moreover, specimens identified as belonging to the subspecies L. a. annulata, L. a. cussiliris, L. s. ornata and L. s. polysticta do not group together suggesting the current classification includes non-natural groups. The analysis of morphological evidence also supports the phylogenetics results, indicating that several clades can be recognized as evolutionary units presenting distinct phenotypes. To equate the taxonomy to our results, we propose a new taxonomic arrangement for Leptodeira in which we are: (1) redefining the composition of L. annulata and L. septentrionalis; (2) elevating five subspecies to species level; (3) revalidating one species; (4) recognizing four species complexes; and (5) indicating the presence of hidden diversity (probably four undescribed species). Finally, we describe a new species (Leptodeira tarairiu sp. nov.) from the open formations of South America (Cerrado and Caatinga), and we provide detailed redescriptions for all South American species of Leptodeira.
Reference
JC.L.C, RG, Grazziotin FG, Zaher H, Rodrigues MT., Prudente ALDC.. Reassessing the systematics of Leptodeira (Serpentes, Dipsadidae) with emphasis in the South American species. Zoologica Scripta. 2022 Apr; in press. doi:10.1111/zsc.12534.
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https://repositorio.butantan.gov.br/handle/butantan/4346
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https://doi.org/10.1111/zsc.12534
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2022


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Corrigendum to the paper Reassessing the systematics of Leptodeira (Serpentes, Dipsadidae) with emphasis in the South American species.pdf
Description: in the online supporting information (Appendix S3 in Costa et al., 2022); thus, the new name can be considered unavailable until the description of the new species fully satisfies the requirements indicated in chapter 4, article 16.4.1 (with respect to the holotype) and 13.1.1 (with respect to the diagnosis) of the International Code of Zoological Nomenclature (Anonymous, 1999). Therefore, we provide here the complementary information for the new species described by Costa et al., 2022 in order to meet the requirements of the International Code of Zoological Nomenclature (Anonymous, 1999). Leptodeira tarairiu sp. nov. (https://www.urn:lsid:zoobank.org:act:C58BB3F0-EE29-4C9E-9DE3-1F3049741DF8). HOLOTYPE: An adult female, CHUFPB 447, collected by Miguel T. Rodrigues on 10th April 1984 from Fazenda Bravo (07°30′S, 36°17′W), Municipality of Cabaceiras, State of Paraíba, Brazil (Figure 1A–F in Appendix S3 of Costa et al., 2022). DIAGNOSIS: Leptodeira tarairiu sp. nov. can be distinguished from their congeners by the combination of 15 characters (described in Appendix S3 of Costa et al., 2022). The new species differs from L. annulata, L. approximans and L. ornata by having large dark spots in the dorsal head and dark stripes in the occipital region, or internasal, prefrontal, supraocular, frontal and parietal scales darker than the other scales of head (vs. absence or small dark spots in the dorsal head and the absence or presence of thin line in the occipital region); from L. bakeri and L. larcorum by having two dark brown stripes in the occipital region (vs. a bar and butterfly shape in L. bakeri and L. larcorum, respectively); from L. ashmeadii by having a medial spine at the base of asulcate side of the hemipenis (vs. two medial spines); from L. pulchriceps by having a higher average number of subcaudals in males 92 (83–107) and females 82 (73–93) (vs. a lower average number of subcaudals in males 83 (73–89) and females 75 (72–78)). Full description of the new species and an extended comparison within the genus are presented in Appendix S3 (Costa et al., 2022).
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