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Rediscovery of the Pocket Gopher Orthogeomys lanius (Rodentia: Geomyidae) in Veracruz, Mexico
Journal of Mammalogy (2014)
  • Mark S. Hafner, Louisiana State University
  • David J. Hafner, University of New Mexico
  • Erick E. Gonzáles, Universidad Nacional Autótoma de México
  • James W. Demastes, University of Northern Iowa
  • Theresa A. Spradling, University of Northern Iowa
  • Fernando A. Cervantes, Universidad Nacional Autótoma de México
The pocket gopher Orthogeomys lanius (Elliot, 1905), unknown to science since the first 2 specimens were captured in 1904, is rediscovered in the mountains south and east of Pico de Orizaba in Veracruz, Mexico. Mitochondrial DNA extracted from the skin of the 109-year-old paratype specimen is nearly identical (0.3% cytochrome-b divergence) to that extracted from 2 newly captured specimens. Phylogenetic analyses of the complete cytochrome-b gene and 2 nuclear genes show O. lanius to be sister to the geographically widespread species O. hispidus. O. lanius has a diploid number of 44 and a fundamental number of 84, and the species is easily distinguished from O. hispidus by its larger size and dense, woolly pelage. Our observations suggest that O. lanius is reasonably abundant in a roughly 1,000-km2 region of central Veracruz, where it persists in forested refugia often too steep and rugged for cultivation by humans.
  • cytochrome-b,
  • endangered species,
  • genetic differentiation,
  • karyology,
  • phylogenetics
Publication Date
Citation Information
Mark S. Hafner, David J. Hafner, Erick E. Gonzáles, James W. Demastes, et al.. "Rediscovery of the Pocket Gopher Orthogeomys lanius (Rodentia: Geomyidae) in Veracruz, Mexico" Journal of Mammalogy Vol. 95 Iss. 5 (2014) p. 792 - 802
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