Integrative taxonomy of Australian monsoonal herpetofauna

Northern Red-throated Skink, Carlia rubrigularis. (c) GregTheBusker, Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license.

Description

We propose to undertake detailed systematic studies of several herpetological taxa for which existing genetic data suggest a significant number of unrecognised species, especially in the monsoonal tropics. This study will confirm current taxonomic status and describe new species in the:

  • Myobatrachid frog genus Uperoleia,
  • the gekkonid species complex Heteronotia planiceps,
  • and within the six monsoonal species, the skink genus Carlia.

Following best-practice 'integrative taxonomy', we will use a combination of multi-locus genetic and phenotypic analyses to delimit species, establish a robust phylogeny for each group, and map the distribution of each resulting species. Using existing records and predictive modelling, we will undertake additional fieldwork to fill key sampling gaps and establish the geographic range of each taxon.

Image: Northern Red-throated Skink, Carlia rubrigularis. (c) GregTheBusker, Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license.

Updated:  29 March 2017/Responsible Officer:  Director RSB/Page Contact:  Webmaster RSB