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Universität Carolo-Wilhelmina zu Braunschweig (2011)

Phylogenetics and systematics of North-African Geckos Tarentola

Bshaena, Ismail Mustafa

Titre : Phylogenetics and systematics of North-African Geckos Tarentola

Auteur : Bshaena, Ismail Mustafa

Université de soutenance : Universität Carolo-Wilhelmina zu Braunschweig

Grade : Doktors der Naturwissenschaften (Dr. rer. Nat.) 2011

The genus Tarentola (Reptilia : Gekkonidae) consists of about 20 known species, which are distributed mostly in North Africa, coastal regions of Mediterranean Sea, Macaronesian Islands, and also Cuba and the Bahamas. While Tarentola of the Canary Islands and Morocco have been very well investigated ; we have only little knowledge about the Tarentola of the eastern Maghreb countries (Algeria, Tunisia and Libya). The present work is considered as one of the primary studies that are concerned with this genus in North Africa. This study is based on 615 specimens, representative of different forms of the genus Tarentola. The specimens were collected through field work from various localities in Libya between 2007-2008, additional specimens of North African Tarentola were kindly provided from various collections. In this study, we used both morphological and molecular phylogenetic techniques to investigate the relationships among different populations of the genus Tarentola in North Africa. 1- Morphologically, we have extensively analyzed the relationships among different North African Tarentola population, the study based on multivariate analysis of 25 external morphological characters (14 morphometric characters and 11 non metric [scalation] characters were used). 2- Molecular phylogenetically, in total 2596 bp DNA sequences were amplified : A. Two mitochondrial marker genes, partial 12S rRNA (372 bp) and two fragments of 16S rRNA (448 bp and 604 bp respectively). B. Three nuclear marker genes, the partial C-mos (424 bp), the partial RAG2 (387 bp), and fragment of Phosducin (361 bp). The investigated Tarentola sampled through this study (from coastal and desert locations) in Libya demonstrated that, they show a distinct phylogeographical pattern and differ from all other North Africa Tarentola populations at least some characters, in respect of morphology and mtDNA haplotypes. As a result, the presence of the following monophyletic groups is confirmed : 1- A new subspecies of T. deserti from NW-Libya (first record from Libya). 2- A new subspecies of T. neglecta from northern central Sahara oases (second record from Libya) ; T. mindiae (only in Egypt) is the sister species of T. neglecta. 3- T. mauritanica from Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia, not confirmed for Libya. 4- T. fascicularis from Egypt, Libya and Tunisia (former subspecies of T. mauritanica), comprising five new subspecies from Libya and one new subspecies (T. fascicularis wolfgangi Joger and Bshaena 2010) endemic to central Tunisia.


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