The Comparison of Cranial Osteology of Neurergus microspilotus and Salamandra infraimmaculata semenovi (Amphibia: Salamandridae)

Fahimeh Akia, Nasrullah Rastegar-Pouyani, Hiwa Faizi


Cranial osteology characters of Neurergus microspilotus collected from Kavat River, Paveh, KermanshahProvince and Salamandra infraimmaculata semenovi from Sarvabad, Kurdistan Province, western Iran, have been described and compared based on 10 dry skull preparations. Individual characters within each of these two species discussed and compared together. Prominent differences between skulls of the two species observed are as follows: individual bones thickness, maxillary dentition, shape of the frontal, parietal and premaxillary bones, morphology of the palatines and associated structures. In S. i. semenovi the most parts of skull are not being completely ossified and have a membranous structure and even in the ossified parts the elements have nosolidity this may due in part to more evolutionary primitive status of compare to Neurergus. The frontal bone in N. microspilotus is ossified with a projection towards the orbit which creates a ring by cartilaginous part asfrontosquamosal ring. However, the frontosquamosal bone structure is absent in S. i. semenovi. Almost all skullelements of N. microspilotus are mineralized but this is not the case with S. i. semenovi.


Neurergus microspilotus; Salamandra infraimmaculata semenovi; skull; comparative osteology

Full Text:



Baloutch M. and Kami H. G. (1995), «Amphibians of Iran», Tehran University Publications 2250, 177, 91 – 99.

Degani G. (1996), Salamandra salamandra at the Southern Limit of its Distribution, Laser Pages Publishing Ltd.

Duellman E. W. and Schlager N. (2004), Animal Life Encyclopedia. Second Edition. Vol. 6. Amphibians, In association with the American Zoo and Aquarium Association.

Duges A. (1834), «Recherches sur osteologie et la myologie des Batraciens a leurs differens ages», part II, 155, Paris.

Ehmcke J. and Clemen G. (2000), «The structure and development of the skull of Costa Rican plethodontid salamanders (Amphibia: Urodela)», Ann. Anat., 182, 537 – 547.

Ehmcke J. and Clemen G. (2006), «The skull structure of six species of Mesoamerican plethodontid salamanders (Amphibia: Urodela)», Ann. Anat., 185, 235 – 261.

Hanken J. and Hall B. (1993), «Mechanisms of skull diversity and evolution», in: J. Hanken and B. K. Hall (eds.), The Skull. Vol. 3. Functional and Evolutionary Mechanisms, Univ. Chicago Press, Chicago and London, pp. 1 – 36.

James H. and David B. (2005), «The solution to the large Black Salamander Problem (genus Bolitoglossa) in Costa Rica and Panama», Copeia, 2005(2), 227 – 245.

Joger U. and Steinfartz S. (1994), «Zur subspezifischen Gliederung der südiberischen Feuersalamander (Salamandra salamandra-Komplex)», Abh. Ber. Naturkunde, 17, 83 – 98.

Joger U. and Steinfartz S. (1995), « Protein electrophoretic of taxonomic problems in East Miditerranean Salamandra (Urodela: Salamandridae)», in: Lorente et al. (eds.), Scientia Herpetologica, pp. 33 – 36.

Laurent R. (1947), «La disposition des dents vomeriennes t chez les Urodeles superieurs et son importance phylogenetique», Bull. Mus. Roy. d’Hist. Nat. Belg., 23, 1 – 4.

Naylor B. G. (1978), «The frontosquamosal arch of newts as a defense against predators», Can. J. Zool., 56, 2211 – 2216.

Nesterov P. V. (1916), «Tri novykh khvostatykh amfibii is Kurdistana (Drei neue Formen von Amphibien aus Kurdistan)», Ann. Mus. Zool. Acad. Sci. Petrograd, 21, 1 – 30.

Noble G. K. (1931), The Biology of the Amphibians. Edition 1995, Dover Publications, Inc.

Rastegar-Pouyani N. and Assadian S. (2003), «Analysis of geographic variation in Neurergus microspilotus (Caudata: Salamandridae)», in: Proc. of the 11th Iranian Biol. Conf., August 23 – 25, 2003, Urmia University, Urmia, Iran.

Rastegar-Pouyani N. and Faizi H. (2006), «On a collection of the Near East Fire Salamander, Salamandra infraimmaculata semenovi (Salamandridae), from Kurdistan province, Western Iran», Zool. Middle East, 37, 115 – 118.

Regal P. J. (1966), «Feeding specializations and the terrestrial salamanders», Evolution, 20, 392 – 407.

Romer A. Sh. and Parsons T. (1997), The Vertebrate Body. 5th Edition, W. B. Saunders Company.

Sharifi M. and Assadian S. (2002), «Distribution and conservation of Neurergus microspilotus», Asiatic Herpetol. Res., 10, 224 – 229.

Sharifi M. and Assadian S. (2005), «The reproductive cycle of Neurergus microspilotus in western Iran», Russ. J. Herpetol., 12(1), 63 – 68.

Stadtmuller F. (1924), «Über Entwichlung und Bau der papillenformigen Erhebungen (Filterfortsatze) auf den Branchialbogen der Salamandriden Larven, Zeitschr», Morphol. Antropol., 24, 125 – 156.

Steinfartz S., Veith M., and Tautz D. (2000), «Mitochondrial sequence analysis of Salamandra taxa suggests old splits of major lineages and postglacial recolonizations of Central Europe from distinct source populations of Salamandra salamandra», Mol. Ecol., 9, 397 – 410.

Steinfartz S., Vicario S., Arntzen Jw., and Caccone A. (2007), «A Bayesian approach on molecules and behavior: reconsidering phylogenetic and evolutionary patterns of the Salamandridae with emphasis on Triturus newts», J. Exp. Zool., 308, 139 – 162.

Titus T. A. and Larson A. (1995), «A molecular phylogenetic perspective on the evolutionary radiation of the salamander family Salamandridae», Syst. Biol., 44, 125 – 151.

Wake D. B. and Larson A. (1987), «Multidimensional analysis of an evolving lineage», Science, 238, 42 – 48.

Wilder I. (1925), The Morphology of Amphibian Metamorphosis, Smith College, Northampton, Mass.



  • There are currently no refbacks.