Analysis of Geographic Variation within Populations of Neurergus microspilotus and between N. kaiseri and N. microspilotus (Caudata: Salamandridae)

Nasrullah Rastegar-Pouyani, Mozafar Sharifi, Somayeh Assadian Narenji


The genus Neurergus encompasses three species in Iran as follows: N. kaiseri, N. microspilotus, and N. crocatus. So far, no comprehensive taxonomic study on the species and different populations of this genus has been carried out. In present study an analysis of geographic variation in four allopatric populations of N. microspilotus has been presented based on preserved museum materials from western edges of the Iranian Plateau in Kermanshah Province. Using principal component analysis for data on 20 external characteristics the first and second components (PC1 and PC2) showed 37.38 and 15.58% of the total variance respectively. This result indicates that different populations of N. microspilotus from various areas of the range have acquired a certain degree of divergence. A comparison based on the principle component as well as discriminant function analyses for 20 important characters pertaining to morphology and body stature in N. microspilotus and N. kaiseri (from southern Zagros Mountains, Lorestan Province) also shows that they are conveniently distinguishable from each other at the specific level. A short account on historical biogeography of the genus Neurergus is provided.


Salamandridae; Neurergus; geographic variation; Zagros Mountains; multivariate analysis

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