Publications
Abb. 4. Index FemL x 10/AnL (Interfemoralnaht-Länge x 10/Interanalnaht-Länge) aufgetragen gegen die Carapaxlänge für Exemplare ab I 0 cm Carapaxlänge. Die eingezeichneten Regressionsgeraden sind wegen aHornetrischer Verschiebungen außer bei C. tcheponensis für juvenile und subadulte Tiere (Carapaxlänge 10-17 cm) und für Adulti (Carapaxlänge über 17 cm) getrennt dargestellt. Bei C. tcheponensis wurde auf das Einzeichnen einer Regressionsgeraden für Adulti verzichtet, da nur zwei geschlechtsreife Exemplare untersucht wurden. Pfeile: Typusexemplare von Cyclemys dhor shanensis ANNANDALE, 1918. Index FemL x 10/ AnL (interfemoral seam length x 10/interana1 seam length) plotted against carapace length (Carapaxlänge) in specimens :::>: 10 cm carapace Iength. With the exception of C. tcheponensis, the regression lines are given for juveniles and subadults (carapace length 10-17 cm) and adults (carapace length over 17 cm) separately because of allometric changes. Due to the small sample size, no regression line is presented for adult C. tcheponensis. Arrows: types of Cyclemys dhor shanensis ANNANDALE, 1918. Offene Dreiecke/open triangles ( C. d.) = C. dentata: n = 41; Regressionsgeraden/regression Iines: y (juv.) =-0,0228 x + 8,9828; y (ad.) =-0,0131 x + 9,0482. Schwarze Kreise/solid b1ack circles (C. o.) = C. oldhamii: n = 47; Regressionsgeraden/ regression lines: y (juv.) =-0,0019 x + 8,8248; y (ad.) = 0,0148 x + 6,7733. Schwarze Quadrate/solid black squares ( C. p.) = C. pulchristriata: n = 17; Regressionsgeraden/regression 1ines: y (juv.) = 0,0095 x + 5,2543; y (ad.) =-0,0345 x + 12,843. Offene Rauten/open rhombs ( C. t.) = C. tcheponensis: n = 12; Regressionsgeradel regression line: y (juv.) =-0,0063 x + 9,0105.
Abb. 8. Panzerhöhe aufgetragen gegen die Carapaxlänge bei Cyclemys dentata und C. oldhamii. Man beachte die klar abfallenden, hochrückigen Tiere (alte Exemplare). Shell height (Panzerhöhe) plotted against carapace length (Carapaxlänge) in Cyclemys dentata and C. oldhamii. Note the distinct, domed old specimens. Männchen = males; Weibchen = females.
Within the genus Cyclemys, four species are recognised and diagnosed, based upon more than 200 specimens. One is described as a new species. For the other three species, the nomenclatural history is discussed and several lecto- or neotypes are designated. In addition, a key for all species is presented. Cyclemys dentata (GRAY, 1831) sensu stricto is characterised by a reddish, intensely striped head and neck pattern and a predominant or entirely yellow plastron with a short interfemora1 and a long interanal seam. It is distributed from Thailand over the Malay peninsula to Sumatra and Java. Its range includes Borneo and some islands of the Palawan and Sulu regions of the Philippines, too. The soft parts of Cyclemys oldhamii GRAY, 1863 are mainly dark coloured, without distinct head and neck stripes. The plastron is principally dark and the interfemoral seam is longer and the interanal seam shorter compared with C. dentata. C. oldhamii is in a vast area sympatric with C. dentata. C. oldhamii occurs from NE India over Burma, Thailand, and the Malay peninsula to Borneo, Sumatra, and Java. The population on Java could represent a distinct subspecies because several adults exhibit a clearly paler plastron colouration than specimens from other parts of the range. Cyclemys pulchristriata sp. nov. is a very striking coloured taxon with a conspicuous head and neck pattern consisting of yellow, but not reddish stripes. It is further distinguished from the superficially similar C. dentata by its uniform light coloured throat and the much broader light stripes on the ventral side of the neck. Up to now, C. pulchristriata is only known from Annam (Vietnam). Cyclemys tcheponensis (BOURRET, 1939) closely resembles in many characters C. oldhamii. However, C. tcheponensis differs from this taxon by its striped head and neck pattern. The plastral pattern of hatchlings is different from the three other taxa. C. tcheponensis is known to occur in Chiang Mai (Thailand), Tonkin (Vietnam), and from the border region between Laos and Vietnam.
 
The description of Hyla melaflopleura was based on five syntypes from Huancabamba. Peru, from 925 m above sea level. Information on colouration in life and life history were unknown until the authors rediscovered this species in Huancabamba, Pe ru, a t 1780 m above sea level. Eight frogs were found at night in the vegetation next to small streams and in artificial ponds. Life colouration of H . melaflopleura at day and night and osteology of the hand are described , and measurements of morphological characters are presented. The call and tadpole of H. meiaflopleura remain unknown.
 
A new species of leptodactylid frog, genus Phrynopus, is described from a Polylepis- forest of the eastern Andean slopes of central Peru (Departamento de Huánuco) between 3420 and 3430 m above sea level. The new species is assigned to the Phrynopus peruanus group and differs from all known species of the genus by having ventral surfaces of arms (except hands), legs (except feet), venter, chest and groin mainly red, and remaining dorsal, lateral and ventral surfaces of body with reticulated pattern and structure of slightly elevated brown to greenish blotches surrounded by cream to yellow lines. The new species occurs sympatrically with Phrynopus horstpauli and Gastrotheca griswoldi. Males of the new species are unknown.
 
Geographic origin of samples: (1) Doñana National Park; (2) Ceuta; (3) SE Marrakech; (4) Oued Dadès, NE Ouarzazate; (5) Oued Drâa, SE Ouarzazate; (6) Oued Tata, S Tata; (7) Oued Noun, E Guelmine; (8) Oued Noun, N Tiliouine. For exact localities see Table 1. 
Neighbour-Joining tree of the cyt b dataset for Mauremys leprosa, rooted with M. rivulata. Clusters 1 and 2 represent localities north of the Atlas Mts. and from both sides of the Strait of Gibraltar, clusters 3 and 4 localities south of the Atlas Mts. Large numbers at the leaves are MTD T numbers (Tab. 1); numbers in black circles denote collection sites (Fig. 1). The sample from the Oued Drâa catchment area with the haplotype occurring otherwise in the Oued Noun region is asterisked. Small numbers at the nodes are, from left to right: bootstrap values of 10,000 trees for NJ, bootstrap values for ML (TBR swapping algorithm), posterior probabilities for MrBayes, and bootstrap values for MP (1,000 resamplings). Branch lengths correspond to number of nucleotide changes.
Mauremys leprosa saharica with pale blue eyes (Oued Noun canyon, N Tiliouine, Morocco, 29°05.115N, 10°15.140W). 
Juveniles of (a) Mauremys leprosa vanmeerhaghei (Sidi-Flah, Oued Dadès NE Ouarzazate, 31°00.688N, 6°29.931W) and (b) M. l. saharica (Oued Noun canyon, N Tiliouine, Morocco, 29°05.115N, 10°15.140W). Note carapacial patterns. 
Sequence data of the mitochondrial cytochrome b gene of stripe-necked terrapins (Mauremys leprosa) have been compared from localities north and south of the Atlas Mts . (Ceuta; Morocco) and from Donana National Park (Spain). A low maximum sequence divergence (approximately I %) corresponds to two major clades; one is re presented by localities to the north of the Atlas Mts. and in Dofiana National Park and the other by localities to the south of the Atlas Mts. Differentiation between populations north and south of the Atlas Mts. is much more pronounced than that found between samples from each side of the Strait of Gibraltar. These findings suggest that the Strait of Gibraltar is, in contrast to the Atlas Mts .. not a significant barrier to gene flow in s tripe -necked terrapins. The major c lades could reflect taxonomic segregation between populations north and south of the Atlas Mts . Sequences from Marrakech (corresponding to M. I. marokkensis), Ceuta, and the Donana National Park (M. Ieprosa) are only weakly differentiated. South of the Atlas Mts. we found no consistent differences between samples from catchment basins of the Oued Draa (M. I. vanmeerhaghei) and the Oued Noun (M. I. saharica). Our findings imply that taxonomic differentiation within M. leprosa is currently overestimated.
 
Recently, Triturus cristatus has been discovered in northwest Bulgaria. The species' distribution is discussed with regard to the new findings. Species identity is proved by means of colouration, number of rib-bearing vertebrae, vomeral teeth arrangement and WOLTERSTORFF Index data. Its conservation status is discussed. © 2008 Deutsche Gesellschaft für Herpetologie und Terrarienkundee. V.(DGHT).
 
We discuss the name Stenostoma albifrons Wagler in Spix, 824 (= Leptotyphlops albifrons), attributed to widely distributed Neotropical worm snake populations and consider it a nomen dubium reviewing literature. The current junior synonym Leptotyphlops tenellus Klauber, 939 is proposed as a replacement name. Stenostoma albifrons was described in a very succinct description by Wagler in Spix, 824 based on a single specimen from "Habi-tat rarum in adjacentibus urbis Para", in the proximity of Belém, Para, Brazil. The name Stenostoma was preoccupied by Stenosto-ma Latreille, 80 for a coleopteran ge-nus (which is also the case for Stenostoma Lamarck, 87, a molluscan genus). After invalidation of Stenostoma as a genus name, Fitzinger (843) attributed the name Lepto-typhlops, to all described species under the genus name Stenostoma, actually attributed to Leptotyphlops albifrons. Additionally, oth-er generic names were proposed to describe other species (i.e. Glauconia) coined after ac-tually naming Leptotyphlops, for this discus-sion see McDiarmid et al. (999). The genus Leptotyphlops comprises 05 species widely distributed on all continents, except Australia and Antarctica (cf. McDi-armid et al. 999, Dixon & Vaughan 2003, Passos et al. 2006, Broadley & Walach 2007, Hedges 2008). Leptotyphlops albifrons is actually known to range from Trinidad and Guyana south into Argentina (Orejas-Mi-randa 967, McDiarmid et al. 999). According to the International Code of Zoological Nomenclature (ICZN 999: ), the status of a nomen dubium has to be as-signed to a name of unknown or doubtful application. Many authors have agreed with the difficulty to relegate Leptotyphlops albi-frons (Wagler in Spix, 824) to any popu-lation of Leptotyphlops species (Smith & In-ger 95, Thomas 965, Orejas-Miranda 967, Vanzolini 970, Wilson & Hahn 973, Cunha & Nascimento 978, 993, Vanzo-lini et al. 980, Hoogmoed & Gruber 983, McDiarmid et al. 999, Tipton 2005). The difficulty in applying the name L. albifrons and its resulting taxonomic problems in-volving all previously described species of the albifrons group, revealed that diagnos-tic characters for L. albifrons have been con-fusing and incorrectly used (Jan 859, 86, Klauber 939, Smith & Laufe 945, Roze 952, Smith & List 958, Peters & Orejas-Miranda 970, Vanzolini 996). The de-scription of Wagler in Spix (824), as well as the illustration of the holotype, are little informative and it is impossible to demon-strate any diagnostic character for this nomi-nal species since no additional information on the holotype became available before its destruction during the World War II (Smith & List 958, Hahn 980). Jan (859) exam-ined type specimens described by Wagler, but provided no additional information con-cerning S. albifrons.
 
In this study 175 specimens of Podarcis dugesii from the islands Madeira, Deserta Grande, Bugio, Porto Santo, Selvagem Grande and Selvagem Pequena were examined. Morphological data from lizards of these six islands were subjected to a Variance-and Discriminant-analysis and compared to results from an Enzyme-Electrophoresis. Podarcis dugesii mauli is placed as a synonym of the nominate subspecies. In contrast, two new subspecies are described: Podarcis dugesii jogeri ssp.n. for the population from Porto Santo and Podarcis dugesii selvagensis ssp.n. from the Selvagens islands.
 
View of the vegetation in the Masoala Rain Forest Hall of Zurich Zoo. 
Male Furcifer pardalis carrying a glued-on BD-2 transponder. 
Illustration of the distribution of peripheral and non-peripheral perches within the utilized plants for the individual groups. The peripheral proportions are shown as red solid areas and the non-peripheral proportions in green dotted areas.
The habitat preferences and activity patterns of panther chameleons, Furcifer pardalis (CUVIER, 1829) living in the Masoala Rain Forest Hall of the Zurich Zoo were investigated by means of radiotelemetry. Twelve animals were monitored over periods of up to 32 days. The animals exhibited a significant preference for the upper third, or crown stratum, of the plants. The chameleons were furthermore mostly encountered in the peripheral areas of their trees. Migratory patterns of male specimens in particular followed a largely linear course from the starting point. Distinctions could be made between specimens with a high degree of home range fidelity and more explorative individuals, which differed clearly with regard to the distances they moved away from their respective starting points. © 2008 Deutsche Gesellschaft für Herpetologie und Terrarienkundee. V.(DGHT).
 
Ecological niches of squamate reptiles are delineated by diet, microhabitat use, and activity period. In the current study field data were gathered to characterize the ecology of Rhacodactylus auriculatus with regard to these three axes. Rhacodactylus auriculatus regularly consume a wide taxonomic and ecological variety of arthropods, lizard prey including geckos and skinks, and various plant materials including floral parts and sap. Based upon the variety of dietary constituents and the regularity with which they are utilized, R. auriculatus may have the most atypical of all gekkonid diets. Rhacodactylus auriculatus partition their microhabitat with conspecifics based on perch height, presumably to avoid aggressive interactions. During winter in southern New Caledonia, R. auriculatus were most active from one to four hours after sunset.
 
The range and the status of the Egyptian tortoise Testudo kleinmanni in Libya are poorly known due to the country's political isolation. The results of our own studies are compared critically with all hitherto published reports, and are summarized. During visits to Libya in 2005, 2006 and 2007 a total of 79 living T. kleinmanni were found at 28 different localities. Our conclusions permit a more accurate delineation of the range of T. kleinmanni in this country. Once contiguous with Egyptian populations, now virtually extinct, the species ranges continuously from the eastern border nearly to Tripoli in the west. Contrary to previous indications, T. kleinmanni is absent from the tableland of the Jabal al Akhdar and from its northern and western coastal foothills. On the other hand, it is widespread along the coastal area of the Gulf of Sirte, continuing into Tripolitania along the coast to the vicinity of Tripoli. Evidence for the presence of T. kleinmanni in the Jabal Nafusa Range south of there does not exist, though the species occurs on the eastern and northern slopes of those mountains. Limited ecological observations of the species are presented, including a list of plants which serve as food or hiding places for T. kleinmanni. Our investigations confirm that there still exists heavy exploitation of tortoises in Libya for the international animal trade. © 2008 Deutsche Gesellschaft für Herpetologie und Terrarienkundee. V.(DGHT).
 
Distribution and ecology of Pelodytes caucasicus BOULENGER, 1896 in Turkey. The presently known distribution of Pelodytes caucasicus in Turkey comprises 14 localities within the eastern part of the coastal slopes of the Pontic mountain chain. The easternmost locality record (near Kars) needs confirmation. The species' vertical distribution ranges from near sea level to 1900 m a.s.l. Spawning sites of the Caucasian parsley frog are mostly densely overgrown, shallow parts of cool, slow moving brooks, rock pools within ravines, and residual pools in the gravel beds of rivers. All spawning sites were located in or very close to forested areas. The terrestrial habitats of adult specimens are unknown, but most probably are forests. Total lengths and masses of Turkish P. caucasicus correspond to literature data for Georgian and Caucasian populations. Average values of masses and total lengths of repro-ductive animals are slightly lower in the late breeding season compared to the early season. Data for the breeding season in Turkey ränge from July to October and usually larvae metamorphose in early summer of the following year. During the summer months larval populations of non flood-affected breeding sites consist of three size classes: freshly laid clutches plus hatchlings, half grown individuals, and metamorphosing animals. In contrast, breeding sites within small water bodies in mountain brooks often suffer from floods caused by runoff of melting snow or continous heavy summer rains. Those water bodies often contain only one size class of larvae during the summer, usually hatchlings or small tadpoles. Clutches of P. caucasicus contained 58-223 eggs. Satellite behaviour was observed several times at enyuva. One calling male was accompanied by one to three non-calling males. In addition, the keeping of Pelodytes caucasiccus in an outdoor enclosure in northwestern Germany is reported. Zusammenfassung Die derzeit bekannte Verbreitung von Pelodytes caucasicus in der Türkei umfaßt 14 Fund-punkte innerhalb der östlichen Küstenkette des Pontus-Gebirges. Der östlichste Verbreitungs-punkt bei Kars bedarf einer Bestätigung. Die Vertikalverbreitung der Art reicht von Meeres-niveau bis 1900 m NN. Laichgewässer des Kaukasischen Schlammtauchers sind in der Regel dicht eingewachsene Bereiche von kühlen, langsam fließenden Bächen, Felskolke in kleinen Schluchten und Restwasser im Schotterbett von Flüssen. Alle Laichgewässer liegen im Wald oder in unmittelbarer Waldnähe. Die Landlebensräume adulter Tiere sind unbekannt, aber höchstwahrscheinlich handelt es sich um eine Waldart. Gesamtlängen und Massen türkischer P. caucasicus stimmen gut mit den Literaturdaten für georgische sowie kaukasische Populationen überein. Zu Beginn der Laichzeit sind diese Werte deutlich höher als zu deren Ende. Nach den vorliegenden Daten reicht die Laichzeit in der Türkei von Juli bis Oktober; die Metamorphose findet in der Regel im Frühsommer des darauffolgenden Jahres statt. Larvenpopulationen in Laichgewässern, die keinen regelmäßi-gen Hochwassern ausgesetzt sind, setzen sich in den Sommermonaten aus drei Größenklassen zusammen: Laich inklusive frisch geschlüpfter Larven, halbwüchsige Larven und metamor-phosierende Tiere. Dagegen enthalten Gewässer, die Hochwasser ausgesetzt sind (Schnee-schmelze und andauernde, heftige Sommerregen), oft nur Schlüpflinge oder junge Larven. Gelege von P. caucasicus wiesen 58-223 Eier auf. Satelliten verhalten wurde mehrfach in Salamandra, Rheinbach, 31.3.1999, 35(1): 1-18. © 1999 Deutsche Gesellschaft für Herpetologie und Terrarienkunde e.V. (DGHT) MICHAEL FRANZEN enyuva beobachtet. Dabei wurde ein rufendes Männchen von ein bis drei nicht rufenden Tieren begleitet. Abschließend wird über die Haltung von Pelodytes caucasicus in einem Freiluftterrarium in Nordwestdeutschland berichtet.
 
Holotype of Cochliophagus isolepis (ZMB 8164). 
Lectotype of Coluber nympha (BMNH 1946.1.13.69). 
Portrait of the head of the lectotype of Coluber nympha (BMNH 1946.1.13.69). 
Reexamination of the holotype of Cochliophagus isolepis Müller, 1924, has shown that it does not differ from Dryocalamus nympha (Daudin, 1803), confirming its synonymous status with the latter. A lectotype for Coluber nympha is designated and described. © 2008 Deutsche Gesellschaft für Herpetologie und Terrarienkunde e.V. (DGHT).
 
Dam 1, which was found to be inhabited by Cyprus grass snakes in 2007.
The only farm pond still satisfying basic needs (enough water, vegetation, sufficient frog abundance) of the Cyprus grass snake.
Dam 2, in which a melanistic female Cyprus grass snake was observed swimming, thus confirming at least the occasional occurrence of grass snakes in this reservoir (previously unpublished).
Distribution of size classes among the specimens from Stream 1 in 2008 (red: males; blue: females).  
Distribution of size classes among the specimens from Stream 2 in 2008 (red: males; blue: females; black: unsexed).  
The conservation status of the populations of the highly endangered Cyprus grass snake, Natrix natrix cypriaca (HECHT, 1930), in the Troodos Mountains was re-evaluated in 2008. Results suggest that only two streams continue to be inhabited by the snake. The total number of grass snakes in the Troodos area is estimated to be around 90-100 specimens. There has been a severe decline in the percentage of juveniles in both subpopulations in comparison to earlier studies in 2002 and 2005. There are a number of threats to the survival of the grass snake at all sites. A pair was observed mating relatively late in the season in July, which was only the third mating ever observed in N. n. cypriaca. One male caught by hand displayed a mild form of akinesis, which is the first record of this defensive behaviour in the Cyprus grass snake. Six specimens had tail damage, which is thought to have resulted from interaction with humans.
 
New material of Agama agama Linnaeus, 1758 from Mount Hanang, Tanzania is indistinguishable from the type material of Agama agama turuensis Loveridge, 1932, a taxon which is so far considered to be a synonym of Agama lionotus elgonis Lönnberg, 1922. Our comparative morphological study demonstrates turuensis is most similar to Agama mwanzae Loveridge, 1923 and Agama kaimosae Loveridge, 1935, and distinct from both A. agama and A. lionotus Boulenger, 1896. Agama turuensis can likewise neither be assigned to A. mwanzae nor A. kaimosae but has to be rather considered as a distinct species. © 2008 Deutsche Gesellschaft für Herpetologie und Terrarienkunde e.V. (DGHT).
 
Dendrobates rufulus Gorzula, 1990 is a poorly known dendrobatid, described from two specimens from the Chimantá Massif in the Venezuelan Guayana. We redescribe it based on six additional specimens and allocate this species to the genus Anomaloglossus. We also provide data on natural history, such as ecology, habitat, and vocalization. © 2011 Deutsche Gesellschaft für Herpetologie und Terrarienkunde e.V. (DGHT), Rheinbach, Germany.
 
Non-metric multidimensional scaling (NMDS) ordination of Rhombophryne, Stumpffia, and Anilany after correcting the coding of clavicle states of Stumpffia and Rhombophryne. Otherwise, coding is identical to that used in Peloso et al. (2017). Original data and methods were presented in Scherz et al. (2016). 
The taxonomy of the Cophylinae Cope (Anura: Microhylidae) has been recently debated: PELOSO et al. (2016) reconstructed the subfamily as having two paraphyletic genera, and proposed to synonymize Stumpffia with Rhombophryne, and Platypelis with Cophyla. SCHERZ et al. (2016) showed that PELOSO et al. (2016) had misidentified several taxa, and contested their paraphyly findings based on more comprehensive taxon sampling and sequence coverage. PELOSO et al. (2017) continued advocating for the PELOSO et al. (2016) taxonomy, despite their newly calculated phylogeny largely agreeing with SCHERZ et al. (2016), and synonymized Anilany with Rhombophryne. We reiterate that the taxonomic changes proposed by PELOSO et al. (2016, 2017) are taxonomically non-parsimonious, and reject them as they would constitute a significant step in the wrong direction in the attempt to improve the inventory of the highly threatened herpetofauna of Madagascar. We therefore resurrect Anilany and Stumpffia from the synonymy of Rhombophryne, and Platypelis from Cophyla, and advocate the continued use of these five genera. Stability of these taxa will be critical for ongoing taxonomic revisions.
 
Abnormalities and the postnatal development of the carapace were investigated in 106 captive tortoises (Testudinidae, Testudo hermanni boettgeri, Testudo graeca, Testudo marginata, Testudo horsfieldii) using computer tomography (CT) in live animals and/or dissection of preserved specimens. The carapace was reconstructed two-dimensionally through combining sectional images. The postnatal ossification was demonstrated in 3D CT images combined with dis­section results. We found that abnormal numbers and arrangements of horny scutes and bony plates may occur independ­ently at different locations and different ontogenetic stages. Abnormalities of the horny scutes are present at hatching when the bony plates are not yet fully formed. The temporal course of carapace ossification appears to be species-specific. We demonstrate that computer tomography is a non-invasive and convenient method suitable for studying abnormalities and the postnatal ossification process of the bony carapace, as well as for diagnostics in live chelonians. However, the resolution limit of the method will be reached in the case of very young or metabolically challenged subjects. © 2015 Deutsche Gesellschaft für Herpetologie und Terrarienkunde e.V. (DGHT), Mannheim, Germany.
 
The genus Brachycephalus is endemic to the Brazilian Atlantic Forest with most of its known species having been described only recently. In contrast to growing body of knowledge regarding the taxonomy of this genus, there remains a lack of general knowledge about their biology. Herein, we aim to describe the acoustic repertoire, social interactions between males and temporal pattern of reproductive activity of Brachycephalus pitanga. Humidity was the main explanatory factor for variation in the number of calling males throughout the year. We describe five calls types for the species: advertisement, territorial, encounter, warm-up and antiphony. The contexts in which these call types are emitted and their temporal and spectral parameters are discussed. During territorial disputes male frogs exhibited increasing levels of aggressiveness, beginning with the emission of territorial calls, escalating through encounter calls and visual signals and culminating in physical contests. © 2017 Deutsche Gesellschaft für Herpetologie und Terrarienkunde e.V. (DGHT), Mannheim, Germany.
 
Herein, we present new data on the acoustic repertories of Scinax heyeri, S. humilis, S. longilineus, and S. trapi-cheiroi, all of which are species belonging to the S. catharinae species group. Based on the acoustic features of the calling signals of the group’s representatives, we recognize two acoustic patterns: long call (four species) and short call (13 species). We found two- and three-note types for species with long and short calls, respectively. This acoustic diversity of notes is recurrent in the literature about the acoustic repertoire of the S. catharinae group and may be directly related to a functional diversity. The species S. humilis has a unique call that does not match any of the acoustic patterns described, and the calls of S. agilis resemble calls of another species group, the Scinax ruber group. Additionally, we review the call nomenclature of the group and standardize it according to homology criteria: acoustic similarity, relative position, and connection by intermediate taxa between the call structures analysed. The interspecific acoustic differences and similarities found here suggest that bioacoustic features may help solve taxonomic issues and aid in the construction of phylogenetic hypotheses within the S. catharinae group. © 2017 Deutsche Gesellschaft für Herpetologie und Terrarienkunde e.V. (DGHT), Mannheim, Germany.
 
We used morphometric data from 151 Crocodylus acutus captured in the Coastal Zone of Belize to develop predictive models for deducing body size (total length [TL] and snout-vent length [SVL]) from measurements of single attributes (dorsal cranial length [DCL], cranial width [CW], snout length [SL] and width [SW], body mass [BM], and rear foot length [RFL]), quantify sexual size dimorphism, examine ontogenetic changes in cranial morphology, and estimate standing crop biomass of crocodiles on an offshore atoll. Strong positive allometric relationships were found between measurements of body length and other morphometric attributes, and provide a reliable means to estimate body length from tracks, skulls, and body parts. The maximum DCL:CW ratio of 2.4 was attained at a body size that coincided with a dietary shift from invertebrates to larger vertebrate prey. The SL:SW ratio of C. acutus partially overlapped that of C. moreletii, and consequently this attribute was not useful for distinguishing these two morphologically similar, sympatric species. The mean DCL:TL ratio was 0.15 and remained constant across body sizes ranging from hatchlings to large adults. Both overall and adult sex ratio (female:male) were not significantly different from parity. The mean SVL of males (111.3 ± 20.7 cm) was significantly greater than that of females (101.0 ± 6.2 cm). A compressed sexual size dimorphism index (SDI) of 2.10 was calculated for C. acutus in coastal Belize. Crocodylus acutus in coastal Belize appear to attain a smaller body size than reported for other populations. Standing crop biomass of C. acutus in the Turneffe Atoll was estimated to be 0.92 kg/ha. © 2011 Deutsche Gesellschaft für Herpetologie und Terrarienkunde e.V. (DGHT).
 
Age and size at metamorphosis were studied in two half-sibling Salamandra infraimmaculata larval cohorts born and raised in the laboratory under three different density regimes, and fed ad libitum until they metamorphosed. There was no significant effect of density on the number of larvae metamorphosing. In the two cohorts studied, a significant positive relationship was observed with age at metamorphosis that increased with density, and a significant negative relationship between mass and density. In both cohorts, density did not appear to have an effect on either minimal or maximal age, mass or length at metamorphosis, nor on the range between maximum and minimum. There was no significant difference between the two cohorts in either age or length at metamorphosis. The difference in mass increased with density. The evolutionary significance of density effects on size (mass, length) and age at metamorphosis under unlimited resource (food) conditions, is by spreading out emergence of post-metamorphs onto land and their subsequent dispersal, and by affecting their size as adults and thereby their eventual maturity. ©2012 Deutsche Gesellschaft für Herpetologie und Terrarienkunde e.V. (DGHT), Mannheim, Germany.
 
Subadult specimen of Adolfus africanus from Isecheno, Kakamega Forest, Kenya (ZFMK 77475). Subadultes Exemplar von Adolfus africanus aus Isecheno, Kakamega Forest, Kenia (ZFMK 77475).  
Known localities for/bekannte Verbreitung von Adolfus africanus: 1 – Kakamega Forest; 2 – Imatong Mountains; 3 – Entebbe; 4 – Mabira Forest; 5 – Mpanga Forest; 6 – Budongo Forest; 7 – Kibale Forest; 8 – Bwindi Impenetrable Forest; 9 – Nyungwe Forest; 10 – Niangara; 11 – Penge; 12 – Medje; 13 – Itebero; 14 – Avakubi; 15 – Kahuzi-Biega, Irangi-Forest; 16 – Kindu; 17 – Mitumba Mountains; 18 – Zambezi Source; 19 – Bitye; 20 – Dikume; 21 – Mt. Kupe; 22 – Minim, Adamaua; 23 – Edib, Bakossi Mountains; 24 – Idjwi Island.  
The lacertid lizard Adolfus africanus is recorded from Kakamega Forest, western Kenya, and Imatong Mountains, southern Sudan. Both localities represent first country records for the species. Kakamega Forest constitutes the easternmost locality for A. africanus which was also recorded from Cameroon. The known distribution of this rain forest species is reviewed and discussed in a biogeographical context.
 
The influence of population density on the growth and development of Leptodactylus melanonotus tadpoles was studied in field and laboratory experiments with ad libitum feeding. The differences in growth and development rates were far greater between the different density groups than between the groups of equal density but at different water quality. An increasing pollution of the water with nitrogen compounds corresponds to higher development rates, but the nitrogen content did not influence tadpole growth rate up to the moment when the first tadpole reached metamorphosis stage. Generally, in freshwater as well as in the flowing polluted water treatment, the ammonium content was low, while the nitrite and nitrate contents increased. In contrast, the two nitrogen acid radicals remained low in stagnant polluted water treatments with low oxygen content. When all tadpole groups were exposed to identical water in flowing-water experiments, the individually housed tadpoles reached growth rates that were more than three times higher than in all the tadpoles in groups. Therefore, such remarkable growth delay in groups must be caused by other factors than natural pollution of the water by tadpole faeces, and natural pollution may be ruled out as the dominant factor for explaining the growth and development patterns. Between siblings that were reared together in the beginning, but separated into groups of larger and smaller tadpoles later, the first ones doubled their total mass within 19 days of observation while the smaller ones increased their mass by a factor of six and produced about four times more nitrate and nitrite. Tadpoles that were kept individually in small mirror-walled containers responded to the visual stimuli of their own mirror images with more movement than those that were reared in non-mirroring, sand-coated containers. In confined conditions, visual stimuli of virtual tadpoles seen in mirrors tend to have similar effects as physically present tadpoles. The generally weak response to their mirror images in larger containers can be regarded as tolerance to conspecifics in tadpoles of schooling species like L. melanonotus. Nevertheless, their motoric activity increases much more by the physical presence of other tadpoles than by their virtual mirror images due to the real mutual disturbances. Individually housed tadpoles in sand-coated containers spent much more time resting on the bottom and grew and developed best. Disturbance reduces the time available for resting and digestion, and increases energy expenditure for movement. With the latter being directly linked to population density, this could be the dominant influence on tadpole development.
 
Males of Trachylepis occidentalis follow a testicular cycle with a period of sperm formation in spring and early summer followed by an abrupt regression in February. Recovery (recrudescence) promptly begins and continues into early spring. Females contained enlarged ovarian follicles (> 5 mm) in summer. Some females began to deposit yolk the previous summer from which young were born. Not all females reproduce annually. Mean clutch size for five females was 6.0 ± 1.2, range: 5-8. Reports of oviparity versus viviparity for T. occidentalis in the literature raise the question of possible geographic differences in the mode of female reproduction. © 2008 Deutsche Gesellschaft für Herpetologie und Terrarienkunde e.V. (DGHT).
 
The spatio-temporal distribution of five leaf-litter frog species, Phrynobatrachus ghanensis, P. phyllophilus, P. liberiensis, P. latifrons and P. tokba was studied in Banco National Park (BNP), Ivory Coast. Frogs were sampled in a standardized way along ten transects, representing all major habitat types of the park. With acoustic and visual methods we recorded a total of 394 P. ghanensis, 303 P. phyllophilus, 510 P. liberiensis, 1704 P. latifrons and 225 P. tokba. The five leaf-litter frogs were widespread along the BNP transects, but showed clear differences concerning their habitat preferences. Only P. latifrons preferred more open habitats. All other species dominated in forested parts of BNP. All Phrynobatrachus species could be recorded throughout all seasons. The number of encountered specimens per species seemed to differ between seasons, however not statistically significant. Some species were not recorded during all seasons at all sites, however. Presence or absence of a particular leaf-litter frog largely depended on habitat preferences, underlining the suitability of these species as indicators for habitat changes. © 2018 Deutsche Gesellschaft für Herpetologie und Terrarienkunde e.V. (DGHT), Mannheim, Germany.
 
New occurrences of Algyroides marchi (white dots) and systematically selected localities (dark grey dots) at the southeastern border of the distribution (headwaters of the rivers Taibilla and Zumeta, Albacete, Spain). Urban cores in black squares. Insert in the top left corner: the study area on the Iberian Peninsula. Map based on 30-m resolution; ASTER Global Digital Elevation ranging from 429 to 2,095 m a.s.l.
Species Distribution Model (SDM) of Algyroides marchi with a resolution of 1 km². Dark grey areas represent suitability values > 0.66, medium grey areas suitability values 0.33-0.66, and light grey areas suitability values < 0.33. (A) Representation of the total distribution range as predicted by the model. The occurrences used to develop the model are presented in black. (B) Extension of the model for the study area. White dots represent main villages, and black dots locations where the species was found.
Contribution of every variable when used alone to calculate the model (dark grey), and when removed from it and keeping the remaining variables to calculate the model with a resolution of 1 km² (light grey). The last bar represents the full model. Key to variables: (A) altitude in m above sea level; (B) curvature index of the surface; (C) cardinal direction; (D) slope; (E) mean annual precipitation; (F) insolation; (G) maximum temperature in July.
Peripheral populations are considered vulnerable but important for conservation. The Spanish algyroides is a small and endangered lacertid lizard, endemic to a small area in the southeastern mountains of the Iberian Peninsula. It is a stenotopic species that will typically inhabit shaded and humid microhabitats in enclosed rocky situations. These habitat preferences relate to a very low thermal inertia and high evaporative water loss consistent with its small body size. Its patchy distribution is delimited by dryer and warmer lowlands. Newly detected localities seemed to expand its known distribution range, providing a contact zone with core populations. We studied the habitat selection and conservation status of populations living in the border zone, produced a species distribution model of the new area, and compared border versus core structural and environmental variables. The results confirmed the predicted occurrence, showing no differences in border vs. core selected habitat characteristics. From the perspective of habitat selection alone, edge effects and local adaptation seem insignificant. This could be related to the ‘hard-type edge’ and ‘two-patch system’ of the small distribution of this species. Detected alterations of the habitat in this border area were mainly road and forest track construction, urbanisation, and livestock grazing. In the longer term, aridification of the area due to the global climate change could potentially gain importance, considering the dependency of the species on humid habitats, and the proximity of the edge of its distribution to the uninhabitable lowlands that determine its range limits. It is of great importance to identify the shape of the whole edge of this species’ range, effect in-depth evaluations, and monitor its conservation status. © 2017 Deutsche Gesellschaft für Herpetologie und Terrarienkunde e.V. (DGHT), Mannheim, Germany.
 
Ethanol extracts from Oophaga pumilio specimens collected in western Panama (14 populations) and southern Nicaragua (two populations) were analyzed for their alkaloid composition by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. High variability in the alkaloid profiles among the various populations as well as among individual specimens from Panama and Nicaragua were observed. Since alkaloids in dendrobatid frogs and other anurans are of dietary origin, the various alkaloid profiles found are not representative for certain populations, but are indicative for the availability of prey (mites, ants and other arthropods) containing these chemical compounds selected as food by the frogs in their habitats. © 2008 Deutsche Gesellschaft für Herpetologie und Terrarienkunde e.V. (DGHT).
 
We isolated and characterized 16 new di and tetranucleotide micro satellite markers for the critically endangered Asian box turtle genus Cuora, focusing on the “Cuora trifasciata” species complex. Te new markers were then used to analyze genetic variability and divergence amongst five described species within this complex, namely C. aurocapitata (n = 18), C. cyclornata (n = 31), C. pani (n = 6), C. trifasciata (n = 58), and C. zhoui (n = 7). Our results support the view that all five species represent valid taxa. Within two species (C. trifasciata and C. cyclornata), two distinct morphotypes were corroborated by microsatellite divergence. For three individuals, morphologically identified as being of hybrid origin, the hybrid status was confirmed by our genetic analysis. Our results confrm the controversial species (Cuora aurocapitata, C. cyclornata) and subspecies/morphotypes (C. cyclornata meieri, C. trifasciata cf. trifasciata) to be genetically distinct, which has critical implications for conservation strategies. © 2014 Deutsche Gesellschaf für Herpetologie und Terrarienkunde e.V. (DGHT), Mannheim, Germany.
 
The herpetofauna of various gravel pits with differing degrees of recultivation was studied quantitatively in Sankt Augustin (Northrhine-Westfalia). These biotopes provide habitats for threatened amphibians and reptiles such as Bufo calamita, Rana esculenta, Pelobates fuscus, Tri-turas vulgaris, Triturus cristatus, Lacerta agilis. Most individuals are restricted to sandy sites with little and low vegetation, whereas the recultivated regions with heavy soils and agriculture are avoided. The habitat determinants are discussed in relation to the special features of these secon-dary habitats. Finally it is suggested dropping the obligatory recultivation in at least some gravel pits in order to facilitate the survival of these habitat specialists within a primarily agricultural ecosystem.
 
Abstгасt Contributions to the taxonomic revision of the genus Lacerta (Reptilia: Lacertidae). Part 1: Zootoca, Omanosaura, Timor., and Teira as full genera. According to their phylogenetic relationships, the subgenera Zootoca, Omanosaura, and Timon are excluded from the genus Lacerta, and Teira is excluded from the genus Podarcis. On the basis of their morphological and karyological pecularities, they are defined as full genera. Zusammenfassung Aus der Gattung Lacerta s.l. werden die Untergattungen Zootoca, Omanosaura und Timon sowie aus der Gattung Podarcis die Untergattung Teira aufgrund ihrer phylogene-tischen Beziehungen ausgegliedert und anhand ihrer morphologischen und karyologischen Besonderheiten als eigenstandige Gattungen definiert.
 
Key information related to field studies.
Anuran amphibians are a key group when assessing diversity patterns in Amazonia. Of the many different habitat types in this region exploited by anurans, floating meadows have received little attention. These are semi-anchored, thick plant mats on the surface of water bodies. We characterize the diversity of anuran communities encountered in this habitat and explore the Amazon River species turnover. Thirty-five species were recorded at seven floating meadow sites. Species richness varied among them but similarity was commonly high between neighbouring floating meadows. Upper Amazon basin sites were more similar to each other than to central Amazonian sites. Central Amazonian sites had limited similarity to each other. High densities in certain anuran species suggest that floating meadows provide highly beneficial habitats, while the presence of other, less common species may result from ‘accidental’ drift. Yet anuran beta-diversity is relatively similar. We suggest that this is likely due to the fluid nature of floating meadows, which have the ability to disperse anurans. © 2017 Deutsche Gesellschaft für Herpetologie und Terrarienkunde e.V. (DGHT), Mannheim, Germany.
 
Meristic comparisons between members of the Micrurus hemprichii group: ventrals (A), subcaudals (B), and triads (C).
Photographs of live individuals in the Micrurus hemprichii group. Body dorsum (A) and venter (B) of Micrurus boicora sp. n. (IBSP 77.772, paratype) from the municipality of Cacoal, Rondônia, Brazil; body dorsum (C) of Micrurus hemprichii (unvouchered, photographed by M. A. Passos) from the municipality of Itaituba, Pará, Brazil; body dorsum (D) of Micrurus ortoni (the "rondonia­ nus" form, unvouchered) from the municipality of Cacoal, Rondônia, Brazil; and body dorsum (E) and head dorsolateral view (F) of Micrurus ortoni (UFACF 727) from Resex Riozinho da Liberdade, municipality of Tarauacá, Acre, Brazil.
Dorsal view of head of some Micrurus boicora sp. n. preserved paratypes, showing variation of the parietal band through ontogeny. (A) IBSP 89.473; (B) IBSP 89.475; (C) ABAM 1549.
A new species of elapid snake of the genus Micrurus is described herein, from the states of Rondônia and Mato Grosso, in the western Brazilian Amazon. The new species has a single anal plate, a unique characteristic shared with members of the M. hemprichii species group. It can be distinguished from the other members of this group by having a parietal reddish band in juveniles (absent in adults) and the absence of brownish or orange-yellow dorsal body bands. In addition, this species is distinguished from M. hemprichii by its lower number of body triads, and from M. ortoni by its lower numbers of ventrals and subcaudals scales. © 2018 Deutsche Gesellschaft für Herpetologie und Terrarienkunde e.V. (DGHT), Mannheim, Germany.
 
Top-cited authors
Miguel Vences
  • Technische Universität Braunschweig
Mark-Oliver Rödel
  • Museum für Naturkunde - Leibniz Institute for Research on Evolution and Biodiversity
Wolfgang Böhme
  • Research Museum Alexander Koenig
Stefan Lötters
  • Universität Trier
Frank Glaw
  • Zoologische Staatssammlung München