Michael Barej

Michael Barej
Museum für Naturkunde - Leibniz Institute for Research on Evolution and Biodiversity | MFN · Herpetology

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49
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Publications

Publications (49)
Article
Full-text available
Higher-level systematics in amphibians is relatively stable. However, recent phylogenetic studies of African torrent-frogs have uncovered high divergence in these phenotypically and ecologically similar frogs, in particular between West African torrent-frogs versus Central (Petropedetes) and East African (Arthroleptides and Ericabatrachus) lineages...
Article
Torrent frogs of the genus Petropedetes Reichenow, 1874 as currently understood have a disjunct distribution with species endemic to West, Central or East Africa. We herein present a phylogenetic analysis including all but one of the currently described 12 species of the genus. Maximum Likelihood and Bayesian analyses of combined nuclear (rag1, SIA...
Article
Full-text available
Correct species identification is crucial in different fields of biology, and in conservation. The endemic West African frog family Odontobatrachidae currently contains a single described species, Odontobatrachus natator. From western Guinea to western Ivory Coast it inhabits forests around waterfalls or cascades. Based on more than 130 specimens f...
Article
Full-text available
Relationships among chameleons of the genus Trioceros in Cameroon are reviewed on a molecular basis using mitochondrial genes and by morphology. Trioceros oweni is placed basal to two distinct clades (lowland-submontane species vs. submontane-montane species) and its position is discussed due to high genetic differences to the remaining taxa. Withi...
Article
We describe a new species of the genus Conraua from the Fouta Djallon Highlands in Guinea. The species is recognised as distinct from nominotypical C. alleni, based on morphological evidence and is supported by a recent species delimitation analysis, based on DNA sequence data. The new species is distinguished from its congeners by the unique combi...
Article
Full-text available
We describe a new species of the genus Conraua from the Fouta Djallon Highlands in Guinea. The species is recognised as distinct from nominotypical C. alleni , based on morphological evidence and is supported by a recent species delimitation analysis, based on DNA sequence data. The new species is distinguished from its congeners by the unique comb...
Article
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Forty-nine years after the last description of a slippery frog, we describe a seventh species of the genus Conraua. The new Conraua is endemic to the Atewa Range Forest Reserve, central Ghana, and is described based on genetic, bioacoustics, and morphological evidence. Recent molecular phylogenetic and species delimitation analyses support this pop...
Article
Although Conraua goliath is well known as the largest living frog species, the diversity and evolution of the genus Conraua across sub-Saharan Africa remain poorly understood. We present multilocus phylogenetic analyses of the six currently recognized species that provide insights into divergence times, biogeography, body size evolution and undescr...
Article
Full-text available
Zoologists have widely acknowledged the utility of classification systems for characterising variation in anuran egg and clutch types, tadpole morphotypes, embryonic and tadpole development, amplexus types and reproductive modes. These classification systems have facilitated unambiguous communication between researchers, often working in completely...
Article
Full-text available
Atractaspidines are poorly studied, fossorial snakes that are found throughout Africa and western Asia, including the Middle East. We employed concatenated gene-tree analyses and divergence dating approaches to investigate evolutionary relationships and biogeographic patterns of atractaspidines with a multi-locus data set consisting of three mitoch...
Data
Settings for high-resolution CT scans and DOI numbers for supporting files on the Morphosource website, in Microsoft Excel format. (XLSX)
Article
Full-text available
Herein, we describe the tadpoles of six Astylosternus species, A. fallax, A. cf. fallax, A. laurenti, A. montanus, A. perreti, A. ranoides, and Scotobleps gabonicus, and redescribe the tadpoles of A. batesi, A. diadematus, A. laticephalus, A. occidentalis, A. rheophilus, and Nyctibates corrugatus. All Astylosternus tadpoles are adapted to torrent c...
Article
Frogs in the genus Amnirana (family Ranidae) are widely distributed across sub-Saharan Africa and present a model system for exploring the relationship between diversification and geography across the continent. Using multiple loci from the mitochondrial (16S) and nuclear genomes (DISP2, FICD, KIAA2013, REV3L), we generated a strongly supported spe...
Article
Full-text available
We describe a new species of Phrynobatrachus from swamp forests in the southern border region of Ivory Coast and Ghana. The new species differs from all other known West African Phrynobatrachus by the combination of adult snout-vent-length being between 20 and 30 mm; absence of a spiny tubercle on the eyelid; presence of a dark face mask; a black t...
Article
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A new species of flat gecko, Afroedura gorongosa sp. nov., is described from Gorongosa National Park, Sofala Province, central Mozambique. The new species is morphologically similar to A. transvaalica and A. loveridgei, from both of which it is genetically distinct (15–17% divergence; 400 bp of 16S rRNA). Morphologically it can be distinguished fro...
Article
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The accumulation of biodiversity in tropical forests can occur through multiple allopatric and parapatric models of diversification, including forest refugia, riverine barriers, and ecological gradients. Considerable debate surrounds the major diversification process, particularly in the West African Lower Guinea forests, which contain a complex ge...
Article
Organismal traits interact with environmental variation to mediate how species respond to shared landscapes. Thus, differences in traits related to dispersal ability or physiological tolerance may result in phylogeographic discordance among co-distributed taxa, even when they are responding to common barriers. We quantified climatic suitability and...
Article
We report the rediscovery of the skink Trachylepis keroanensis (Chabanaud, 1921) 90 years after its description. For the first time pictures of live specimens are shown and the known, now extended, distribution is presented. The clear morphological differences (body shape, colouration and most notably ratio tail length to body length) towards Trach...
Article
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The Mascarene ridged frog, Ptychadena mascareniensis, is a species complex that includes numerous lineages occurring mostly in humid savannas and open forests of mainland Africa, Madagascar, the Seychelles, and the Mascarene Islands. Sampling across this broad distribution presents an opportunity to examine the genetic differentiation within this c...
Article
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The niche-filling process predicted by the 'ecological opportunity' (EO) model is an often-invoked mechanism for generating exceptional diversity in island colonizers. Whether the same process governs lineage accumulation and trait disparity during continental colonization events is less clear. Here we test this prediction by investigating the rate...
Article
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We describe two new species of puddle frogs, genus Phrynobatrachus, from the south-western Republic of the Congo. One of them, P. horsti sp. nov., occurs also in neighbouring Gabon and is morphologically most similar to the Cameroonian P. ruthbeateae. It differs from the latter species by smaller males with longer thighs and shanks. The new species...
Article
Full-text available
West African torrent-frogs of the genus Odontobatrachus currently belong to a single species: Odontobatrachus natator (Boulenger, 1905). Recently, molecular results and biogeographic separation led to the recognition of five Operational Taxonomic Units (OTUs) thus identifying a species-complex. Based on these insights, morphological analyses on mor...
Article
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We describe the tadpoles of four Cameroonian Phrynobatrachus species, P. auritus, P. chukuchuku, P. jimzimkusi, and P. manengoubensis. While P. auritus is a widespread frog of Central African rainforests, the other three species are endemic to parts of the Cameroonian Volcanic Line. All tadpoles have the short and rotund body shape that is typical...
Article
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Perret's toad, Amietophrynus perreti, has not been seen since 1970 and thus believed to be lost. We searched for the species 50 years after its original description and successfully recorded its continued presence at the type locality, where it seems to maintain a viable population. We failed however, to record the species at suitable sites elsewhe...
Article
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We herein examine the taxonomic status of two West African forest-dwelling Leptopelis species. The small L. spiritusnoctis, described from the Upper Guinean forests of West Africa, was recently synonymized with L. aubryi, described from Gabon. The large L. macrotis, known from Ghana to Sierra Leone, was downgraded to a subspecies of L. millsoni, ra...
Article
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The monotypic genus Trichobatrachus, with its sole representative, the hairy frog, Trichobatrachus robustus Boulenger, 1900, could be considered one of the most well-known frogs of Africa. Despite its broad recognition and the fact that it is considered wide-spread and locally common (Amiet & Burger 2004), surprisingly little is known about the act...
Article
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We describe and compare the tadpoles of nine Leptodactylodon species from Cameroon. The tadpoles of Leptodactylodon bicolor, L. mertensi, L. ovatus, L. perreti and L. ventrimarmoratus are herein reinvestigated, partly based on larger series than previously available. In addition we present first descriptions for the tadpoles of L. boulengeri, L. er...
Article
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Males of all reed frog species (Anura: Hyperoliidae) have a prominent, often colourful, gular patch on their vocal sac, which is particularly conspicuous once the vocal sac is inflated. Although the presence, shape, and form of the gular patch are well-known diagnostic characters for these frogs, its function remains unknown. By integrating biochem...
Data
(a) First part of list of absence and presence data for chemical compounds in tissue samples of 17 specimens belonging to four reed frog species (Hyperolius). (b) Second part of list of absence and presence data for chemical compounds in tissue samples of 17 specimens belonging to four reed frog species (Hyperolius).
Article
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Amphibian chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) has been hypothesised to be an indigenous parasite of African amphibians. In Cameroon, however, previous surveys in one region (in the northwest) failed to detect this pathogen, despite the earliest African Bd having been recorded from a frog in eastern Cameroon, plus one recent record in...
Article
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Tadpoles of Cardioglossa were collected in streams of the Mount Manengouba region, southwestern Cameroon during the rainy seasons of 2010 and 2011. We examined our samples together with material collected by J. - L. Perret from the same region. Within Cardioglossa tadpoles, we distinguished three different morphotypes. We assigned these morphotypes...
Article
We describe a new small Phrynobatrachus species from western Nigeria, the eastern-most part of the Upper Guinea biodiversity hotspot. The new species exhibits a combination of unique morphological characters and a belly without pattern. Morphologically it is characterised by small size, compact roundish body with a round and short snout, large eyes...
Article
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Astylosternus laticephalus sp. nov. Rödel, Hillers, Leaché, Kouamé, Ofori-Boateng, Diaz & Sandberger is described from eastern Ivory Coast and western and central Ghana, and compared to Astylosternus occidentalis Parker, 1931 from the western part of the Upper Guinea forest zone (western Ivory Coast, Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone). Based on a co...
Article
Full-text available
Detailed tadpole descriptions for toads of the genus Werneria Poche, 1903 have been only published for W. preussi (Matschie, 1893) (Mertens 1938) and W. tandyi (Amiet, 1972) (Rödel et al. 2004), the latter description assigned to this species with reser-vation. A few characters of W. bambutensis (Amiet, 1972) tadpoles were mentioned by Amiet (1972)...
Article
The Central African Hairy Frog Trichobatrachus robustus Boulenger, 1900 possesses two morphological peculiarities, its unique hair-like dermal appendages, and claw-like terminal phalanges also known from related genera. We review formerly published data on claw-like terminal phalanges in arthroleptid frogs and discuss their systematic significance,...
Article
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We review and summarize the present knowledge on Central African Petropedetes, discuss their taxonomy and describe three new species. We synonymise one name: P. newtonii is a junior synonym of P. johnstoni. Frogs from the African mainland, namely Cameroon and eastern Nigeria, assigned to ''P. newtonii'' in more recent literature, were misidentified...
Article
We review and summarize the present knowledge on Central African Petropedetes, discuss their taxonomy and describe three new species. We synonymise one name: P. newtonii is a junior synonym of P. johnstoni. Frogs from the African mainland, namely Cameroon and eastern Nigeria, assigned to “P. newtonii” in more recent literature, were misidentified....
Article
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Amietophrynus superciliaris is known to occur in rain forests from West Africa to eastern Democratic Republic of Congo and Gabon. We herein present morphological and molecular data indicating the existence of three distinct taxa. The name A. superciliaris superciliaris is restricted to toads from the western Lower Guinean Forest (eastern Nigeria, C...
Article
Full-text available
BAREJ M. F., INEICH I., GVOZDIK V., LHERMITTE-VALLARINO N., GONWOUO L. N., LEBRETON M., BOTT U. & SCHMITZ A., 2010 - Insights into the chameleons of the genus Trioceros (Squamata: Chamaeleonidae) in Cameroon, with the resurrection of Chamaeleon serratus Mertens, 1922. Bonn zoological Bulletin, 57(2): 211-229.
Article
We describe here the first known documented case of human envenomation by the burrowing asp Atractaspis congica. The patient received a single fang puncture in the index finger and suffered local pain, discolouration, blistering and swelling of the finger, hand and forearm. Analgesics were given, but no antivenom. Recovery was complete within 48 h,...
Article
Full-text available
We report on a case of invertebrate predation on a vertebrate in African tropics. A nocturnal ctenid spider was found to have preyed upon a tree frog (Leptopelis brevirostris) in southern Cameroon.