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A taxonomic assessment of the Australian Dusky Antechinus Complex: a new species, the Tasman Peninsula Dusky Antechinus (Antechinus vandycki sp. nov.) and an elevation to species of the Mainland Dusky Antechinus (Antechinus swainsonii mimetes (Thomas))

Title

A taxonomic assessment of the Australian Dusky Antechinus Complex: a new species, the Tasman Peninsula Dusky Antechinus (Antechinus vandycki sp. nov.) and an elevation to species of the Mainland Dusky Antechinus (Antechinus swainsonii mimetes (Thomas) (2106 KB) pdf document icon)

Author/s

Baker, A.M., Mutton, T.Y., Mason, E.D. & Gray, E.L.

Citation

Baker, A.M., Mutton, T.Y., Mason, E.D. & Gray, E.L. 2015. A taxonomic assessment of the Australian Dusky Antechinus Complex: a new species, the Tasman Peninsula Dusky Antechinus (Antechinus vandycki sp. nov.) and an elevation to species of the Mainland Dusky Antechinus (Antechinus swainsonii mimetes (Thomas)). Memoirs of the Queensland Museum – Nature 59: 75-126. https://doi.org/10.17082/j.2204-1478.59.2015.2014-10

Accepted 25 November 2014
Published online 26 May 2015
Peer reviewed:

Yes

DOI

https://doi.org/10.17082/j.2204-1478.59.2015.2014-10

Keywords Marsupialia, Dasyuridae, dasyurid, carnivorous marsupial, Antechinus swainsonii, mimetes, insulanus, vandycki, taxonomy, Tasmania, Tasman Peninsula

Abstract

In 2014, the northern outlying population of carnivorous marsupial Dusky Antechinus (Antechinus swainsonii) was nominated a new species, A. arktos. Here, we describe a further new species in the dasyurid A. swainsonii complex, which now contains five taxa. We recognise two distinct species from Tasmania, formerly represented by A. swainsonii swainsonii (Waterhouse); one species (and 2 subspecies) from mainland south-eastern Australia, formerly known as A. swainsonii mimetes (Thomas) and A. swainsonii insulanus Davison; and one species from the Tweed Caldera in mid-eastern Australia, formerly known as A. s. mimetes but recently described as A. arktos Baker, Mutton, Hines and Van Dyck. Primacy of discovery dictates the Tasmanian Dusky Antechinus A. swainsonii (Waterhouse) is nominate; the Mainland Dusky Antechinus taxa, one raised from subspecies within A. swainsonii mimetes (Thomas) is elevated to species (now A. mimetes mimetes) and the other, A. swainsonii insulanus Davison is transferred as
a subspecies of A. mimetes (now A. mimetes insulanus); a species from Tasmania, the Tasman Peninsula Dusky Antechinus, is named A. vandycki sp. nov. These taxa are strongly differentiated: geographically (in allopatry), morphologically (in coat colour and craniodental features) and genetically (in mtDNA, 7.5-12.5% between species pairs).