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Actinemys marmorata (BAIRD & GIRARD, 1852)

IUCN Red List - Actinemys marmorata - Vulnerable, VU

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Higher TaxaEmydidae, Emydinae, Testudines (turtles) 
SubspeciesActinemys marmorata marmorata (BAIRD & GIRARD 1852)
Actinemys marmorata pallida (SEELIGER 1945) 
Common NamesWestern Pond Turtle, Pacific Pond Turtle
marmorata: Northwestern Pond Turtle, Northern Pacific Pond Turtle
pallida: Southwestern Pond Turtle, Southern Pacific Pond Turtle 
SynonymEmys marmorata BAIRD & GIRARD 1852: 177
Clemmys marmorata — STRAUCH 1862
Actineyms nigra — AGASSIZ 1857 (fide GRAY 1872: 54)
Geoclemmys nigra — GRAY 1870 (fide GRAY 1872: 54)
Emys nigra — GRAY 1872: 54
Clemmys hesperia HAY 1903:238
Clemmys marmorata — FITCH 1936
Clemmys marmorata — STEBBINS 1985: 99
Clemmys marmorata — LINER 1994:31
Clemmys marmorata — CROTHER 2000
Actinemys marmorata — HOLMAN & FRITZ 2001
Emys marmorata — FELDMAN & PARHAM 2002
Actinemys marmorata — OBST 2003: 16
Clemmys marmorata — BETTELHEIM 2005
Actinemys marmorata — MCCORD & JOSEPH-OUNI 2006
Actinemys marmorata — REYNOLDS et al. 2007
Emys marmorata — SPINKS & SHAFFER 2009
Emys marmorata — VAN DIJK et al. 2011
Actinemys marmorata — CROTHER et al. 2012

Actinemys marmorata marmorata (BAIRD & GIRARD 1852)
Emys nigra HALLOWELL 1854: 91 (non Emys nigra BLYTH 1855)
Clemmys wosnessenskyi STRAUCH 1862
Clemmys marmorata marmorata — SEELIGER 1945
Clemmys marmorata marmorata — STEBBINS 1985: 99
Clemmys marmorata marmorata — CROTHER 2000
Actinemys marmorata marmorata — MCCORD & JOSEPH-OUNI 2006
Emys marmorata — SPINKS et al. 2014

Actinemys marmorata pallida (SEELIGER 1945)
Clemmys marmorata pallida SEELINGER 1945
Clemmys marmorata pallida — STEBBINS 1985: 99
Clemmys marmorata pallida — LINER 1994
Clemmys marmorata pallida — CROTHER 2000
Actinemys marmorata pallida — MCCORD & JOSEPH-OUNI 2006
Emys pallida — SPINKS et al. 2014 
DistributionUSA (west of the Cascade-Sierra crest, Washington, Oregon, California, W Nevada),
Mexico (NW Baja California)

marmorata: N California, W Oregon, exterme S Washington, isolated colonies exist in the Truckee and Carson rivers in Nevada; (populations north of the San Francisco Bay area plus populations from the Great Central Val-ley north including the apparently introduced Nevada population, fide Spinbks et al. 2014); Type locality: “Puget Sound” [state of Washington].

pallida: S California, N Baja California; central coast range south of the San Francisco Bay area to the species’ southern range boundary, including the Mojave River (spinks et al. 2014). Type locality: “Lower Coyote Creek, near Alamitos, Orange County, California” Map legend:
TDWG region - Region according to the TDWG standard, not a precise distribution map.

NOTE: TDWG regions are generated automatically from the text in the distribution field and not in every cases it works well. We are working on it.
TypesSyntypes: USNM 88 (alcoholic juvenile, CL 53 mm), cataloged 1856; USNM 7594 (alcoholic juvenile, CL 33 mm), cataloged 1872; USNM 7595 (alcoholic juvenile, CL 56 mm), cataloged 1872; USNM 7596 (alcoholic juvenile, CL 31 mm), cataloged 1872; and USNM 131830 (formerly USNM 7593, see “Remarks”) (alcoholic juvenile, CL 148 mm), originally cataloged 1872. All from Puget Sound, Washington, collector unknown, during the U.S. Exploring Expedition, May–Jun 1841.
Holotype: MVZ 6716, adult female [pallida] 
CommentRelationships: Clemmys marmorata (BAIRD & GIRARD, 1852) is closley related to Emys orbicularis and Emydoidea blandingii (BICKHAM et al., 1996; LENK et al., 1999; FELDMAN & PARHAM, 2002). Based on this close relationship, BICKHAM et al. (1996) suggested that all three species should be placed in the genus Emys. An expanded Emys was supported by FELDMAN & PARHAM (2002). HOLMAN & FRITZ (2001) suggested that the three species should be in monotypic genera based on the fact that Clemmys marmorata has a an akinetic, rigid plastron. FRITZ (2001: 338 ff) also reported a hybrid between Clemmys insculpta and Clemmys marmorata. Spinks et al. (2010) indicated that southern and northern lineages, with a zone of contact somewhere in the central Coast Range of California, exist and may well be diagnosable. However, these geographic lineages do not correspond to genetic lineages as defined by two nuclear and four mitochondrial sequences. Hence, Rhodin et al. (2010) do not recognize the two subspecies. Spinks et al. (2014) used more DNA data to distinguish between a northern and southern clade which they recommended to call E. marmorata and E. pallida.

Diagnosis (marmorata): Clemmys marmorata marmorata can be distinguished from the southern subspecies (see beyond) by the presence of a pair of triangular inguinal plates, which usually (89 per cent) are relatively large. The sides of the neck usually are brownish or grayish with darker spots contrasting with the light color of the under side (SEELIGER 1945: 158).

Diagnosis (pallida): Inguinal plates absent (60 percent) or small (34 percent). The sides and ventral surface of the neck usually have a light uniform background color with dark spots.

Synonymy: Note that Emys nigra HALLOWELL may be synonymous to Emys olivacea GRAY (= Trachemys stejnegeri).

Distribution: Does not occur in Canada according to MCCORD & JOSEPH-OUNI 2006 and Barela & Olson 2014. See Spinks et al. (2014: Fig. 2) for a map of E. marmorata and E. pallida, based on genetic data.

Hybridization: Emys marmorata and Emys pallida show very limited intergradation in a few populations in the northern central coast range and adjacent Sierra Nevada foothills, although at all intergrade sites we also found pure individuals of the locally prevalent species

Type species: Emys marmorata BAIRD & GIRARD 1852: 177 is the type species of the genus Actinemys AGASSIZ 1857: 444. 
EtymologyThe name marmorata is from the Latin marmor, marble; refers to the marbled (mottled) pattern of the carapace. 
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