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Elseya dentata (GRAY, 1863)

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Higher TaxaChelidae, Chelodininae, Pleurodira, Testudines (turtles) 
Common NamesNorthern Australian Snapping Turtle 
SynonymChelymys dentata GRAY 1863: 98
Chelymys elseyi GRAY 1864:132 (nomen nudum)
Chelymys elseya GRAY 1870: 76 (nomen nudum)
Elseya dentata — GRAY 1867
Elseya intermedia GRAY 1872: 23
Elseya dentata — BOULENGER 1889
Elseya dentata — COGGER 2000: 194
Elseya flaviventralis GEORGES et al. 2000: 7 (nomen nudum)
Elseya dentata — GEORGES & THOMSON 2010
Elseya (Elseya) dentata — THOMSON et al. 2015
Elseya (Elseya) dentata — TTWG 2017: 194 
DistributionN Australia (from the Kimberley district of Western Australia eastward through the Northern Territory to the Roper River of eastern Northern Territory)

Type locality: Beagle’ s Valley, upper Victoria River, N. T. (15 ̊ 34' S, 130 ̊ 54' E)

intermedia: Type locality: upper part of Victoria River, NT, Australia.  
TypesLectotype: BMNH 1947.3.6.2 (designated by THOMSON et al. 2015); Syntypes: BMNH 1947.3.6.3 (probable holotype), BMNH 1947.3.6.2
Holotype: BMNH 1947.3.4.14 [intermedia] 
CommentType Species: Chelymys dentata GRAY 1863 is the type species of the genus Elseya GRAY 1867.

Fossil species: E. (Pelocomastes) nadibajagu Thomson and Mackness, 1999 (Pliocene) and Elseya (Pelocomastes) uberrima (de Vis, 1897) (reviewed by Thomson, 2000) (Pleistocene) are fossil species of the genus Elseya.

WELLS 2007 and a few other authors also consider E. jukesii WELLS 2002 and Elseya stirlingi Wells and Wellington, 1985 as valid. Fritz & Havas (2007:162) and Georges & Thomson (2010) do not accept the description of jukesi as acceptable as it was published privately.

Habitat: freshwater (rivers, swamps) 
EtymologyNamed after the dentate margin of the shell of younger animals.

The specific epithet of 'jukesi' honours Australian naturalist Brian Jukes, a past resident of the area where this species lives. [from wELLS 2007]. 
  • Artner, H. G. 1999. Nomenklatur aktuell: Gattung Elseya. Emys 6 (3): 30.
  • Bonin, F., Devaux, B. & Dupré, A. 2006. Turtles of the World. English translation by P.C.H. Pritchard. Johns Hopkins University Press, 416 pp.
  • Bour, R. 2008. Global diversity of turtles (Chelonii; Reptilia) in freshwater. Hydrobiologia 595:593–598
  • Cogger, H. G. 2014. Reptiles and Amphibians of Australia, 7th ed. CSIRO Publishing, xxx + 1033 pp.
  • Cogger, H.G. 2000. Reptiles and Amphibians of Australia, 6th ed. Ralph Curtis Publishing, Sanibel Island, 808 pp.
  • Ernst,C.H. and Barbour,R.W. 1989. Turtles of the World. Smithsonian Institution Press, Washington D.C. - London
  • Georges, A. 1996. Electrophoretic delineation of species boundaries within the short-necked freshwater turtles of Australia (Testudines: Chelidae). Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society (1996), 118: 241–260.
  • Georges, A. & Thomson, S. 2010. Diversity of Australasian freshwater turtles, with an annotated synonymy and keys to species. Zootaxa 2496: 1–37 - get paper here
  • Gray, J. E. 1863. Additional observations of Chelymys dentata. Ann. Mag. nat. Hist. (3) 12: 246 - get paper here
  • Gray,J.E. 1863. On the species of Chelymys from Australia, with the description of a new species. Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (3) 12: 98-99 - get paper here
  • Gray,J.E. 1864. On the genera of Chelydidae and the characters furnished by the study of their skulls. Proc. Zool. Soc. London 1864: 128-135 - get paper here
  • Gray,J.E. 1872. Appendix to the Catalogue of Shield Reptiles in the Collection of the British Museum. Part I. Testudinata (Tortoises). British Museum, London, 28 pp.
  • Iverson, John B., Scott A. Thomson and Arthur Georges 2001. Validity of taxonomic changes for turtles proposed by Wells and Wellington. Journal of Herpetology 35 (3): 361-368 - get paper here
  • Kaiser, H.; Crother, B.I.; Kelly, C.M.R.; Luiselli, L.; O’Shea, M.; Ota, H.; Passos, P.; Schleip, W.D. & Wüster, W. 2013. Best Practices: In the 21st Century, Taxonomic Decisions in Herpetology are Acceptable Only When Supported by a Body of Evidence and Published via Peer-Review. Herpetological Review 44 (1): 8-23
  • Lieb, Carl S.; Jack W. Sites, Jr. & James W. Archie 1999. The use of isozyme characters in systematic studies of turtles: preliminary data for Australian Chelids. Biochemical Systematics and Ecology 27: 157-183
  • Seddon, J. M.;Georges, A.;Baverstock, P. R.;McCord, W. 1997. Phylogenetic relationships of chelid turtles (Pleurodira: Chelidae) based on mitochondrial 12S rRNA gene sequence variation. Mol Phylogenet Evol 7 (1): 55-61 - get paper here
  • Thomson S.A. and Mackness B.S. 1999. Fossil turtles from the early pliocene bluff downs local fauna, with a description of a new species of Elseya. Transactions of the Royal Society of South Australia 123(3):101-105 - get paper here
  • Thomson, S.; Amepou, Y., Anamiato, J. & Georges, A. 2015. A new species and subgenus of Elseya (Testudines: Pleurodira: Chelidae) from New Guinea Zootaxa 4006 (1): 059–082 - get paper here
  • Thomson, Scott, Arthur Georges and Colin J. Limpus 2006. A new species of freshwater turtle in the genus Elseya (Testudines: Chelidae) from Central Coastal Queensland, Australia. Chelonian Conserv. Biol. 5 (1): 74-86.
  • TTWG; Anders G.J. Rhodin, John B. iverson, Roger Bour, Uwe Fritz, Arthur GeoRges, H. BRadley Shaffer, and Peter Paul van Dijk 2017. Turtles of the World: Annotated Checklist and Atlas of Taxonomy, Synonymy, Distribution, and Conservation Status (8th Ed.). In: Rhodin, A.G.J., Iverson, J.B., van Dijk, P.P., Saumure, R.A., Buhlmann, K.A., Pritchard, P.C.H., and Mittermeier, R.A. (Ed Chelonian Research Monographs 7:1–292. doi: 10.3854/crm.7.checklist.atlas.v8.2017 - get paper here
  • Wells, R. W. 2007. Some taxonomic and nomenclatural considerations on the class Reptilia in Australia. A new genus of the family Chelidae from eastern Australia. Australian Biodiversity Record (3): 1–13 - get paper here
  • Wells, R. W. 2007. Some Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Considerations on the Class Reptilia in Australia. Some Comments on the Elseya dentata (Gray, 1863) complex with Redescriptions of the Johnstone River Snapping Turtle, Elseya stirlingi Wells and Wellington, 1985 and t Australian Biodiversity Record (2): 1-12 - get paper here
  • Wells, R. W. and Wellington, C. R. 1985. A classification of the Amphibia and Reptilia of Australia. Australian Journal of Herpetology, Supplementary Series, (1):1-61 [sometimes cited as 1983] - get paper here
  • Wells, R.W. 2002. Taxonomic notes on some Australian freshwater turtles of the genera Chelodina and Elseya (Reptilia: Chelidae). Australian Biodiversity Record (2): 1–30. - get paper here
  • Wilson, D.S. et al. 2003. Estimating age of turtles from growth rings: a critical evaluation of the technique. Herpetologica 59 (2): 178-194 - get paper here
  • Wilson, S. & Swan, G. 2010. A complete guide to reptiles of Australia, 3rd ed. Chatswood: New Holland, 558 pp.
  • Winkler, J.D. 2006. Testing phylogenetic implications of eggshell characters in side-necked turtles (Testudines: Pleurodira). Zoology 109: 127-136
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