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Mesoclemmys nasuta (SCHWEIGGER, 1812)

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Higher TaxaChelidae, Chelinae, Pleurodira, Testudines (turtles)
Common NamesE: Guianan Toadhead Turtle, Common Toadheaded Turtle
Portuguese: Cágado-da-Cabeça-de-Sapo, Lalá 
SynonymEmys nasuta SCHWEIGGER 1812
Emys barbatula GRAVENHORST 1829
Emys nasua [sic] — GRAY 1831
Platemys Schweiggerii DUMÉRIL & BIBRON 1835: 435 (nomen subst. pro E. nasuta)
Rhinemys nasuta — BOULENGER 1889
Batrachemys nasuta — STEJNEGER 1909
Rhinemys tuberculata LUEDERWALDT 1926 (?)
Phrynops nasuta — PRITCHARD 1967
Phrynops (Batrachemys) nasuta — GAFFNEY 1977
Phrynops (Batrachemys) nasutus — ALDERTON 1988
Batrachemys nasuta — MCCORD et al. 2001
Batrachemys nasuta — MCCORD & JOSEPH-OUNI 2002
Batrachemys nasuta — SOUZA 2004
Mesoclemmys nasuta — BOUR & ZAHER 2005
Batrachemys (Phrynops) nasutus — BONIN et al 2006
Mesoclemmys nasuta — VAN DIJK et al. 2011
Phrynops (Batrachemys nasuta — PHILIPPEN 2012
Mesoclemmys nasuta — TTWG 2021 
DistributionSE Colombia, E Peru, N Bolivia, Brazil (Amazon basin), French Guiana, Suriname

Type locality: “Patria ignota (= locality unknown); Designated as “Amérique méridionale” (= South America) by Duméril & Bibron 1835: 437. Restricted to near “Rivière Ouaqui et Inini, bassin du Maroni en amont de Maripasoula, Guyane francaise” by Bour & Pauler 1987: 6.  
TypesHolotype: MNHN-RA 4140 
DiagnosisDiagnosis and Description (genus Batrachemys). The genus Batrachemys is a member of the toadhead group of chelid turtles with the following characteristics: The snout is pointed. The carapace is relatively broad, as is the head, whose width between the tympana is 20% or more of the median straight length of the carapace. The neck is relatively thin and short. Zero to five reduced neural bones (usually 3 - 4) may be present and are sometimes discontiguous. The first neural is absent, allowing the first pair of costal bones to contact medially (as with Mesoclemmys, but not Phrynops, which has a first neural). The interanal seam of the plastron is usually longer than the interhumeral seam, but sometimes equal or shorter. The 11 th marginals are narrower than or equal to the width of the supracaudals. A welldeveloped scale is present at the distal end of the antero-medial row of tibial scales. The paired barbels are small (McCord et al. 2001). 
CommentSubspecies: Phrynops nasutus wermuthi has been given species status (Phrynops raniceps, Phrynops wermuthi) by Iverson 1992 and others.

Type Species: Emys nasuta SCHWEIGGER 1812 is the type species of the genus Batrachemys STEJNEGER 1909. For a diagnosis of the genus see MCCORD et al. 2001.

Distribution: Not in Venezuela fide Rivas et al. 2015. Not confirmed for Guyana (Cole et al. 2013: 534).

Habitat: freshwater (rivers, swamps) 
  • Alderton, D. 1988. Turtles and tortoises of the world. Facts on File, New York.
  • 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. 2007. The holotype of Emys nasuta Schweigger, 1812. Emys 14 (4): 28-32
  • Bour, R. 2008. Global diversity of turtles (Chelonii; Reptilia) in freshwater. Hydrobiologia 595:593–598 - get paper here
  • Bour, R. & Pauler, I. 1987. Identité de Phrynops vanderhaegei Bour 1973 et des espèces affines. Mésogée 47: 3-23
  • Bour, R. & Zaher, H. 2005. A NEW SPECIES OF MESOCLEMMYS, FROM THE OPEN FORMATIONS OF NORTHEASTERN BRAZIL (CHELONII, CHELIDAE). Pap. Avul. Zool., Sao Paulo 45 (24): 295-311 - get paper here
  • Duméril, A.M.C., and G. Bibron. 1835. Erpétologie Générale ou Histoire Naturelle Complète des Reptiles, Vol. 2. Librairie Encyclopédique de Roret, Paris, iv + 680 p. - get paper here
  • Ernst,C.H. and Barbour,R.W. 1989. Turtles of the World. Smithsonian Institution Press, Washington D.C. - London
  • Ettmar, Stephan 2019. Toad-headed turtles of the genus Mesoclemmys - Distribution, Natural History, Husbandry. Edition Chimaira, Frankfurt, 204 pp.
  • Gaffney, Eugene S. 1977. The side-necked turtle family Chelidae: a theory of relationships using shared derived characters. American Museum Novitates (2620): 1-28 - get paper here
  • Gonzalez R. C. et al. 2020. Lista dos Nomes Populares dos Répteis no Brasil – Primeira Versão. Herpetologia Brasileira 9 (2): 121 – 214 - get paper here
  • Lescure, J., and J. Fretey 1975. Etude Taxinomique de Phrynops (Batrachemys) nasutus (Schweigger) (Testudinata, Chelidae). Bull. Mus. Natn. Hist. Nat., Paris 337: 1317-1328
  • McCord, W. P., Joseph-Ouni, M.i & W. W. Lamar 2001. A taxonomic reevaluation of Phrynops (Testudines: Chelidae) with the description of two new genera and a new species of Batrachemys. Revista de Biologia Tropical 49 (2): 715-764 - get paper here
  • McCord, W.P. & Joseph-Ouni, M. 2002. Chelonian illustrations #1: South American Toadhead Turtles. Reptilia (GB) (21): 34-38 - get paper here
  • Mertens, R. 1967. Bemerkenswerte Süßwasserschildkröten aus Brasilien. Senckenbergiana Biologica 48 (1): 71-82
  • Philippen, H. - D. 2012. Phrynops. Die Gattung der Krötenkopfschildkröten. Reptilia (Münster) 17 (98): 42-48 - get paper here
  • Rivas, Gilson A.; Tito R. Barros, Flavio de Barros Molina, Pedro Trebbau, and Peter C.H. Pritchard 2015. The Presence of Mesoclemmys raniceps and Mesoclemmys nasuta in Venezuela and Comments on the Type Locality of Hydraspis maculata (Chelidae). Chelonian Conservation and Biology 14 (1): 104-107. - get paper here
  • Schweigger, A.F. 1812. Prodromus Monographia Cheloniorum auctore Schweigger. Königsberg. Arch. Naturwiss. Mathem., 1: 271-368, 406-458.
  • Souza, Franco L. 2004. Uma revisão sobre padrões de atividade, reprodução e alimentação de cágados brasileiros (Testudines, Chelidae) [A review on activity patterns, reproduction, and feeding habits in Brazilian chelid turtles (Testudines, Chelidae)]. Phyllomedusa 3 (1): 15-28 - get paper here
  • TTWG; Dijk, Peter Paul van; John B. Iverson, H. Bradley Shaffer; Roger Bour & Anders G.J. Rhodin [turtle taxonomy working group] 2011. Turtles of the World, 2011 Update: Annotated Checklist of Taxonomy, Synonymy, Distribution, and Conservation Status. Chelonian Research Monographs No. 5: 78 pp.; doi:10.3854/crm.5.000.checklist.v4.2011 - get paper here
  • TTWG; Rhodin, A.G.J., Iverson, J.B., Bour, R., Fritz, U., Georges, A., Shaffer, H.B., and van Dijk, P.P. 2021. Turtles of the World: Annotated Checklist and Atlas of Taxonomy, Synonymy, Distribution, and Conservation Status (9th Ed.). In: Rhodin, A.G.J., Iverson, J.B., van Dijk, P.P., Stanford, C.B., Goode, E.V., Buhlmann, K.A., and Mittermeier, R.A. (Eds.). Chelonian Research Monographs 8:1–472. doi:10.3854/crm.8.checklist.atlas.v9.2021. - get paper here
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