Rafetus swinhoei (GRAY, 1873)
Can you confirm these amateur observations of Rafetus swinhoei?
|Higher Taxa||Trionychidae (Trionychinae), Trionychoidea, Testudines (turtles)|
|Common Names||Shanghai Softshell Turtle, Swinhoe’s Soft-shelled Turtle|
|Synonym||Oscaria swinhoei GRAY 1873|
Trionyx swinhonis — BOULENGER 1889
Rafetus swinhoei — MEYLAN & WEBB 1988
Trionyx swinhoei — ALDERTON 1988
Yuen maculatus HEUDE
Pelochelys taihuensis ZANG
Rafetus swinhoe — RUDOLPHI & WESER 1998
Rafetus leloii HÀ DÌNH DÚC 2000
Rafetus swinhoei — FARKAS & WEBB 2003
Oscaria (Rafetus) swinhoei — BONIN et al 2006
Rafetus vietnamensis LE et al. 2010
|Distribution||S China, Vietnam|
Type locality: Shanghai, People's Republic of China.
vietnamensis: N Vietnam (Hoan Kiem Lake); Type locality: not explicitly given.
|Types||Holotype: BMNH 19184.108.40.206 (formerly 220.127.116.11) and its skull, numbered separately as BMNH 1918.104.22.168.|
Holotype: HK1 (”Hung Ky specimen”, Ngoc Son Temple and Hoa Binh Museum) [vietnamensis]
|Diagnosis||Diagnosis (vietnamensis): “The giant fresh water soft-shelled turtle differs significantly from all the described genera in its body size, living conditions, appearance, skull morphology and DNA sequence. The diagnosis focused on identification of the species by using the specific characteristics of the wide and blunt appearance of the skull with a blunt curved maxillary arch, the giant size of the body, its habitat and especially the DNA sequence comparisons” [from LE TRAN BINH et al. 2010].|
|Comment||Previously considered as a synonym of Pelodiscus (=Trionyx) sinensis.|
Conservation: This is one of the most endangered turtle species according to a 2003 assessment by the IUCN. Only a few living specimens have survived (Liu et al. 2019).
Synonymy: The description of Rafetus vietnamensis is very vague (see diagnosis). Rhodin et al (2010) provisionally synonymized vietnamensis with swinhoei and Farkas et al. (2011) do so formally.
Habitat: freshwater (rivers and tributaries)
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