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Chelonoidis microphyes (GÜNTHER, 1875)

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Higher TaxaTestudinidae, Testudinoidea, Testudines (turtles)
Common NamesE: Volcán Darwin Giant Tortoise, Darwin Volcano Giant Tortoise, Tagus Cove Giant Tortoise 
SynonymTestudo microphyes GÜNTHER 1874: 313 (nomen dubium)
Testudo microphyes GÜNTHER 1875
Geochelone elephantopus microphyes — PRITCHARD 1967
Chelonoidis elephantopus microphyes — OBST 1986
Geochelone nigra microphyes — IVERSON 1992: 250
Chelonoidis nigra microphyes — DAVID 1994
Geochelone elephantopus microphyes — SWASH & STILL 2000
Geochelone microphyes — CISNEROS-HEREDIA 2006
Geochelone microphyes — POULAKAKIS et al. 2008
Chelonoidis microphyes — TTWG 2017: 129 
DistributionEcuador: Galapagos (NC Albemarle = Isabela);

Type locality: originally “Hood’s Island” (GÜNTHER 1875, in error), then “Tagus Cove, northern Albemarle Island” (GÜNTHER 1877).  
TypesHolotype: BMNH 1947.3.4.88
Holotype: MCZ 11066 [microphyes] 
CommentSynonymy: previously synonymized under C. niger or C. vicina.

Conservation: IUCN: Vulnerable D1+2 [TTWG 2017], CITES: Appendix I, as Chelonoidis nigra.

Taxonomy: This is a member of the Chelonoidis niger species complex, variably considered subspecies of C. nigra or as valid species. Rhodin et al. (2010) listed them separately but under the heading “C. niger species complex”. 
  • Cisneros-Heredia, D.F. 2006. Turtles of the Tiputini Biodiversity Station with remarks on the diversity and distribution of the Testudines from Ecuador. Biota Neotrop. 6 (1): 1-16 - get paper here
  • David, Patrick 1994. Liste des reptiles actuels du monde. I. Chelonii. Dumerilia 1: 7-127
  • Günther, A. 1874. Description of the living and extinct races of gigantic land-tortoises. Parts I. and II. introduction and the tortoises of the Galapagos islands. Ann. Mag. nat. Hist. (4) 14: 311-313 - get paper here
  • Günther, A. 1875. Description of the living and extinct races of gigantic land-tortoises. Parts I. and II. introduction and the tortoises of the Galapagos islands. Phil Trans. Roy. Soc. 165:251-284 - get paper here
  • Iverson, J.B. 1992. A revised Checklist with Distribution Maps of the Turtles of the World. Richmond, Indiana, privately published, 363 pp.
  • Obst, F.J. 1986. Turtles, tortoises and terrapins. St. Martins, New York. 231 pp.
  • Poulakakis, Nikos; Scott Glaberman, Michael Russello, Luciano B.Beheregaray, Claudio Ciofi, Jeffrey R. Powell and Adalgisa Caccone 2008. Historical DNA analysis reveals living descendants of an extinct species of Galápagos tortoise. PNAS 105 (40): 15464–15469 - get paper here
  • Pritchard, P.C.H. 1967. Scientific and common names of turtles of the world. Bulletin of the Ross Allen Reptile Institute 1967:1-10.
  • Swash, A. & Still, R. 2000. Birds, Mammals and Reptiles of the Galapagos Islands. Pica Press, 168 pp.
  • Torres-Carvajal O, Pazmiño-Otamendi G, Salazar-Valenzuela D. 2019. Reptiles of Ecuador: a resource-rich portal, with a dynamic checklist and photographic guides. Amphibian & Reptile Conservation 13 (1): [General Section]: 209–229 (e178) - get paper here
  • 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
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