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Pelochelys signifera WEBB, 2002

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Higher TaxaTrionychidae (Trionychinae), Trionychoidea, Testudines (turtles)
Common NamesE: Variegated Giant Softshell Turtle 
SynonymPelochelys signifera WEBB 2002
Pelochelys signifera — GEORGES & THOMSON 2010
Pelochelys signifera — TTWG 2021 
DistributionN Papua New Guinea

Type locality: Wanggar River, Weyland Range, Geelvinck Bay, N. New Guinea.  
TypesHolotype: BMNH 1921.11.11.4 
DiagnosisDiagnosis: Pelochelys signifera differs from the other two species ofthe genus, P. bibroni and P. cantorii, in having (in combination) a juvenile carapace with a close-set, indistinct, reticulated pattern emphasized by distinct, small dark dots and markings, and the adult carapace patternless, uniformly olive-brownish.
CommentDistribution: Listed in the list of Australian freshwater turtles by GEORGES & THOMSON 2010 withouth any Australian localities.

Habitat: freshwater (rivers and tributaries, lakes) 
EtymologyNamed after the unique juvenile pattern of close-set, dark markings on the carapace the new species may be known as (Latin, signifer, -a, -um, bearing marks, figures, signs). 
  • Bour, R. 2008. Global diversity of turtles (Chelonii; Reptilia) in freshwater. Hydrobiologia 595:593–598 - get paper here
  • 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
  • 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
  • Webb, Robert G. 2002. Observations on the Giant Softshell Turtle, Pelochelys cantorii, with description of a new species. Hamadryad 27 (1): 99-107 - get paper here
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