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SPECIES Thomasomys aureus

Author:Tomes, 1860.
Citation:Proc. Zool. Soc. Lond., 1860: 219.
Common Name:Golden Thomasomys
Type Locality:Ecuador, Chimborazo Prov., "Pallatanga," 4950 ft (1509 m). See discussions by Gardner (1983b) and Voss (2003) on indeterminate location of Pallatanga, a place below the altitudinal range documented for T. aureus; amendment of type locality needed.
Distribution:Andean forests, about 2400-4000 m, from far W Venezuela (see Linares, 1998:Fig. 152) and E Colombia, through Ecuador and Peru, to WC Bolivia (see Anderson, 1997:Fig. 702); vouchered documentation of range needed.
Status:IUCN Lower Risk (lc).
Comments:Highly differentiated morphologically from other species of Thomasomys (see Carleton, 1973; Hooper and Musser, 1964a; Voss and Linzey, 1981). Karyotype reported by Gardner and Patton (1976). Based on the Thomasomys material in the BMNH, Ellerman (1941) had recognized an aureus group, consisting of large species and also including nicefori, popayanus, and praetor; and Cabrera (1961) later consolidated most of these as subspecies within a highly variable T. aureus. The indiscriminate lumping prompted Gardner and Romo R. (1993) to refer to the populations as the "T. aureus complex," which they suspected to consist of three or more valid species. Voss (2003) provided essential traits for separating T. aureus proper from T. popaynus and T. praetor (see those accounts).
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Offspring:

Synonyms:

    altorum J. A. Allen, 1914
    princeps (Thomas, 1895)

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