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SPECIES Crocidura ichnusae

Author:Festa, 1912.
Citation:Boll. Mus. Zool. Anat. Comp. Torino, 27(684): 1.
Common Name:North African White-toothed Shrew
Type Locality:Italy, Sardinia, Lanusei, Piscina.
Distribution:Pantelleria Isl, Sardinia (Italy), Ibiza (Spain), and E North Africa (Tunisia, E Algeria).
Status:IUCN Lower Risk (lc) as C. cossyrensis.
Comments:The species was first reported from Pantelleria as russula; see Contoli and Amori (1986); then named cossyrensis in a footnote (Contoli et al., 1989) and later redescribed by Contoli (1990). Closely related to russula if not conspecific (Sara et al., 1990). However, morphological (Sara and Vogel, 1996; Sara and Zanca, 1992) as well as chromosomal differences, restricted fertility in the F2 generation (Vogel et al., 1992), and yet unpublished genetic data (Vogel, pers. comm.) suggest that C. russula includes two species; cossyrensis has been used for the E North African taxon (Contoli and Aloise, 2001; Hutterer, 1993a), but ichnusae has priority. Sara and Vogel (1996) considered agilis as unidentifiable taxon. The names mauritanicus, pigmaea and heljanensis are listed here under russula on geographical grounds, while ichnusae and ibicensis belong to the E North African taxon, based on a genetical study of these island forms (Cosson et al., in prep.). The type locality of anthonyi is Gafsa, Tunisia, and thus this name has to be considered; however, Heim de Balsac (1968) casted some doubt on the reliability of the type locality, as did Contoli and Aloise (2001). By comparing the coefficient of variation of cranial measurements in various North African populations of Crocidura, these authors identified a region W of Algers as a possible zone of sympatry between russula and ichnusae.
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Synonyms:

    agilis (Loche, 1867)
    anthonyi Heim de Balsac, 1940
    cossyrensis Contoli, 1989
    ibicensis Vericad and Balcells, 1965

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