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SPECIES Abeomelomys sevia

Author:Tate and Archbold, 1935.
Citation:Am. Mus. Novit., 803: 3.
Common Name:Papuan Abeomelomys
Type Locality:Papua New Guinea, Morobe Province, Huon Peninsula, Cromwell Range, Sevia, 1400 m.
Distribution:Papua New Guinea; disjunct montane populations in Central Cordillera of Papua New Guinea from Star Mtns (Telefomin area) in the west to Wau region of Morobe Province in the east, and isolated population in the Cromwell Range on Huon Peninsula; 1400-3100 m (Flannery, 1995a; Menzies, 1990).
Status:IUCN – Lower Risk (lc) as Pogonomelomys sevia.
Comments:Originally described as a species of Melomys (Tate and Archbold, 1935) and subsequently transferred to Pogonomelomys (Rümmler, 1938) where it remained (Laurie and Hill, 1954; Tate, 1951) until sevia was made the type species of Abeomelomys (Menzies, 1990). Morphology of sevia has always been considered distinctive compared to mayeri and bruijnii, the two species of Pogonomelomys (Flannery, 1990b; Tate, 1951), but whether it should be separated from that genus remains a question because the traits used by Menzies to diagnose Abeomelomys simply duplicated the diagnostic morphological characters of sevia and did not identify Abeomelomys as a separate monophyletic group in any phylogenetic sense. Furthermore, Menzies (1990:134) distinguished A. sevia from the two species of Pogonomelomys by only its "grey-based ventral fur and the relatively long incisive foramina." Subsequently, Menzies (1996) also cited Breed and Aplin’s (1994) description of spermatozoal morphology of sevia as corroborating evidence for its generic status, but Breed and Aplin did not have comparative samples of Pogonomelomys, and primitive features characterize spermatozoal morphology of sevia. Menzies (1990) did not recognize tatei because in his opinion it was indistinguishable from sevia, but no data was presented to support this synonymy.
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    tatei (Hinton, 1943)

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