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SPECIES Arvicanthis blicki

Author:Frick, 1914.
Citation:Ann. Carnegie Mus., 9: 20.
Common Name:Blick’s Arvicanthis
Type Locality:Ethiopia, South Chilalo Mtns, Hora Mt base camp, 9000 ft (2743 m).
Distribution:Ethiopia; between 2750 and 4050 m from plateau on E side of Ethiopian Rift Valley (Yalden et al., 1976; Yalden et al., 1996).
Status:IUCN – Lower Risk (lc).
Comments:An Ethiopian endemic with 2n = 48, FNa = 68 (Corti et al., 1996b; Lavrenchenko et al., 1997) that is a characteristic diurnal member of the Afro-Alpine moorland zone above 3500 m (Demeter and Topal, 1982; Rupp, 1980; Yalden, 1988; Yalden et al., 1976). In morphology, ecological and geographic distribution, and habits, A. blicki is a very distinctive species, as recognized by Dorst (1972). Judged by similarities in molar occlusal topography and dorsal fur patterning, chromosomal traits, and allozymic data, A. blicki is more closely related to A. abyssinicus than to any other species of Arvicanthis and together with that species and A. niloticus forms a monophyletic clade (see account of A. abyssinicus). Statistical summary of external measurements for a large sample reported by Sillero-Zubiri et al. (1995a). Habitat preferences, abundance, and biomass of rodents in the Bale Mtns, including A. blicki, and relevance to the endangered Canis simensis recorded by Sillero-Zubiri (1995c).
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