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SPECIES Leggadina lakedownensis

Author:Watts, 1976.
Citation:Trans. R. Soc. S. Aust., 100: 105.
Common Name:Lakeland Downs Leggadina
Type Locality:Australia, Queensland, Lakeland Downs, 110 km north of Cooktown.
Distribution:NE and N Australia; recorded from inland localities in C Queensland and coastal regions in far N Queensland, in subtropical region of Northern Territory, and Kimberley and Pilbara regions (including Thevanard Isl) of Western Australia (Cooper et al., 2003a).
Status:IUCN Lower Risk (nt).
Comments:A distinctive species distinguished from its close relative L. forresti by a suite of morphological, biochemical, and chromosomal traits (Baverstock et al., 1976a; Cooper et al., 2003a; Moro et al., 1998; Watts, 1976). Kidney structure described by Moro (2000). Moro et al. (1998) reported variation in mtDNA cytochrome b sequenes between the Pilbara (including Thevanard Isl) and the Kimberley and argued for taxonomic distinction of these populations. Cooper et al. (2003a) undertook a broader analysis based on much newly collected material and a combination of allozyme electrophoresis and morphological analysis. Although regional morphological differences were revealed, the various populations are genetically similar from the Pilbara region through to the Northern Territory. Populations in Queensland may be genetically more distinct; however, insufficient samples were available to quantify the extent of divergence. The Thevanard Isl population is larger in all dimensions than any in the nearby Pilbara region but with minimal genetic differentiation.
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