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SPECIES Apodemus speciosus

Author:Temminck, 1844.
Citation:In Siebold, Temminck and Schlegel, Fauna Japonica, Arnz et Socii, Lugduni Batavorum: 52.
Common Name:Large Japanese Field Mouse
Type Locality:Japan.
Distribution:Endemic to Japan (Dobson, 1994); found on the four larger islands (Hokkaido, Honshu, Shikoku, and Kyushu) and some smaller islands, but south only to Yakushima (Corbet, 1978c; Abe and Ishii, 1987; Kaneko, 1994; Tsuchiya, 1974).
Status:IUCN Lower Risk (lc).

Apodemus group. Usually included in subgenus Alsomys (e.g., Pavlinov et al., 1995a) but placed in subgenus Apodemus by Pavlinov and Rossolimo (1987) and Mezhzherin and Zykov (1991); considered a member of an Apodemus Group by Musser et al. (1996), which is consistent with analyses of allozymic data and mtDNA cytochrome b and nuclear DNA sequences (Chelomina, 1998; Chelomina et al., 1998b; Liu et al., 2004; Mezhzherin, 1997a; Serizawa et al., 2000; Suzuki et al., 2003). Phylogenetic analyses of mtDNA cytochrome b and nuclear IRBP sequences identified A. speciosus as an independent lineage within a radiation that includes the separate lineage of A. peninsulae, the A. agrarius-A. chevrieri clade, and A. draco-A. semotus-A. latronum cluster; this radiation is separate from those two producing the Nepalese A. gurkha and Japanese A. argenteus (Suzuki et al., 2003; also see Liu et al., 2004). Sympatric with A. peninsulae on Hokkaido. Geographic variation extensively analyzed by Imaizumi (1962). Some of the synonyms (ainu, navigator, and miyakensis) have been listed as separate species (Vorontsov et al., 1977a; also see discussion in Corbet, 1978c), but we follow Corbet (1978c) who included them in a single species. This action was also reflected by Tsuchiya (1974), who divided the names into two groups of A. speciosus based on biochemical and chromosomal evidence. Saitoh et al. (1989) provided additional biochemical information in context of systematic comparisons among Japanese Apodemus. Evolution of restriction sites of ribosomal DNA in natural populations reported by Suzuki et al. (1994b). Inter- and intraspecific patterns of morphological variation in sympatric A. speciosus and A. argenteus and its importance in insular isolation and biogeographic gradients reported by Renaud and Millien (2001). Analysis of the cranial and mandibular skeletal and myological morphology associated with incisal biting and mastication reported by Satoh (1997, 1998, 1999) and contrasted with the arvicoline Myodes rufocanus. Significance of lower incisor shape and size related to ecological and taxonomic inquiries investigated by Millien-Parra (2000a). Adaptive latitudinal trends in mandible shape contrasted with A. sylvaticus and A. argenteus. Reviewed by Kawamura (1989, 1991, 1994), Kaneko (1994), Musser et al., (1996), and partially by Mezhzherin (1997a). Catalog of specimens in National Science Museum, Tokyo, provided by Endo et al. (2002).

Fossils extend the history of A. speciosus in Japan back to the middle Pleistocene and Kawamura (1989:57) noted that "the temporal morphological changes since the middle Pleistocene are generally slight." Citation for the original description is usually cited as 1845, but was published in 1844; see Holthuis and Sakai (1970).




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