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SPECIES Praomys derooi

Author:Van der Straeten and Verheyen, 1978.
Citation:Z. Säugetierk., 43: 33.
Common Name:Deroo’s Praomys
Type Locality:Togo, Borgou, 160 m.
Distribution:Known only from E and S Ghana, Togo, Benin, and W Nigeria (see Van der Straeten and Verheyen, 1978b).
Status:IUCN – Lower Risk (lc) as Myomys derooi.
Comments:Part of the murine fauna endemic to West Africa (see account of Grammomys buntingi). Described as a savanna species found living in and around human dwellings. Grubb et al. (1998) reviewed the Ghana population, and Decher et al. (1997) recorded two animals from the Accra Plains region in SE Ghana, one caught in a house, the other near a house. Phylogenetic relationships of this species are with P. daltoni; the two are closely similar in pelage coloration and texture (except that underparts are gray in most derooi and white in most daltoni, but we have seen series of USNM P. daltoni ranging from gray to white), external, cranial, and dental morphology (our observations), habitat (see account of P. daltoni), and variation in mtDNA cytochrome b sequences (Lecompte et al., 2002b) and nuclear IRBP gene sequences (E. Lecompte, in litt., 2002). The morphological and molecular resemblances are so close we suspect the samples of derooi simply represent local populations of P. daltoni. Even Van der Straeten’s (1979) canonical analyses of cranial and dental measurements exposed broad overlap between his samples of P. daltoni and P. derooi. Ziegler et al. (2002) discussed an example of P. derooi from C Guinea collected in a village, but the record is so far from the known, well documented range that we suspect it represents a misidentification of P. daltoni.



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