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SPECIES Spermophilus (Spermophilus) ralli

Author:Kuznetsov, 1948.
Citation:Zveri Kirgizii [Animals of Kirgiziya, Moscow Soc. of Naturalists]: 39.
Common Name:Tien Shan Ground Squirrel
Type Locality:"Tip iz kotlovinny Oz. Issyk-Kulí" [Type from basin of lake Issyk-Kulí] (Kuznetsov, 1965:264).
Distribution:Mountains and valleys surrounding the eastern end of the Issyk-Kulí valley, from the Terskii-Alatau in the southeast to the Ketmení Alatau in the northeast. Its range is separated from that of S. relictus, which occupies the western Tien Shan.
Comments:This species is usually included in S. relictus as an allopatric subspecies, but molecular sequence data indicate that the two taxa are separate (Harrison et al., 2003). Kuznetsovís name is regarded as having priority over ralli (Heptner, 1948; a replacement name for pygmaeus arenicola; and thus preoccupied), but Pavlinov and Rossolimo (1987) indicated that Kuznetsov (1948) might not have been published in May, but later, in July-August, while pygmaeus ralli was published in May, 1948. If so, Kuznetsov, 1948 is preoccupied.
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