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SPECIES Dendromus mesomelas

Author:Brants, 1827.
Citation:Het. Geslacht der Muizen: 122.
Common Name:Brants’s African Climbing Mouse
Type Locality:South Africa, Eastern Cape Prov., Sunday’s River, east of Port Elizabeth.
Distribution:Discontinuous range in Southern African Subregion—in South Africa across Western and Eastern Cape Provs., north through KwaZulu-Natal (Taylor, 1998), to Mpumalanga and Limpopo; Okavango swamps in N Botswana and Caprivi region of NE Namibia (Smithers, 1971); NW Zambia (Ansell, 1978, as D. m. major); and Gorongoza Mtn in C Mozambique (Smithers and Lobao Tello, 1976); may eventually be found in wet habitats of SE Angola and SW Zambia. Not recorded north of the Zambeze River in Mozambique or north of about 12º latitude elsewhere.
Status:IUCN – Lower Risk (lc).
Comments:Reviewed by de Graaff (1997cc). The indecisive shifting of pumilio between D. mesomelas and D. mystacalis is reviewed Meester et al. (1986), who documented its proper association with the former. Some names once included in D. mesomelas (see Misonne, 1974) are here treated as distinct species (see D. insignis, D. nyasae, D. oreas, and D. vernayi). Judged by specimens, D. mesomelas from the Southern African Subregion is morphologically separable from northern populations in East Africa, Angola, and Cameroon. It is a larger version of, and likely closely related to, D. mystacalis. Dendromus mesomelas inhabits grasslands in swamps and other wet habitats; whereas, D. mystacalis and D. melanotis, which occur in the same regions, occupy dryer environments (Smithers, 1971; Smithers and Lobao Tello, 1976).
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    ayresi Roberts, 1913
    major St. Leger, 1930
    pumilio (Wagner, 1841)
    typicus Smith, 1834
    typus Smith, 1829

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