|Salamandra salamandra (Amphibia: Caudata: Salamandridae) in Portugal: not all black and yellow.
|Reis, DM, Cunha, RL, Patrão, C, Rebelo, R, Castilho, R
|Year of Publication
|Animals, Base Sequence, DNA, Mitochondrial, Evolution, Molecular, Genetic Variation, Genetics, Population, Geography, Haplotypes, Phylogeny, Portugal, Salamandra, Sequence Alignment
The fire salamander complex is quite diverse in the Iberian Peninsula where nine subspecies of Salamandra salamandra are currently recognized. Here, we analysed the geographical distribution of the subspecies S. s. gallaica and S. s. crespoi using partial sequences of the mitochondrial cytochrome b gene of 168 individuals from 12 locations in Portugal. Our results support the existence of a deep lineage divergence between the two subspecies, with non-overlapping geographical distributions except in two contact zones: one in Sesimbra on the western coast, and another in Alcoutim on the southeastern border with Spain. Moreover, S. s. crespoi displays signs of gene flow among the sampled locations whereas S. s. gallaica shows evidence of some restriction to gene flow. Present-day genetic make-up of S. s. gallaica and S. s. crespoi is a result of past historical events, fine-tuned by contemporary Iberian geoclimate. Humid mountain areas were found to harbour increased genetic diversity possibly acting as past refugia during drier interglacial periods. To analyse wider geographical patterns and lineage splitting events within S. salamandra we performed a Bayesian dating analysis completing our data set with previously published sequences. The observed divergences were associated to successive biogeographic scenarios, and to other Iberian species showing similar trends.