Three new turtles described in 2016

Three new species of turtles were described during 2016. This brings the number of recognized species to 345. All three of the new species have relatively small distributions and are good candidates for threatened status.

The Yellow-bellied Snapping Turtle, Elseya flaviventralis

Goode’s Thornscrub Tortoise, Gopherus evgoodei

The Yellow-bellied Snapping Turtle, Elseya flaviventralis Thomson & Georges, 2016 (family Chelidae), inhabits the Mary, South Alligator, East Alligator, Goyder and Mann River drainages of the northeastern portion of the Northern Territory (Arnhem Land region), Australia.

Goode’s Thornscrub Tortoise, Gopherus evgoodei Edwards, Karl, Vaughn, Rosen, Meléndez-Torres & Murphy, 2016 (family Testudinidae). The new tortoise is a habitat specialist and is found exclusively in thornscrub and tropical broadleaf forests that comprise about 24,000 km2.

Isan Snail-eating Turtle, Malayemys isan Sumontha, Brophy, Kunya, Wiboonatthapol & Pauwels, 2016 (family Geoemydidae). This species inhabits northeastern Thailand, where it uses shallow, stagnant or slow-moving freshwater.

Isan Snail-eating Turtle, Malayemys isa

Brophy, Timothy R.; Sumontha, M.; Kunya, K.; Wiboonatthapol, S.; and Pauwels, O.S.G., 2016. A New Snail-Eating Turtle of the Genus MalayemysLindholm, 1931 (Geoemydidae) from Thailand and Laos. Faculty Publications and Presentations. Paper 120.
Edwards T, Karl AE, Vaughn M, Rosen PC, Torres CM, Murphy RW (2016) The desert tortoise trichotomy: Mexico hosts a third, new sister-species of tortoise in the Gopherus morafkaiG. agassizii group. ZooKeys562: 131-158.

Thomson S,  Georges A. 2016. A new species of freshwater turtle of the genus Elseya (Testudinata: Pleurodira: Chelidae) from the Northern Territory of Australia. Zootaxa 4061(1):18-28

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