AMPHIBIAWEB
Paramesotriton yunwuensis

Subgenus: Paramesotriton
family: Salamandridae
subfamily: Pleurodelinae
 
Species Description: Wu Y, Jiang K, Hanken J 2010 A new species of newt of the genus Paramesotriton (Salamandridae) from southwestern Guangdon, China, with a new northern record of P. longliensis from western Hubei. Zootaxa 2494:45-58.

AmphibiaChina 中国两栖类.

Country distribution from AmphibiaWeb's database: China

View distribution map using BerkeleyMapper.


Conservation Status (definitions)
IUCN (Red List) Status
CITES
Other International Status None
National Status None
Regional Status None

   

From the Encyclopedia of Life account:

Distribution

The type locality is at a scenic park near Nanchong village, Fuhe, Luoding city, Guangdong. This species probably occurs in the range of Mount Yunwu, which is located in the southwestern corner of Guangdong.


Authors: Wu, Yunke; Sparreboom, Max
License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/

Morphology

The following account is based on the original description by Wu et al. (2010). Large, robust newt. Head longer than broad, wider than neck. Snout truncate, projecting beyond mandible. Head slopes steeply downward anteriorly in lateral view. Labial fold well developed. Vomerine tooth patch ˄ shaped. Paratoids prominent. Gular fold present, numerous longitudinal wrinkles on throat. Vertebral ridge flat and inconspicuous. Numerous transverse wrinkles on flanks, venter and lateral sides of tail base. Large warts on head and dorsolateral ridges. Forelimb short; when extended rostrally it barely reaches posterior margin of eye. When forelimb and hind limb are adpressed, tips of digits just meet. Four fingers and five toes, no webbing. Tail laterally compressed; dorsal caudal fin evident on posterior half of tail; ventral caudal fin inconspicuous. Tail tip rounded. Cloaca with transverse wrinkles. Dorsal coloration ranges from reddish brown to olive brown. Ventral color pattern varies from black background with a few orange blotches to orange background with numerous small black flecks. Bright ventral blotches irregular without a network of black lines. Males have a bluish-white caudal stripe on the posterior half of the tail during the breeding season, and few papillae on cloacal wall. Adult females have a more conspicuous vertebral ridge, a smaller and shorter cloacal opening, and no papillae on the cloacal wall.

Morphology of subadults differs from that of fully grown adults. The skin of subadult is more densely granulated; the dorsal vertebral ridge is highly elevated; the forelimbs are relatively long and extend beyond the anterior margin of the eye when extended forward; the palm and tarsus overlap when the forelimb and hind limb are adpressed against the flank. Subadults are black dorsally, with rounded orange blotches on a black venter.


Authors: Wu, Yunke; Sparreboom, Max
License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/

Size

All measurements are from Wu et al. (2010).

Male (3 specimens). Total length: 165.1–186 mm; snout-vent length: 93–104.8 mm; head length: 29.9–31.6 mm; head width: 23.3–27.1 mm; forelimb length: 21.4–26.5 mm; hind-limb length: 26.2–28.8 mm.

Female (5 specimens). Total length: 145–161 mm; snout-vent length: 73.4–87.8 mm; head length: 23.1–27.6 mm; head width: 17.9–21.4 mm; forelimb length: 22–23.8 mm; hind-limb length: 21.7–24.1 mm.


Authors: Wu, Yunke; Sparreboom, Max
License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/

Diagnostic Description

Large and robust newt with flat or low vertebral ridge, lightly granular warts, long and shallow tail and short limbs. When the forelimb is extended rostrally it barely reaches the posterior margin of eye. When forelimb and hind limb are adpressed, digits tips meet but palm and sole do not overlap.


Authors: Wu, Yunke; Sparreboom, Max
License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/

Look Alikes

Paramesotriton yunwuensis resembles P. deloustali, P. guanxiensis and P. fuzhongensis. Adult P. yunwuensis have a flat or low vertebral ridge and lightly granular warts and the other three species have a high vertebral ridge and densely granulated warts (Bourret 1934; Huang et al. 1983; Wen 1989). Unlike P. deloustali and P. fuzhongensis, P. yunwuensis also has short limbs similar to P. guanxiensis, namely when the forelimb is extended rostrally it barely reaches the posterior margin of eye. But P. yunwuensis differs from P. guanxiensis by its much larger body size and long and shallow tail.


Authors: Wu, Yunke; Sparreboom, Max
License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/

Habitat

The species is found in large pools (4 x 4 m) along a montane stream at mid-elevation of the mountain. Water depth reaches about 3 m. Submerged boulders, small rocks and coarse gravel constitute the pool substrate. Pools are connected by currents of cold, clear, slow-moving water. Broadleaf forests grow along the site, but the stream is not covered by the canopy. Several species of fish coexist with the newt. Newts are active on the pool bottom when temperature goes up during midday and they can be found at shallower pool edges at night.


Authors: Wu, Yunke; Sparreboom, Max
License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/

Reproduction

Breeding season should be around May because eggs were laid by females caught in early May.


Authors: Wu, Yunke; Sparreboom, Max
License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/

Evolution

Paramesotriton yunwuensis is the sister species to P. guanxiensis based on mitochondrial phylogeny (Wu et al., 2010). This result is consistent with morphology because both species have much shorter limbs than the closely related P. fuzhongensis and P. deloustali.

Paramesotriton yunwuensis and P. guanxiensis together form the sister lineage to P. fuzhongensis. In conjunction with the three species’ geographic distributions, the Pearl River may act as a geographic barrier for speciation.


Authors: Wu, Yunke; Sparreboom, Max
License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/

Genetics

Mitochondrial DNA sequence data are available in Wu et al. (2010).


Authors: Wu, Yunke; Sparreboom, Max
License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/

Conservation

The distribution of this species is likely limited to the range of Mount Yunwu in the southwestern corner of Guangdong. At the type locality, which is a scenic park, local villagers use baited fish line to catch this newt; they sell the newts to tourists as baby Chinese Giant Salamanders for little money. Paramesotriton yunwuensis is also caught with other stream fishes by electric fishing.


Authors: Wu, Yunke; Sparreboom, Max
License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/