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Theriologia Ukrainica

ISSN 2616-7379 (print) • ISSN 2617-1120 (online)

2020 • Vol. 19 • Contents of volume >>>

download pdfZagorodniuk, I. 2020. Close species of rodents of the superfamily Muroidae in the fauna of Ukraine: taxonomy, biogeography, diagnostics, and ecomorphology. Theriologia Ukrainica, 19: 3-26.


Close species of rodents of the superfamily Muroidae in the fauna of Ukraine: taxonomy, biogeography, diagnostics, and ecomorphology


Zagorodniuk, I.


National Museum of Natural History, NAS of Ukraine (Kyiv, Ukraine)


Theriologia Ukrainica. 2020. Vol. 19: 3-26.




Ukrainian, with English summary, titles of tables, captures to figs


The results of the revision of the species composition and related knowledge on taxonomy, biogeography, diagnostics, variability, and ecomorphology of polytypic groups of murine rodents in the superfamily Muroidae are presented. These are five former ‘large’ species: ‘wood mice’, ‘typical mice’, ‘water voles’, ‘pine voles’ and ‘common voles.’ Each of these groups is represented in the fauna of Ukraine and neighbouring countries by 2–3 species. The two most difficult for revision and for background monitoring are ‘wood mice’ and ‘common voles’, each of which is represented in the fauna of the region by three morphologically similar species of different kinship, among which one (the most genetically distant) is widely sympatric to the other two species that are allospecies. Among ‘wood mice’, such species are Sylvaemus uralensis (= microps) against the pair of S. sylvaticus + S. witherbyi (= S. falzfeini), and among the ‘common voles’ it is Microtus levis (= rossiaemeridionalis) against the pair of M. arvalis + M. obscurus. The other three pairs of species are generally more diverged (at least in terms of habitats and ecology, and in some cases morphology) and clearly less sympatric species. In the group of ‘typical mice’, Mus musculus’ (s. l.), there is a pair of synanthropic and exanthropic forms—M. musculus and M. spicilegus (= M. sergii), which usually do not interact in nature, and therefore are poorly diverged in morphology. In the group of ‘water voles’, there is an allopatric pair represented by the Carpathian–Roztochchian (essentially mountainous, associated with meadows) and lowland hydrophilic forms, Arvicola scherman and A. amphibius (= A. terrestris). In the group of ‘pine voles’, there is a sympatric pair of species, one of them has limited distribution in the Carpathians (Terricola tatricus), but the other (T. subterraneus), being sympatric to the former in the Carpathians, also forms abundant populations in lowland forests, both in the forest zone and in the bairak steppe zone. Morphological differentiation between them is generally high, but the Eastern Carpathian form of T. tatricus is the smallest in a row of mountain forms of Terricola (multiplex, tatricus, and zykovi), which was the reason for its long-term non-recognition in the fauna of Ukraine. For all species, descriptions are presented, including five standard parts for this series of publications: general remarks, taxonomy (including nomenclature), distribution (including biotopes), diagnostics (including variability), and ecomorphology.


rodents, Muroidae, taxonomy, distribution, differences, ecomorphology.



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Zagorodniuk, I. V., I. G. Emelianov. 2012. Taxonomy and nomenclature of mammals of Ukraine. Proceedings of the National Museum of Natural History, 10: 5–30. (In Ukrainian)
Zagorodniuk, I. 2014. Changes in taxonomic diversity of Ukrainian mammals for the last three centuries: extinct, phantom, and alien species. Proceedings of the Theriological School, 12: 3–16.
Zagorodniuk, I., Z. Barkaszi. 2018. Mammals of the Carpathians in the Red Data Book of Ukraine. Scientific Bulletin of the Uzhhorod University. Series Biology, 45: 20–32. (In Ukrainian)
Zagorodniuk, I. 2019a. Close non-murid rodent species in the Ukrainian fauna: differences, biogeography, ecomorphology. Theriologia Ukrainica, 17: 8–27. (In Ukrainian)
Zagorodniuk, I. 2019b. Range dynamics in sibling species: facts and reconstructions for the mammal fauna of Eastern Europe. Theriologia Ukrainica, 18: 20–39.
Zagorodniuk, I. 2020. Distribution and variation of mice group Sylvaemus microps & uralensis in Eastern Europe: fragmentation and clines. Theriologia Ukrainica, 20 (in press).
Zima, J., I. V. Zagorodniuk, V. A. Gajchenko, T. O. Zhezherina. 1991. Polymorphism and chromosomal variability in Microtus rossiaemeridionalis (Rodentiformes). Vestnik zoologii, № 4: 48–53. (In Russian)


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