Squamates Ep. 13: Mostly Humbugs

A totally serious herpetological podcast

Squamates Ep. 13: Mostly Humbugs

We are the worst, but at least we have an Episode 13, unlike a certain podcast we know. In this long-delayed episode, it’s just two of your normal co-hosts, Dr Mark D. Scherz and Gabriel Ugueto, in a more laid-back, chatty format than the usual!

In this thirteenth episode, the structure of the show is a bit different, but we do talk about biogeography and conservation of some geckos and frogs from Madagascar, how exciting we find turtles, and some really cool new science.

Works in Frogress

Mohan, A.V., Gehring, P.-S., Scherz, M.D., Glaw, F., Ratsoavina, F.M. & Vences, M. (2019) Comparative phylogeography and patterns of deep genetic differentiation of two gecko species, Paroedura gracilis and Phelsuma guttata, across north-eastern Madagascar. Salamandra, 55(3):211–220.

Scherz, M.D., Glaw, F., Hutter, C.R., Bletz, M.C., Rakotoarison, A., Köhler, J. & Vences, M. (2019) Species complexes and the importance of Data Deficient classification in Red List assessments: the case of Hylobatrachus frogs. PLoS One, 14(8):e0219437. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0219437 — for more information about this paper, see Mark’s article in The Conversation (short) and on his blog (long) about it

Mark mentions this paper as well when talking about the former:

Gehring, P.-S., Siarabi, S., Scherz, M.D., Ratsoavina, F.M., Rakotoarison, A., Glaw, F. & Vences, M. (2018) Genetic differentiation and species status of the large-bodied leaf-tailed geckos Uroplatus fimbriatus and U. giganteus. Salamandra, 54(2):132–146.

and this paper when talking about the latter:

Gehara, M., Crawford, A.J., Orrico, V.G.D., Rodríguez, A., Lötters, S., Fouquet, A., Barrientos, L.S., Brusquetti, F., De la Riva, I., Ernst, R., Urrutia, G.G., Glaw, F., Guayasamin, J.M., Hölting, M., Jansen, M., Kok, P.J.R., Kwet, A., Lingnau, R., Lyra, M., Moravec, J., Pombal, J.P., Jr., Rojas-Runjaic, F.J.M., Schulze, A., Señaris, J.C., Solé, M., Rodrigues, M.T., Twomey, E., Haddad, C.F.B., Vences, M. & Köhler, J. (2014) High levels of diversity uncovered in a widespread nominal taxon: continental phylogeography of the Neotropical tree frog Dendropsophus minutus. PLoS ONE, 9(9):e103958. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0103958

Some showcases of what Gabriel talked about:

His ‘cheat-sheets’ to some American lizards:



Jurassic taxa for his upcoming book:


Wollenberg Valero, C.K., Marshall, C.J., Bastiaans, E., Caccone, A., Camargo, A., Morando, M., Niemiller, L.M., Pabijan, M., Russello, A.M., Sinervo, B., Werneck, P.F., Sites, W.J., Wiens, J.J. & Steinfartz, S. (2019) Patterns, mechanisms and genetics of speciation in reptiles and amphibians. Genes, 10(9): DOI: 10.3390/genes10090646

Rasys, A.M., Park, S., Ball, R.E., Alcala, A.J., Lauderdale, J.D. & Menke, D.B. (2019) CRISPR-Cas9 Gene Editing in Lizards Through Microinjection of Unfertilized Oocytes. Cell Reports, 28(9):2288–2292.e3. DOI: 10.1101/591446

Breuil, M., Vuillaume, B., Schikorski, D., Krauss, U., Morton, M.N., Haynes, P., Daltry, J.C., Corry, E., Gaymes, G., Gaymes, J., Bech, N., Jelić, M. & Grandjean, F. (2019) A story of nasal horns: two new subspecies of Iguana Laurenti, 1768 (Squamata, Iguanidae) in Saint Lucia, St Vincent & the Grenadines, and Grenada (southern Lesser Antilles). Zootaxa, 4608(2):201–232. DOI: 10.11646/zootaxa.4608.2.1

Breaking Newts

Women Researching and Talking Herpetology

The September 2019 issue of MDPI Diversity is packed with herpetology!

Fischer, E.K., Roland, A.B., Moskowitz, N.A., Tapia, E.E., Summers, K., Coloma, L.A. & O’Connell, L.A. (2019) The neural basis of tadpole transport in poison frogs. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 286(1907):20191084. DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2019.1084 — Mark said this was in Open Science but it was not

Rovatsos, M., Farkačová, K., Altmanová, M., Johnson Pokorná, M. & Kratochvíl, L. (2019) The rise and fall of differentiated sex chromosomes in geckos. Molecular Ecology, 28(12):3042-3052. DOI: 10.1111/mec.15126

Feiner, N. (2019) Evolutionary lability in Hox cluster structure and gene expression in Anolis lizards. Evolution Letters, 3(5):474–484. DOI: 10.1002/evl3.131 — check out the post on this article on Anole Annals!

Skipwith, P.L., Bi, K. & Oliver, P.M. (2019) Relicts and radiations: Phylogenomics of an Australasian lizard clade with east Gondwanan origins (Gekkota: Diplodactyloidea). Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution, 140:106589. DOI: 10.1016/j.ympev.2019.106589

Watanabe, A., Fabre, A.-C., Felice, R.N., Maisano, J.A., Müller, J., Herrel, A. & Goswami, A. (2019) Ecomorphological diversification in squamates from conserved pattern of cranial integration. Proceedings of the national Academy of Sciences of the USA, 116(29):14688. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1820967116

Chaplin, K., Sumner, J., Hipsley, C.A. & Melville, J. (2019) An integrative approach using phylogenomics and high-resolution x-ray computed tomography for species delimitation in cryptic taxa. Systematic Biology: DOI: 10.1093/sysbio/syz048


Common Descent Podcast: PodBeanApple Podcasts@CommDescentPC

Eva Fischer: @evakfischerFischer lab websitePersonal Website

Lauren O’Connell: @alaurenoconnellStanford Laboratory of Organismal Biology

Follow the show and the hosts on social media!

SquaMates: website • twitter • instagram • facebook

Mark D. Scherz: website • twitter • instagram • tumblr • facebook • researchgateredbubble

Gabriel Ugueto: website • twitter • instagram • facebook • artwork prints

Ethan Kocak: website • twitter • tumblr • facebook

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