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A new subspecies of large-eared pika, Ochotona macrotis (Lagomorpha: Ochotonidae), from the Eastern Himalaya
Lissovsky A.A., McDonough M., Dahal N., Jin Wei, Liu Shaoying, Ruedas L.A.
P. 30-42
We examined 212 complete sequences of the cytochrome b gene for all pika species (Lagomorpha: Ochotona) as well as 250 skulls of pikas from the eastern Himalayan region. The results of our analyses suggest that a new and distinct subspecies of large-eared pika — Ochotona macrotis gomchee ssp.n. occurs in Bhutan. Our phylogenetic analyses indicate that this subspecies holds a sister-taxon relationship to other O. macrotis. The cranial shape of O. m. gomchee ssp.n. is similar to that of remaining O. macrotis; pelage colouration and ear length differentiate O. m. gomchee ssp.n. from all other representatives of O. macrotis. We hypothesize that pikas from the Great Bend of the Tsangpo River, which were previously assigned to O. forresti, in fact belong to O. macrotis; the correct name for that particular subspecies is therefore amended to O. m. duoxionglaensis. The distributional ranges of O. m. gomchee ssp.n. and O. m. duoxionglaensis are hypothesized to be separated by a broad matrix of unsuitable habitats.

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