Genetic relationships of Long-nosed Potoroos Potorous tridactylus (Kerr, 1792) from the Bass Strait Islands, with notes on the subspecies Potorous tridactylus benormi Courtney, 1963
Bass Strait is an important biogeographic barrier for Australian mammals, often resulting in significant genetic differentiation between populations on the mainland and Tasmania for species with a trans-Bassian distribution. King and Flinders Islands, in Bass Strait, are the largest remnants of the land bridge that once linked Tasmania with mainland Australia. Due to their remote locality and habitat loss on the islands since European settlement, little is known about the evolutionary movements of species across the former land bridge. Here we present genetic data, generated from museum skins, on the King and Flinders Island populations of Long-nosed Potoroo, Potorous tridactylus (Kerr, 1792) to investigate their affinities with other populations of this species. We also assessed the validity of the subspecies Potorous tridactylus benormi Courtney, 1963 described from King Island. Analysis of two partial mitochondrial DNA genes (CO1, ND2) indicate that potoroos on King and Flinders Islands are more closely related to Tasmanian rather than mainland potoroo populations. Molecular and morphological data from the holotype and paratype of Potorous tridactylus benormi does not support separate taxonomic status and places it within the Tasmanian subspecies Potorous tridactylus apicalis (Gould, 1851).
Frankham, Greta J., Linda E. Neaves, and Mark D. B. Eldridge. 2020. Genetic relationships of Long-nosed Potoroos Potorous tridactylus (Kerr, 1792) from the Bass Strait Islands, with notes on the subspecies Potorous tridactylus benormi Courtney, 1963. In Papers in Honour of Ken Aplin, ed. Julien Louys, Sue O’Connor, and Kristofer M. Helgen. Records of the Australian Museum 72(5): 263–270.