DNA barcoding has been proposed as a method for species identification. However, this method has been criticised for its over-reliance on a single mitochondrial gene. In this study, four mitochondrial gene regions and one nuclear gene region were used to investigate their different abilities to identify tissue associated with museum specimens of Aethomys chrysophilus, Aethomys ineptus and Micaelamys namaquensis. Aethomys chrysophilus and the more recently elevated A. ineptus are indistinguishable on morphological grounds; however, their ranges are largely parapatric with only one syntopic locality currently known. All of the mitochondrial gene regions were able to separate M. namaquensis from A. chrysophilus and A. ineptus, but they varied in their abilities to resolve differences between A. chrysophilus and A. ineptus. The sequence results identified a specimen from KwaZulu-Natal that was misclassified and should have been identified as A. ineptus. Seven specimens that had not been reclassified following the elevation of A. ineptus to species level were identified as A. ineptus. Individuals of A. chrysophilus from Malawi could not be classified as either A. chrysophilus or A. ineptus, and may be a hybrid or a new, distinct species. This study indicates that DNA barcoding may be used to separate M. namaquensis from A. chrysophilus and A. ineptus, and although it was not able to separate A. chrysophilus and A. ineptus, it did indicate specimens from Malawi may be a new cryptic species.
You have requested a machine translation of selected content from our databases. This functionality is provided solely for your convenience and is in no way intended to replace human translation. Neither BioOne nor the owners and publishers of the content make, and they explicitly disclaim, any express or implied representations or warranties of any kind, including, without limitation, representations and warranties as to the functionality of the translation feature or the accuracy or completeness of the translations.
Translations are not retained in our system. Your use of this feature and the translations is subject to all use restrictions contained in the Terms and Conditions of Use of the BioOne website.
Vol. 51 • No. 1