The Madrean Archipelago in southern Arizona and southwestern New Mexico consists of 22 mountain ranges south of the Mogollon Rim. Herpetofaunal lists for these ranges and a segment of the rim were constructed based on museum specimens from Madrean evergreen woodland, petran montane conifer forest, and interior chaparral. Few or no species have been recorded from these communities in the Sierrita, Little Dragoon, and Big Hatchet mountains, emphasizing the need for additional sampling in the archipelago. A total of 83 species are found in the remaining 20 ranges, with lizards (28) and snakes (35) predominating. No two mountain ranges had the same herpetofauna. Species richness varies from 15 to 44 (mean 28.1). Phenetic analyses of herpetofaunal similarity among the ranges identify three groups: a northern group with eight ranges from the Rincon Mountains to the Pinaleño Mountains to the Sierra Ancha; a southwestern group consisting of the Baboquivari, Santa Rita, Pajarito, and Patagonia mountains; and a southeastern group with seven ranges from the Huachuca and Whetstone mountains to the Animas Mountains; the Mogollon Rim segment is placed as the first “branch” of the phenogram. The analyses place the Patagonia Mountains in the SW group and the Huachuca Mountains in the SE group, although the two are connected by woodland. The Madrean line separating the northern group from the two southern groups approximates the southern limit of interior chaparral. The ranges of the southwestern group are in contact with semitropical Sonoran desert scrub at low elevations, whereas Chihuahuan desert scrub and semidesert grassland surround the southeastern ranges. With few exceptions, published studies of phylogeography within species suggest that divergence among montane populations in the archipelago does not predate the Pleistocene. Phylogeographic analyses using nuclear and mitochondrial gene sequences and including all ranges of the Madrean Archipelago inhabited by a species are needed to determine the extent to which shared historic biogeographic events may underlie the groups of mountain ranges identified on the basis of herpetofaunal similarities in this study.
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Vol. 2014 • No. 3810