Zoological Studies

Vol. 61, 2022

(update: 2022.1.3)

Historical Biogeography of the Leptodactylus fuscus Group (Anura, Leptodactylidae): Identification of Ancestral Areas and Events that Modeled their Distribution

Matías E. Cáffaro1, Regina G. Medina2,3,*, María L. Ponssa4, and Juan M. Díaz Gómez1,5

1Instituto de Bio y Geociencias del Noroeste Argentino (CONICET-UNSa), Avenida 9 de julio 14, CP 4405, Rosario de Lerma, Salta, Argentina. E-mail: caffaromatias32@gmail.com (Cáffaro)
2Instituto de Biodiversidad Neotropical (CONICET- UNT), Horco Molle, Yerba Buena, Tucumán, Argentina. Cátedra de Biología Animal, Facultad de Ciencias Naturales, U.N.T. Miguel Lillo 205, San Miguel de Tucumán, Argentina. * Correspondence: E-mail: regina.g.medina@gmail.com (Medina)
3Departamento de Ecología, Facultad de Ciencias Biológicas, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, Santiago, Chile.
4Unidad Ejecutora Lillo (CONICET-FML). Miguel Lillo 251, San Miguel de Tucumán, Argentina. E-mail: mlponssa@hotmail.com (Ponssa)
5Cátedra de Diversidad Biológica IV, Facultad de Ciencias Naturales, Universidad Nacional de Salta, Salta, Argentina. E-mail: jmdiaz@unsa.edu.ar (Gómez)

Received 21 March 2021 / Accepted 20 December 2021
Communicated by Sheng-Feng Shen

The objective of the present study was to reconstruct the biogeographic history of the monophyletic group of frogs Leptodactylus fuscus. We carried out two complementary historical biogeographic approaches: one estimates the ancestral areas with the statistical dispersion and vicariance method (S-DIVA). The other detects disjoint distributions among sister groups, which provides information about barriers that separate populations through a spatial analysis of vicariance (VIP method). For that, we used a database of species presence records and a topology of a phylogenetic cladogram, both obtained from updated published data that incorporates the current phylogenetic, taxonomic and distributional arrangements for the group. For the analysis of ancestral areas, the following subregions of the L. fuscus group distribution area were used: Caribbean, Chacoan, Parana, Amazonian and North American Pacific. The optimal reconstruction obtained with S-DIVA showed five vicariance events, two extinctions and 50 dispersals. The spatial analysis of vicariance revealed 19 disjointed sibling nodes and two distributions on nodes removed in the consensus tree. The results suggest that the ancestor of the Leptodactylus fuscus group occupied large areas within the Amazon and Chacoan subregions. Due to several dispersal events, the ancestor distribution range may have expanded to the Caribbean subregion. This expansion could have occurred during wetter periods, when forests were more extensive, which would have allowed the invasion of open habitats within humid forest systems. It is important to note that ecological factors and marine transgressions that occurred during the Miocene could have had a great influence on the current distribution of the group.

Key words: Ancestor, Biogeographic methods, Miocene, Vicariance, Distribution.

Citation: Cáffaro ME, Medina RG, Ponssa ML, Díaz Gómez JM. 2022. Historical biogeography of the Leptodactylus fuscus group (Anura, Leptodactylidae): identification of ancestral areas and events that modeled their distribution. Zool Stud 61:0e.

Supplementary materials: Table S1 | Table S2 | Table S3 | Fig. S1