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  Supporting the Sustainable Management of Amphibian and Reptile Biodiversity

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The Mexican region provides habitat for over 849 species of reptiles and amphibians. Here Amphibian and Reptile Conservation journal presents conservation re-assessments for the region based on the EVS measure in two parts. Other articles include taxonomic reevaluation and conservation assessment of the common cantil, Agkistrodon bilineatus (Squamata: Viperidae) and the beaded lizard, Heloderma horridum (Squamata: Helodermatidae)

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 Mexico Cover  


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Inside cover

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Table of Contents

A conservation reassessment of the reptiles of Mexico based on the EVS measure. 2013. Larry David Wilson, Vicente Mata-Silva, Jerry D. Johnson. Amphibian & Reptile Conservation 7(1):1-47. 

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 Trachemys gaigeae  Xenosaurus_tzacualtipantecus

Left: Trachemys gaigeae, Photo by Vicente Mata-Silva. Right:Xenosaurus tzacualtipantecus, Photo by Christian Berriozabal-Islas.

Summary: Summary: We reassess the conservation status of the reptile fauna of Mexico based on the use of the EVS (Envrionmental Vulnerability Score) Measure. We also update the content of the reptile fauna from that indicated in the book Conservation of Mesoamerican Amphibian and Reptiles (2010) to 849 species. Our results very widely from those obtained during an IUCN workshop held in 2005. Based on these results, we provide a set of eight recommendations and conclusions of importance to individuals dedicated to reversing trends of environmental degradation and biodiversity decline in Mexico.

A taxonomic reevaluation and conservation assessment of the common cantil, Agkistrodon bilineatus (Squamata: Viperidae): a race against time. 2013.  Louis W. Porras, Larry D. Wilson, Gordon W. Schuett, Randall S. Reiserer. Amphibian & Reptile Conservation 7(1): 48–73.

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 Agkistrodon bilineatus  Agkistrodon bilineatus russeolus

Left: Agkistrodon bilineatus, Photo by Javier Alvarado. Right:A. russeolus,Photo by Kevin Zansler, courtesy of Robert A. Thomas.

Summary: Several lines of evidence suggest that populations of cantils (Agkistrodon bilineatus, A. taylori) are in decline. Pronounced differences in conservation assessments (IUCN, Environmental Vulnerability Scores) led us to conduct a taxonomic reassessment of the common cantil (A. bilineatus), to determine if the recognized subspecies merit specific status. Based on morphological, biogeographical, and DNA-based evidence we elevate the three previously recognized subspecies of A. bilineatus to full species. Given this taxonomic reassessment, we examine the conservation status of the newly elevated taxa and provide conservation recommendations.


Taxonomic reassessment and conservation status of the beaded lizard, Heloderma horridum (Squamata: Helodermatidae). 2013. Randall S. Reiserer, Gordon W. Schuett, Daniel D. Beck. Amphibian & Reptile Conservation 7(1): 74–96.

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  Heloderma horridum xxx  Heloderma charlesbogerti
 Left: Heloderma horridum,  Photo by Javier Alvarado. Right: H. c  harlesbogerti, Photo by Daniel Ariano-Sánchez. 

Summary: The beaded lizard (Heloderma horridum) is threatened by human persecution, habitat degradation, and recent climate change. Recent DNA-based studies of the beaded lizard suggest that the current use of subspecies underestimates their biodiversity and that species status is warranted. Based on multiple lines of evidence, including a review of the use of subspecies in taxonomy, we elevate the four subspecies of beaded lizards to full species: Heloderma alvarezi (Chiapan beaded lizard), H. charlesbogerti (Guatemalan beaded lizard), H. exasperatum (Río Fuerte beaded lizard), and H. horridum (Mexican beaded lizard). Finally, we propose a series of research programs and make conservation recommendations.


A reassessment of the conservation status of the amphibians of Mexico based on the EVS measure. 2013. Larry D. Wilson, Jerry D. Johnson, Vincente Mata-Silva Amphibian & Reptile Conservation 7(1): 97–127. 

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  Pseudoeurycea naucampatepetl  xxx   Craugastor hobartsmithi

Left: Pseudoeurycea naucampatepetl, Photo by James Hanken. Right: Craugastor hobartsmithi, Photo by Iván Trinidad Ahumada-Carrillo.

Summary: Global amphibian population decline is an environmental super-problem with broad impact on the diverse and highly endemic-rich Mexican amphibian fauna. Results using the Environmental Vulnerability Score algorithm demonstrate that this fauna is highly imperiled, just like the Mexican reptile fauna, as illustrated in a companion paper in the Special Mexico Issue. A major paradigm shift in human thought and action will be necessary for this problem to be resolved. Accordingly, we provide five broad-based recommendations.


Patterns of physiographic distribution and conservation status of the herpetofauna of Michoacán, Mexico. 2013. Javier Alvarado-Díaz, Ireri Suazo-Ortuño, Larry D. Wilson, Oscar Medina-Aguilar. Amphibian & Reptile Conservation 7(1): 128–171.

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  Crotalus tancitarensis xx   Incilius pissinus
Left:  Crotalus tancitarensis, Photo by Javier Alvarado-Díaz. Right:  Incilius pissinus, Photo by Oscar Medina-Aguilar. 

Summary: Within highly biodiverse Mexico, the state of Michoacán is a major center of herpetofaunal diversity and endemicity, with a higher proportion of endemicity (66.0%) than that reported for the country as a whole. The herpetofauna of the state consists of 215 species, including 54 amphibians and 161 reptiles, classified in 96 genera and 38 families. We examined the physiographic distribution of the herpetofauna of Michoacán and found that among the five recognized physiographic provinces, almost one-half of these species occur in a single province. The largest number of species is found in the Sierra Madre del Sur, with slightly fewer encountered in the Balsas-Tepalcatepec Depression and the Transverse Volcanic Axis. We analyzed the conservation status of the state’s herpetofauna using the EVS measure, and concluded that about 40% of the species are categorized at the highest level of environmental vulnerability. We provide seven recommendations for the protection of Michoacán’s herpetofauna in perpetuity.



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     Dr Robert Browne

    Dr. Robert Browne Chairperson

    Dr. Browne established the Internet based ARC in 2011 and expanded it globally in 2013. Robert is committed to achieving the ARC's goal to provide for the sustainable management of amphibians and reptiles. He has a wide international experience in herpetological conservation and has published over 40 scientific articles on amphibian and reptile conservation. see Biography