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Rana lessonae Camerano 1882

Peter Beerli
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Containing group: Western Palearctic water frogs


A member of the water frog group with green backs which show black spots in females. Males are brightly yellowish-green during mating season. [More to follow.]


In the west it extends to the Atlantic Ocean in France; in the north are a few populations in Sweden; in the northeast the distribution extends beyond St. Petersburg; the southern border is assumed to be the Danube in the east. Problematic is the distribution in Italy. The species is considered to be distributed throughout the Po valley, but seems to be parapatric with an unnamed peninsular taxon (the peninsular non-hybrid, D Nei >= 0.2). In Kalabria, Santucci et al. (pers. comm., 1995) found another hybrid zone (genetic differences between parental taxa are D Nei = 0.4) suggesting that another species is occurring in the southermost Kalabria and Sicily (southern non-hybrid).


The following recordings are short sequences of longer recordings. These files are size reduced (MULAW 8-bit encoded) from 16-bit encoded sound files.

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Valid name: Rana (Pelophylax) lessonae Camerano 1882

Synonyms: Rana esculenta var. sylvaticus Koch 1872, "Rana meridionalis" Lataste 1876, Rana esculenta acutirostris Lessona 1877, Rana esculenta obtusirostris Lessona 1877, Rana esculenta var. lessonae Camerano 1882, "Rana esculenta var. immaculata" Camerano 1882, "Rana esculenta var. maculata" Camerano 1882, "Rana esculenta var. punctata" Camerano 1882, "Rana esculenta var. nigrovittata" Camerano 1882, Rana esculenta var. bolkayi Fejervary 1909, Rana lessonae pannonica Karaman 1948.


Beerli, P. 1994. Genetic isolation and calibration of an average protein clock in western Palearctic water frogs of the Aegean region. Dissertation Universität Zürich 1994. [Summary]

Beerli H. Hotz, H. Tunner, S. Heppich, and T. Uzzell. 1994. Two new water frog species from the Aegean islands Crete and Karpathos (Amphibia, Salientia, Ranidae). Notulae Naturae, Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia 470:1-9.

[see full text]

Berger, L. 1983. Western Palearctic water frogs (Amphibia, Ranidae): Systematics, genetics and population compositions. Experientia 39(2): 127-130.

Dubois, A., and A. Ohler. 1994. Frogs of the subgenus Pelophylax (Amphibia, Anura, genus Rana): a catalogue of available and valid scientific names, with comments on the name-bearing types, complete synonymies. proposed common names, and maps showing all type localities. In: M. Ogielska (Ed.): II International Symposium on Ecology and Genetics of European water frogs, 18-25 September 1994, Wroclaw, Poland. Zoologica Poloniae 39(3-4).

Graf, J.-D. and M. Polls Pelaz. 1989. Evolutionary genetics of the Rana esculenta complex. In: Dawley, R.M. and J.P. Bogart (eds.): Evolution and ecology of unisexual vertebrates. New York State Museum Bulletin 466: 289-302.

Hotz, H. 1983. Genic diversity among water frog genomes inherited with and without recombination. Ph.D. Thesis University of Zürich. pp. 136.

Santucci, F., G. Nascetti, L. Bullini. 1995. Genetic structure of the hybridogenetic Rana esculenta from Italy. Fifth congress of the European Socieity for Evolutionary Biology, Edinburgh 4-8 September 1995. [Abstract].

Information on the Internet

Peter Beerli's Water Frog Info-Pool
Title Illustrations
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Scientific Name Rana lessonae
Location Switzerland
Copyright © 1995 Hansjürg Hotz
About This Page

Peter Beerli
Florida State University, Tallahassee, Florida, USA

All Rights Reserved.

Citing this page:

Beerli, Peter. 1995. Rana lessonae Camerano 1882. Version 20 December 1995 (under construction). http://tolweb.org/Rana_lessonae/17499/1995.12.20 in The Tree of Life Web Project, http://tolweb.org/

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