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Spermophilus xanthoprymnus (Rodentia: Sciuridae)

Mutlu Kart Gür, Hakan Gür
DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1644/864.1 183-194 First published online: 26 July 2010


Spermophilus xanthoprymnus (Bennett, 1835), the Asia Minor ground squirrel, is a group-living, diurnal, obligately hibernating marmotine squirrel. It inhabits the steppes and alpine meadows throughout central lowland and eastern highland Anatolia and adjacent Armenia and northwestern Iran. Its preferred elevation appears to range from about 800 to 2,900 m. The species displays sexual dimorphism in size, with adult males being considerably larger than adult females and exhibits geographic variation in body size. It is presently listed as “Near Threatened” on the 2009 International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources Red List of Threatened Species because of large-scale agricultural activities that result in habitat destruction and fragmentation.

Key words
  • Anatolian ground squirrel
  • annual cycle
  • Asia Minor ground squirrel
  • body-size variation
  • hibernation
  • Marmotini
  • near threatened species
  • phylogeography
  • sciurid
  • Turkey