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Comments on the Taxonomy and Geographic Distribution of Some North American Rabbits
written by "Kelson, Keith R."
...f No. 208 are either individual variations or features peculiar to the population of Sylvilagus floridanus in the Datil Mountains. [Pg 56] Sylvilagus floridanus robustus Bailey 1905. Lepus pinetis robustus V. Bailey, N. Amer. Fauna, 25:159, October 24. Nelson (N. Amer. Fauna, 29:194–195, August 31, 1909) described specimens from the Big Bend area of Texas. This was the only area from which Nelson had specimens. Our examination of these same specimens indicates that his description of them was accurate. Davis and Robertson (Jour. Mamm., 25:271, September 8, 1944) recorded a specimen, under the name Sylvilagus robustus, from "The Bowl, Guadalupe Mountains, Culberson County, Texas." Our examination of the skull of this specimen (♀ adult, No. 658, Mus. Zool., Louisiana State University) indicates that it is, among named kinds of rabbits, best referred to robustus. The specimen is morphologically as well as geographically intermediate between S. f. cognatus and S. robustus. This morphological intermediacy is illustrated by certain of the following cranial measurements of three adult females: No. 108695 (robustus), Chisos Mts.; No. 658 from the Guadalupe Mts.; and No. 128651, NE slope Capitan Mts. Basilar length, 59.2, 54.2, 54.4; length of nasals, 33.9, 31.1, 32.2; breadth of rostrum above premolars, 19.3, 17.5, 17.0; depth of rostrum in front of premolars, 15.8, 14.8, 14.0; interorbital breadth, 20.4, 19.1, 19.7; parietal breadth, 27.2, 27.1, 26.5; diameter of bulla, 13.3, 12.2, 10.7. Considering the intermediate nature of specimen No. 648, and the kind and amount of difference between Sylvilagus floridanus cognatus and S. robustus, it seems appropriate to us to use the name-combination Sylvilagus floridanus robustus. Actual intergradation, in the sense of interbreeding between individuals of a continuously distributed population of animals, probably does not occur regularly between S. f. cognatus and S. f. robustus ...

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