Genetic networks in the Congolian forests: Unexplored biodiversity archive, herpetological aspect (2023–2025)

Číslo projektu 23-07331S
I. číslo G353
Období 1. 1. 2023 — 31. 12. 2025

The rainforests of the Congo Basin are the least known terrestrial ecosystem, despite being the second largest tropical forest in the world. Information on the phylogeography of the fauna of the Congolian rainforests, especially the central part, is very limited. Knowledge of the biodiversity richness is also insufficient, as evidenced by descriptions of new charismatic taxa in recent years. This project aims to explore genomic variation of amphibians and reptiles in the Congo Basin, with a special focus on the Central Congolian rainforests. Geographic genetic variation will be studied by comparing multiple taxa with different ecologies to infer common or idiosyncratic phylogeographic patterns of these model rainforest vertebrates and to identify biogeographic breaks, including potential riverine barriers. Methods accounting for gene flow will reveal genetic and species networks. Evaluation of genomic architecture, diversity and phylogenetic relationships will allow us to identify and describe potential overlooked species diversity.