Freitag, 04 August 2017 14:34

GRISMER, L. L. et al. (2012)


A phylogeny and taxonomy of the Thai-Malay Peninsula Bent-toed Geckos of the Cyrtodactylus pulchellus complex (Squamata: Gekkonidae): combined morphological and molecular analyses with descriptions of seven new species.

Zootaxa 3520: 1–55.


An integrative taxonomic analysis using color pattern, morphology and 1497 base pairs of the ND2 itochondrial gene and its five flanking tRNAs demonstrated that nine monophyletic species-level lineages occur within the Cyrtodactylus pulchellus complex (Cyrtodactylus pulchellus sensu strictu and C. macrotuberculatus) of the Thai-Malay Peninsula that have a sequence divergence between them ranging from 5.9–16.8%. Additionally, each lineage is discretely diagnosable from one another based on morphology and color pattern and most occur in specific geographic regions (upland areas or islands) that prevent or greatly restrict interpopulation gene  flow. Six of these lineages were masquerading under the nomen C. pulchellus and are described as the following: Cyrtodactylus astrum sp. nov. from  northwestern  Peninsular Malaysia and southwestern Thailand; C. langkawiensis sp. nov., at this point endemic to Langkawi Island, Malaysia; C. bintangrendah sp. nov., a lowland  species  surrounding  the  Banjaran  (=mountain  range)  Bintang  of  northwestern Peninsular Malaysia; C. bintangtinggi sp. nov., endemic to the upland regions of the Banjaran Bintang of northwestern Peninsular Malaysia; C. trilatofasciatus sp. nov., endemic to upland regions of Cameron Highlands in the central portion of the Banjaran Titiwangsa in Peninsular Malaysia; and C. stralotitiwangsaensis sp. nov. from the more southerly upland regions of the Banjaran Titiwangsa. An additional species, Cyrtodactylus lekaguli sp. nov. from Satun, Trang, Surat Thani, and Phang-nga provinces in southern Thailand, was identified on the basis of morphology and color pattern and is hypothesized to be part of a clade containing C. astrum sp. nov. and C. langkawiensis sp. nov.

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Review of Teiid Morphology with a Revised Taxonomy and Phylogeny of the Teiidae (Lepidosauria: Squamata)

Zootaxa 3459: 1–156


Despite advances within particular groups, systematics of the Teiidae has long been unsatisfactory, because few morphological characters have been described for this family. Consequently, most species have been assigned to the large, polyphyletic, and poorly defined genera Ameiva and Cnemidophorus. We describe 137 morphological characters and score them for most species of Neotropical Teiidae. Important, but previously undescribed, character suites include pupil shape; the frontal ridge; longitudinal division of the interparietal; the rostral groove; patterns of supraciliary fusion; the preauricular skin fold; the “toothy” first supralabial; modified apical granules; the pectoral sulcus; expansion of scales at the heel; tibiotarsal shields; scales between the digital lamellae along the postaxial edges of the toes; scale surface microstructure of macrohoneycomb, macroridges, or lamellae; distribution patterns and morphology of enticular scale organs; types of epidermal generation glands; and several hemipenial structures. We propose a new taxonomy of the Teiidae based on recovered evolutionary history and numerous morphological characters surveyed in this study. We recognize three subfamilies: Callopistinae new subfamily, Teiinae Estes et al., and Tupinambinae Estes et al. To resolve polyphyly of Ameiva and Cnemidophorus, we erect four new genera for various groups of Neotropical Teiidae: Ameivula new genus, Aurivela new genus, Contomastix new genus, and Medopheos new genus. We resurrect Holcosus Cope from the synonymy of Ameiva and Salvator Duméril and Bibron from the synonymy of Tupinambis. On the basis of shared derived characters, we propose new species groups of our redefined Ameiva and Cnemidophorus. We incorporate our new characters into a key to the genera and species groups of Teiidae. A phylogenetic hypothesis of Teiidae based on morphological characters differs substantially from hypotheses based on mitochondrial DNA. The phylogeny based on morphology is consistent with well-established biogeographic patterns of Neotropical vertebrates and explains extreme morphological divergence in such genera as Kentropyx and Aurivela.

Freigegeben in H

Cryptic, Sympatric Diversity in Tegu Lizards of the Tupinambis teguixin Group (Squamata, Sauria, Teiidae) and the Description of Three New Species.

PLoS ONE 11(8): e0158542.


Tegus of the genera Tupinambis and Salvator are the largest Neotropical lizards and the most exploited clade of Neotropical reptiles. For three decades more than 34 million tegu skins were in trade, about 1.02 million per year. The genus Tupinambis is distributed in South America east of the Andes, and currently contains four recognized species, three of which are found only in Brazil. However, the type species of the genus, T. teguixin, is known from Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, French Guyana, Guyana, Peru, Suriname, Trinidad and Tobago, and Venezuela (including the Isla de Margarita). Here we present molecular and morphological evidence that this species is genetically divergent across its range and identify four distinct clades some of which are sympatric. The occurrence of cryptic sympatric species undoubtedly exacerbated the nomenclatural problems of the past. We discuss the species supported by molecular and morphological evidence and increase the number of species in the genus Tupinambis to seven. The four members of the T. teguixin group continue to be confused with Salvator merianae, despite having a distinctly different morphology and reproductive mode. All members of the genus Tupinambis are CITES Appendix II. Yet, they continue to be heavily exploited, under studied, and confused in the minds of the public, conservationists, and scientists.

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Sonntag, 23 Juli 2017 15:25

STOW, A. J. & SUNNUCKS, P. (2004)

STOW, A. J. & SUNNUCKS, P. (2004a)

High mate and site fidelity in Cunningham's skinks (Egernia cunninghami) in natural and fragmented habitat.

Molecular Ecology 13 (2): 419-430. 10.1046/j.1365-294X.2003.02061.x


While habitat alteration has considerable potential to disrupt important within-population processes, such as mating and kin structure, via changed patterns of dispersal, this has rarely been tested. We are investigating the impact of anthropogenic habitat alteration on the population biology of the rock-dwelling Australian lizard Egernia cunninghami on the Central Tablelands of New South Wales, Australia, by comparing deforested and adjacent naturally vegetated areas. The novel analyses in this paper, and its companion, build on previous work by adding a new replicate site, more loci and more individuals. The additional microsatellite loci yield sufficient power for parentage analysis and the sociobiological inferences that flow from it. Genetic and capture–mark–recapture techniques were used to investigate mate and site fidelity and associated kin structure. Analyses of the mating system and philopatry using 10 microsatellite loci showed high levels of site fidelity by parents and their offspring in natural and deforested habitats. Parentage assignment revealed few individuals with multiple breeding partners within seasons and fidelity of pairs across two or more breeding seasons was typical. Despite reduced dispersal, increased group sizes and significant, dramatic increases in relatedness among individuals within rock outcrops in deforested areas, no significant differences between deforested and natural areas were evident in the degree of multiple mating or philopatry of breeding partners within and across seasons. With the exception that there was a significantly higher proportion of unmated males in the deforested area, the social and mating structure of this species has so far been surprisingly robust to substantial perturbation of dispersal and relatedness structure. Nonetheless, approximately 10-fold elevation of mean pairwise relatedness in the deforested areas has great potential to increase inbred matings, which is investigated in the companion paper.


STOW, A. J. & SUNNUCKS, P. (2004b)

Inbreeding avoidance in Cunningham's skinks (Egernia cunninghami) in natural and fragmented habitat.

Molecular Ecology 13 (2): 443-447. 10.1046/j.1365-294X.2003.02060.x


Habitat fragmentation/alteration has been proposed as a distinct process threatening the viability of populations of many organisms. One expression of its impact may be the disruption of core population processes such as inbreeding avoidance. Using the experimental design outlined in our companion paper, we report on the impact of habitat alteration (deforestation) on inbreeding in the rock-dwelling Australian lizard Egernia cunninghami. Ten microsatellite loci were used to calculate relatedness coefficients of potential and actual breeding pairs, and to examine mate-choice and heterozygosity. Despite significantly less dispersal and higher within-group relatedness between potential mates in deforested than in natural habitats, this did not result in significantly more inbred matings. Average relatedness amongst breeding pairs was low, with no significant difference between natural and fragmented populations in relatedness between breeding pairs, or individual heterozygosity. Active avoidance of close kin as mates was indicated by the substantially and significantly lower relatedness in actual breeding pairs than potential ones. These facts, and heterozygote excesses in all groups of immature lizards from both habitats, show that E. cunninghami maintained outbreeding in the face of increased accumulation of relatives.

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Distribution and conservation of Dalmatolacerta oxycephala (Duméril & Bibron, 1839) in Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Distribucija i zaštita Dalmatolacerta oxycephala (Duméril & Bibron, 1839) u Hrvatskoj i Bosni i Hercegovini.

Hyla 2014 (2): 20-33. ISSN: 1848-2007


The sharp snouted rock lizard, Dalmatolacerta oxycephala, is an endemic lizard of the Balkan Peninsula with 70% of its range found in Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina (B&H). The herpetological literature surprisingly yields scarce localized data. In this paper we summarize most, if not all, records found in literature, data from museum collections, our own field surveys and records of field researchers with reliable knowledge of D. oxycephala. All literature and new data are plotted and an updated distribution map for Croatia and B&H is given. The sharp snouted rock lizard occurs continuously over the southern areas of the region with new records increasing the known distribution towards the north and into the high mountainous regions. The species occupies a very wide set of habitats, from rocky shrubs at sea level (on islands) up to rocky mountain cliffs and gorges at 1400 m a.s.l. Overall seasonal activity was highest from April to June with strong affiliation to warm and dry habitats. The species has a large range, it is still very abundant and there is no direct evidence of population decline, therefore its IUCN regional status for Croatia should remain least concerned (LC) and near threatened (NT) for B&H.

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Samstag, 15 Juli 2017 09:56


Integrative Approaches to the Systematics and Conservation of the Reptiles of the Cape Verde Islands.

PhD Thesis. Departamento de Biologia Faculdade de Ciências da Universidade do Porto



Two of the main sensitivities of Conservation Biogeography are the inadequacies in taxonomic and chorological data, the so-called Linnean and Wallacean shortfalls, respectively. These shortfalls increase in the more remote areas such as oceanic islands. This thesis contributed to dilute those shortfalls in one of those remote areas, the Cape Verde Islands, for one of its least studied group, the reptiles.The specific goals of this thesis were related to answering to what diversity occurs there and to address putative biogeographic factors that explain why diversity is unevenly distributed. Then, it is aimed to answer where this biodiversity can be found and, based on all the gathered data, to plan how to better protect it at different levels.

First, the phylogeographic patterns of terrestrial reptiles were studied to identify an introduced agamid and cryptic endemic taxa of the three genera (Hemidactylus, Tarentola and Chioninia) and to clarify their systematics. The new introduced taxon in Cape Verde was identified as Agama agama. Also, some endemic subspecies were upgraded to the specific status and three new cryptic species (Hemidactylus lopezjuradoi, Tarentola bocageiand T. fogoensis) and subspecies (Chioninia vaillanti xanthotis, C. spinalis boavistensis and C. s. santiagoensis) were described using an integrative approach combining morphological, genetic and population analyses. These studies highlighted the usefulness of integrative datasets in the fields of Taxonomy and Phylogeography and how they can improve the performance of taxa estimations. In addition, the origin of the introduced Agama and the colonisation patterns of the endemic taxa were inferred and several historical and environmental factors, such as the Pleistocene sea-level falls and altitude, were related with the uneven distribution of diversity at intraspecific level. Low intraspecific divergence between reptile lineages of the same island has been explained by the recent volcanic activity and high ecological stress that could lead to population extinctions, and the low habitat diversity within some islands that could restrain opportunities for allopatric diversification.

Secondly, extensive sampling and bibliographic chorological data were compiled to produce and updated distribution atlas for all taxa addressing doubtful or erroneous records and to develop predictive maps of occurrence based on ecological niche-based models for most of the endemic taxa. This data also allowed the detection of the wide-spreading of the introduced H. angulatus in Santiago and Boavista and the colonisation of two new islands by the exotic H. mabouia. In addition, it allowed updating the conservation status for the endemic taxa showing that around half of them are threatened under the IUCN criteria and that the most frequent classifying criterion was related to restricted geographic range. The most pervasive threats identified are related to natural disasters, as droughts and volcanic activity, intrinsic factors, such as low population densities and restricted range, and introduced species.

Finally, this work also demonstrated how ecological niche-based models are useful tools to infer ranges on relatively under-sampled and remote areas with high accuracies and how they can be applied to conservation, maximizing efficiency of reserve designs. Results depicted that in Santa Luzia, Branco, Raso, Sal, Boavista, Maio and Rombos designation of new protected areas is not a priority since the ones that are going to be implemented will reach the conservation targets for all identified evolutionary significant units of those islands and islets. On the other hand, new or modified reserves should be implemented on the remaining islands to cover all identified lineages of Cape Verdean reptiles. This measure is especially important in Fogo and Brava, where no planning unit selected by the area prioritisation scenarios is within the protected areas limits and no protected area is planned, respectively.
Altogether, this work exemplifies the usefulness of integrating different disciplines to more effectively allowing systematic conservation planning of biodiversity.

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A review of the African red–flanked skinks of the Lygosoma fernandi (BURTON, 1836) species group (Squamata: Scincidae) and the role of climate change in their speciation.

Zootaxa 2050: 1–30. ISSN 1175-5326.


We present an analysis of the morphometric and genetic variability of Lygosoma fernandi. Geographical variation and taxonomic consequences are discussed and Lepidothyris Cope, 1892 is resurrected as genus for the L. fernandi species group. The results show that Lepidothyris fernandi sensu lato is a species complex, which comprises an eastern and a western species. Each of them has a further subspecies of its own, and a third distinct species is present in southwestern Central Africa. The morphological and genetic differences between these taxa are analyzed resulting in the description of two new taxa, and the resurrection of two more taxa.

Freigegeben in W

The reproduction and husbandry of the Water monitor Varanus salvator at the Gladys Porter Zoo, Brownsville.

Int. Zoo Yb. 31: 124-130.


Es wird über die Erfahrungen bei der Haltung und Zucht von Bindenwaranen während 14 Jahren berichtet.

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Dienstag, 11 Juli 2017 09:38

HORN, H.-G. (1980)

Bisher unbekannte Details zur Kenntnis von Varanus varius auf Grund von feldherpetologischen und terraristischen Beobachtungen (Reptilia: Sauria: Varanidae)

Salamandra 16 (1): 1-18.


Die gebänderte Form von Varanus varius ist keine distinkte Unterart. Durch Bestimmung der Geschlechtszugehörigkeit von 22 Exemplaren der bellii-Phase wird nachgewiesen, daß Warane der bellii-Phase stets männlichen Geschlechts sind. Es handelt sich also um eine geschlechtsgebundene Farbmutante. Verschiedene Beobachtungen zum Verhalten des Buntwarans im Freien werden mitgeteilt. Ebenso werden Beiträge zum Verhalten in Gefangenschaft geliefert; so wird beispielsweise über eine selten eingenommene Drohhaltung des Buntwarans berichtet. Verschiedene
Situationen des Verhaltens werden durch Fotos dokumentiert. Ferner wird das in der Literatur verstreute Material zur Fortpflanzung von V. varius kompiliert und kritisch gesichtet.

Freigegeben in H
Montag, 10 Juli 2017 16:40

BENNETT, D. (2014)

A Dubious Account of Breeding Varanus olivaceus in Captivity at the Paradise Reptile Zoo in Mindoro, Philippines.

Biawak, 8(1), pp. 12-14
© 2014 by International Varanid Interest Group


Varanus  olivaceus is one of the most valuable monitor lizards in wildlife trade and considered vulnerable throughout its range.  A published report claiming “the world’s first successful breeding of V. olivaceus” is reviewed critically in the light of established facts about the reproduction of this species in captivity, and experience of the establishment in question in the year of the supposed breeding.  Regulatory authorities and peer reviewers should require unambiguous proof of captive breeding success before accepting such claims in the future.

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