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Acanthodactylus boskianus (DAUDIN, 1802)

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Higher TaxaLacertidae, Eremiadinae, Sauria, Lacertoidea, Squamata (lizards)
SubspeciesAcanthodactylus boskianus asper (AUDOUIN 1829)
Acanthodactylus boskianus boskianus (DAUDIN 1802)
Acanthodactylus boskianus euphraticus BOULENGER 1919 
Common NamesE: Bosk's Fringe-fingered Lizard, Bosc’s Fringe-toed lizard
G: Boscs Fransenfinger
F: Acanthodactyle de Bosc 
SynonymLacerta boskiana DAUDIN 1802: 188
Lacerta aspera AUDOUIN 1829
Scapteira inaequalis GRAY 1838
Acanthodactylus Boskianus — DUMÉRIL & BIBRON 1839: 278
Acanthodactylus boskianus — ANDERSON 1896: 34
Lacerta longicauda HEMPRICH & EHRENBERG in TORNIER 1899
Acanthodactylus boskianus var. asper — LATASTE 1885
Acanthrodactylus [sic] boskianus — STEINDACHNER 1903: 9
Acanthodactylus boskianus asper — BOULENGER 1920
Acanthodactylus boskianus — LARGEN & SPAWLS 2010: 346
Acanthodactylus boskianus — SCHLEICH, KÄSTLE & KABISCH 1996: 378
Acanthodactylus boskianus — ŠMÍD et al. 2014
Acanthodactylus boskianus — BAR et al. 2021

Acanthodactylus boskianus asper (AUDOUIN 1829)
Lacerta aspera AUDOUIN 1829: 121
Acanthodactylus boskianus var. syriacus BOETTGER 1879: 69
Acanthodactylus boskianus var. asper — FEJERVARY 1927: 516
Acanthodactylus boskianus asper — LOVERIDGE 1936: 61
Acanthodactylus schreiberi syriacus — SCHMIDT 1939
Acanthodactylus boskianus asper — SCHMIDT & MARX 1956
Acanthodactylus boskianus asper — BONS 1959
Acanthodactylus schreiberi syriacus — REED & MARX 1959
Acanthodactylus boskianus asper — SCHNURRENBERGER 1963
Acanthodactylus boskianus asper — PAPENFUSS 1969
Acanthodactylus schreiberi syriacus — HRAOUI-BLOQUET et al. 2002
Acanthodactylus schreiberi syriacus — SINDACO & JEREMČENKO 2008
Acanthodactylus boskianus asper — SINDACO & JEREMČENKO 2008
Acanthodactylus boskianus khattensis TRAPE & TRAPE 2012: 53
Acanthodactylus boskianus nigeriensis TRAPE, CHIRIO & GENIEZ 2012: 50
Acanthodactylus boskianus asper — SINDACO et al. 2014
Acanthodactylus boskianus asper — MILTO 2017

Acanthodactylus boskianus euphraticus BOULENGER 1919
Acanthodactylus boskianus var. euphraticus BOULENGER 1919
Acanthodactylus boskianus euphraticus — SCHMIDT 1939
Acanthodactylus boskianus euphraticus — SINDACO & JEREMČENKO 2008
Acanthodactylus t. euphraticus — MOHAMMED et al. 2017 
DistributionMorocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Libya, Egypt (Nile-delta and parts of the Sinai-Peninsula), Jordan,
Western Sahara, Mauritania, Mali, Niger, N Nigeria, Sudan (Jumhūriyyat), Republic of South Sudan (RSS), Ethiopia (Abyssinia), Eritrea, Chad, Yemen,
Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Oman, Kuwait,
Israel, Syria, Iraq (Euphrat region), Iran, S Turkey

asper: most of range, Morocco, through Egypt (incl. Sinai) to United Arab Emirates etc.

boskianus: Nile Delta, Sinai; Type locality: l’île Saint-Dominque.

euphraticus: Iraq, Iran

khattensis: SE/CE Mauretania; Type locality: “les buissons du lit d’un « khatt » situé au pied du guelb Mohammed Moûloûd (19° 47’ 46’’ N, 14° 25’ 27’’ W) à 8 km au nord-ouest d’Akjoujt en Mauritanie”

nigeriensis: Niger et du Nigeria; Type locality: “près de Birnin-Gaouré (13° 05’ N, 02° 55’ E) au Niger”.

syriacus: Lebanon, Israel; Type locality: Haifa, Israel.  
TypesHolotype: MNHN-RA 2762
Holotype: BMNH 1946.9.3.77 (unclear fide P. Campbell, pers. comm., March 2019) [asper]
Holotype: MNHN 2011.0223, Paratypes : MNHN 2011.0224, IRD TR.1411-1413 [khattensis]
Holotype : MNHN 2011.0273; Paratypes: IRD TR.3653, MNHN 2011.0274, MNHN 2011.0275 [nigeriensis]
Syntypes: BMNH [euphraticus] 
DiagnosisDiagnosis (genus): Occipital absent. Fingers with three or four series of scales. Flat ventrals. Collar present. Toes with more or less developed pectination. Femoral pores present. Parietal foramen present [SALVADOR 1982: 8].

Phylogenetics: A. schreiberi nested within A. b. asper, and the subspecies A. schreiberi syriacus nested within a distinct lineage of A. b. asper (Tamar et al. 2014). Also, A. b. khattensis and A. b. nigeriensis are nested within A.b. asper (K. Tamar, pers. comm., 23 Oct 2014). Psonis et al. 2016) found that the boskianus species group is monophyletic with at least four distinct subclades within A. boskianus, thus indicating that this taxon should be considered as a species complex.

Description: The vertebral dark stripe is simple in A. opheodurus but forked in A. boskianus. The vertebral stripe is forked but light-colored in two geographically adjacent related taxa, A. b. boskianus (Daudin, 1802) of northern Egypt and A. schreiberi syriacus Boettger, 1878 of coastal Israel.

Diagnosis (boskianus): Medium to large size species. Usually four entire supraoculars but, at times, the first one divided. Pectinate anterior border of ear opening. Keeled temporals. Slightly denticulated eyelids. Conspicuous gular fold. Three series of scales on fingers. Ventrals arranged in 10 straight longitudinal rows. Very large, keeled, imbricate dorsals. Granular scalation on sides of the body. Moderate to intense pectination of fourth toe. Large, imbricate, and sharply keeled scales on the upper surface of the tail. (Salvador 1982: 23)

Diagnosis (nigeriensis): “Lacertidé associé aux régions de savane soudano-sahélienne du sud du Niger et du nord du Nigeria, génétiquement distinct des populations du complexe Acanthodactylus boskianus de Mauritanie, d’Afrique du Nord et d’Égypte dont il partage les principales caractéristiques morphologiques (trois rangées d’écailles aux doigts, quatre supraoculaires, écailles des flancs beaucoup plus petites que les écailles médio-dorsales qui sont larges et fortement carénées, quatrième et cinquième supralabiales en contact avec la sous-oculaire), mais caractérisé par sa petite taille (longueur museau-cloaque des adultes comprise entre 50 et 63 mm) et une coloration différente des juvéniles et des femelles qui ne présentent pas de couleurs vives sur la queue” [TRAPÉ et al. 2012].

Diagnosis (khattensis): “lacertidé de l’ouest de la Mauritanie, présentant les principales caractéristiques des espèces et sous-espèces du complexe Acanthodactylus boskianus (trois rangées d’écailles aux doigts, quatre supraoculaires, écailles des flancs beaucoup plus petites que les écailles médio-dorsales, quatrième et cinquième supralabiales en contact avec la sous-oculaire), mais génétiquement distinct des populations de ce complexe d’Égypte, d’Asie, d’Afrique du Nord et des autres régions d’Afrique occidentale. Il est caractérisé par sa grande taille (longueur museau-cloaque des adultes comprise entre 70 et 82 mm), son petit nombre de rangées de dorsales (28-32), la présence de 10 rangées de ventrales et sa coloration particulière.” [TRAPÉ et al. 2012]. 
CommentSynonymy: partly after SALVADOR 1982. Various authors questioned the validity of the 3 subspecies (e.g. SALVADOR 1982, ARNOLD 1984, DISI et al. 2001). For comments on the types of this species see BAUER & GÜNTHER 1995. TAMAR et al. 2014 synonymized syriacus with asper. TAMAR et al. 2016 synonymized A. b. khattensis and A. b. nigeriensis with Acanthodactylus boskianus asper. The Turkish population (A. s. ataturi) is considered as a relict of a previously wider distribution (Psonis et al. 2016).

Type species: Lacerta boskiana DAUDIN 1802: 188 is the type species of the genus Acanthodactylus FITZINGER in WIEGMANN 1834.

Key: Kurnaz & Şahin 2021 provided a key to Acanthodactylus species. In order to distinguish Acanthodactylus ilgazi from other Acanthodactylus species, a discrimination key was devised based on previous studies (Haas, 1957; Haas & Werner 1969; Salvador, 1982; Arnold, 1983; Geniez & Foucart, 1995; Baha El Din, 1996; Rastegar-Pouyani, 1998; Moravec et al., 1999; Meinig & Böhme, 2002; Werner, 2004; Baran et al., 2005; Heidari et al., 2013; Tamar et al., 2017; Miralles et al., 2020). All defined species were divided into two groups according to whether the subocular touches the mouth or not. Since the subocular plate of Acanthodactylus ilgazi touched the mouth, all other specimens (i.e. A. robustus) that had no mouth contact with the subocular plate were going to the number 15 in the key. The remaining 14 species were investigated via other characteristics in the discrimination key (see Kurnaz & Şahin 2021).

Distribution: See map in SMID et al. 2014 for distribution in Iran and map in Burriel-Carranza et al. 2019 for map in UAE. See Bar et al. 2021 for a map.

Phylogenetics: Heidari et al. 2014 presented a phylogeny of Iranian species. 
EtymologyApparently named after Louis Augustin Guillaume Bosc (1759 – 1828), French naturalist and botanist. Daudin only mentions a “naturaliste Bosc” without first names or much other details.

Etymology (khattensis): “en référence au nom local des petits oueds encombrés de végétation où ce lézard abonde dans la région d’Akjoujt.”

Acanthodactylus boskianus euphraticus was named after the Euprates river and region where the species was found. 
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