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Acontias jappi (BROADLEY, 1968)

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Higher TaxaScincidae, Acontinae; Scincoidea, Sauria, Squamata (lizards) 
Subspecies 
Common Names 
SynonymTyphlosaurus lineatus jappi BROADLEY 1968
Typhlosaurus jappi — SCHNEIDER & BAUER 2009
Acontias jappi — LAMB et al. 2010 
DistributionW Zambia, E Angola (Gago Coutinho District

Type locality: Kalabo, Barotseland, Zambia  
Reproductionviviparous 
TypesHolotype: NMZB, previously UM.6757 
CommentTyphlosaurus lineatus jappi was distinguished from the allopatrically distributed nominate form of the species on the basis of fewer well-defined dark longitudinal stripes (2 versus as many as 8, but with only 2-4 distinct), fewer subcaudal scales (22-27 versus 26-35), three chin shields bordering the mental (versus typically 4), and a slightly larger (maximum SVL 188 mm versus 160 mm) and more robust body. However, there is overlap in all of the characters.

T. jappi has a relatively more elongate ocular scale (approximately twice as long as high) than T. linea/us, in which the ocular is scarcely larger than the underlying eye (Fig. 1 in SCHNEIDER & BAUER 2009). It also has an increased number of marginal teeth: 7 maxillary and 10 dentary teeth (n =5) versus 5 and 8 (n =6). Further, it is the only species of Typhtosaurus with more than 7 dentary teeth. Finally, litter size also differs. Four embryos were located in the single gravid female T. jappi examined (Natural History Museum of Zimbabwe, NMZB 10116), whereas T. lineatus lineatus have 1-3 offspring, with a mean litter size of 1.6.

Burrowing, confined to the sandveld.

Morphology: Limbless. 
EtymologyNamed after Latin “linea”, meaning stripe or line. 
References
  • Broadley, D.G. 1968. A review of the African genus Typhlosaurus Wiegmann (Sauria: Scincidae). Arnoldia (Rhodesia) 3 (36): 1-20
  • Lamb, T.; Biswas, S. & Bauer, A.M. 2010. A phylogenetic reassessment of African fossorial skinks in the subfamily Acontinae (Squamata: Scincidae): evidence for parallelism and polyphyly. Zootaxa 2657: 33–46 - get paper here
  • Marques, Mariana P.; Luis M. P. Ceríaco , David C. Blackburn , and Aaron M. Bauer 2018. Diversity and Distribution of the Amphibians and Terrestrial Reptiles of Angola -- Atlas of Historical and Bibliographic Records (1840–2017). Proc. Cal. Acad. Sci. (Ser. 4) 65: 1-501 (Supplement II)
  • Pietersen DW, Pietersen EW, Conradie W. 2017. Preliminary herpetological survey of Ngonye Falls and surrounding regions in south-western Zambia. Amphibian & Reptile Conservation 11(1) [Special Section]: 24–43 (e148 - get paper here
  • Schneider, V. & Bauer, A.M. 2009. Typhlosaurus jappi Broadley, 1968, a Valid Species of Acontine Skink. African Journal of Herpetology 58 (1): 56-58. - get paper here
  • Wagner, Philipp; Donald G. Broadley, and Aaron M. Bauer 2012. A New Acontine Skink from Zambia (Scincidae: Acontias Cuvier, 1817). Journal of Herpetology 46 (4): 494-502. - get paper here
 
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