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Acontias schmitzi WAGNER, BROADLEY & BAUER, 2012

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Higher TaxaScincidae, Acontiinae (Acontidae), Scincoidea, Sauria, Squamata (lizards)
Common Names 
SynonymAcontias schmitzi WAGNER, BROADLEY & BAUER 2012
Acontias schmitzi — PIETERSEN et al. 2021
Acontias schmitzi — ZHAO et al. 2023 

Type locality: Kataba Reserve (15°23.015’S, 23°23.729’E), near Mongu (Western Province, formerly Barotseland), Zambia.  
TypesHolotype: ZFMK 91579, collected by Jean-Luc Meier (between July and August, 2000); donated by Hynek Burda and Rainer Hutterer, December 2010. 
DiagnosisDiagnosis: A medium-sized limbless species of the genus Acontias, with the eyes covered by more than one scale, no ear openings, clear scale covering the pineal foramen. It is distinguishable from all other species by the combination of the concealed eye, four chin shields bordering the mental, 14 scale rows at midbody, 173 ventral scales (from chin shield to cloaca), and a color pattern characterized by a dark dorsum and a pale ventrum. 
CommentSimilar species: A. jappi

Abundance: only known from the type specimen (Meiri et al. 2017). 
EtymologyNamed after Dr. Andreas Schmitz, curator of the herpetological collection of the Museum d'histoire Naturelle, Geneva, Switzerland, for his outstanding knowledge on scincid lizards; and in the case of the first author, for Dr. Schmitz's field companionship in Zambia. 
  • Böhme, Wolfgang 2014. Herpetology in Bonn. Mertensiella 21. vi + 256 pp. - get paper here
  • Meiri, Shai; Aaron M. Bauer, Allen Allison, Fernando Castro-Herrera, Laurent Chirio, Guarino Colli, Indraneil Das, Tiffany M. Doan, Frank Glaw, Lee L. Grismer, Marinus Hoogmoed, Fred Kraus, Matthew LeBreton, Danny Meirte, Zoltán T. Nagy, Cristiano d 2017. Extinct, obscure or imaginary: the lizard species with the smallest ranges. Diversity and Distributions - get paper here
  • 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
  • Pietersen, Darren, Verburgt, Luke & Davies, John 2021. Snakes and other reptiles of Zambia and Malawi. Struik Nature / Penguin Random House South Africa, 376 pp., ISBN 9781775847373
  • 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
  • Zhao, Z., Conradie, W., Pietersen, D.W., Jordaan, A., Nicolau, G., Edwards, S., Riekert, S., Heideman, N. 2023. Diversification of the African legless skinks in the subfamily Acontinae (Family Scincidae). Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution - get paper here
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