Alpinoscincus alpinus (GREER, ALLISON & COGGER, 2005)
Can you confirm these amateur observations of Alpinoscincus alpinus?
|Higher Taxa||Scincidae, Eugongylinae (Sphenomorphini), Scincoidea, Sauria, Squamata (lizards)|
|Synonym||Lobulia alpina GREER, ALLISON & COGGER 2005|
Alpinoscincus alpinus — SLAVENKO et al. 2021
|Distribution||Papua New Guinea (Central Province)|
Type locality: Sidibamul, Murray Pass, Wharton ranges, Woitape District, Central Province, Papua New Guinea, 2700-3000 m elevation.
|Types||Holotype: AMS (AM) R 23339|
|Diagnosis||Diagnosis (genus) : Medium-sized (adult SVL 46.1–72.7 mm) terrestrial to semi-arboreal skinks with moderate limbs (forelimbs 27.0–39.8% of SVL, hindlimbs 31.7–48.7% of SVL); small lobules present on anterior edge of ear opening; two pairs of chin shields in medial contact; modally three supralabials posterior to subocular supralabial; chin shields separated from infralabials by a row of genials; lower eyelid scaly; temporal region fragmented (> 3 scales); nasal scale undivided; frontoparietals unfused; viviparous; litter size 1–4.|
Alpinoscincus differs from all other genera by modally having three (vs. two) supralabials posterior to the subocular supralabial. It further differs from Prasinohaema by lacking green blood and tissues, a prehensile tail with a glandular tip, and basally expanded subdigital lamellae. It further differs from Lobulia, Palaia and Papuascincus by having the lower eyelid scaly (vs. lower eyelid with a semi-transparent window), a fragmented (vs. the standard three-scale) temporal region and the chin shields separated from the infralabials by a row of genials (vs. chin shields abutting infralabials). It further differs from Palaia and Papuascincus by having two pairs of chin shields in medial contact (vs. one pair), unfused (vs. fused) frontoparietals and a viviparous (vs. oviparous) reproductive mode. It further differs from Palaia by its longer adult SVL (46.1–72.7 vs. 37.3–41.2 mm) and by lacking basally slightly expanded subidigital lamellae. It further differs from Papuascincus by having an undivided (vs. divided) nasal scale (Slavenko et al. 2021).
Diagnosis: Lobulia alpina differs from other Lobulia in the following combination of characters: three supralabials posterior to the subocular supralabial instead of two; prefrontals usually in contact either directly or through a median azygous scale (83.4 percent) instead of separated; presuboculars modally two; supralabials modally eight, and subdigital lamellae 13-17.
|Comment||Type species: Lobulia alpina GREER, ALLISON & COGGER 2005 is the type species of the genus Alpinoscincus SLAVENKO et al. 2021.|
|Etymology||Named after the high altitude distribution of the species.|
The genus name is a combinatorial noun derived from the Latin adjective alpinus, of high mountains, and Latin noun scincus, a type of lizard, in reference to the extremely high elevations in which species in this genus occur.
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