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Aspidoscelis neavesi COLE, TAYLOR, BAUMANN & BAUMANN, 2014

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Higher TaxaTeiidae, Teiinae, Gymnophthalmoidea, Sauria, Squamata (lizards) 
Subspecies 
Common NamesNeaves' Whiptail Lizard 
SynonymAspidoscelis neavesi COLE, TAYLOR, BAUMANN & BAUMANN 2014 
DistributionUSA ? (no field observation, see comment).  
ReproductionAspidoscelis neavesi is the first known tetraploid amniote that reproduces through parthenogenetic cloning by individual females. Aspidoscelis neavesi originated through hybridization between Aspidoscelis exsanguis (triploid parthenogen) × Aspidoscelis inornata (diploid bisexual or gonochoristic species) in the laboratory. The authors speculate that field-caught tetraploids may be found in the future. 
TypesHolotype. MCZ R-192219 (5 SIMR 8093), a cloned adult female of the F2 laboratory reared generation that also cloned herself at the SIMR. She hatched on August 13, 2008, and her mother was MCZ R-192209 (=SIMR 4919). 
CommentDiagnosis. A species of the Aspidoscelis sexlineata species group as reviewed by Lowe et al. (1970b). The species is distinguished from all others in the genus by the following combination of characters: abruptly enlarged mesoptychials; enlarged postantebrachials; 2 frontoparietals; usually 3 parietals; 4 supraoculars each side; unisexual (only females exist); body with 6 longitudinal pale stripes that fade and can disappear in large adults; hatchlings basically unspotted but adults with pale dots and spots on body; maximum snout-vent length (SVL) about 80 mm; tetraploid number of chromosomes about 91, with 4 haploid sets of the sexlineata species group, including the slightly modified triploid karyotype of some A. exsanguis from Alamogordo (Lutes et al., 2011), and the 3 largest chromosomes being metacentric. 
EtymologyThe specific epithet, a noun in the genitive singular case, honors Dr. William B. Neaves, who was awarded a Ph.D. at Harvard University. Dr. Neaves’ graduate studies on unisexual whiptail lizards (Neaves and Gerald, 1968, 1969; Neaves, 1969, 1971) provided important early insights into the molecular genetics, origins, and speciation of parthenogens through hybridization, as well as the origin of a tetraploid hybrid lizard of A. exsanguis X A. inornata that he discovered in the field in Alamogordo, Otero County, New Mexico, which was the inspiration for the present laboratory hybridization project. 
References
  • Cole, Charles J.; Harry L. Taylor, Diana P. Baumann, and Peter Baumann 2014. Neaves' Whiptail Lizard: The First Known Tetraploid Parthenogenetic Tetrapod (Reptilia: Squamata: Teiidae). Breviora (539): 1-20 - get paper here
  • Kwet, Axel 2015. Aspidoscelis neavesi – eine Rennechse ist die erste im Labor erzeugte Reptilienart. Terraria Elaphe 2015 (3): 8-9 - get paper here
 
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