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Brachymeles miriamae (HEYER, 1972)

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Higher TaxaScincidae, Scincinae, Scincoidea, Sauria, Squamata (lizards)
Common NamesE: Miriam's Skink
G: Miriams Skink 
SynonymDavewakeum miriamae HEYER 1972
Davewakeum miriamae — GREER 2002
Brachymeles miriamae — SILER et al. 2011
Davewakeum miriamae — CHAN-ARD et al. 2015: 136
Brachymeles miriamae — COTA et al. 2022 
DistributionThailand (Nakhon Ratchasima Province)

Type locality: Khao Saton, 300 m above the Kasetsart University Forestry station, 60 km S of Nakhon Ratchasima on Highway 304, Amphoe Pak Thong Chai, Changwat Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand.  
Reproductionviviparous (phylogenetic imputation, fide Zimin et al. 2022) 
TypesHolotype: FMNH 182550, but THNHM 20240 according to Cota et al. 2022. 
DiagnosisDiagnosis (genus and species): The only scincine genera in which some or all of the species are limbless are: Barkudia, Brachymeles, Cryptoposcincus, Davewakeum,Grandidierina, Malacontias, Melanoseps, Nessia, Ophiomorus, Paracontias, Pseudoacontias, Scelotes, Scolecoseps, Sepsophis, Typhlacontias, Voeltzkowia. Barkudia and Sepsophis differ from Davewakeum in having an external ear. The remainder of the genera either lack an external ear or the character is variable among species within a genus. Ophiomorus has a transparent disk in the lower eyelid. Davewakeum has a thickened, opaque lower eyelid. Brachymeles, Melanoseps, Scelotes, Scolecoseps, and Typhlacontias have supranasal scales:Davewakeum lacks supranasal scales. Cryptoposcincus, Grandidierina, Malacontias, Nessia, Paracontias, Pseudoacontias, and Voeltzkowia lack prefrontal scales, Davewakeum has prefrontal scales [from HEYER 1972]. 
CommentLimb morphology: Limbless.

Type Species: Davewakeum miriamae HEYER 1972 is the type species of the genus Davewakeum HEYER 1972, which nests within Brachymeles, at least when B. apus is included (e.g. Zheng & Wiens 2016).

Habitat: semifossorial and typically found in dry, rotting material inside or underneath decaying logs or in loose soil, forest floor detritus, and leaf litter of lowland forest. 
EtymologyThe species is named after the author’s wife, Miriam. 
  • Beolens, Bo; Michael Watkins, and Michael Grayson 2011. The Eponym Dictionary of Reptiles. Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, USA - get paper here
  • Chan-ard, T., Parr, J.W.K. & Nabhitabhata, J. 2015. A field guide to the reptiles of Thailand. Oxford University Press, NY, 352 pp. [see book reviews by Pauwels & Grismer 2015 and Hikida 2015 for corrections] - get paper here
  • Cota, M., Makchai, S., & Pongcharoen, C. 2022. Updated Catalogue of the Amphibian and Reptile Type Specimens of the Natural History Museum, National Science Museum, Thailand. Thai Specimens 21: 311––5407
  • Greer, A.E. 2002. The loss of the external ear opening in scincid lizards. Journal of Herpetology 36 (4): 544-555 - get paper here
  • Heyer, W.R. 1972. A new limbless skink (Reptilia: Scincidae) from Thailand with comments on the generic status of the limbless skinks of southeast Asia. Fieldiana: Zoology 58 (10): 109-129 - get paper here
  • Siler, Cameron D.; Arvin C. Diesmos, Angel C. Alcala and Rafe M. Brown 2011. Phylogeny of Philippine slender skinks (Scincidae: Brachymeles) reveals underestimated species diversity, complex biogeographical relationships, and cryptic patterns of lineage diversification. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 59 (1): 53-65 - get paper here
  • Staub, Nancy L. and Rachel Lockridge Mueller 2017. David Burton Wake. Copeia 105 (2): 415-426 - get paper here
  • Zimin, A., Zimin, S. V., Shine, R., Avila, L., Bauer, A., Böhm, M., Brown, R., Barki, G., de Oliveira Caetano, G. H., Castro Herrera, F., Chapple, D. G., Chirio, L., Colli, G. R., Doan, T. M., Glaw, F., Grismer, L. L., Itescu, Y., Kraus, F., LeBreton 2022. A global analysis of viviparity in squamates highlights its prevalence in cold climates. Global Ecology and Biogeography, 00, 1–16 - get paper here
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