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Chalcides minutus CAPUTO, 1993

IUCN Red List - Chalcides minutus - Vulnerable, VU

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Higher TaxaScincidae, Scincinae, Scincoidea, Sauria, Squamata (lizards)
Common Names 
SynonymChalcides (chalcides) minutus CAPUTO 1993: 105
Chalcides chalcides mertensi KLAUSEWITZ 1954: 198 (partim)
Chalcides minutus — SCHLÜTER 2004: 46
Chalcides minutus — SINDACO & JEREMČENKO 2008 
DistributionNE Morocco

Type locality: environs of Debdou (NE Morocco)  
TypesHolotype: MZUF 32903, adult female 
DiagnosisDIAGNOSIS: “It differs: from C. mertensi in its smaller size, the fewer dorsal and ventral scales and presacral vertebrae, the dorsal pattern frequency and at 4 out of 33 loci (tabs. X and XI, fig. 9); from C. striatus in the smaller size of both sexes, the fewer subdigital lamellae under the 3rd toe (only in females), the dorsal pattern striatus, and at 11 loci out of 33 (tabs. X and XI, fig. 9). For the differences from C. chalcides and C. pseudostriatus, see the sections concerning these species.” (Caputo 1993)

DESCRIPTION: “(value for the holotype in brackets) A rather small species of the Chalcides chalcides complex (body length of the largest specimen, female 32900 MZUF: 114.84 mm) with the following characters: head scales basically as in the diagnosis of the superspecies (see above); limbs short, the anterior and posterior ones representing 3.89-6.81% (x̅ = 5.44 +/- 0.17) (4.28) and 6.07-10.43% (x̅ = 7.61 +/- 0.21) (6.12), respectively, of the body length; median toe (III) subequal to IV; 4-7 (x̅ = 5.41 +/- 0.41) (5/5) subdigital lamellae; 21-24 (X = 22.37 +/- 0.15) (22) dorsal scales; 112-122 (x̅ = 116.52 +/- 0.48) (112) ventral scales; 56-60 (x̅ = 58.20 +/- 0.26) (59) presacral vertebrae; tail accounting for 52.08-55.20% (x̅ = 55.24 +/- 1.23) of the total length (the tail is regenerated in the holotype); dorsal pattern concolor (64.00%, n = 39) and mertensi (36.00%, n = 39) (concolor in the holotype). In fig. 22 there is a schematic representation of the variability of the dorsal pattern (see also tab. VI and fig. 9).” (Caputo 1993) 
CommentNot listed in SCHLEICH, KÄSTLE & KABISCH 1996. Smallest species of the genus. 
EtymologyFrom Latin “minutus” = small, referring to the small size of the species. 
  • Caputo V 1993. Taxonomy and evolution of the Chalcides chalcides complex (Reptilia, Scincidae) with description of two new species. MUSEO REGIONALE DI SCIENZE NATURALI BOLLETTINO (TURIN) 11(1): 47-120 - get paper here
  • Carranza, S.; E.N. Arnold, Ph. Geniez, J. Roca and J.A. Mateo 2008. Radiation, multiple dispersal and parallelism in the skinks, Chalcides and Sphenops (Squamata: Scincidae), with comments on Scincus and Scincopus and the age of the Sahara Desert. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 46 (3): 1071-1094 - get paper here
  • Martínez del Mármol, Gabriel; D. James Harris, Philippe Geniez, Philip de Pous, and Daniele Salvi 2019. Amphibians and Reptiles of Morocco. Edition Chimaira, Frankfurt am Main, Germany, 478 pp - get paper here
  • Mediani, Mohamed; José Carlos Brito, Soumia Fahd 2015. Atlas of the amphibians and reptiles of northern Morocco: updated distribution and patterns of habitat selection. Basic and Applied Herpetology 29: - get paper here
  • Montero-Mendieta, Santiago; Joan Ferrer, Mohammed Ait Hammou, Walid Dahmani, Delfi Sanuy, Sebastia Camarasa 2017. Another record or a new taxon? A candidate species of Chalcides Laurenti, 1768, in north Africa (Squamata: Sauria: Scincidae). Herpetozoa 29 (3/4): 155 - 161 - get paper here
  • Schlüter, U. 2004. Die Herpetofauna des Mittleren Atlas von Marokko. Reptilia (Münster) 9 (45): 42-49 - get paper here
  • Sindaco, R. & Jeremcenko, V.K. 2008. The reptiles of the Western Palearctic. Edizioni Belvedere, Latina (Italy), 579 pp. - get paper here
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