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Diploderma qilin WANG, REN, CHE & SILER, 2020

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Higher TaxaAgamidae (Draconinae), Sauria, Iguania, Squamata (lizards)
Common NamesE: Qilin Mountain Dragon
Chinese: 麒麟龙蜥 (Pinyin: Qi Lin Long Xi) 
SynonymDiploderma qilin WANG, REN, CHE & SILER in WANG et al. 2020: 251
Japalura flaviceps: Zhao and Yang (1997: 165–167), in part; Zhao et al. (1999: 111–115), in part; Yang and Rao (2008: 200), in part.
DistributionChina (NW Yunnan: Jinsha River Valley)

Type locality: Jinsha River Valley in Balong, Deqin County, northwest Yunnan Province, China (27.7017° N, 99.4563°E, elevation 1982 m, WGS 84).  
TypesHolotype: KIZ 028332, adult male, Collected by Kai WANG and Jinlong REN on July 9, 2016.
Paratypes: KIZ 028333, adult male, same collecting information as for the holotype; KIZ 028334–336, adult females, same collecting information as for the holotype. KIZ 044412, 044413, adult males, near Baka Village, Shangri-La County, NW Yunnan Province, China (27.8066° N, 99.4527° E, elevation 2028 m); KIZ 044405, 044407, adult males, KIZ 044408, adult female, near Meiding Village, Shangri-La County, NW Yunnan Province, China (27.8811 N, 99.4440 E, elevation 1950 m); KIZ 044745, adult male, KIZ 044744, adult female, near Cangjue Village, Shangri-La County, NW Yunnan Province, China (27.6087 N, 99.5226 E, 1,939 m); KIZ 044820, adult female, near Pengnanshou Bridge, Shangri-La County, NW Yunnan Province, China (28.0301 N, 99.4215 E, elevation 2,619 m); all collected by Kai WANG, Zhuoyu LU, and Xiankun HUANG on June 15, 2019. 
DiagnosisDiagnosis: The new species can be diagnosed from congeners by a combination of the following morphological characteristics: (1) body length moderate, SVL 55.9–66.5 mm in males, 55.3–61.7 mm in females; (2) tail long, TAL 201.0%–218.2% SVL in males, 174.3%–199.7% in females; (3) hind limbs moderate HLL 73.3%–78.4% SVL in males, 72.5%– 80.4% in females; (4) head relatively robust, HW 65.0%–73.2% HL, HD 72.3%–82.8% HW; (5) MD 38–45; (6) F4S 15–19; (7) T4S 21–25; (8) conical or subpyramidal, post-rictal scales moderately developed, 3–8; (9) tympanum concealed; (10) transverse gular fold present, distinct; (11) ventral scales of head and body distinctively keeled; (12) gular spots present in both males and females, Light Sulphur Yellow (Color 93); (13) oral cavity uniformly Light Flesh Color (Color 250); (14) dorsolateral stripes present, jagged, always in males, sometimes in females, Cream Yellow (Color 82) in males, Beige (Color 254) in females; (15) ventrolateral body Light Sulphur Yellow (Color 93) in males; and (16) ventral body uniform white or Pale Buff (Color 1) in both sexes (Wang et al. 2021). 
CommentSimilar species: D. brevicauda and D. yulongense

Publication date: The online publication time for the manuscript that describe the species (December 2020) is earlier than the publication time of the entire issue of the journal (January 2021), which is why the taxonomic authority is 2020 instead of 2021.

Conservation: The estimated extent of occurrence is approximately 700 km2 along the Jinsha River Valley. Most of the habitats overlapped with human inhabitations and major highways and are not covered by any existing natural reserves. Continuous expansions of agriculture and tourist infrastructure were observed between 2016 and 2019, which had led to serious habitat destructions of the species. According to IUCN criteria D2, we recommend listing the species as Vulnerable (VU).

EtymologyThe specific name, qilin, is derived from the Chinese name of the legendary beast (麒麟). According to Chinese mythology, Qilin is the son of the dragon, with a golden yellow body coloration, which matches the diagnostic gular color of the new species. 
  • Cai B., Zhang M. H., Li J., Du S. M., Xie F., Hou M., Zhou H. M., Jiang J. P. 2022. Three New Species of Diploderma Hallowell, 1861 (Reptilia: Squamata: Agamidae) from the Shaluli Mountains in Western Sichuan, China. Asian Herpetol Res. 13(4): 205–223 - get paper here
  • Wang K, Lyu ZT, Wang J, Qi S, Che J 2022. Updated Checklist and Zoogeographic Division of the Reptilian Fauna of Yunnan Province, China. Biodiversity Science 30 (4): 21326, 1–31 - get paper here
  • Wang, K., Ren, J. L., Jiang, K., Wu, J. W., Yang, C. H., Xu, H. M., ... & Che, J. 2019. Revised distributions of some species in the genus Diploderma (Reptilia: Agamidae) in China. Sichuan J. Zool, 38(5), 481-495
  • Wang, K., Ren, J., Wu, J., Jiang, K., Jin, J., Hou, S., ... & Che, J. 2020. Systematic revision of mountain dragons (Reptilia: Agamidae: Diploderma) in China, with descriptions of six new species and discussion on their conservation. Journal of Zoological Systematics and Evolutionary Research, 59(1), 222-263 (published online 2020)
  • WANG, Kai; , Ke JIANG, Gang PAN, Mian HOU, Cameron D. SILER and Jing CHE 2015. A New Species of Japalura (Squamata: Sauria: Agamidae) from Upper Lancang (Mekong) Valley of Eastern Tibet, China. Asian Herpetological Research 6 (3): 159–168 - get paper here
  • WANG, Kai; Ke JIANG, Da-Hu ZOU, Fang YAN, Cameron D. SILER, Jing CHE 2016. Two new species of Japalura (Squamata: Agamidae) from the Hengduan Mountain Range, China. Zoological Research 37(1): 41-56, DOI: 10.13918/j.issn.2095-8137.2016.1.41 - get paper here
  • WANG, KAI; WEI GAO, JIAWEI WU, WENJIE DONG, XIAOGANG FENG, WENJING SHEN, JIEQIONG JIN, XIUDONG SHI, YIN QI, CAMERON D. SILER, JING CHE 2021. Two New Species of Diploderma Hallowell, 1861 (Reptilia: Squamata: Agamidae) from the Hengduan Mountain Region in China and Rediscovery of D. brevicaudum (Manthey, Wolfgang, Hou, Wang, 2012). Zootaxa 4941 (1): 001–032 - get paper here
  • Zhao E. M., Zhao K., Zhou K. Y. 1999. Fauna Sinica, Reptilia, Vol. 2, Squamata, Lacertilia. [In Chinese] Beijing: Science Press, 394 pp
  • Zhao, E & Yang, D. 1997. Amphibians and Reptiles of the Hengduan Mountain Region. [in Chinese] Science Press, Beijing, 303 pp.
  • Zhao, E. (ed.) 2003. Coloured atlas of Sichuan reptiles [in Chinese]. Beijing, China Forestry Publishing House
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