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Laudakia sacra (SMITH, 1935)

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Higher TaxaAgamidae (Agaminae), Sauria, Iguania, Squamata (lizards) 
Subspecies 
Common NamesAnan's Rock Agama 
SynonymAgama himalayana sacra SMITH 1935: 214
Agama himalayana sacra — WERMUTH 1967: 14
Stellio sacer — ANANJEVA & PETERS 1990
Laudakia sacra — MACEY et al. 2000
Stellio sacra — ANANJEVA et al. 1990
Laudakia sacra — BARTS & WILMS 2003
Laudakia sacra — BAIG et al. 2012: 250 
DistributionChina (Xizang = Tibet), 3000– 4000 m elevation

Type locality: Lhasa, Tibet.  
Reproductionoviparous 
TypesLectotype: BMNH 1946.8.28.57 
DiagnosisDiagnosis: Rock agamid with flattened head and body which is typical for this lizard group. They are comparatively large lizards with a snout-vent length of 120- 150 mm and a tail length of 180-240 mm (Table 1 in ANANJEVA et al. 1990).
Gular Sac seems to be developed to a greater degree than in other Stellio. Body scales are small and granular. The scales are not well differentiated. There is a very slight but noticeable nuchal crest on the head. It begins from the middle of the occiput and continues as a poorly differentiated vertebral stripe. The longitudinal rows of enlarged and feebly keeled scales on the vertebral region are arranged parallel to each other. There are neither groups of enlarged scales nor separate enlarged scales on the dorsal lateral regions.
The males have a large patch of callous scales on the belly. The annuli and segmentation of the scales on the basal quarter of the tail are not prominent. On the lateral surface of the tail there are three to four annuli in each segment.
There is a small granular dark pattern on the back. The center of the back tends to have more black and toward the sides a dark golden brown dominates. The separate elements of this pattern are connected to heavily marked diffuse transverse stripes. The narrow stripes form two rows of the dark colored scales that continue from the neck to the tail. Overall the lizard is darkly colored but there are a few randomly scattered yellow blotches on the back (Fig. 5). Juveniles are lighter in color tending more toward a dark golden brown with darker speckling all over the back. The dark golden brown forms bands across the back which are offset at the spin.

Diagnosis. Comparatively large; head and body de- pressed; head scales mostly smooth; no enlarged, mucronate scales either on flanks or on body; higher number of scales around mid body; groups of low spinose scales on neck and sides of head; distinct tail segment of four whorls above becoming three below; callous glands both at precloacal and abdominal position [BAIG et al. 2012]. 
CommentNomenclature: the common name, Anan's Rock Agama, is of unknown origin and doesn’t make much sense (Pauwels & Wahlgren 2012).

Distribution: possibly in Bhutan (Lenz 2012). 
Etymology 
References
  • Ananjeva, N.B. & Tuniev 1994. Some aspects of historical biogeography of Asian rock agamids. Russ. J. Herpetol. 1 (1): 43 - get paper here
  • Ananjeva, N.B.; Peters,G.; Macey & Papenfuss, T. 1990. Stellio sacra (Smith 1935) - a distinct species of Asiatic rock agamid from Tibet. Asiatic Herpetological Research 3: 104-115 - get paper here
  • ANANJEVA, Natalia B.; Xianguang GUO and Yuezhao WANG 2011. Taxonomic Diversity of Agamid Lizards (Reptilia, Sauria, Acrodonta, Agamidae) from China: A Comparative Analysis. Asian Herpetological Research 2 (3): 117-128 - get paper here
  • Baig, Khalid Javed; Philipp Wagner, Natalia B. Ananjeva & Wolfgang Böhme 2012. A morphology-based taxonomic revision of Laudakia Gray, 1845 (Squamata: Agamidae). Vertebrate Zoology 62 (2): 213-260 - get paper here
  • Barts, M. & Wilms, T. 2003. Die Agamen der Welt. Draco 4 (14): 4-23 - get paper here
  • Lenz, Norbert 2012. Von Schmetterlingen und Donnerdrachen - Natur und Kultur in Bhutan. Karlsruher Naturhefte 4, Naturkundemuseum Karlsruhe, 124 pp.
  • Macey, J. R., J. A. Schulte II, A. Larson, N. B. Ananjeva, Y. Wang, R. Pethiyagoda, N. Rastegar-Pouyani, T. J. Papenfuss 2000. Evaluating trans-Tethys migration: an example using acrodont lizard phylogenetics. Systematic Biology 49 (2): 233-256 - get paper here
  • Pauwels, Olivier S. G. and Richard Wahlgren 2012. Beolens Bo, Watkins Michael, and Grayson Michael (2011), The Eponym Dictionary of Reptiles, The Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore. Russ. J. Herpetol. 19 (4): 352 – 355 - get paper here
  • Smith,M.A. 1935. The fauna of British India, including Ceylon and Burma. Reptiles and Amphibia, Vol. II. Sauria. Taylor and Francis, London, 440 pp.
  • Zhao,E. & Adler,K. 1993. Herpetology of China. SSAR, Oxford/Ohio, 1-522
 
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