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Leiolopisma ceciliae ARNOLD & BOUR, 2008

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Higher TaxaScincidae, Eugongylinae, Scincoidea, Sauria, Squamata (lizards) 
Common Names 
SynonymLeiolopisma ceciliae ARNOLD & BOUR 2008 
DistributionLa Reunion

Type locality: Grotte au Sable, St-Gilles, La Réunion  
TypesHolotype: BMNH R16538, right dentary; Paratypes: Grotte au Sable, St-Gilles, La Réunion; 1 juvenile frontal, 1 fused postorbital and postfrontal, 2 right maxillae*, 2 quadrates*, 1 left pterygoid, 4 left and 5 right dentaries*, 2 right posterior mandibles*, 6 presacral vertebrae*, 3 left and 3 right humeri*, 1 sacrum, 2 left and 3 right pelves*, 1 left and 1 right fem- ora*, 1 right tibia; BMNH R16539-16564. Grottes des Premiers Français , St-Paul, La Réunion ; 1 right quadrate, 1 right posterior mandible, 1 right humerus; BMNH 16565-16567. Cave near St-Paul, La Réunion; 1 right dentary, 1 partial right humerus, 1 right tibia; BMNH 1977.881-883 (material previously reported and tibia illustrated by Arnold, 1980). An asterisk indicates that examples of the elements con- cerned have also been placed in the Muséum d’Histoire Naturelle, St-Denis, La Réunion. 
CommentConservation: Probably extinct; this species has been described based on subfossil remains and DNA data. 
EtymologyNamed after Cécile Mourer-Chauviré, celebrated specialist on fossil birds, who took part in excavations for subfossil remains on La Réunion between 1987 to 2001, identifying half a dozen of new species of birds. She also proposed the hypothesis of a ‘great extinction’ on the island, associated with cataclysmic volcanic eruptions, 180,000–230,000 years ago (Mourer-Chauviré et al., 1999). 
  • Arnold, E. Nicholas; Bour, Roger. 2008. A new Nactus gecko (Gekkonidae) and a new Leiolopisma skink (Scincidae) from La Reunion, Indian Ocean, based on recent fossil remains and ancient DNA sequence. Zootaxa 1705: 40-50 - get paper here
  • Beolens, Bo; Michael Watkins, and Michael Grayson 2011. The Eponym Dictionary of Reptiles. Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, USA - get paper here
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