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Liolaemus halonastes LOBO, SLODKI & VALDECANTOS, 2010

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Higher TaxaLiolaemidae, Iguania, Sauria, Squamata (lizards) 
Common Names 
SynonymLiolaemus halonastes LOBO, SLODKI & VALDECANTOS 2010 
DistributionArgentina (Salta)

Type locality: Margins of Salar de Arizaro at 11 km southeast of Campamento Mina Arita, Salta Province, Argentina, 3,491 m (25°04.570’S, 67°40.019’W). Map legend:
Type locality - Type locality.
TypesHolotype: MACN 39216. Adult male. Collected on 27 February 2007 by J. P. Julia´ , F. Lobo, D. Slodki, and S. Valdecantos. 
CommentDiagnosis.—Liolaemus halonastes is a mediumsized lizard within its genus (72 mm SVL). It belongs to the montanus group (sensu Etheridge, 1995) because it has the tibial process associated with a hypertrophy of the tibialis anticus. It differs from all species of the boulengeri group (boulengeri series of Schulte et al., 2000) because it lacks a patch of enlarged scales on the posterior surface of thighs. Within the montanus series (sensu Schulte et al., 2000, for which no morphological apomorphies have been pro- posed at this time), it differs from lizards of the dorbignyi group (sensu Dı ´az Go´ mez, 2007a,b) because members of this last group have larger and flat dorsal scales and are more robust animals lacking strong sexual dichroma- tism. Within the andinus group L. halonastes differs from L. famatinae and L. manueli because of larger SVL (L. halonastes 5 62–72 mm vs. 42– 59 mm range for the two species). Differs from L. manueli in ventral scales shape and imbrica- tion (quadrangular and juxtaposed in L. manueli, triangular to rhomboid and imbricate in L. halonastes). Liolaemus halonastes is smaller than L. foxi, L. nigriceps, and L. patriciaiturrae (adult SVL average of the three . 80 mm), it differs also from L. nigriceps because it lacks head melanism and from L. andinus and L. rosenmanni because it has fewer scales around midbody (L. andinus 5 98–110; L. rosenmani 5 99–104; vs. L. halonastes 5 80–97). Liolaemus halonastes has more scales around midbody than L. erguetae, L. famatinae, L. griseus, L. huacahuasicus and L. orko (54–72 vs. 80–97 in L. halonastes). Liolaemus halonastes exhibit a unique elongated subocular, whereas in L. poconchilensis is divided in two. Liolaemus halonastes has more ventrals than L. pulcherrimus (75–88 in L. pulcherrimus vs. 91–105 in L. halonastes) and more scales between occiput and thighs than L. orko and L. poconchilensis (664 in L. poconchilensis, 63–75 in L. orko, 87–99 in L. halonastes). Liolaemus halonastes is different from L. eleodori, L. pulcherrimus, and L. ruibali in the number of dorsal head scales (24– 35 in L. eleodori, 21–29 in L. pulcherrimus, and L. ruibali vs. 14–20 in L. halonastes). In L. halonastes, blue scales are absent, whereas in L. andinus, L. famatinae, L. multicolor, L. poconchilensis, and L. pulcherrimus exhibit light blue scales on flanks or sometime all over their backs. In L. halonastes, tail is shorter than SVL, whereas in L. orko and L. vallecurensis, tails are longer than SVL. This new species lacks either auricular or distinct tympanic scales projecting on the border of auditory meatus like in L. multicolor and L. robertoi. Females of L. halonastes do not have precloacal pores, whereas those of L. cazianiae, L. eleodori, L. nigriceps, L. orko, and L. pulcherrimus may have them. Liolaemus halonastes has an immaculate throat, whereas in L. cazianiae, L. eleodori, L. erguetae, L. foxi, L. multicolor, and L. pleopholis it is variegated (L. poecilochromus is polymorphic respect to this character). Liolaemus halonastes has longer fore- and hind limbs and dorsal scales less imbricate and keeled than L. huacahuasicus. Liolaemus halonastes lacks gray spots in its belly, and males lack light blue scales over dorsum and flanks like in L. duellmani and L. molinai. Males of L. halonastes do not present supernumerary precloacal pores (present in several males of L. cazianiae, L. multicolor, L. orko, and L. poecilochromus). Liolaemus halonastes has a postocular scale quite shorter than in L. multicolor (postocular length/head length, mean 5 0.09 in L. halonastes; mean 5 0.15 in L. multicolor). Liolaemus halonastes has immaculate flanks without dark reticulation that is present in L. multicolor. Liolaemus halonastes has a unique character not described in any other member of the andinus group, which is the presence of frontonasal scales convex and projecting, making the frontonasal area convex in dorsal and lateral views. 
EtymologyEtymology.—Its name comes from Greek and means ‘‘living in salt’’ because it is only found on the salty margins of Salar de Arizaro. 
  • Abdala, Cristian Simón; Marcos Maximiliano Paz & Romina Valeria Semhan 2013. Nuevo Liolaemus (Iguania: Liolaemidae) con novedoso carácter morfológico, de la frontera entre Argentina y Chile. Rev. Biol. Trop. 61 (4): 1563-1584 - get paper here
  • AVILA, LUCIANO JAVIER; LORENA ELIZABETH MARTINEZ & MARIANA MORANDO 2013. Checklist of lizards and amphisbaenians of Argentina: an update. Zootaxa 3616 (3): 201–238
  • Lobo, F.; Slodki, D. & Valdecantos, S. 2010. Two New Species of Lizards of the Liolaemus montanus Group (Iguania: Liolaemidae) from the Northwestern Uplands of Argentina. Journal of Herpetology 44 (2): 279–293 - get paper here
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