Liolaemus shitan ABDALA, QUINTEROS, SCROCCHI & STAZZONELLI, 2010
Can you confirm these amateur observations of Liolaemus shitan?
|Higher Taxa||Liolaemidae, Iguania, Sauria, Squamata (lizards)|
|Synonym||Liolaemus shitan ABDALA, QUINTEROS, SCROCCHI & STAZZONELLI 2010|
Liolaemus elongatus — CEI & AVILA 1998
Liolaemus elongatus — MORANDO et al. 2003
Liolaemus shitan — RUIZ et al. 2021
|Distribution||Argentina (Río Negro)|
Type locality: Over Provincial route 6, 175 km from General Roca, Estancia Piedras Blancas (40° 17’ 17.8’’ S, 68° 27’ 26.9’’ W), 820 m elevation, Río Negro, Argentina.
|Types||Holotype: FML 19276|
|Diagnosis||Diagnosis: A large size Liolaemus (Max SVL 98.3 mm), which belong to the L. chiliensis group. Inside this group it belongs to the L. elongatus group (sensu Lobo et al. 2010). The new species is distributed far away south from the members of the L. capillitas group (Lobo, 2005) – included in the L. petrophilus group – which inhabit in Northwestern Argentina and differs from it because the lack of the synapomorphies of the L. capillitas group (Lobo, 2005). Liolaemus shitan differs from the southern distributed members of the L. petrophilus group in having a distinct color pattern, entirely melanic. From L. elongatus, L. parvus, and L. gununakuna differs in having more ventral scales (120-132 in L. shitan vs. 96-113 in the other three species). Dorsal scales in L. shitan shows an evident keel, whereas this keel is weak in L. austromendocinus and L. thermarum. Temporal scales are weakly keeled in L. shitan, and smooth in L. austromendocinus and L. smaug. The number of scales around midbody is lower in L. shitan (72-85) than in L. gununakuna and L. thermarum (84-97). Number of dorsal scales in L. gununakuna is larger (83-90) than in L. shitan (64-76). Liolaemus shitan is larger than L. parvus, L. smaug, and L. thermarum. Also, L. shitan exhibit a weakly sexual dichromatism, absent in all members of the L. petrophilus group, with the exception of L. smaug. The lacks of precloacal pores in L. thermarum distinguish it from L. shitan. It differs from the member of the L. kriegi group (Morando et al., 2003) in the lower number of scales around midbody (72-85 vs 85-110 in L. burgeri and L. kriegi); the lower number of dorsal scales (69-83 vs 87-110 in L. kriegi). The presence of red coloration in cloacal region in L. burgeri distinguishes this taxon with L. shitan (without red coloration).|
|Comment||KWET 2012 says that the ABDALA paper was published in 2011.|
Synonymy: populations of L. shitan that show marked melanism are genetically intermixed with individuals of L. elongatus (Medina 2015, PhD thesis). Medina et al 2017 did not find sufficient molecular distinction between L. elongatus and L. shitan, despite morphological distinction between individuals from type localities (Medina 2015). Ruiz et al. 2021 claim that shitan is suffficiently distinguished from elongatus to justify species status.
|Etymology||Named after the Arabian “Shitan”, meaning “demon”, because this species is extremely aggressive and because of its black dorsal coloration.|
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