Marmorosphax montana SADLIER & BAUER, 2000
Can you confirm these amateur observations of Marmorosphax montana?
|Higher Taxa||Scincidae, Eugongylinae, Scincoidea, Sauria, Squamata (lizards)|
|Synonym||Marmorosphax montana SADLIER & BAUER, 2000|
|Distribution||New Caledonia, elevation 900-1000 m.|
Type locality: Mt. Ouin, south face (22° 00’ 34’’ S, 166° 27’ 26’’ E), 1050-1150 m elevation, New Caledonia.
|Types||Holotype: MNHN-RA 1998.0466; paratypes at AMS|
|Diagnosis||DIAGNOSIS. Marmorosphax montana can be distinguished from other members of the genus by the following combination of characters: dorsal scale rows 71-78; fourth toe lamellae 35-41; dorsal surface with a pattern of light and dark markings in females forming roughly alternating brown (1-2 scale width) and black (1 scale width) rows across the body, males with a more muted pattern; lateral surface with scattered obscure pale blotches (males) or obvious pale markings (females); throat with overall light brown wash (males) or with small black blotches (females). Scalation characters will readily distinguish Marmorosphax montana from Marmorosphax kaala n. sp., Marmorosphax taom n. sp. and Marmorosphax tricolor all of which have fewer scales under the toes (see Table 1). Marmorosphax montana can be further distinguished from sympatric M. tricolor in having more scales on the dorsal surface of the fourth finger and toe, and females in having obscure (vs bold) pale markings on the labials. Marmorosphax montana is most similar in overall appearance and scalation to Marmorosphax boulinda n. sp. It can be distinguished by its overall darker dorsal colouration (brown and black vs cream and brown) giving it an overall bolder appearance, and in females by having darker and more extensive throat markings. Recognition of Marmorosphax montana as an evolutionary species distinct from Marmorosphax boulinda n. sp. is supported by the deep divergences between the two taxa as identified in the DNA sequence data.|
|Etymology||Named after Latin “montanus”, meaning “pertaining to mountains.|