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Monilesaurus rouxii (DUMÉRIL & BIBRON, 1837)

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Higher TaxaAgamidae (Draconinae), Sauria, Iguania, Squamata (lizards) 
Subspecies 
Common NamesRoux's Forest Lizard, Forest Blood Sucker 
SynonymCalotes rouxii DUMÉRIL & BIBRON 1837: 407
Calotes rouxii — SMITH 1935: 206
Calotes rouxii — BOULENGER 1885: 330
Calotes ellioti STOLICZKA 1872 (not of GÜNTHER; fide SMITH 1935)
Calotes rouxii — WERMUTH 1967: 40
Calotes rouxii — MOODY 1980
Calotes rouxi — MANTHEY & SCHUSTER 1999: 38
Calotes rouxi — BARTS & WILMS 2003
Calotes rouxii — GANESH et al. 2018
Monilesaurus rouxii — PAL et al. 2018: 427 
DistributionIndia (Bombay Presidency, Travancore, W Bengala, Gujarat, Goa, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Kerala, Western Ghats, Tamil Nadu)

Type locality: Indes orientales; restricted to India by SMITH 1935.  
Reproductionoviparous 
TypesSyntypes: MNHN RA 6894 and MNHN-RA-1994.1857 (formerly MNHN-RA 6894A) 
DiagnosisDiagnosis (genus). Monilesaurus gen. nov. can be easily diagnosed from all members of draconinae lizards from the Indian subcontinent except Psammophilus in having an antehumeral fold, which mostly extends below the dewlap forming a fused fold on the shoulder and the neck. It differs from Psammophilus in having a dorso-laterally compressed body and lower number of scales on the mid-body. Supratympanic spines are present, in the form of two separated spines vs clusters in Calotes and Psammophilus. From Microauris gen. nov. by having a relatively large tympanum (Fig. 9c vs. 9b). Scales on head large uniform shield like (vs small, sub-triangular) (Fig. 10a vs 10d).
Monilesaurus gen. nov. can be easily diagnosed from the genera Otocryptis, Sarada Deepak, Karanth & Giri, 2016 and Sitana Cuvier, 1829 by the presence of a well-developed fifth toe (Smith, 1935; Deepak et al. 2016). Monilesaurus gen. nov. differs from Mantheyus phuwuanensis by the absence of femoral pores (Manthey & Nabhitabhata, 1991; Ananjeva & Stuart 2001); from the members of the genus Bronchocela by the presence of postorbital and supratympanic spines (Hallermann & Böhme 2000); from Cophotis, Ceratophora, Lyriocephalus, Ptyctolaemus Peters, 1864, Phoxophrys Hubrecht, 1881 by the presence of external tympanum (Boulenger, 1885; Smith, 1935; Inger, 1960; Pethiyagoda & Manamendra-Arachchi 1998; Schulte II et al. 2004; Bahir & Silva 2005; Manamendra-Arachchi et al. 2006; Samarawickrama et al. 2006). Monilesaurus gen. nov. can be diagnosed from Japalura, Gray 1853 by the absence of heterogenous dorsal scales and short and thick nuchal scales; from Salea Gray, 1845 (S. anamallayana and S. horsfieldii) by the presence of small regular lateral scales and the absence of enlarged plate like scales between the eye and tympanum (Smith, 1935); from Complictus nigrigularis (Ota & Hikida, 1991), Hypsicalotes kinabaulensis (de Grijs, 1937), Malayadracon robinsonii (Boulenger, 1908), Oriocalotes (Günther, 1864) Pseudocophotis (Manthey & Grossmann, 1997) and Pseudocalotes by the absence of enlarged row of suborbital scales (Smith, 1935; Taylor 1963; Ota & Hikida, 1991; Manthey & Denzer 1992; Inger & Steubing 1994; Ota & Hikida, 1996; Hallermann & Böhme 2000; Manthey & Denzer, 2000; Hallermann & McGuire 2001; Leong 2001; Manamendra-Arachchi et al. 2006; Samarawickrama et al. 2006; Ananjeva et al. 2007; Hallermann & Böhme 2007; Das & Lakim 2008; Hallermann et al. 2010; Mahony 2010; Harvey et al. 2014; Denzer et al. 2015; Grismer LL et al. 2016; Harvey et al. 2017). (Pal et al. 2018, to which all figures refer).

Diagnosis and comparisons. A small sized Monilesaurus (SVL up to 74.8 mm) characterized by the posteroventral orientation of lateral scales; antehumeral fold small, triangular spines; two separated small supratympanic spines; dorsal and lateral scales keeled, ventral scales strongly keeled; paired postmentals, first pair in contact or separated by a single scale; 18–21 subdigital lamellae under fourth finger, 24–29 subdigital lamellae under fourth toe; 9–10 supralabials and 8–9 infralabials; olive-brown to above, antehumeral fold black, top of head often darker than dorsum, body often speckled with dark and light blotches, prominent in juveniles and sub-adults.
Morphologically, M. rouxii comb.nov. is superficially similar to M. montanus gen. et sp. nov., M. ellioti comb. nov.; and M. acanthocephalus gen. et sp. nov., but can be distinguished by a combination of the following characters: 52–56 midbody scale rows (vs. 46–52 in M. montanus gen. et sp. nov., 62–64 in M. acanthocephalus gen. et sp. nov., and 52–58 in M. ellioti comb. nov.) spine in the posterior corner of orbit absent (vs. very small, indistinct tubercle like in M. montanus gen. et sp. nov., long, distinct in M. ellioti comb.nov. and much longer in M. acanthocephalus gen. et sp. nov.); 7–8 small nuchal spines (vs. 3–6 small nuchal spines in M. montanus gen. et sp. nov., 6 much longer nuchal spines in C. acanthocephalus gen. et sp. nov., 3–4 long nuchal spines in M. ellioti comb.nov.); small isolated spines on the back of head and above tympanum (vs. longer, prominent spines in M. ellioti comb. nov. and M. acanthocephalus gen. et sp. nov.) white spot below the eye absent (vs. present in M. ellioti comb.nov. and M. acanthocephalus gen. et sp. nov.; in the form of a band in M. montanus gen. et sp. nov.) and smaller body size: adult SVL 51.4–74.8 mm, n=9 (vs. C. montanus gen. et sp. nov., adult SVL 61–83.4 mm, n=8; and M. acanthocephalus gen. et sp. nov. adult SVL 68.9–72.6 mm, n=3). (Pal et al. 2018: 428) 
CommentSynonymy partly after WERMUTH 1967.

Distribution and type locality: The only precise locality of a specimen in the catalogue of British Museum is given as “Matheran, Bombay Presidency” (Boulenger 1885, 1890); Smith (1935) gives the range of M. rouxii comb. nov. as “Bombay Presidency (Matheran, Khandala, Kanara, Jog); Travancore”. Of these, other than “Travencore” all the other localities are from the northern and central Western Ghats (Pal et al. 2018: 427).

Type species: Calotes rouxii DUMÉRIL & BIBRON 1837: 407 is the type species of the genus Monilesaurus PAL et al. 2018: 426. 
EtymologyThe genus epithet is derived by adding the word ‘Monile’ meaning necklace in Latin referring to the distinct neck fold in this genus and the Greek word sauros meaning lizard which is latinized here as saurus. 
References
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  • Sreekar, Rachakonda; Katya Saini, Shyam N. Rao, and Chetana B. Purushotham 2011. Predicting Lizard Gender: Sexual Dimorphism in Calotes rouxii (Reptilia: Agamidae) from Agumbe, Karnataka, India. Herp. Cons. Biol. 6 (1): 75-80 - get paper here
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