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Nannoscincus garrulus SADLIER, BAUER & SMITH, 2006

IUCN Red List - Nannoscincus garrulus - Endangered, EN

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Higher TaxaScincidae, Eugongylinae (Eugongylini), Scincoidea, Sauria, Squamata (lizards)
Common Names 
SynonymNannoscincus garrulus SADLIER, BAUER & SMITH 2006
Nannoscincus garrulus — SADLIER et al. 2014 
DistributionS New Caledonia (Pic Ningua and adjacent Mont Çidoa)

Type locality: Pic Ningua, 17.0 km south of Nakaré, Province Sud, New Caledonia (21°44'25"S, 166°09'21"E).  
Reproductionoviparous (not imputed, fide Zimin et al. 2022) 
TypesHolotype: MNHN-RA 2003.1002, collected by R.A. Sadlier, A.M. Bauer, T. Jackman, & C.C. Austin on 27 September 2002. PARATYPES: AMS R163451–52, CAS 226164–65, MCZ R183655 same collection data as holotype; AMS R163453– 57, CAS 226166–67 Pic Ningua, 17.0 km south of Nakaré, Province Sud, New Caledonia (21°44'36"S 166°09'02"E), collected by R.A. Sadlier, A.M. Bauer, T. Jackman, & C.C. Austin on 26 September 2002. 
DiagnosisDiagnosis: Nannoscincus garrulus is a large and elongate member of the genus with a two-toned colour pattern on the body (Fig. 1). It can be distinguished from all other members of the genus by the following combination of characters: frontoparietals divided; two loreals, anterior loreal a small semilunar scale positioned off the postero- dorsal edge of the enlarged nasal scale and failing to contact the labials; seven or more upper labial scales; left and right oviduct present in females; lower eyelid “scaled”; ear opening minute; body scales striated; adult dorsal colour two-toned; ear opening positioned four scales posterior to lower secondary temporal; presacral vertebrae 33–34; phalangeal formula for manus; phalangeal formula for pes

The first four characters will distinguish N. garrulus from N. rankini, N. greeri, N. hanchisteus, N. humectus, N. exos, and N. manaueti, all of which have fused frontoparietals, a single loreal, a windowed lower eyelid, and the oviduct present on the right side only. It can be further distinguished from these species by having fewer phalanges on the third and fourth fingers of the manus.
Nannoscincus mariei is somewhat intermediate between the two morphologically-defined species groups, in possessing the derived character state of a single loreal and loss of the left oviduct, but retaining the primitive character state of divided frontoparietals. It also has a “scaled” lower eyelid similar to N. gracilis, N. slevini, and N. garrulus, the structure and possible polarity of which has been discussed elsewhere (Sadlier, 1990). Nannoscincus garrulus is readily distinguished from N. mariei by the presence of two (vs one) loreal scales, and the presence of a small but obvious ear opening (vs ear opening absent).
Nannoscincus garrulus most resembles N. gracilis and N. slevini. It is noticeably larger (maximum SVL 52.5 mm) than either N. gracilis (SVL 49.0 mm) or N. slevini (SVL 43.0 mm), and has seven or more upper labial scales whereas both N. gracilis and N. slevini have six. It can be further distinguished from N. slevini by the presence of five (vs four) digits on the manus, and from N. gracilis in having more phalanges on the fifth digit of the manus ( vs [SADLIER et al. 2006]. 
CommentThis is the only species of Nannoscincus recorded as being able to vocalise.

Distribution: see map in SADLIER et al. 2014: 56.

Abundance: only known from its original description (Meiri et al. 2017). 
EtymologyThe specific epithet is the Latin word garrulus, meaning talkative, and is in reference to the tendency for this species to emit a squeaking sound when distressed. 
  • Barts, M. 2006. Verbeulte Geckos und geschwätzige Skinke - neue Echsen aus Neukaledonien. Terraria 1 (1): 28-29
  • Meiri, Shai; Aaron M. Bauer, Allen Allison, Fernando Castro-Herrera, Laurent Chirio, Guarino Colli, Indraneil Das, Tiffany M. Doan, Frank Glaw, Lee L. Grismer, Marinus Hoogmoed, Fred Kraus, Matthew LeBreton, Danny Meirte, Zoltán T. Nagy, Cristiano d 2017. Extinct, obscure or imaginary: the lizard species with the smallest ranges. Diversity and Distributions - get paper here
  • Sadlier, R.A., Bauer, A.M.; Smith, S.A. 2006. A new species of Nannoscincus Gunther (Squamata: Scincidae) from high elevation forest in southern New Caledonia. Rec. Austral. Mus. 58 (1):29-36. - get paper here
  • Zimin, A., Zimin, S. V., Shine, R., Avila, L., Bauer, A., Böhm, M., Brown, R., Barki, G., de Oliveira Caetano, G. H., Castro Herrera, F., Chapple, D. G., Chirio, L., Colli, G. R., Doan, T. M., Glaw, F., Grismer, L. L., Itescu, Y., Kraus, F., LeBreton 2022. A global analysis of viviparity in squamates highlights its prevalence in cold climates. Global Ecology and Biogeography, 00, 1–16 - get paper here
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