Ninurta coeruleopunctatus (HEWITT & METHUEN, 1913)
Can you confirm these amateur observations of Ninurta coeruleopunctatus?
|Higher Taxa||Cordylidae (Cordylinae), Scincoidea, Sauria, Squamata (lizards)|
|Common Names||Blue-spotted (Girdled) Lizard|
|Synonym||Zonurus coeruleopunctatus HEWITT & METHUEN 1913|
Zonurus coeruleo-punctatus — ESSEX 1925
Cordylus coeruleo-punctatus — FITZSIMONS 1943
Cordylus coeruleopunctatus — FROST et al. 2001
Ninurta coeruleopunctatus — STANLEY et al. 2011
Ninurta coeruleopunctatus — BATES et al. 2014: 199
Ninurtia coeruleopunctatus — REISSIG 2014: 21 (in error)
|Distribution||Republic of South Africa (S Cape from Mossel Bay to Witelsbos)|
Type locality: Buffel’s Nek, between Knysna and Avontuur, South Africa.
|Reproduction||Ovoviviparous/viviparous, giving birth to 3–4 young.|
|Types||Holotype: DNMNH (= TM) (Transvaal Museum)|
|Comment||Type species: Zonurus coeruleopunctatus HEWITT & METHUEN 1913 is the type species (and currently only species) of the genus Ninurta STANLEY et al. 2011.|
Definition: Body gracile, limbs elongate, digits unreduced. Med- ium-sized (maximum SVL 82 mm). No occipital spines present, granular scales on nape. Keeled dorsal scales arranged in 40–46 transverse and 20–30 longitudinal rows. Spinose tail-whorls lack- ing. A band of granular lateral scales present between the dorsals and ventrals. Osteoderms widely distributed across body. Enamel blue spots on head and dorsum in eastern populations. Breeding males develop a yellow-to-orange gular patch.
|Etymology||Ninurta (masculine) was, in Summerian and Akkadian mythology, among his other attributes, the god of rain and of the south wind. The name references the sole species’ occurrence along the cool, moist south coast of South Africa.|
The species is named after its blue spots (Latin “coeruleus” = blue, “pucatatus” = spotted).