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Poromera fordii (HALLOWELL, 1857)

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Higher TaxaLacertidae, Eremiadinae, Sauria, Lacertoidea, Squamata (lizards)
Common NamesE: West African Striped Lizard 
SynonymTachydromus Fordii HALLOWELL 1857: 48
Poromera fordii — BOULENGER 1887: 6
Poromera Fordii — GÜNTHER 1896: 264
Poromera haugi MOCQUARD 1897: 6 (fide BOULENGER 1921)
Poromera fordii — SCHMIDT 1919: 604
Poromera fordii — BOULENGER 1921: 121
Poromera fordii — FREYHOF 1994
Poromera fordii — BISCHOFF 2005 
DistributionCameroon, Gabon, Democratic Republic of the Congo (Zaire), Equatorial Guinea (Bioko = Fernando Po Island), Central African Republic

Type locality: “West Africa, Gaboon country”  
TypesHolotype: ANSP 9202 
DiagnosisDefinition (genus): Head-shields normal. Nostril pierced between the nasal, two postnasals, and the first upper labial. Lower eyelid scaly. Collar distinct. Back with large, plate like, subimbricate scales with strong keels forming continuous lines, sides with small juxtaposed scales; ventral plates pointed, imbricate, keeled. Digits slightly compressed, with tubercular lamellae inferiorly. Femoral pores forming a long series. Tail very long, cylindrical.

Description (fordii): Body moderately or rather feebly depressed. Head feebly depressed, 1.5 to 1.75 times as long as broad, flat above, its depth equal to the distance between the centre of the eye and the tympanum, its length 3.75 to 4 times in length to vent (3.33 to 3.5 times in the young); snout pointed, as long as or slightly longer than postocular part of head, with sharp canthus and nearly vertical loreal region. Pileus 2 to 2.33 times as long as broad. Hind limb reaching the ear or between the collar and the ear in males, the collar or a little beyond in females;
foot a little longer than head. Tail nearly 2 to 2.5 times as long as head and body.
Nostril between four shields; nasals forming a rather long or very short suture behind the rostral (a small azygos shield between the nasals in a male from Butanga); upper head-shields with strong keels and short striae; internasal as long as broad or a little longer; prefrontals sometimes forming a median suture, more often separated by a small azygos shield or by the frontonasal being in contact with the frontal; frontal bi- or tricarinate, as long as or a little shorter than its distance from the end of the snout, 1.75 to 2 times as long as broad, of nearly equal width throughout or a little narrower behind than in front; parietals 1.66 to 1.75 times as long as broad, outer border sometimes feebly emarginate for the accommodation of the first anterior temporal; interparietal narrow, 2 to 2.5 times as long as broad (broader in the young); occipital small, not more than half as long as the interparietal; 3 or 4 supraoculars, first very small and keeled if present (absent in a male and a femal from Benito River), second often a little longer than third, fourth broken up into 3 to 5 keeled scales; 5 or 6 superciliaries, first long and narrow and sharply keeled, the others very narrow and separated from the supraoculars by 5 or 6 keeled scales.
Rostral not entering the nostril; two superposed postnasals; anterior loreal as long as or shorter than second; 4 to 6 upper labials (out of 32 cases, 5 in 22 cases, 4 in 7, 6 in 3) anterior to the subocular, which is not or but little narrower beneath than above; two, rarely three, large, keeled upper temporals, first longest; temporal scales rhombic or hexagonal, strongly keeled,, larger beneath than above; a narrow tympanic shield usually present.
Parietal foramen usually absent. Pterygoid teeth absent.
Four pairs of chin-shields, the two or three anterior meeting on the middle line. Anterior gular scales small and granular, generally enlarged, imbricate, pointed and keeled towards the collar, which contains 12 to 14 pointed, strongly keeled plates; 24 to 34 scales n a straight line in the middle, including the collar-plate. No gular fold.
6 or 8 longitudinal rows of large, hexagonal or rhombic dorsal plates, with very strong keels forming continuous lines; sometimes 8 rows in front and 6 behind; small scales may be intercalated between the dorsal plates; upper lateral scales small, keeled, juxtaposed, lower larger, imbricate, strongly keeled, and graduating into the ventral plates, which are similar to the dorsals, but pointed or shortly mucronate, in 8 or 10 longitudinal and 22 to 27 transverse series. Males with a large preanal plate bordered by a semicircle of pointed keeled scales; females with the preanal region covered with pointed keeled scales.
Limbs with large rhombic keeled scales. 10 to 15 femoral pores on each side, usually 11 to 13, the series not extending to the distal end of the thigh. Subdigital lamellae with rounded tubercles, which may be very prominent, 20 to 25 under the fourth toe.
Caudal scales pointed and very strongly keeled, the whorls sub equal, the fourth or fifth containing 14 scales.
Dark olive above, often turning to bronze or copper-colour posteriorly; two light dorsal streaks, bright bluish white, sometimes edged with blaclc, anteriorly, each originating from the middle of the posterior border of the parietal shield, often disappearing on the posterior part of the back; the back between the light streaks sometimes blackish, which shade is continued as a stripe to the base of the tail; traces of a light vertebral streak sometimes present in the young; upper lip bluish green. Tail uniform or with a dorsal series of black spots. Lower parts greenish white in front, salmon-pink behind (all text above from Boulenger 1921). 
CommentDistribution: For a map with localities in Equatorial Guinea see SÁNCHEZ-VIALAS et al. 2022. Not listed by BROADLEY & POYNTON 1998 for the Democratic Republic of the Congo (Zaire).

Type species: Tachydromus Fordii HALLOWELL 1857: 48 is the type species of the genus Poromera BOULENGER 1887: 6. 
EtymologyNamed after Dr. Henry A. Ford, a medical missionary in Gabon, who collected natural history specimens for the Philadelphia Academy of Natural Sciences (1851). 
  • Beolens, Bo; Michael Watkins, and Michael Grayson 2011. The Eponym Dictionary of Reptiles. Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, USA - get paper here
  • Bischoff, W. 1992. Übersicht der Arten und Unterarten der Familie Lacertidae 6. Die Gattungen Poromera, Psammodromus, Pseuderemias, Takydromus und Tropidosaura. Die Eidechse 3 (6): 13-17 - get paper here
  • Boulenger, G. A. 1887. Catalogue of the lizards in the British Museum (Nat. Hist.) III. Lacertidae, Gerrhosauridae, Scincidae, Anelytropsidae, Dibamidae, Chamaeleontidae. London: 575 pp. - get paper here
  • Boulenger, G.A. 1921. Monograph of the Lacertidae, vol. 2. British Museum (London), 451 pp. - get paper here
  • Carlino, P. & Pauwels, O.S.G. 2015. An Updated Reptile List of Ivindo National Park, the Herpetofaunal Hotspot of Gabon. Bull. Chicago Herp. Soc. 50(3): 25-39 - get paper here
  • Chirio, L. & Lebreton, M. 2007. Atlas des reptiles du Cameroun. MNHN, IRD, Paris 688 pp.
  • Chirio, Laurent and Ivan Ineich 2006. Biogeography of the reptiles of the Central African Republic. African Journal of Herpetology 55(1):23-59. - get paper here
  • FREYHOF, J. 1994. Poromera fordii (HALLOWELL, 1857) bei Dehane am unteren Nyong in Kamerun beobachtet. Die Eidechse 5 (12): 23-25 - get paper here
  • Günther, A. 1896. Report on a collection of reptiles and fishes made by Miss M. H. Kingsley during her travels on the Ogowe river and in Old Calabar. Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (6) 17: 261-267 - get paper here
  • Hallowell,E. 1857. Notes of a collection of reptiles from the Gaboon country, West Africa, recently presented to the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia, by Dr. Herny A. Ford. Proc. Acad. Nat. Sci. Philadelphia 9: 48-72 - get paper here
  • Pauwels, O.S.G.; Kamdem Toham, A. & Chimsunchart, C. 2002. Recherches sur l’herpétofaune du Massif du Chaillu, Gabon. Bull. Inst. Roy. Sci. Nat. Belgique (Biologie) 72: 47-57 - get paper here
  • Portik DM, Jongsma GFM, Kouete MT, Scheinberg LA, Freiermuth B, Tapondjou WP, Blackburn DC. 2016. A survey of amphibians and reptiles in the foothills of Mount Kupe, Cameroon. Amphibian & Reptile Conservation 10(2) [Special Section]: 37–67 (e131)
  • SÁNCHEZ-VIALAS, A., CALVO-REVUELTA, M. & DE LA RIVA, I. 2022. Synopsis of the terrestrial Reptiles of Equatorial Guinea. Zootaxa, 5202 (1): 1-197 - get paper here
  • Schmidt, Karl Patterson 1919. Contributions to the Herpetology of the Belgian Congo based on the Collection of the American Congo Expedition, 1909-1915. Part I: turtles, crocodiles, lizards, and chamaeleons. Bull. Amer. Mus. Nat. Hist. 39 (2): 385-624 - get paper here
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