Pseudocalotes viserion GRISMER, QUAH, WOOD, ANUAR, MUIN, DAVIS, MURDOCH, GRISMER, COTA & COBOS, 2016
Can you confirm these amateur observations of Pseudocalotes viserion?
|Higher Taxa||Agamidae (Draconinae), Sauria, Iguania, Squamata (lizards)|
|Common Names||E: Viserion’s False Garden Lizard|
|Synonym||Pseudocalotes viserion GRISMER, QUAH, WOOD, ANUAR, MUIN, DAVIS, MURDOCH, GRISMER, COTA & COBOS 2016|
|Distribution||Peninsular Malaysia (Pahang)|
Type locality: crossing the radar tower road at Ulu Kali at Genting Highlands, Pahang, Peninsular Malaysia (03° 26.166 N 101° 47.021 E; 1754 m in elevation
|Reproduction||oviparous. The holotype was a gravid female that had just ovulated indicating that the reproductive season of this species extends through March.|
|Types||Holotype: LSUHC 12227, Adult female, collected on 26 March 2015 by Evan S. H. Quah at 1000 hrs.|
Paratype. Adult male LSUHC 12141 found dead on the radar tower road at Ulu Kali at Genting Highlands, Pahang, Peninsular Malaysia (03° 26.12 N 101° 47.345 E; 1750 m in elevation) by L. Lee Grismer, Perry L. Wood, Jr., Hayden R. Davis, Matthew L. Murdoch, Brandon R. Burch, and Anthony J. Cobos.
|Diagnosis||Diagnosis. Pseudocalotes viserion sp. nov. can be separated from all other species of Psuedocalotes by having a combination of three postrostrals; 10 circumorbitals; four or five canthals; 5–7 superciliaries; rostral and nasal in contact; supralabials contacting nasal; six or seven supralabials; seven or eight infralabials; two or three postmentals; three enlarged chinshields; 47 or 48 smooth, flat, gular scales; weak transverse gular and antehumeral folds; two enlarged scales between the ear and eye; an enlarged upper and lower posttemporal; an enlarged supratympanic; no enlarged postrictals; 7–9 nuchal crest scales lacking gaps and not extending beyond midbody; weakly keeled and plate-like scales on flanks; 35–38 scales around midbody; ventrals smaller than dorsals; 22 or 23 subdigital lamellae on fourth finger; 26 or 27 subdigital lamellae on fourth toe; preaxial scales on third not modified; subdigital lamellae not unicarinate; HW/HL 0.62; no white marking below the eye; dewlap in males yellow; and no elbow or knee patches. These characters or a subset of them are scored across all species in Table 3 (Grismer et al. 2016).|
Variation: The male paratype (LSUHC 12141) resembles the female holotype (LSUHC 12227) in aspects of color pattern but the overall ground color is brown, not dull-yellow. It also has a greatly swollen tail base. Differences in scalation are presented in Table 5 and Fig. 10 (Grismer et al. 2016).
Comparisons. Pseudocalotes viserion sp. nov. is readily differentiated from all other species of Pseudocalotes except it sister species P. flavigula by having enlarged, plate-like scales on the flanks. It can be separated from P. flavigula by having larger, plate-like scales on the flanks (compare Figs. 10 and 12) as evidenced by having fewer midbody scale rows (35–38 versus 41–44); having more gular scales (47 or 48 versus 40–46); fewer subdigital lamellae on the fourth finger (22 or 23 versus 22–28); and fewer subdigital lamellae on the fourth toe (26 or 27 versus 26–30) (Table 5). There appears to be less yellow coloration in the gular region of P. flavigula in that the yellow does not extend onto the region of the throat anterior to the forelimb insertions as it does in P. viserion sp. nov. and the skin between the scales is white in P. flavigula as opposed to being yellow in P. viserion sp. nov. (Figs. 10,12). Additionally, these two species share a 22% uncorrected pairwise sequence divergence between them. Differences from other species are listed in Table 3 (Grismer et al. 2016).
|Comment||Habitat: The holotype (LSUHC 12227) was collected during mid-morning at 1000 hrs under broken cloud cover as it was crossing the radar tower road at Ulu Kali at Genting Highlands. The paratype (LSUHC 12141) was found freshly killed on the same road at 1500 hrs. This short stretch of road runs along the crest of Ulu Kali and winds through a mossy cloud forest between 1,700 and 1,800 m in elevation (Fig. 11 in Grismer et al. 2016).|
Abundance: only known from its original description (Meiri et al. 2017).
|Etymology||The specific epithet viserion refers to this species’ resemblance in form and color to the yellowish dragon, Viserion—one of three dragons born in the Dothraki Sea and commanded by Daenerys Targaryen—the Mother of Dragons—in George R. R. Martin’s fictional work Game of Thrones.|
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