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Sceloporus madrensis OLSON, 1986

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Higher TaxaPhrynosomatidae, Sceloporinae, Iguania, Sauria, Squamata (lizards)
Common NamesE: Lesser Torquate Lizard
S: Espinosa de Collar Pequeño 
SynonymSceloporus torquatus madrensis OLSON 1986: 167
Sceloporus torquatus madrensis — OLSON 1991
Sceloporus torquatus madrensis — BELL et al. 2003
Sceloporus torquatus madrensis — LINER & CASAS-ANDREU 2008
Sceloporus madrensis — CAMPILLO-GARCÍA et al. 2021 
DistributionMexico (Tamaulipas)

Type Locality: Above Rancho del Cielo, 1740 m, 7 km NW Gómez Farías, Tamaulipas, Mexico.  
TypesHolotype: TCWC 62433, collected by R. E. Olson, 18 June 1982 
DiagnosisDescription: Sceloporus torquatus is a species of lizard large for the genus. Members of this species are brown, olive, or dark slate-gray dorsally, with a bold nuchal collar. Sceloporus torquatus madrensis is thought to have derived from the lineage which occurs along the outer slopes of the Sierra Madre (Olson, 1978). Examples of this lineage are usually dark slate-gray or bluish dorsally with a deep gray to black head and nuchal collar (Figure 1). The collar is deep-set, imparting a cape-like effect with complete, white borders. Mature males are entirely dark cobalt-blue on the throat and abdomen; only the rear limbs and tail are dirty white. These are members of the large-scaled assemblage of the torquatus group, all of which have nuchal collars. Dorsals average about. 28, ventrals 440 (details of scutellation are given under the variation section below). They are small lizards, compared with other members of the species, attaining an average adult size of little more than 90 mm SVL. The rear limbs are rather long compared with the body length. (Olson 1986)

Diagnosis: Sce loporus torquatus madrensis differs from the nominotypical race (which is part of the same lineage) by having relatively long forelimbs, which, when stretched posteriorly along the body, reach to or near the anterior insertion of the hindlimb (compared to being 6-10 scales distant): a narrow head (length/breadth 1.0 HL/HB - compared to approximately 0.9; and short body length in adults (ca. 90 mm SVL, never reaching 100, compared to ca. 95 mm SVL, often exceeding 100). In almost all other features, there is much resemblance between S. t. madrensis and S. t. torquatus. From the subspecies S. t. melanogaster, binocularis, and mikeprestoni, all plateau races, the subspecies further differs in features additional to the above suite of characters. Sceloporus torquatus madrensis has dark dorsal coloration, black head in adults (rather than brown or olive), deep cobalt-blue belly patches which, in adult males, meet at the midline (compared to lighter blue, discontinuous patches), relatively long hind limbs, and broad, complete nuchal collar (similar in both madrensis and mikeprestoni). (Olson 1986)

Description of holotype: Dorsally the color is dark gray to black with a broad nuchal collar, which anteriorly and posteriorly is edged by chalk-white borders. The center of the dorsum bears dark rhomboid blotches. The nuchal collar is 4-5 scales broad, the borders one scale wide. The posterior border is complete to the central scale, che anterior broken medially, with the outer ends bent anteriorly. Ventrally the entire surface is dark blue or black posteriorly to the dark-spotted undersurfaces of the posterior limbs, feet, and tail. The throat and outer portions of the belly patches are deep cobalt-blue. A continuous black band extends along the center of the abdomen from the throat posteriorly to the femora. The color of specimens in preservative have become somewhat darker, so that the holotype has the nuchal collar and belly patches almost black. (Olson 1986) 
CommentGroup: S. torquatus group (sensu lato, fide Flores-Villela et al. 2022) 
EtymologyNamed after the Latinized Spanish madre, "mother," and the suffix -ensis, "pertaining to," refer to the type locality of this form in the pine-oak forests on the eastern wall of the Sierra Madre Oriental. 
  • Bell, E.L.; Smith, H.M. & Chiszar, D. 2003. AN ANNOTATED LIST OF THE SPECIES-GROUP NAMES APPLIED TO THE LIZARD GENUS SCELOPORUS. Acta Zoologica Mexicana (n.s.) 90: 103-174 - get paper here
  • Campillo-García G, Flores-Villela O, Butler BO, Velasco Vinasco JA, Ramírez Corona F 2021. Hidden diversity within a polytypic species: The enigmatic Sceloporus torquatus Wiegmann, 1828 (Reptilia, Squamata, Phrynosomatidae. Vertebrate Zoology 71: 781-798 - get paper here
  • FLORES-VILLELA, Oscar, SMITH, E. N., CAMPILLO-GARCÍA, Gustavo, MARTÍNEZ-MÉNDEZ, Norberto, & CAMPBELL, J. A. 2022. A new species of Sceloporus of the torquatus group (Reptilia: Phrynosomatidae) from West Mexico. Zootaxa 5134 (2): 286-296 - get paper here
  • Olson, R. Earl 1986. A new subspecies of Sceloporus torquatus from the Sierra Madre Oriental, Mexico. Bull. Maryland Herp. Soc. 22 (4): 167-170 - get paper here
  • Olson, R.E. 1991. Sceloporus torquatus madrensis in San Luis Potosi Mexico Bull. Maryland Herpetol. Soc., 27(1): 38-39. - get paper here
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