Sitana marudhamneydhal DEEPAK, KHANDEKAR, VARMA & CHAITANYA, 2016
Can you confirm these amateur observations of Sitana marudhamneydhal?
|Higher Taxa||Agamidae (Draconinae), Sauria, Iguania, Squamata (lizards)|
|Synonym||Sitana marudhamneydhal DEEPAK, KHANDEKAR, VARMA & CHAITANYA 2016|
|Distribution||India (Tamil Nadu)|
Type locality: Kallidaikurichi, Tirunelveli District, Tamil Nadu, India (8°39’54” N; 77°27’15” E), 68 m elevation
|Reproduction||oviparous. Breeding males were observed during the month of September and October. Hatchlings were recorded during the month of January.|
|Types||Holotype: NCBS AQ460, an adult male (Fig. 6 in Deepak et al. 2016), collected on 12 November 2014 by V. Deepak and R. Chaitanya. Paratypes CES 141124, an adult male from Kallidaikurichi, Tirunelveli District, Tamil Nadu, India (8°39’54” N; 77°27’15” E), 68 m elevation, collected on 12 November 2014 by V. Deepak and R. Chaitanya. BNHS 2313 an adult female from Kanyakumari, Kanyakumari District, Tamil Nadu, India (8°4’45” N 77°31’55” E), 68 m elevation, collected on 10 January 2014 by V. Deepak|
|Diagnosis||Diagnosis. A large-sized Sitana with a maximum SVL of 55 mm, distinguished from all congeners by the following combination of characters: 1) dewlap extending beyond forearm insertion (vs not extending in S. sivalensis complex including S. kalesari); 2) highly serrated dewlap (vs faintly serrated in S. spinaecephalus and S. laticeps); 3) large dewlap extending over up to 64% of trunk vs S. ponticeriana (46%), S. bahiri (29%), S. devakai (33%) and S. visiri (56%), 4. Large body size (average SVL) 51 mm vs S. bahiri (Rameshwaram population 42.1 mm; Sri Lankan population 34 mm), S. devakai 35 mm, S. visiri 50 mm and S. ponticeriana 40.5 mm, 5. Fewer dorsal scales (39–40) vs S. visiri (41–50).|
|Comment||Habitat: coastal sand dunes, grassland habitats, open areas dominated with Prosopis juliflora and plains in the southern Tamil Nadu.|
Sympatry: Eutropis carinata, Eutropis bibronii, and Calotes versicolor
|Etymology||The species is named for its occurrence in the grassy plains as well as the seashore in Tamil Nadu, India. The specific epithet is derived from a combination of two ancient Tamil words (Tamil: Marudham = cultivable grasslands, Neydhal = land by the seashore).|
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