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Techmarscincus jigurru (COVACEVICH, 1984)

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Higher TaxaScincidae, Eugongylinae (Eugongylini), Scincoidea, Sauria, Squamata (lizards)
Common NamesE: Bartle Frere Cool-skink 
SynonymLeiolopisma jigurru COVACEVICH 1984
Techmarscincus jigurru — WELLS & WELLINGTON 1985
Bartleia jigurru — HUTCHINSON et al. 1990
Bartleia jigurru — COGGER 2000: 563
Techmarscincus [sic] jigurru — GREER 2005 (online)
Techmarscincus jigurru — WILSON & SWAN 2010: 344
Techmarscincus jigurru — CHAPPLE et al. 2023 
DistributionAustralia (Queensland, Cape York Peninsula), elevation 1524 m.

Type locality: near summit of South Peak of Mt Bartle Frere, Qld  
TypesHolotype: QM J40040, collected J. Covacevich, R. McKay & D. Marshall, 7-8.xi.1981. Paratype: AMS (AM) R95553 
DiagnosisDiagnosis: A mid-body scale count of 30 and paired frontoparietal scales distinguishes Leiolopisma jigurru from other Australian species of Leiolopisma except L. entrecasteauxii (Dumeril and Bibron). L. entrecasteauxii has a lower lamellae under the 4th toe count (16-22) than L. jigurru (26-29) and lacks the distinctive dark brown to black, and white to cream colour pattern of L. jigurru.
Ten New Zealand species of Leiolopisma have the combination of 30 mid-body scale rows and paired frontoparietals, but only 3 species also have a 4th toe subdigital lamellae count which overlaps with that of L. jigurru. These are L. infrapunctatum (Boulenger), L. nigriplantare (Peters), and L. lineoocellatum (Dumeril and Dumeril). Colour and pattern quickly distinguish L. jigurru from these species. See PI. 1a-b, 2a-b and Hardy (1977, figs 27, 30-32, 33). (Covacevich 1984: 403)

Description of holotype: Covacevich 1984: 403 
CommentType species: Leiolopisma jigurru COVACEVICH 1984 is the type species of the genus Techmarscincus WELLS & WELLINGTON 1985: 39. Leiolopisma jigurru Covacevich 1984 has also been designated type species for the new genus Bartleia HUTCHINSON et al. 1990.

Abundance: only known from the type locality (Meiri et al. 2017). 
EtymologyNamed after the Mamu and the Ngajan name for this lizard, “jigurru”, acccording to Molly Ramond and George Watson, the last people to speak these languages well. Their people lived in the rainforest country at the headwaters of the Mulgrave and Russell Rivers on the slopes of the Bellenden Ker Range and their territories overlapped in the high mountains such as Bartle Frere. 'For more than ten thousand years they lived in harmony ... with their environment. One hundred years ago many of them were shot and poisoned ...' (Dixon, 1972).

The genus was Bartleia named after the summit of Mt. Bartle Frere in NE Queensland. 
  • Chapple, D., Chapple, S., Smith, S., Shea, G., Brennan, I., & Sadlier, R. 2023. Phylogenetic relationships in the Eugongylini (Squamata: Scincidae): generic limits and biogeography. Australian Journal of Zoology 70(6): 165–203 - get paper here
  • Cogger, H. G. 2014. Reptiles and Amphibians of Australia, 7th ed. CSIRO Publishing, xxx + 1033 pp. - get paper here
  • Cogger, H.G. 2000. Reptiles and Amphibians of Australia, 6th ed. Ralph Curtis Publishing, Sanibel Island, 808 pp.
  • Couper, P., Covacevich, J., Amey, A. & Baker, A. 2006. The genera of skinks (Family Scincidae) of Australia and its island territories: diversity, distribution and identification. in: Merrick, J.R., Archer, M., Hickey, G.M. & Lee, M.S.Y. (eds.). Evolution and Zoogeography of Australasian Vertebrates. Australian Scientific Publishing, Sydney, pp. 367-384
  • Covacevich J 1984. A biogeographically significant new species of Leiolopisma (Scincidae) from north eastern Queensland. Memoirs of the Queensland Museum 21 (2): 401-411 - get paper here
  • Hutchinson M N; Donnellan S C; Baverstock P R; Krieg M; Simms S; Burgin S 1990. Immunological relationships and generic revision of the Australian lizards assigned to the genus Leiolopisma (Scincidae: Lygosominae). Australian Journal of Zoology 38 (5): 535-554 - get paper here
  • Meiri, Shai; Aaron M. Bauer, Allen Allison, Fernando Castro-Herrera, Laurent Chirio, Guarino Colli, Indraneil Das, Tiffany M. Doan, Frank Glaw, Lee L. Grismer, Marinus Hoogmoed, Fred Kraus, Matthew LeBreton, Danny Meirte, Zoltán T. Nagy, Cristiano d 2017. Extinct, obscure or imaginary: the lizard species with the smallest ranges. Diversity and Distributions - get paper here
  • Wilson, S. & Swan, G. 2010. A complete guide to reptiles of Australia, 3rd ed. Chatswood: New Holland, 558 pp.
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