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Tympanocryptis houstoni STORR, 1982

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Higher TaxaAgamidae (Amphibolurinae), Sauria, Iguania, Squamata (lizards)
Common NamesE: Nullarbor Earless Dragon, Houston’s Earless Dragon 
SynonymTympanocryptis lineata houstoni STORR 1982
Tympanocryptis houstoni — SHOO et al. 2008
Tympanocryptis houstoni — WILSON & SWAN 2010: 386
Tympanocryptis houstoni — MELVILLE et al. 2019: 20
Tympanocryptis houstoni — CHAPPLE et al. 2019: 95 
DistributionS Australia (S Western Australia)

Type locality: 10 km SSE of Cocklebiddy, Western Australia, in 32°07'S, 126°06'E.  
TypesHolotype: WAM R53427; paratypes: WAM 
DiagnosisDiagnosis: A large subspecies of T. lineata Peters, distinguishable from all others by its broad vertebral stripe. Further differing from T. l. centralis Sternfeld in its stouter habit, thicker neck and more strongly developed colour pattern (especially on head).

Diagnosis. A species of Tympanocryptis with rostral scale continuous with the canthus rostralis, nasal scale below the canthus and not bordered below by enlarged scales, well-developed lateral neck fold, keeled dorsal head scales, well-developed five-lined colour pattern in which the dorsolateral lines are narrower than the vertebral line and with sometimes more than five dark dorsal cross-bands, no lateral skin fold, venter heavily patterned with black flecks [Melville et al. 2019].

Comparisons. It is most similar to T. petersi, but distinguishable from both it and its other geographical near neighbour (see Remarks), T. tolleyi sp. nov. (Species D) by its broad vertebral stripe and moderate to intense black ventral markings [Melville et al. 2019]. 
CommentDistribution: see map in Melville et al. 2019: 6 (Fig. 1) 
EtymologyNamed after Latin “linea”, meaning stripe or line. 
  • Chapple, David G.; Reid Tingley, Nicola J. Mitchell, Stewart L. Macdonald, J. Scott Keogh, Glenn M. Shea, Philip Bowles, Neil A. Cox, John C. Z. Woinarski 2019. The Action Plan for Australian Lizards and Snakes 2017. CSIRO, 663 pp. DOI: 10.1071/9781486309474 - get paper here
  • Cogger, H. G. 2014. Reptiles and Amphibians of Australia, 7th ed. CSIRO Publishing, xxx + 1033 pp. - get paper here
  • Ellis, Ryan J. 2019. An annotated type catalogue of the dragon lizards (Reptilia: Squamata: Agamidae) in the collection of the Western Australian Museum. Records of the Western Australian Museum 34: 115–132 - get paper here
  • Melville J, Chaplin K, Hipsley CA, Sarre SD, Sumner J, Hutchinson M. 2019. Integrating phylogeography and high-resolution X-ray CT reveals five new cryptic species and multiple hybrid zones among Australian earless dragons. R. Soc. open sci. 6: 191166 - get paper here
  • Shoo, L.P.; R. Rose, P. Doughty, J.J. Austin, J. Melville 2008. Diversification patterns of pebble-mimic dragons are consistent with historical disruption of important habitat corridors in arid Australia. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 48: 528–542 - get paper here
  • Storr, G M 1982. Taxonomic notes on the genus Tympanocryptis Peters (Lacertilia: Agamidae). Rec. West. Austr. Mus. 10 (1): 61-66 - 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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