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Tytthoscincus batupanggah KARIN, DAS & BAUER, 2016

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Higher TaxaScincidae, Sphenomorphinae (Sphenomorphini), Scincoidea, Sauria, Squamata (lizards)
Common NamesE: Cursed-stone Diminutive Leaf-Litter Skink 
SynonymTytthoscincus batupanggah KARIN, DAS & BAUER 2016: 409 
DistributionMalaysia (N Borneo: Sarawak, Gunung Penrissen)

Type locality: Batu Panggah, 1.120666o N 110.226922o E (WGS84), 1,050 m elevation, on the north face of Gunung Penrissen, Kuching Division, Sarawak, Malaysia.  
TypesHolotype: CAS 259189, A specimen collected 4 July 2014 at 20:00 h by Benjamin R. Karin, Pui Yong Min, Samuel Shonleben, and Adi Shabrani. Paratype. One additional specimen (ZRC 2.7123) was collected at the same locality at the same time as the holotype. 
DiagnosisDiagnosis: Tytthoscincus batupanggah sp. nov. can be identified by the following combination of characters: (1) body size small (SVL = 26.8–33.2 mm); (2) MBSR = 30–31; (3) PVSR = 62–66; (4) VSR = 55–61; (5) four enlarged supraoculars; (6) parietals in contact with the last supraocular; (7) prefrontals in contact with one another; (8) two loreals; (9) six supralabials; (10), five infralabials; (11) nine SDL on Toe IV; (12) smooth texture of the subdigital lamellae; (13) enlarged precloacal scales; (14) a dark dorsolateral stripe; (15) a light postorbital stripe; and (16) a light dorsolateral stripe.

Comparisons: Karin et al. 2016: 412 + Table 1

Description of holotype: Karin et al. 2016 
CommentComparisons: see Table 1 in Karin et al. 2016.

Habitat: highland, mixed-dipterocarp forest; This species appears to be a leaf-litter specialist and was seen running and jumping through this microhabitat

Abundance: only known from its original description (Meiri et al. 2017). 
EtymologyThe species epithet batupanggah is in reference to the type locality at Batu Panggah on Gunung Penrissen. From Malay, Batu Panggah translates to “Stone of the Head House” or “Cursed Stone” to refer to the large sandstone rock that is believed by local peoples to be cursed. The story goes that a young couple from different longhouses fell in love, but when their respective longhouses found out about their romance they sent out the headhunters to hunt them down. As they fled into the jungle it began to pour rain with thunder and lightning, they found a house in the woods, a head house, where human heads were traditionally kept as a symbol of victory, and ran inside to take shelter. However, women are not traditionally allowed in the head house and when they ran inside the house turned to stone, leaving behind a large rock that is now known as Batu Panggah. 
  • KARIN, BENJAMIN R.; INDRANEIL DAS, AARON M. BAUER 2016. Two new species of diminutive leaf-litter skinks (Squamata: Scincidae: Tytthoscincus) from Gunung Penrissen, Sarawak, Malaysia (northern Borneo). Zootaxa 4093 (3): 407–423 - 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
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