Voeltzkowia yamagishii SAKATA & HIKIDA, 2003
Can you confirm these amateur observations of Voeltzkowia yamagishii?
|Higher Taxa||Scincidae, Scincinae, Scincoidea, Sauria, Squamata (lizards)|
|Synonym||Sirenoscincus yamagishii SAKATA & HIKIDA 2003|
Sirenoscincus yamagishii — SCHMITZ et al. 2005
Voeltzkowia yamagishii — MIRALLES et al. 2015
Type locality: Ampijoroa, Ankarafantsika Strict Nature Reserve, northwestern Madagascar (16° 20’ S, 46° 48’ E); elevation 100 m.
|Types||Holotype: KUZ R50922|
|Diagnosis||Diagnosis (genus): The new genus is a member of the subfamily Scincinae (Greer, 1970). I t is distinguished from all other taxa in this group by the follow- ing combination of characters in derived states (polarity for each of these characters was inferred as relative to Eumeces, the putative primitive genus of the family: Greer and Broadley, 2000). Body highly elongated (SVL 11.6-14.0 times head length) with 53 presacral vertebrae; original tail slightly longer than SVL; snout pointed, lower jaw counter- sunk; neck indistinguishable externally; body scales smooth and transparent without pig- mentation; 20 longitudinal scale rows at mid- body. Forelimb small (approximately 4.70/0 of SVL) with indistinct fingers and four stout claws; no hind limbs, shallow groove in their position in other scincines; prefrontals absent; nasal sharply pointed, triangular, positioned at V-shaped notch of rostral; nostril positioned at anterior tip of nasal; frontonasal as large as frontal; frontoparietal absent; loreal single; supraoculars two; superciliaries and movable lower eyelid absent; eye covered with two oculars; supralabials six; infralabials five, anterior three higher than posterior two; external ear opening covered by scales, but small ear groove visible through transparent scale; postmental single.|
|Comment||Eyeless, no ear opening, no hindlimbs, forelimbs with only 4 digits (the only Malagasy skink with completely reduced hindlimbs but exhibiting forelimbs).|
Type species: Sirenoscincus yamagishii SAKATA & HIKIDA 2003 is the type species of the genus Sirenoscincus SAKATA & HIKIDA 2003.
|Etymology||The generic name is derived from the Latin words, siren (mermaid) and scincus (skink), referring to the unique body shape of the type species with forelimbs only. The specific epithet is dedicated to Dr. Satoshi Yamagishi, who was a professor of Kyoto University and the project leader of Ecological Surveys in Ampijoroa, Ankarafantsika Strict Nature Reserve, in which both of the type specimens were obtained.|