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Amphisbaena uroxena MOTT, RODRIGUES, DE FREITAS & SILVA, 2008

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Higher TaxaAmphisbaenidae, Amphisbaenia, Lacertoidea, Sauria, Squamata (lizards)
Common NamesPortuguese: Cobra-de-Duas-Cabeças, Cobra-Cega 
SynonymAmphisbaena uroxena MOTT, RODRIGUES, DE FREITAS & SILVA 2008 
DistributionBrazil (Bahia), elevation 1100 m.

Type locality: Fazenda Caraibas (13°09’49’’S, 41°24’19’’W), district of Cascavel, municipality of Mucugê, Serra do Espinhaço (Chapada Diamantina), state of Bahia, Brazil.  
TypesHolotype: MZUSP 95987, an immature female, collected by Marco Antonio de Freitas and Thais Figueiredo Santos Silva on 8 December 2005. 
DiagnosisDiagnosis: A small Amphisbaena with a short, blunt, nonautotomic tail covered with small conic tubercules at their diagonal and dorsally oriented tip. This morphological feature is unique among South American amphisbaenians. No visible precloacal pores, paired nasals, prefrontals, frontals and parietals, 210– 213 body and 12–13 caudal annuli, 14 dorsal and 14–15 ventral segments per annuli at midbody, 3 supralabials, 3 infralabials. Head not distinct from the trunk, mouth ventral. Prefrontals are the largest head scales. 
CommentAmphisbaena uroxena is a small amphisbaenian without precloacal pores, 210–213 body annuli, 12–13 tail annuli without evident autotomic site, and 14 dorsal and 14–15 ventral segments per annuli at midbody. The striking difference of this form is the presence of small tubercles on the dorsal region of its tail. This feature is unique among its congeners, although Rhineura floridana, a North American amphisbaenian, has tubercles on its tail.

Abundance: only known from the type locality (Meiri et al. 2017). 
EtymologyThe uroxena from the Greek “uros” meaning tail and “xenos” meaning strange, different, is a reference to the strikingly different tail of this species.  
  • Almeida JPFA De, De Freitas MA, Da Silva MB, Valverde MCC, Rodrigues MT, Pires AM, Mott T. 2018. A new four-pored Amphisbaena (Squamata: Amphisbaenidae) from northeastern Brazil. Zootaxa 4514 (4): 553-562. doi: 10.11646/zootaxa.4514.4.8. - get paper here
  • Freitas, M.A.; D. Veríssimo; V. Uhlig. 2012. Squamate Reptiles of the central Chapada Diamantina, with a focus on the municipality of Mucugê, state of Bahia, Brazil. Check List 8(1):16-22 - get paper here
  • Gonzalez R. C. et al. 2020. Lista dos Nomes Populares dos Répteis no Brasil – Primeira Versão. Herpetologia Brasileira 9 (2): 121 – 214 - 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
  • Mott, T.; Rodrigues, M.T.; de Freitas, M.A. & Silva, T.F.S. 2008. New Species of Amphisbaena with a Nonautotomic and Dorsally Tuberculate Blunt Tail From State of Bahia, Brazil (Squamata, Amphisbaenidae). Journal of Herpetology 42 (1): 172-175 - get paper here
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