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Amphisbaena vanzolinii GANS, 1963

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Higher TaxaAmphisbaenidae, Amphisbaenia, Lacertoidea, Squamata (lizards)
Common NamesE: Vanzolini's Worm Lizard
Portuguese: Cobra-de-Duas-Cabeças, Cobra-Cega 
SynonymAmphisbaena vanzolinii GANS 1963
Amphisbaena vanzolinii — GONZALEZ-SPONGA & GANS 1971
Amphisbaena vanzolinii— HOOGMOED & AVILA-PIRES 1991
Amphisbaena hugoi VANZOLINI 1989 (fide HOOGMOED & MOTT 2003)
Amphisbaena hugoi — VANZOLINI 2002
Amphisbaena vanzolinii — GANS 2005: 20
Amphisbaena vanzolinii — MORATO et al. 2014: 63 
DistributionGuyana (Rupununi District), Suriname (Sipaliwini), N Brazil (Amazonas, Pará)

hugoi: Brazil (Amazonas, from the area of Balbina, northeast of Manaus).

Type locality: Guyana; Marudi (02°05’N, 59°00’W).  
TypesHolotype: AMNH 60975; paratype: AMNH 60778
Holotype: MZUSP 68644 [hugoi] 
DiagnosisDIAGNOSIS: A form of Amphisbaena without major fusions of head shields; with the nasals the largest segments of the head and divided from the frontals by a peculiar V-shaped suture; without enlarged malars; with two supralabials and one and a halfinfralabials. The form has 225 to 228 body annuli; apparently more than 15 caudal annuli (the tail is broken in both types); no caudal autotomy constriction; 12 to 13 dorsal and 16 to 17 ventral segments to a midbody annulus; and four round precloacal pores. The color of preserved specimens is a uniform dark brown dorsally, fading to a lighter ventral coloring. The tendency toward darkening of the rectangular segmental centers is only faintly apparent under the microscope (Gans 1963: 13).

The belly of Surinam A. vanzolinii is white and the back light- to dark-brown, exactly the same as in A. hugoi. All meristic and other characters mentioned by Vanzolini (1990, 2002) for A. hugoi completely fall within the range of variation known for A. vanzolinii. 
CommentDistribution: map in HOOGMOED & AVILA-PIRES 1991. 
EtymologyThe specific name is a homage to Dr. Paulo Emílio Vanzolini (1924-2013), one of the most distinguished Brazilian zoologists. About Vanzolini see Heyer (2004), Bastos & Sa 2011, and Dirksen 2013. 
  • Beolens, Bo; Michael Watkins, and Michael Grayson 2011. The Eponym Dictionary of Reptiles. Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, USA - get paper here
  • Cole, Charles J.; Carol R. Townsend, Robert P. Reynolds, Ross D. MacCulloch, and Amy Lathrop 2013. Amphibians and reptiles of Guyana, South America: illustrated keys, annotated species accounts, and a biogeographic synopsis. Proceedings of the Biological Society of Washington 125 (4): 317-578; plates: 580-620 - get paper here
  • Dirksen, Lutz 2013. Paulo Emilio Vanzolini. Ein Herpetologe aus Leidenschaft. Terraria-Elaphe 2013 (5): 52-54 - get paper here
  • Gans, C. 1963. Notes on amphisbaenids (Amphisbaenia, Reptilia). 8. A redescription of Amphisbaena stejnegeri and the description of a new species of Amphisbaena from British Guiana. American Museum Novitates (2128): 1-18. - get paper here
  • Gans, C. 2005. CHECKLIST AND BIBLIOGRAPHY OF THE AMPHISBAENIA OF THE WORLD. Bull. Am. Mus. Nat. Hist. 289: 1-130 - get paper here
  • Gonzales Sponga, M.A. & Gans C. 1971. Amphisbaena gracilis Strauch rediscovered (Amphisbaena: Reptilia). Copeia 1971 (4): 589-595 - 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
  • Hoogmoed M.S.; de Avila-Pires T C S 1991. A new species of small Amphisbaena (Reptilia: Amphisbaenia: Amphisbaenidae) from western Amazonian Brazil. BOLETIM DO MUSEU PARAENSE EMILIO GOELDI SERIE ZOOLOGIA 7 (1): 77-94
  • Hoogmoed, M. S.; Mott, T. 2003. On the identity of Amphisbaena hugoi Vanzolini, 1990 (Reptilia: Squamata: Amphisbaenidae). Zoologische Mededelingen 77 (15/36): 455-458 - get paper here
  • Hoogmoed, Marinus S.; Roberta R. Pinto, Wáldima Alves da Rocha, and Emiliane G. Pereira 2009. A NEW SPECIES OF MESOBAENA MERTENS, 1925 (SQUAMATA: AMPHISBAENIDAE) FROM BRAZILIAN GUIANA, WITH A KEY TO THE AMPHISBAENIDAE OF THE GUIANAN REGION. Herpetologica 65 (4): 436 - get paper here
  • Morato, S.A.A.; Calixto, P.O.; Mendes, L.R.; Gomes, R.; Galatti, U.; Trein, F.L.; Oliveira, F.S.; Ferreira, G.N. 2014. Guia fotográfico de identificação da herpetofauna da Floresta Nacional de Saracá-Taquera, Estado do Pará. Curitiba: STCP Engenharia de Projetos Ltda.; Porto Trombetas: MRN – Mineração Rio do Norte S.A.; 213 p. - get paper here
  • Morato, Sérgio Augusto Abrahão; Guilherme Nunes Ferreira; Michela Rossane Cavilha Scupino (eds.) 2018. Herpetofauna da Amazônia Central: Estudos na FLONA de Saracá-Taquera. Curitiba, Pr: STCP Engenharia de Projetos Ltda.; Porto Trombetas, Pa: MRN – Mineração Rio do Norte S.A., 2018. 210p. - get paper here
  • Vanzolini P E 1989. A new species of Amphisbaena from the State of Amazonas, Brasil (Reptilia, Amphisbaenia, Amphisbaenidae). MEMORIAS DO INSTITUTO OSWALDO CRUZ RIO DE JANEIRO 84 (Suppl. 4): 525-528 - get paper here
  • Vanzolini, P.E. 2002. AN AID TO THE IDENTIFICATION OF THE SOUTH AMERICAN SPECIES OF AMPHISBAENA (SQUAMATA, AMPHISBAENIDAE). Pap. Avul. Zool., Sao Paulo 42(15):351-362 - get paper here
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