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Anelytropsis papillosus COPE, 1885

IUCN Red List - Anelytropsis papillosus - Least Concern, LC

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Higher TaxaDibamidae, Sauria, Squamata (lizards)
Common NamesE: Mexican Blind Lizard
S: Lagartija Ciega Mexicana 
SynonymAnelytropsis papillosus COPE 1885: 380
Anelytropsis papillosus — SMITH & TAYLOR 1950: 170
Anelytropsis papillosis — AXTELL 1958 (in error)
Anelytropsis pustulosus — MALNATE 1971: 360 (in error)
Anelytropsis papillosus — GREER 1985
Anelytropsis papillosus — LINER 1994
Anelytropsis papillosus — LINER 2007 
DistributionNE Mexico (E San Luis Potosi, EC Veracruz, Quéretaro, Hidalgo, Oaxaca, Tamaulipas)

Type locality: Near Jalapa, Veracruz, Mexico  
TypesHolotype: ANSP 11458 (declared lost by Campbell 1974 and Greer 1985 but rediscovered later).
Neotype: AMNH 64024 (Buenavista, 32.4 km NE of Cerritos, San Luis Potosi, Mexico), designated by Greer 1985 
DiagnosisDiagnosis (genus): Differs from Dibamus, the only other genus in the family, in the following combination of derived character states: limbs (males only) relatively small and lacking fully developed tibia and fibula, and probably as a consequence, tibial pores absent; preanal pores poorly developed and reduced to one per side in males, absent in females (Greer 1985: 146).

Diagnosis. Differs from all other dibamids in the following combination of characters: rostral sutures complete and separate and nasal and labial sutures
complete, and usually only one scale along the posteromedial edge of the infralabial (90 percent, N = 15) (Greer 1985: 147).

Original description: “Char. gen. Rostral plate capping muzzle, the nostril at the junction of its posterior border with the suture separating the loreal and first labial. No frontonasal nor supraorbital plates. Three plates on top of head, which should probably be identified as anterior and posterior frontal and parietal. Eye scarcely visible through the single ocular plate. Scales equal, smooth. Vent not terminal. No limbs. No preanal pores. This genus only differs from Feylinia Gray (= Anelytrops Hallow), in the arrangement of the lateral plates of the muzzle. In that genus and Typhlosaurus, the only other genus of the family, the rostral plate is as in Acontias; i. e., divided longitudinally on each side by a fissure which extends from the nostril posteriorly. Whether the internal characters differ remains to be ascertained. I give the genus the name Anelytropsis in order to justify the family name Anelytropids. This will produce no confusion, as the name Anelytrops was given by Hallowell to the genus which had previously been named Feylinia, and as a synonym disappears from view.” (from COPE 1885).

Char. Specif. Form slender. Tail moderately long, with obtuse extremity. Scales scincoid, with rounded edges, everywhere equal, including the preanal region. Color brownish flesh-color. The head is distinguishable from the body by its slightly greater width, and is slightly contracted at the position of the orbits, and continued as a distinct muzzle. The body is cylindrical, and the tail is a little longer than one-fourth the total length. Twenty longitudinal series of scales. The area represented by the rostral plate of Acontias, is invaded on each side by two labial plates, and a large loreal above them. Behind the second labial plate is a very small third, and above it is a large Ocular plate which extends upwards and forwards to a line with the superior border of the loreal. The pale spot which represents the eye is situated in the lower posterior corner. The fourth and last labial is a little larger than the second, and has a narrowly rounded posterior extremity. Above it is a small postocular, which is in contact with the posterior frontal. On the summit of the head there are three scuta. The anterior, or anterior frontal is the smallest. It forms a transverse band between the loreal and ocular of one side and those of the other. The succeeding plate, the postfrontal, is the largest. It is succeeded by the parietal,which is a transverse plate, concave in front and convex posteriorly, and which is separated from the postocular on each side by a single scale. Posterior to this scute, the scales of the body commence. There is a large symphyseal plate which is a triangle with its apex posterior and truncate. It is bounded on each side by a very large inferior labial, which is also a triangle. This is followed on the labial margin by two very small labial plates. A small body scale succeeds the symphyseal, and this is connected with the small posterior labials by a narrow plate on each side. These are followed by the body scales. Six laterally imbricated scales bound the vent in front. Total length, M. ,170; length of tail, .045; of head, to line connecting rictioris, .0041. The rostral, loreal and anterior twolabial scuta are marked with minute papillie, which when removed leave punctiform impressions. They are not very closely placed.

For a comparison of Anelytropsis and Dibamus see Greer 1985, who also compares dibamids to amphisbaenians, snakes and pygopods. 
CommentType species: Anelytropsis papillosus COPE 1885 is the type species of the genus Anelytropsis COPE 1885

Limb morphology: Limbless. 
EtymologyGenus: Anelytropsis was proposed to justify the family name Anelytropidae Cope, which was based an Anelytrops Dumeril, a synonym of Feylinia Gray. Neither Dumeril nor Cope discussed the etymology of the name, but it apparently is derived from the Greek “ana” (up or upon), “elytron” (shield), and “ops” (eye). The genus name is feminine. [from CAMPBELL 1974]

Species: The name papillosus (Latin) refers to, the papillae present on the anterior head scales. 
  • Axtell, Ralph W. 1958. A northward range extension for the lizard Anelytropsis papillosis, with notes on the distribution and habits of several other Mexican lizards. Herpetologica 14: 189-191 - get paper here
  • Campbell, Howard W. 1974. Anelytropsis, A. papillosus. Catalogue of American Amphibians and Reptiles (156): 1-2 - get paper here
  • Cope, E.D. 1885. A contribution to the herpetology of Mexico. Proc. Amer. Philos. Soc. 22: 379-404 - get paper here
  • Dixon, James R. and Julio A. Lemos-Espinal 2010. Amphibians and reptiles of the state of Queretaro, Mexico. Tlalnepantla UNAM, 428 pp.
  • Greer A E 1990. “Rediscovery” of the holotype of Anelytropsis papillosus Cope 1885. Journal of Herpetology 24 (1): 103-104 - get paper here
  • Greer, A. E. 1976. On the occurrence of a stapedial foramen in living non-gekkonid lepidosaurs. Copeia 1976 (3): 591-592 - get paper here
  • Greer,A. E. 1985. The relationships of the lizard genera Anelytropsis and Dibamus. Journal of Herpetology 19 (1): 116-156 - get paper here
  • Lemos-Espinal JA, Smith GR, Woolrich-Piña GA 2018. Amphibians and reptiles of the state of San Luis Potosí, Mexico, with comparisons with adjoining states. ZooKeys 753: 83-106 - get paper here
  • Lemos-Espinal, Julio A. and James R. Dixon 2013. Amphibians and Reptiles of San Luis Potosí. Eagle Mountain Publishing, xii + 300 pp.
  • Lemos-Espinal, Julio A., Geoffrey R. Smith 2015. Amphibians and reptiles of the state of Hidalgo, Mexico. Check List 11 (3): 1642 - get paper here
  • Liner, Ernest A. 2007. A CHECKLIST OF THE AMPHIBIANS AND REPTILES OF MEXICO. Louisiana State University Occasional Papers of the Museum of Natural Science 80: 1-60 - get paper here
  • Malnate, Edmund V. 1971. A catalogue of primary types in the Herpetological Collections of the Academy of Natural Sciences, Philadelphia (ANSP). Proccedings of the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia 123 (9): 345-375 - get paper here
  • Miller, M. R. 1966. The cochlear ducts of Lanthanotus and Anelytropsis with remarks on the familial relationship between Anelytropsis and Dibamus. Occ. Pap. Cal. Acad. Sci. (60): 1-15 - get paper here
  • Quijano, Fernando Mendoza;Garcia, EfraØn Hernández;Ballardo, Walter Schmidt 1993. Anelytropsis papillosus (Mexican Blind Lizard). México: Hidalgo. Herpetological Review 24 (2): 66 - get paper here
  • Sites, Jack W.; Jr., Tod W. Reeder, and John J. Wiens 2011. Phylogenetic Insights on Evolutionary Novelties in Lizards and Snakes: Sex, Birth, Bodies, Niches, and Venom. Annu. Rev. Ecol. Evol. Syst. 42:227–44 - get paper here
  • Smith, H.M. 1935. Miscellaneous notes on Mexican lizards. Univ. Kansas Sci. Bull. 22: 119-156 - get paper here
  • Terán-Juárez, Sergio A., Elí García Padilla, Vicente Mata-Silva, Jerry D. Johnson and Larry David Wilson. 2016. The herpetofauna of Tamaulipas, Mexico: composition, distribution, and conservation status. Mesoamerican Herpetology 3 (1): 43–113 - get paper here
  • Townsend, Ted M.; Dean H. Leavitt, Tod W. Reeder 2011. Intercontinental dispersal by a microendemic burrowing reptile (Dibamidae). Proc R Soc B. 278 (1718): 2568; doi: 10.1098/rspb.2010.2598 - get paper here
  • Valdez-Villavicencio, Jorge, Elí García-Padilla and Vicente Mata-Silva. 2016. Distribution Notes. Anelytropsis papillosus Cope, 1885 (Squamata: Dibamidae), an overlooked species in the state of Oaxaca, Mexico. Mesoamerican Herpetology 3 (1): 178–180 - get paper here
  • Zaldivar-Riverón, Alejandro; Adrián Nieto-Montes De Oca; Norma Manríquez- Morán; Tod W. Reeder 2008. Phylogenetic Affinities of the Rare and Enigmatic Limb-Reduced Anelytropsis (Reptilia: Squamata) as Inferred with Mitochondrial 16S rRNA Sequence Data. Journal of Herpetology 42 (2): 303–311 - get paper here
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