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Anolis nemonteae AYALA-VARELA, VALVERDE, POE, NARVÁEZ, YÁNEZ-MUÑOZ & TORRES-CARVAJAL, 2021

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Higher TaxaDactyloidae, Iguania, Sauria, Squamata (lizards)
Subspecies 
Common NamesE: Star anoles
S: Anolis de las estrellas 
SynonymAnolis nemonteae AYALA-VARELA, VALVERDE, POE, NARVÁEZ, YÁNEZ-MUÑOZ & TORRES-CARVAJAL 2021 
DistributionEcuador (El Oro)

Type locality: Ecuador, El Oro province, Buenaventura Reserve, 3.654 S, 79.777 W, WGS84, 417 m  
Reproduction 
TypesHolotype. QCAZ 14595 (Figs 1, 2, 3), adult female, 30 January 2016, collected by Andrea Narváez, Sebastián Valverde, Keyko Cruz, and David Reyes.
Paratypes (N=12, Figs 3, 4). ECUADOR: El Oro: QCAZ 14317 (adult female), 14318 (juvenile female), 14431 (juvenile female), 14432 (adult female), 13.2 km SW Piñas on highway, 3.662 S, 79.760 W, 754 m, 11 January 2016, collected by Fernando Ayala, Steven Poe, and Chris Anderson; QCAZ 14596 (adult male), same collection data as holotype; QCAZ 14597 (juvenile male), Buenaventura Reserve, 3.650 S, 79.780 W, 372 m; QCAZ 14660 (female hatchling), Buenaventura Reserve, 3.653 S, 79.766 W, 578 m, 30 January 2016; DHMECN 4132 (juvenile male), Buenaventura Reserve, 3.645 S, 79.763 W, 800 m, 7 February 2006, collected by Mery Juiña; DHMECN 7687 (adult male), same collection data as DHMECN 4132, 18 January 2010, collected by Marco Reyes-Puig, and Michael Harvey; DHMECN 11543 (juvenile male), Buenaventura Reserve, 3.667 S, 79.766 W, 1,000 m, 31 December 2014, collected by Juan Carlos Sánchez, Karem López, Luis Oyagata, and Paúl Guerrero; JMG 0484 (adult male), 0485 (adult female), Buenaventura Lodge, 3.653 S, 79.768 W, 520 m, 6 January 2017, collected by Paulina Romero. 
DiagnosisDiagnosis. The new species belongs to the Megaloa clade of the latifrons series of Dactyloa (Castañeda & de Queiroz 2013; Prates et al. 2020) based on the phylogenetic tree presented in this study. Anolis nemonteae sp. nov. differs from most species of the punctatus, heterodermus, and nasofrontalis series (Castañeda & de Queiroz 2013; Prates et al. 2020) in having relatively smaller head scales; from the roquet series (Castañeda & de Queiroz 2013) in possessing supraorbital semicircles separated from each other and the interparietal separated from the supraorbital semicircles; and from the aequatorialis series (Castañeda & de Queiroz 2013; Prates et al. 2020) in having wider toepads and larger dorsal head scales.
The new species is most similar in external morphology to the other members of the latifrons series (A. agassizi Stejneger 1900, A. apollinaris Boulenger 1919, A. brooksi Barbour 1923, A. casildae Arosemena, Ibáñez & de Sousa 1991, A. danieli Williams 1988, A. fraseri, A. frenatus Cope 1899, A. ginaelisae Lotzkat, Hertz, Bienentreu & Köhler 2013, A. ibanezi Poe, Latella, Ryan & Schaad 2009b, A. insignis Cope 1871, A. kathydayae Poe & Ryan 2017, A. kunayalae, A. latifrons Berthold 1846, A. limon Velasco & Hurtado-Gómez 2014, A. maculigula Williams 1984a, A. maia Batista, Vesely, Mebert, Lotzkat & Köhler 2015, A. microtus Cope 1871, A. mirus Williams 1963, A. parilis, A. princeps Boulenger 1902, A. propinquus Williams 1984b, A. purpurescens Cope 1899, A. savagei Poe & Ryan 2017, and A. squamulatus Peters 1863). Anolis nemonteae can readily be distinguished from A. agassizi, A. apollinaris, A. casildae, A. frenatus, A. ginaelisae, A. ibanezi, A. latifrons, A. limon, A. maculigula, A. maia, A. princeps, A. purpurescens, and A. squamulatus by having shorter legs not reaching ear when adpressed against body (legs reaching to ear or beyond when adpressed against body); from A. purpurescens, A. ibanezi, A. maia and A. limon further by having a green-brown dorsal background (green); from A. danieli and A. propinquus by lacking elongated superciliaries (one elongated superciliary); from A. brooksi, A. insignis, A. microtus, A. savagei, and A. kathydayae, all from Costa Rica and Panama, by possessing weakly keeled ventral scales (smooth); from A. ginaelisae (Panama) by lacking enlarged postcloacal scales in males (present); from A. kunayalae, A. mirus and A. parilis by having a wide toe pad on fourth toe (narrow toe pad), subdigital pad under phalanx III projecting above the proximal end of phalanx IV (subdigital pad continuous or indistinct), 21–23 lamellae under phalanges II and III of fourth toe (11–15 lamellae), and distal phalanx including claw equal or smaller than phalanges II and III combined (longer distal phalanx; see Fig. 1 of Williams 1963).
Anolis nemonteae sp. nov. is most similar morphologically to A. fraseri in having a large body size (SVL > 85 mm), a green-brown dorsal background, reddish brown iris, smooth head scales, weakly keeled ventral scales, and 21–23 (18–24 in A. fraseri) lamellae under phalanges II and III of fourth toe. The new species can be distinguished from A. fraseri (character states in parentheses) by having a creamish white dewlap skin with black blotches longitudinally arranged along yellow stripes in females (female dewlap orangish yellow anteriorly, without black blotches); bluish white dewlap skin with yellowish white scales and gold apicogorgetal scales in males (creamish white skin with yellow or greenish white scales; Fig. 5); dark brown dots on neck laterally and dorsally (neck dots absent, large dark blotches might be present; Figs 3 and 5); 7–11, mean = 9.29±1.25 SD scales between second canthals, (6–10, 7.72±1.02, z = 2.737, p = 0.006); 3–4, 3.29±0.49 scales between supraorbital semicircles (2–4, 2.68±0.57, z = -2.281, p = 0.023), 7–10, 8.86±1.07 supralabials counted to a point below center of eye (7–9, 7.69±0.55, z = 2.845, p = 0.004); 21–23, 21.71±0.95 lamellae under phalanges II–III of fourth toe (18–23, 20.32±1.09, z = -2.799, p = 0.005), snout length/SVL, 0.116–0.122, 0.119±0.002 (0.112–0.133, 0.123±0.005, t = 2.664, p = 0.013) interparietal length/SVL, 0.016–0.028, 0.023±0.004 (0.011–0.027, 0.018±0.004, t = -2.750, p = 0.011), humerus length/ SVL, 0.131–0.184, 0.159±0.016 (0.155–0.204, 0.171±0.011, t = 2.380, p = 0.025), foot length/SVL 0.259–0.282, 0.272±0.009 (0.262–0.310, 0.287±0.014, t = 2.627, p = 0.014), and fourth toe length/SVL 0.151–0.177, 0.162±0.009 (0.168–0.203, 0.181±0.010, t = 4.287, p < 0.001). Furthermore, Anolis nemonteae sp. nov. differs from A. fraseri in lacking enlarged postcloacals in males (present, sometimes inconspicuous), and genetic distances between these species range between 0.03–0.05 (ND2) and 0.05–0.06 (COI). In addition to the above diagnostic traits, the unique male and female dewlap color patterns of A. nemonteae sp. nov. distinguish it from all other Ecuadorian Anolis of the Megaloa clade (Fig. 5) (Ayala-Varela et al. 2021).

Color in life. Holotype, adult female QCAZ 14595 (Fig. 3A, B, C, undisturbed color pattern): dorsum of head, body, limbs and tail pale yellowish green; dorsum of body with three broad, dark brown transverse bands extending onto flanks; dorsal surfaces of limbs and tail with dark brown transverse bands; palpebral scales yellowish green; flanks of neck and body with dark brown spots; ventral aspect of head, body, limbs, and tail cream; iris pale reddish brown; throat lining black; tongue yellow; edge of mouth including jaw hinges white; dewlap skin cream with black blotches, mostly arranged more or less longitudinally along yellow stripes (Fig. 5B); scales of dewlap yellowish white.
When stressed, adult females QCAZ 14594 and JMG0485 (Fig. 3D) turned dorsal background of head, body, limbs and tail yellowish brown or dark brown, respectively.
Juvenile female QCAZ 14431 (Fig. 3E, stressed specimen): general color pattern similar to holotype, but dewlap skin dirty white with broad yellow stripes and elongate black blotches; gorgetals, sternals and marginals yellowish white; ventral aspect of head, body, limbs, and tail grayish cream with brown dots.
Hatchling female QCAZ 14660 (Fig. 3F, stressed specimen): general color pattern similar to female QCAZ 14594, but dorsum of head, body, limbs and tail pale brown; dorsum of body with four dark brown transverse bands extending onto flanks.
Adult male QCAZ 14596 (Fig. 3G, H, I, undisturbed color pattern): dorsum of body, limbs, and tail brown; dorsum of head light grayish turquoise with orange and red spots; dorsum of body with four broad, dark brown transverse bands extending onto flanks, of which the two posteriormost merge ventrally; second anteriormost broad band bordered anteriorly by yellowish cream line; dorsum of limbs and tail with dark brown transverse bands; palpebral scales yellow; flanks of neck and body with dark brown spots; ventral aspect of head, body, limbs, and tail cream; iris reddish brown; throat lining black; tongue yellow; edge of mouth including jaw hinges white; dewlap skin solid bluish white with yellowish white scales and golden apicogorgetals (Fig. 5A). When stressed, adult male JMG 0484 (Fig. 3J, K) turned background of body, limbs, and tail light brown (Ayala-Varela et al. 2021). 
Comment 
EtymologyThe specific epithet nemonteae is a noun in the genitive case and is a patronym for Nemonte Nenquimo, indigenous activist who led a successful campaign and legal action that protected 500,000 acres of Amazonian rainforest and Waorani territory from oil extraction in Ecuador. Nemonte means ‘many stars’ in Wao Tereo language. Nemonte Nenquimo’s work has been recognized worldwide. In 2020, she was awarded the prestigious Goldman Prize and was listed among the 100 most influential people of the year by the Time Magazine. Here we honor Nemonte Nenquimo for her braveness and determination to protect natural forests and their inhabitants. 
References
  • AYALA-VARELA, F. ., VALVERDE, S. ., POE, S. ., NARVÁEZ, A. E. ., YÁNEZ-MUÑOZ, M. H. ., & TORRES-CARVAJAL, O. . 2021. A new giant anole (Squamata: Iguanidae: Dactyloinae) from southwestern Ecuador. Zootaxa, 4991(2): 295–317 - get paper here
 
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