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Bradypodion barbatulum TOLLEY, TILBURY & BURGER, 2022

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Higher TaxaChamaeleonidae, Sauria, Iguania, Squamata (lizards)
Common NamesE: Beardless Dwarf Chameleon 
SynonymBradypodion barbatulum TOLLEY, TILBURY & BURGER 2022 
DistributionRepublic of South Africa (Cape Province)

Type locality: Kouga Mountains west of Smutsberg, Eastern Cape Province, South Africa (−33.626, 23.752, 1 060 m asl).  
TypesHolotype: PEM R013456. An adult male with everted hemipenes. Collected on 22 February 1998 by Matthew Branch.
Paratypes: PEM R09150, adult male. Near Joubertina, Formosa Conservation Area, Tsitsikamma Mountains (−33.867, 23.850, 710 m asl). Collected on 15 April 1994 by Colin Tilbury; PEM R08666, adult male. Sandrift farm, Dennehoek (−33.866, 23.829, 610 m asl). Collected on 10 November 1993 by Marius Burger and Rodger Smith; PEM R05868, adult male. Misgund, SE of Niekerksberg, Langkloof Mountains (−33.787, 23.451, 1 176 m asl). Collected on 28 November 2003 by Krystal Tolley and Marius Burger; PEM R08831, adult female. Niekerksberg, Langkloof Mountains (−33.786, 23.417, 1 280 m asl). Collected on 16 March 1993 by Colin Tilbury and Rodger Smith; PEM R08827, adult female. Langkloof, Formosa Conservation Area (−33.850, 23.851, 610 m asl). Collected on 15 March 1993 by Colin Tilbury and Rodger Smith; PEM R07697. Formosa Conservation Area (−33.899, 23.843, 950 m asl). Collected on 16 March 1992 by Rodger Smith; PEM R08776, adult female. Formosa Conservation Area (−33.787, 23.449, 1 172 m asl). Collected 12 November 1992 by Rodger Smith; PEM R07698, adult female. Formosa Conservation Area (−33.898, 23.843, 942 m asl). Collected on 16 March 1992 by Rodger Smith; PEM R05866, adult female. Northern slopes of the Kouga Mountains, Geelhoutbos trail (−33.669, 24.210, 970m asl). Collected on 2 December 2003 by Marius Burger and Krystal Tolley; PEM R07694, adult female. Kouga Mountain range (−33.607, 23.578, 1 050 m asl). Collected on 7 October 1992 by J. Brits. All of the paratype localities are within the Eastern Cape Province, South Africa. 
DiagnosisDiagnosis: Differs from all other species of Bradypodion, except B. baviaanense sp. nov., by the combination of the following characters: dwarfed body habitus with a maximum adult snout-vent length of <70 mm; tail less than the snout-vent length in both sexes; a low casque (elevated less than 30° above the nape); gular lobes are cone shaped and weakly developed; the flanks have a dorso-lateral row of enlarged tubercles, as well as one or two other rows present on the flanks; dorsal crest extends onto the base of the tail; gular grooves pale, with no widened melanotic zones. Differs from B. baviaanense sp. nov. in the number of tubercles between the anterior end of the canthi rostrales and the upper labials (2–3 versus 3–4 in B. baviaanense sp. nov.). Hemipenes differ in that apart from the two pairs of rotulae there is no other obvious apical ornamentation. There is an overall similarity of hemipenal morphology between this and all other species of Bradypodion, underlining the plesiomorphic nature of these organs in this genus. (Tolley et al. 2022) 
EtymologyNamed after the Latin adjective barbatulum meaning ‘small bearded’– referring to the diminutive gular lobes. Although the gular region of species is not actually ‘beardless’, we propose to retain the common name of Beardless Dwarf Chameleon, which has been in casual use for several decades and this common name has been established in the literature (Tolley and Burger 2007). 
  • Tolley, Krystal A; Colin R Tilbury & Marius Burger 2022. Convergence and vicariance: speciation of chameleons in the Cape Fold Mountains, South Africa, and the description of three new species of Bradypodion Fitzinger, 1843, African Journal of Herpetology, - get paper here
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