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Cercosaura hypnoides DOAN & LAMAR, 2012

IUCN Red List - Cercosaura hypnoides - Data Deficient, DD

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Higher TaxaGymnophthalmidae (Cercosaurinae), Sauria, Gymnophthalmoidea, Squamata (lizards)
Common Names 
SynonymCercosaura hypnoides DOAN & LAMAR 2012
Cercosaura hypnoides — DIAGO-TORO et al. 2021 
DistributionColombia (Meta), elevation 1640 m

Type locality: Vereda de Portachuelo, in the vicinity of Manzanares, Municipality of Acacías, Department of Meta, Colombia; 4.1°N, 73.8°W; 1640 m.  
TypesHolotype: UTA R-60249 (Figs. 1, 2), an adult male, (Fig. 4); collected on 17 August 1979 by William W. Lamar and Eduardo Thierry. 
DiagnosisDiagnosis. (1) supraoculars three; (2) superciliaries 4–5, first expanded onto dorsal surface of head; (3) palpebral eye-disc made up of a single, undivided scale; (4) supralabials five; (5) infralabials five; (6) dorsal body scales hexagonal, with high rounded keel; (7) dorsal scales in transverse and oblique rows; (8) transverse rows of dorsals 28–31; (9) a continuous series of small lateral scales separating dorsals from ventrals, 4–7 scales wide; (10) transverse ventral rows 16–20; (11) longitudinal ventral rows six; (12) femoral pores per hind limb 8–12; (13) preanal pores absent; (14) subdigital lamellae on Toe IV 18–22; (15) limbs overlapping when adpressed against body; (16) dorsolateral stripe passing through dorsal surface of the eye and lateral stripe beginning on the supralabials, no vertebral stripe.

Cercosaura hypnoides is most similar to the species that were formerly considered to belong to the genus Pantodactylus (Ruibal, 1952), but may be distinguished from each of them by having lateral scales that are much smaller than the dorsal scales (versus dorsals and laterals approximately equal in size in C. parkeri (Ruibal), C. quadrilineata Boettger, C. schreibersii Wiegmann, and C. steyeri). Cercosaura hypnoides may also be distinguished from C. quadrilineata by having six longitudinal rows of ventral scales (versus 4). Cercosaura hypnoides can be further distinguished from C. parkeri (Ruibal) by the high femoral pore count of 8–12 (versus 2–6 for C. parkeri). The new species can be distinguished from C. schreibersii Wiegmann by having three postocular scales (versus two) and by having 8–12 femoral pores versus 3–5. Cercosaura hypnoides can be distinguished from C. steyeri by having six longitudinal rows of ventral scales (versus 4 in C. steyeri).
The new species can be distinguished from additional species of the genus Cercosaura by possessing hexagonal dorsal scales arranged in transverse and oblique series (versus quadrangular dorsals in transverse and longitudinal series for C. ocellata Wagler and by having only transverse series in C. argulus Peters, C. dicra (Uzzell), C. eigenmanni (Griffin), C. manicata O’Shaughnessy, C. nigroventris (Gorzula and Señaris), C. phelpsorum (Lancini), and C. vertebralis O’Shaughnessy). The new species can be further separated from C. dicra and C. vertebralis by having three supraocular scales (versus four). Cercosaura hypnoides can be distinguished from C. dicra (8), C. manicata (8), and C. nigroventris (8) by having six longitudinal rows of ventral scales. The new species additionally differs from C. argulus, C. eigenmanni, C. ocellata, C. phelpsorum and C. vertebralis in its pattern of dorsolateral and lateral stripes. 
CommentAbundance: only known from its original description (Meiri et al. 2017). 
EtymologyThe specific epithet is taken from the New Latin adjective hypnum, in turn derived from Greek hupnon (a type of lichen, + -oid) meaning “of the moss in reference to the luxuriant moss growth that characterized the lizard’s habitat and egg deposition sites. 
  • DIAGO-TORO, MARÍA F.; DANIELA GARCÍA-COBOS, GIOVANNI D. BRIGANTE-LUNA & JUAN D. VÁSQUEZ-RESTREPO. 2021. Fantastic lizards and where to find them: cis-Andean microteiids (Squamata: Alopoglossidae & Gymnophthalmidae) from the Colombian Orinoquia and Amazonia. Zootaxa 5067(3): 377–400. - get paper here
  • DOAN, TIFFANY M. & WILLIAM W. LAMAR 2012. A new montane species of Cercosaura (Squamata: Gymnophthalmidae) from Colombia, with notes on the distribution of the genus. Zootaxa 3565: 44–54 - get paper here
  • Echevarría LY, Barboza AC, Venegas PJ. 2015. A new species of montane gymnophthalmid lizard, genus Cercosaura (Squamata: Gymnophthalmidae), from the Amazon slope of northern Peru. Amphibian & Reptile Conservation 9(1): 34–44 (e109) - 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
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