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Eutropis lapulapu BARLEY, DIESMOS, SILER, MARTINEZ & BROWN, 2020

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Higher TaxaScincidae, Mabuyinae, Scincoidea, Sauria, Squamata (lizards)
Common NamesE: Lapu-lapu’s Sun Skink 
SynonymEutropis lapulapu BARLEY, DIESMOS, SILER, MARTINEZ & BROWN 2020: 61 
DistributionPhilippines (Luzon: Bicol Peninsula, Mindanao, Samar, Dinagat, Panay, Cebu)

Type locality: Barangay San Rafael at 180 m, Municipality of Taft, Eastern Samar Province, Samar Island, Philippines (11.829248N, 125.276638E.  
TypesHolotype: PNM 9848 (formerly KU 310781), Female, collected by C.D. Siler and C.W. Linkem, 13 October 2007.
Paratypes (paratopotypes): KU 310340 (collected by RMB 3 October 2007), 310781, 310783 (collected by CDS 13 October 2007), bearing the same locality as the holotype.
Paratypes: Fifteen specimens, all from Philippines. KU 302876, collected by CDS and C.W. Linkem 24 November 2001 at 180 m, Barangay Duyong, Municipality of Pandan, Antique Province, Panay Island (11.760818N, 122.039748E). KU 306194, collected by C.W. Linkem and CDS, 24 June 2006, near Barangay Esperanza at 120 m, Municipality of Loreto, Dinagat Islands Province, Dinagat Island (10.38168N, 125.61688E). KU 306195, collected by C.W. Linkem, 26 June 2006 at 40 m, Barangay San Juan, Municipality of Loreto, Dinagat Islands Province, Dinagat Island (10.365178N, 125.568738E). KU 306200, 306201 (collected by CDS 16 June 2006), KU 306202, 306204, 306205 (collected by C.W. Linkem and CDS 16 June 2006) at 220 m, Taft Forest, Barangay San Rafael, Municipality of Taft, Eastern Samar Province, Samar Island (11.831638N, 125.283178E). KU 337443, collected by RMB, 14 June 2014 at 75 m, Kadakan River, Barangay San Rafael, Municipality of Taft, Eastern Samar Province, Samar Island (11.812078N, 125.29168E). KU 344246, collected by RMB and J.B. Fernandez, 4 April 2016 at 130 m, Kaantulan River Drainage, Sitio Bangon, Barangay Guinmaayohan, Municipality of Balangiga, Eastern Samar Province, Samar Island (11.20748N, 125.36728E). KU 331836, collected by J.B. Fernandez, 11 December 2011 at 400 m, Mt. Lantoy, Municipality of Argao, Cebu Province, Cebu Island (9.9018N, 123.5308E). KU 306197, 306199, collected by C.W. Linkem and CDS, 7 July 2006 at 30 m, Barangay Maangas, Municipality of Presentacion, Camarines del Sur Province, Luzon Island (13.719728N, 123.666668E). CAS 27478, collected by L. Alcala, 9 March 1967, Buhisan Barrio, Cebu City Province, Cebu Island. CAS 24673 collected by D.S. Rabor 31 May 1964, Municipality of Mahaplag, Leyte del Sur Province, Leyte Island. 
DiagnosisDiagnosis: A species of Eutropis, distinguished by the following combination of characters: (1) adult body small to medium-sized (SVL 45–70 mm); (2) interparietal relatively large, separating parietals; (3) paravertebrals 39–45; (4) sum of subdigital lamellae on all five toes of one foot 70–80; (5) ventral scales rows 25–30; (6) midbody scale rows 27–33; (7) keels on the dorsal and lateral body scales moderately defined, 5–9; (8) lower eyelid scaly (9) supraciliaries five or six; (10) prefrontals separated or in contact; (11) primary temporal scales one or two; (12) dorsolateral surface with two faint to moderate light stripes that fade or become broken towards the posterior portion of the body, adult males frequently exhibiting a bright orange coloration on the anterior portion of the body under the chin or suffusing the lateral band (Fig. 6).

Comparisons: Critical comparisons for Eutropis lapulapu include other Philippine species of Eutropis, particularly those known from the southern islands of the archipelago. Eutropis lapulapu can be distinguished from E. rudis and E. multifasciata by its small (adult SVL 45–70 mm) body size (vs. a larger, more robust body; adult SVL 85– 92 mm in E. rudis and 101–141 mm in E. multifasciata). Eutropis lapulapu also has more numerous keels (5–9) on dorsal body scales (vs. only 3 in E. multifasciata and E. rudis) and the new species can readily be distinguished from E. rugifera by having less strongly defined keels of dorsal body scales (vs. more raised and sharply defined in E. rugifera) and a broad, dark dorsolateral band (vs. absent in E. rugifera). Eutropis lapulapu also has a smaller interparietal and parietals not in contact (vs. in contact posteriorly in E. rugifera). As a member of the E. indeprensa complex, E. lapulapu can be distinguished from species in the E. multicarinata complex (including E. multicarinata, E. cuprea, E. borealis, and E. caraga) by its smaller maximum body size, and its tendency to have more prominent, light, dorsolateral striping on the anterior portion of the body and a more mottled dark lateral band, as well as males frequently having a bright orange coloration on the anterior portion of the body (vs. less prominent light striping, a more prominent dark band and no orange coloration; Tables 1 and 2; Figs. 6 and 7). It can also be distinguished from E. borealis by having a large interparietal that separates the parietals (vs. a small interparietal with parietals in contact). Eutropis lapulapu can be distinguished from E. cumingi by usually having more numerous subdigital toe lamellae (70–80 under Toes I–V vs. 59–70 in E. cumingi) and generally having more well-developed hindlimbs (0.25–0.30% of SVL vs. 0.18– 0.25%).

Coloration in life: Dorsal ground coloration and tail an iridescent bronze to olive coloration, with scattered dark brown flecks or lines; head and neck brown. Lateral surfaces contain a thick, dark brown band that extends from the eye to the hindlimb, sometimes suffused with orange in adult males. Venter a light creamish to green, with few dark markings. Chin creamy white with dark flecks. Dorsal surfaces of forelimbs, hindlimbs, and digits dark with indistinct spots. A faint, light line occurs above the lateral brown stripes, being most distinct above the forelimb. A more distinct light line extends from the labial scales to the hindlimb below the dark lateral stripe and above a series of scales that have a mottled brown-white coloration. 
EtymologyNamed in honor of the Philippine National Hero, Lapu-Lapu, who is considered to be the first Filipino native to have resisted Spanish colonization. Lapu-Lapu was a ruler on the island of Mactan in the Visayas, where this species is known to occur. 
  • Barley, A. J., Diesmos, A. C., Siler, C. D., Martinez, C. M. & Brown, R. M. 2020. Taxonomic Revision of Philippine Sun Skinks (Reptilia: Squamata: Scincidae: Eutropis), and Descriptions of Eight New Species. Herpetol. Monogr. 34: 39–70
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