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Lerista vittata GREER, MCDONALD & LAWRIE, 1983

IUCN Red List - Lerista vittata - Endangered, EN

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Higher TaxaScincidae, Sphenomorphinae, Scincoidea, Sauria, Squamata (lizards)
Common NamesE: Side-striped Fine-lined Slider 
SynonymLerista vittata GREER, MCDONALD & LAWRIE 1983
Gavisus vittata — WELLS & WELLINGTON 1984
Lerista vittata — COGGER 2000: 536
Gavisus vittatus — WELLS 2012: 117
Lerista vittata — WILSON & SWAN 2010 
DistributionAustralia (Queensland)

Type locality: 'Mt.Cooper', 90 km SE Charters Towers, QLD [20°31'30"S 146°55'00"E].  
TypesHolotype: QM J40102 
DiagnosisDiagnosis: Lerista vittata differs from all other species of Lerista in the following combination of character states: front limb totally absent (not even represented by a nubbin in a dimple); rear limb monodactyl; prefrontal absent, and primary temporal small, separated from or only in short contact with parietal).

Description. Lerista vittata is very similar to L. cinerea but differs from notice-
ably in the absence of the prefrontal and the presence of a distinct dark brown lateral stripe. Other differences are: presub-ocular larger; transversely enlarged nuchals 1-3 vs. 2-3; primary temporal not in contact with parietal as opposed to usually separated or occasional short contact; infralabials 5 vs. 3-5; anterior pair of chin scales medially separated.

Comparison with Similar Species. Lerista vittata differs from the seven other species of Lerista that combine the absence of all external trace of a front limb with a monodactyl or stylar hind limb (carpentariae, cinerea, humphriesi, karlschmidti,praepedita, storri and stylis) in combining a primary temporal that is either separated from or only in short contact with the parietal with a color pattern featuring a distinct dark brown lateral stripe. 
EtymologyThe adjectival species name vittata is from the Latin word for stripe and calls attention to the distinct dark brown lateral stripe. 
  • Amey, A.P. & Couper, P.J. 2009. A new limb-reduced skink (Scincidae: Lerista) from the dry rainforest of north Queensland, Australia. Zootaxa 2173: 19–30 - get paper here
  • Cogger, H. G. 2014. Reptiles and Amphibians of Australia, 7th ed. CSIRO Publishing, xxx + 1033 pp. - get paper here
  • Cogger, H.G. 2000. Reptiles and Amphibians of Australia, 6th ed. Ralph Curtis Publishing, Sanibel Island, 808 pp.
  • Couper, P., Covacevich, J., Amey, A. & Baker, A. 2006. The genera of skinks (Family Scincidae) of Australia and its island territories: diversity, distribution and identification. in: Merrick, J.R., Archer, M., Hickey, G.M. & Lee, M.S.Y. (eds.). Evolution and Zoogeography of Australasian Vertebrates. Australian Scientific Publishing, Sydney, pp. 367-384
  • Covacevich J.A., Couper, P.J., McDonald, K.R. 1998. Reptile diversity at risk in the Brigalow Belt, Queensland. Memoirs of the Queensland Museum 42 (2): 475-486
  • Greer A E; McDonald K R; Lawrie B C 1983. Three new species of Lerista (Scincidae) from northern Queensland with a diagnosis of the wilkinsi species group. Journal of Herpetology 17 (2): 247-255 - get paper here
  • Wells R W; Wellington C R 1984. A synopsis of the class Reptilia in Australia. Australian Journal of Herpetology 1 (3-4): 73-129 [1983]
  • Wilson, S. & Swan, G. 2010. A complete guide to reptiles of Australia, 3rd ed. Chatswood: New Holland, 558 pp.
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