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Lerista zonulata STORR, 1991

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Higher TaxaScincidae, Sphenomorphinae (Sphenomorphini), Scincoidea, Sauria, Squamata (lizards)
Common NamesE: North-eastern Orange-tailed Slider 
SynonymLerista zonulata STORR 1991
Lerista zonulata — COGGER 2000: 763
Spectrascincus zonulata — WELLS 2012: 291
Lerista zonulata — WILSON & SWAN 2010 
DistributionAustralia (Queensland)

Type locality: Georgetown, Qld  
TypesHolotype: QM J54137, formerly AMS (AM) R63747 
DiagnosisDiagnosis: A small slender Lerista with 4 fingers. 4 toes and immovable eyelid (a spectacle), differing from L. orientalis mainly in its sharp-edged dark upper lateral stripe, and from L. ingrami in its greater size, darker coloration, more supraciliaries (normally 5, v. 4 or 5), more midbody scale rows (mostly 20, v. mostly 18), larger nasals and larger frontoparietals. (Storr 1991)

Description: Snout-vent length (mm): 25-50.5 (N 90, mean 39,2), Length of appendages etc. (% of SVL): foreleg 6.5-12 (N 64, mean 8,5), hindleg 15-22 (N 65, mean 18,7), tail 99-139 (N36, mean 118.4), snout to foreleg 25-35 (N 67, mean 28.8). Nasals in very short to long contact. Prefrontals widely separated, Frontoparietals in moderately short to long contact (N 51) or very short to short contact (5), about as large as interparietal. Nuchals 1-4 on each side (N 56, mean 2.2). Supraoculars 3, first two in contact with frontal. Supraciliaries 5 (N 57, second and fifth smallest, first occasionally as large as third and fourth) or 4 (N 3, due to fusion of first and second). Loreals 2, second smaller. Presuboculars 2, second much the smaller. Upper labials 6, Midbody scale rows 20 (N 52), 21 (2) or 22 (5), Lamellae under longest toe 11-15 (N 61, mean 12.7), with or without a fine weak keel. (Storr 1991)

Coloration: Upper surface pale to moderately dark olive brown, olive grey or greyish brown, becoming paler and more reddish on tail, and marked with dark brown or blackish brown: stippling on head (sometimes heavy) and tail and 4 (occasionally 6) rows of dots or small spots (sometimes faint) passing through centre of dorsal scales. Wide sharp-edged dark brown or blackish brown upper lateral stripe (about 2 scales wide) extending back to tail (on which it narrows and breaks up into a series of spots) and forward through orbit, lore and nasal before narrowing, curving down and meeting its opposite number at tip of snout. Upper labials and sometimes lower labials barred or dotted with dark brown. Upper surface of legs pale brown, mottled or stippled with dark greyish brown. Lower surfaces brownish white; lower lateral, lateroventral and sometimes ventral and subcaudal scales edged or dotted with greyish brown. (Storr 1991) 
CommentLimb morphology: 4 digits, 4 toes 
  • 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
  • Shea, Glenn M; Sadlier, Ross A 1999. A catalogue of the non-fossil amphibian and reptile type specimens in the collection of the Australian Museum: types currently, previously and purportedly present. TECHNICAL REPORTS OF THE AUSTRALIAN MUSEUM 15, 1999: 1-91 - get paper here
  • Skinner, Adam; Michael S Y Lee and Mark N Hutchinson 2008. Rapid and repeated limb loss in a clade of scincid lizards. [Lerista]. BMC Evolutionary Biology 8:310 - get paper here
  • Storr G M. 1991. Revision of Lerista orientalis (Lacertilia: Scincidae) of northern Australia. Rec. West. Austr. Mus. 51 (2): 413-418. - get paper here
  • Wilson, S. & Swan, G. 2010. A complete guide to reptiles of Australia, 3rd ed. Chatswood: New Holland, 558 pp.
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