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Liolaemus carlosgarini ESQUERRÉ, NÚÑEZ & SCOLARO, 2013

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Higher TaxaLiolaemidae, Iguania, Sauria, Squamata (lizards)
Common NamesE: Garín’s Lizard
S: Lagartija de Garín 
SynonymLiolaemus carlosgarini ESQUERRÉ, NÚÑEZ & SCOLARO 2013
Liolaemus carlosgarini — MEDINA et al. 2017
Liolaemus carlosgarini — TRONCOSO-PALACIOS et al. 2019 
DistributionC Chile

Type locality: International Road 115, below the Maule Lagoon. 36°1′0″S, 70°35′0″ E (paper says 19 H 358560 E–6018117 S) WGS84. 1915 m elevation.  
ReproductionProbably viviparous 
TypesHolotype: MNHNC (= MNHNCL) 4563. Male, collected by Carlos Garín. On February 22, 2008. Paratypes. MNHNCL-4562 and one used for diaphanisation, males; MNHNCL-4561, 4564, 4565, 4566, 4567, 4568 and one used for diaphanisation, females. Same collection data as the holotype. 
DiagnosisDiagnosis: Small to medium sized lizard, with a mean SVL (Snout-Vent Length) of 60.7 mm and a maximum of 68.8 mm. Slender body, moderately robust limbs, head longer than wide, tail over 1.5 times body length, and 86- 101 scales around midbody. Background dorsal coloration is ochre, with a dark occipital stripe, parietal stripes as the background color, and lateral stripes the same coloration as the occipital stripe. Black spots distributed variably between the dorsal region of the head and limbs. Individual white scales scattered on the dorsal region of the body, and a clear and mottled ventral region. It can be distinguished from almost all of the species of the elongatus-kriegi complex by its extreme reduction of precloacal pores. None of the male samples, despite being only three, had these pores, and it seems that a very low frequency of males has them (C. Garín in. litt. 2011). Because the absence of precloacal pores is not absolute in this species, minimum diagnostic traits to distinguish it from all the species of the elongatus-kriegi complex are given.

L. carlosgarini is distinguished from L. austromendocinus, L. elongatus, L. gununakuna (Avila et al. 2004), L. petrophilus, L. choique, L. shitan, L. capillitas, L. dicktracyi, L. heliodermis, L. talampaya, L. antumalguen (Avila et al. 2010) , L. umbrifer and L. burmeisteri (Avila et al. 2012) because all of these species have a significantly larger SVL (with a maximal SVL ranging from 82 mm in L. heliodermis to 107.8 mm in L. antumalguen). In addition, all of them exhibit a lower number of scales around midbody. The only species that overlaps that number with L. carlosgarini (86–101), is L. gununakuna (84–97), but the latter has iridescent yellow body coloration, with dark transversal bars, very distinguishable from the ochre coloration and longitudinal stripes in L. carlosgarini. Finally, none of the species mentioned above exhibit the design pattern of L. carlosgarini, with longitudinal stripes. It is worth noting the striking exomorphological similarity L. carlosgarini has with L. smaug, which in addition is found relatively close to the type locality of L. carlosgarini (between Las Loicas and Volcán Peteroa provincial road, Malargüe, Mendoza, Argentina: 35°39’51,3’’S; 70°12’00,9’’W, 1688 m), but it differs from this species because L. smaug has a lower number of scales around midbody (73–80), in addition to a constant presence of precloacal pores in males (3–4) (Abdala 2010; Abdala in. litt. 2011). Sexual dichromatism has not been observed in L. carlosgarini as in L. smaug, nor have golden yellow specimens of L. carlosgarini been observed, but this trait deserves further analysis of live specimens.
From L. cristiani it can be differentiated because L. cristiani has a very dark and pronounced melanistic stripe on the flanks (quite different from the paler stripe in L. carlosgarini), and in the absence of an occipital stripe, present in L. carlosgarini. L. cristiani is larger (mean SVL of 70.67 vs. 60.7 mm), and has fewer number of scales around midbody (83–89 vs 86–101), although these values overlap.
It is differentiated from L. ceii, L. kriegi, L. buergeri, L. ramonensis, L. valdesianus and L. leopardinus because all of them are larger, the smallest being L. buergeri from Pichuante in Teno River, Chile, with a mean SVL of 73.2 mm and a maximum of 87.2 mm. All of these species have precloacal pores and differences in pattern, coloration and squamation. Nevertheless, L. leopardinus males lacking pores can be found, although the exomorpohological differences, especially in pattern, are very notorious. From L. coeruleus and L. neuquensis it can be distinguished by the blue or greenish ventral coloration in both species, and in having fewer scales around midbody. From L. thermarum, L. punmahuida, L. flavipiceus, L. tregenzai and L. riodamas it can be differentiated because all of these have a lower number of scales around midbody, larger size, and a uniform pattern, opposed to the well-defined design in L. carlosgarini.
CommentSynonymy: L. carlosgarini is not clearly differentiated by DNA sequences from L. smaug, but morphological differences have been detected among these taxa (Medina 2015, Medina et al. 2017). Troncoso-Palacios et al.2019 speculate that L. carlosgarini may be a hybrid generated from L. scorialis and L. smaug.

Sympatry: L. buergeri, L. flavipiceus, Phymaturus maulense (Núñez et al. 2010) and Pleurodema bufonina. 
EtymologyNamed after Carlos Garín, “who besides being a good friend, collected these specimens, and provided great assistance.” 
  • Demangel, Diego 2016. Reptiles en Chile. Fauna Nativa Ediciones, Santiago, 619 pp - get paper here
  • Demangel, Diego 2016. Guía de Campo - Reptiles del centro sure de Chile. Corporación Chilena de la Madera, Concepción, Chile 187 pp. - get paper here
  • ESQUERRÉ, DAMIEN; HERMAN NÚÑEZ & JOSÉ ALEJANDRO SCOLARO 2013. Liolaemus carlosgarini and Liolaemus riodamas (Squamata: Liolaemidae), two new species of lizards lacking precloacal pores, from Andean areas of central Chile. Zootaxa 3619 (4): 428–452 - get paper here
  • Gagliardi, Jorge et al. 2016. Fotografías herpetológicas. Boletín Chileno de Herpetología. 3: 40-52. PDF - get paper here
  • Medina, C. D., Avila, L. J., Sites, J. W. and Morando, M. 2017. Phylogeographic history of Patagonian lizards of the Liolaemus elongatus complex (Iguania: Liolaemini) based on mitochondrial and nuclear DNA sequences. J Zool Syst Evol Res. 55: 238; doi:10.1111/jzs.12163 - get paper here
  • Mella-Ávila, Jorge E. 2020. Aportes a la historia natural de los reptiles de la Laguna del Maule: otra utilidad de los rescates de fauna. Boletín Chileno de Herpetología 7: 27-33 - get paper here
  • Mella-Ávila, Jorge E. & Jorge Mella-Romero. 2020. Riqueza y abundancia de reptiles en un gradiente altitudinal en la Cordillera de Los Andes (36° S) de Chile y Argentina. Boletín Chileno de Herpetología 7: 34-41 - get paper here
  • Troncoso-Palacios J, Díaz HA, Esquerré D, Urra FA 2015. Two new species of the Liolaemus elongatus-kriegi complex (Iguania, Liolaemidae) from Andean highlands of southern Chile. ZooKeys 500: 83-109. doi: 10.3897/zookeys.500.8725 - get paper here
  • Troncoso-Palacios J, Diaz HA, Puas GI, Riveros-Riffo E, Elorza AA 2016. Two new Liolaemus lizards from the Andean highlands of Southern Chile (Squamata, Iguania, Liolaemidae). ZooKeys 632: 121-146 - get paper here
  • Troncoso-Palacios J, Esquerré D, Urra FA, Díaz HA, Castro-Pastene C, Ruiz MS. 2018. The true identity of the new world iguanid lizard Liolaemus chillanensis Müller and Hellmich 1932 (Iguania: Liolaemidae) and description of a new species in the Liolaemus elongatus group. Zoological Studies 57:22; doi:10.6620/ZS.2018.57-22 - get paper here
  • Troncoso-Palacios J. & Diego Ramírez-Álvarez 2021. DESCRIPTION OF A NEW SPECIES OF THE LIOLAEMUS ELONGATUS GROUP FROM THE ANDES OF CENTRAL CHILE (IGUANIA: LIOLAEMIDAE). Revista Latinoamericana de Herpetología 4 (1): 148-163 - get paper here
  • Troncoso-Palacios, Jaime; Yery Marambio-Alfaro, Diego Ramírez-Alvarez, Jorge Valdés Saavedra 2019. Phylogenetic position of two species of the Liolaemus elongatus-kriegi Complex and a new northern limit for L. buergeri (Squamata: Liolaemidae). Phyllomedusa 18 (1): 115-121 - get paper here
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