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Liolaemus chaltin LOBO & ESPINOZA, 2004

IUCN Red List - Liolaemus chaltin - Data Deficient, DD

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Higher TaxaLiolaemidae, Iguania, Sauria, Squamata (lizards)
Common Names 
SynonymLiolaemus chaltin LOBO & ESPINOZA 2004
Liolaemus chaltin — LOBO et al. 2010 
DistributionArgentina (Puna of central Jujuy Province, elevation 3400–3750 m), Bolivia (Tarija)

Type locality: off Ruta Provincial 71, 4.2 km west of Abra Pampa, Departamento Cochinoca, Provincia de Jujuy, Argentina (22°42’24.4’’S, 65°43’12.4’’W; 3360 m elevation)  
TypesHolotype: FML 9874 
DiagnosisDiagnosis.—A small (58.7 mm maximum SVL) slender Liolaemus belonging to the alticolor group (as defined above) with a variable dorsal pattern (Fig. 2). Within the alticolor group, L. chaltin differs from L. alticolor in its larger body size (SVL of L. chaltin mean ? 54.7 mm vs mean ? 46.9 mm in L. alticolor), a fragmented midvertebral line (rarely fragmented in L. alticolor), a pigmented subocular scale (white in L. alticolor), and the new species is oviparous, whereas L. alticolor is viviparous (Lobo and Espinoza, 1999). The new species lacks paravertebral markings, whereas these are distinct in L. bitaeniatus, L. pagaburoi, and L. variegatus. Liolaemus chaltin also has smooth dorsal head scales in contrast to the rugose head surface of L. bitaeniatus. Female L. chaltin lack precloacal pores, whereas some female L. bitaeniatus (41%) and L. yanalcu (19%), and most female L. ramirezae (94%) have precloacal pores (Lobo and Espinoza, 1999; Mart ́ınez Oliver and Lobo 2002). Male L. chaltin are immaculate cream-white ventrally, whereas male L. tacnae and L. walkeri have ventral melanism. This new species has dorsolateral stripes in both sexes, which are absent in L. tacnae and L. yanalcu. Compared to L. walkeri, L. chaltin is larger in body size (SVL: mean ? 54.7 mm vs mean ? 48.3 mm in L. walkeri), and this new species has fewer scales around the midbody (mean ? 47.7 vs mean ? 52.7 in L. walkeri). Liolaemus puna n. sp. (described below) is also smaller in body size than L. chaltin (L. puna mean ? 47.9 mm), and males of the former species lack the distinct dorsal stripes found in both sexes of L. chaltin. Additionally, L. puna has nearly twice as many scale organs (mean ? 5.1; n ? 50) in the postrostral scale than recorded for L. chaltin (mean ? 2.6; n ? 20). Fifty percent of the L. puna examined (n ? 40) have a preocular scale that is in contact with the lorilabials, a character state also observed in L. alticolor, L. tacnae, and L. walkeri but never observed in L. chaltin. All male and most female L. puna have fine gray to black irregular spots on the sides of the posterior throat and neck, whereas both sexes of L. chaltin have an immaculate cream-white throat. The two new species also differ in reproductive mode: L. chaltin is oviparous and L. puna is viviparous. Female L. chaltin exhibit gravid coloration, whereas the viviparous members of the alticolor group, as far as known, do not (Appendix 1).

Color in life.—Dorsal background color of head, trunk, and limbs light gray to dark brown (Fig. 2). Head with short black segments or markings in frontal and parietal regions, sometimes surrounding parietal scale. Subocular white with black border dorsally. Dorsolateral stripes varying in color from cream-white, gray, golden or greenish yellow, or golden brown, most vibrant at midbody. In females, dorsolateral stripe bordered on both sides with fine black line (one scale wide), but in males dorsolateral stripes appear less well defined relative to background because they either lack fine black lines, especially posterior to the shoulder, or these lines form only short fragmented segments. Ventral field same as background color with thin (one scale wide), black, usually fragmented, sometimes inconspicuous (especially in males) vertebral line. Background color of flanks brown to gray. Lateral field light gray to dark brown, occasionally pinkish orange or brick red–orange, with small, irregular black or dark brown, occasionally white (males only) markings. Dorsal limbs also with small dark brown to black irregular marks. Ventrolateral line white, usually inconspicuous in males. Base of tail striped as trunk, fading posteriorly to uniform gray or brown with small, irregular, middorsal black markings. Ventrally usually immaculate cream-white to charcoal gray, darker on head and lighter toward cloacal region and tail. Rarely, small dark brown to black markings appear on margins of throat. Adult males with light yellow color on abdomen, femoral and cloacal regions, and ventral tail. Gravid coloration in females appears as yellow to orange highlights along the flanks extending to and covering the belly. 
CommentLiolaemus chaltin n. sp. differs from L. alticolor from the type locality (Tiahuanaco, Bolivia) in the following ways: this new species has a larger body size; a fragmented vertebral stripe; and a pigmented subocular (white in L. alticolor).

Probably also in Bolivia (fide LANGSTROTH 2005). 
EtymologyNamed after the vernacular name (“chaltin”) used by local inhabitants to specifically refer to these small striped lizards. 
  • Abdala CS, Aguilar-Kirigin AJ, Semhan RV, Bulacios Arroyo AL, Valdes J, Paz MM, et al. 2019. Description and phylogeny of a new species of Liolaemus (Iguania: Liolaemidae) endemic to the south of the Plurinational State of Bolivia. PLoS ONE 14(12): e0225815 - get paper here
  • Abdala, Cristian Simón; Andrés Sebastián Quinteros, and Romina Valeria Semham 2015. A New Species of Liolaemus of the Liolaemus alticolor-bibronii Group (Iguania: Liolaemidae) from Mendoza, Argentina. South American J. Herp. 10 (2): 104-115, doi: 10.2994/SAJH-D-14-00033.1 - get paper here
  • AVILA, LUCIANO JAVIER; LORENA ELIZABETH MARTINEZ & MARIANA MORANDO 2013. Checklist of lizards and amphisbaenians of Argentina: an update. Zootaxa 3616 (3): 201–238 - get paper here
  • Langstroth, R.P. 2005. Adiciones probables y confirmadas para la saurofauna boliviana. Kempffiana 1 (1): 101-128
  • Lobo, F.; Espinoza, R.E. and S. Quinteros 2010. A critical review and systematic discussion of recent classification proposals for liolaemid lizards. Zootaxa 2549: 1–30 - get paper here
  • Lobo, Fernando, Espinoza, Robert E. 2004. Two New Liolaemus from the Puna Region of Argentina and Chile: Further Resolution of Purported Reproductive Bimodality in Liolaemus alticolor (Iguania: Liolaemidae). Copeia 2004 (4): 850–867 - get paper here
  • Miranda, B; Aparicio, J & Méndez-de la Cruz, F 2018. Liolaemus chaltin Preferred and critical thermal temperatures. Herpetological Review 49 (3): 489-490 - get paper here
  • Ocampo, Mauricio & Álvaro J. Aguilar-Kirigin 2008. LIOLAEMUS CHALTIN LOBO & ESPINOZA 2004 (IGUANIA: LIOLAEMIDAE). Cuadernos de Herpetología 22 (2): 99–100
  • Ocampo, Mauricio; Álvaro Aguilar-Kirigin, and Sebastián Quinteros 2012. A New Species of Liolaemus (Iguania: Liolaemidae) of the Alticolor Group from La Paz, Bolivia. Herpetologica 68 (3): 410-417. - get paper here
  • Quinteros, Andrés Sebastián 2012. Taxonomy of the Liolaemus alticolor–bibronii Group (Iguania: Liolaemidae), with Descriptions of Two New Species. Herpetologica 68 (1): 100-120 - get paper here
  • QUINTEROS, ANDRÉS SEBASTIÁN 2013. A morphology-based phylogeny of the Liolaemus alticolor–bibronii group (Iguania: Liolaemidae). Zootaxa 3670: 1-32 - get paper here
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