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Morethia taeniopleura (PETERS, 1874)

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Higher TaxaScincidae, Eugongylinae (Eugongylini), Scincoidea, Sauria, Squamata (lizards)
Common NamesE: North-eastern Firetail Skink, Fire-Tailed Skink 
SynonymAblepharus (Morethia) taeniopleurus PETERS 1874: 375
Ablepharus taeniopleurus — GLAUERT 1960: 117
Morethia taeniopleura — GREER 1974: 21
Morethia taeniopleura — COGGER 2000: 550
Morethia taeniopleura — WILSON & SWAN 2010 
DistributionAustralia (Queensland)

Type locality: “Port Bowen (N.O. Australien)” [= Port Clinton, Queensland]  
TypesHolotype: ZMB 8051 (Tiedemann et al. 1994 incorrectly listed NMW 18425 as holotype, fide Bauer et al., 2003) 
DiagnosisDescription: “Form normal, the distance between the tip of the snout and the fore limb 1.4 to 1.6 in the distance between the axilla and the groin. Eye completely surrounded by granules. Rostral in contact with the frontonasal, which is about as wide as long and in contact with the frontal. Nasals divided to form supranasals; prefrontals large. Frontal about as long as its distance from the tip of the snout, in contact with 2 supraoculars, much smaller than the fused frontoparietals and interparietal; 4 supraoculars; one pair of nuchals; 4 upper labials in front of the enlarged subocular. Ear opening large, oval, without lobules. Preanals slightly enlarged. Scales, smooth, subequal, Limbs well-developed with 5 digits, the adpressed limbs overlap slightly. Tail longer than the head and body. Length, 4 in. Head and body, 39 mm.; tail, 62 mm. Fresh specimens are blackish above with a white dorsolateral band extending from the tip of the snout over the eye and over the ear to the base of the tail. Below this is a wider dark band which passes through the eye and over the ear to the tail. This is followed by a narrower white stripe from the upper lip to the end of the body; it is separated from the pale under surface by an ill-defined greenish black area which starts on the lower lip and passes under the ear. The tail in life is reddish.” (Glauert 1960) 
  • 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
  • Glauert, L. 1960. Herpetological miscellanea. XII. The family Scincidae in Western Australia. Pt. 3. The genus Ablepharus. Western Australian Naturalist 7: 115-122 - get paper here
  • Greer A E 1981. A new species of Morethia (Lacertilia: Scincidae) from northern Australia, with comments on the biology and relationships of the genus. Rec. Austral. Mus. 33 (2): 89-122 [1980] - get paper here
  • Greer, A.E. 1974. The generic relationships of the scincid lizard genus Leiolopisma and its relatives. Australian Journal of Zoology 31: 1-67. - get paper here
  • Peters, Wilhem Carl Hartwig 1874. Über einige neue Reptilien (Lacerta, Eremias, Diploglossus, Euprepes, Lygosoma, Sepsina, Ablepharus, Simotes, Onychocephalus). Monatsber. königl. Akad. Wiss. Berlin. 1874 (Juni): 368-377 - get paper here
  • Tiedemann,F.; Häupl,M. & Grillitsch,H. 1994. Katalog der Typen der herpetologischen Sammlung nach dem Stand vom 1. Jänner 1994. Teil II: Reptilia. Kat. wiss. Samml. Naturhist. Mus. Wien 10 (Vertebrata 4): 1-110
  • Wilson, S. & Swan, G. 2010. A complete guide to reptiles of Australia, 3rd ed. Chatswood: New Holland, 558 pp.
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