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Oligosoma newmani WELLS & WELLINGTON, 1985

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Higher TaxaScincidae, Eugongylinae (Eugongylini), Scincoidea, Sauria, Squamata (lizards)
Common NamesE: Newman’s speckled skink 
SynonymOligosoma newmani WELLS & WELLINGTON 1985
Lygosoma infrapunctatum — WERNER 1895
Lygosoma infrapunctatum — SMITH 1937
Lygosoma infrapunctatum — McCANN 1955
Leiolopisma infrapunctata — MITTLEMAN 1952
Leiolopisma infrapunctatum — McCANN 1955
Leiolopisma infrapunctatum — McCANN 1956
Leiolopisma infrapunctatum — WORTHY 1991
Leiolopisma infrapunctatum — EAST et al. 1995
Leiolopisma infrapunctatum — MARKWELL 1995
Leiolopisma infrapunctatum — EFFORD et al. 1997
Oligosoma infrapunctatum — DUNCAN 1999
Oligosoma infrapunctatum — EFFORD et al. 2001
Oligosoma infrapunctatum — MOCKETT et al. 2016
Oligosoma infrapunctatum — NELSON et al. 2016
Oligosoma infrapunctatum — VAN WINKEL et al. 2018
Oligosoma newmani — MELZER et al. 2019: 453 
DistributionNew Zealand (South Island only, on Stephens Island [Takapourewa], the West Coast and Nelson Lakes across a range of ecological districts: Sounds, Karamea, Ngakawau, Foulwind, Maimai, Greymouth, Rotoroa and Hokitikia)

Type locality: Stephens Island (Takapourewa) (40° 40’S, 174° 00’E)  
TypesHolotype: NMNZ RE004481 (coll. G. Woodward, Jan 1963). 50 additional specimens are given in Melzer et al. 2019: 599 (erratum). 
DiagnosisDiagnosis: O. newmani can be distinguished from other species in the O. infrapunctatum species-complex by a combination of characters (Figure 4a–j). There are statistical differences between O. newmani and O. salmo sp. nov. (S-Ear/EF, VS, upper ciliaries). Compared with O. salmo sp. nov. MS is usually 33 or below whereas O. salmo is mostly 33 or above. There are statistical differences from O. robinsoni (AG/SF). Compared with O. robinsoni subdigital lamellae are usually 20 or below whereas usually 20 or above in O. robinsoni. O. newmani has a shorter tail relative to SVL than O. robinsoni. Compared with O. albornense sp. nov. nuchal pairs are usually 3 or below versus 3 or above (O. albornense); usually 69 or more VS (O. newmani) versus 69 or fewer VS (O. albornense sp. nov.). HL/HW is always 1.7 or below in O. albornense sp. nov. whereas it is usually 1.7 or above in O. newmani. O. auroraensis sp. nov. usually has more than 20 subdigital lamellae on fourth hind toe versus 20 or fewer for O. newmani. The mean TL/SVL in O. auroraensis sp. nov. is 1.38 compared with 1.22. There is also a significantly higher VS count in O. auroraensis sp. nov. compared with O. newmani [Melzer et al. 2019: 462]. 
CommentSynonymy: mostly after Melzer et al. 2019, who revalidated O. newmani but whose synonymy is also somewhat confusing as it remains unclear if all the listed authors really dealt with O. newmani.

Habitat: wide range of warm-to-cool and low-to-very high rainfall environments from the coast to mountains (up to 1400 m ASL), occupying various habitats from coastal scrub/forest on islands, cobble and boulder beaches, dune vegetation and pakihi wetlands on coastal flats, densely vegetated or shrubland habitats, open grasslands, fernland, and cool tempe- rature tussock-scrub-low forest mosaic forest on the rocky plateaux in alpine regions; includes glacial river terraces in cool inland beech country. Terrestrial.

Behavior: Diurnal, strongly heliothermic.

Variation: This species can be highly variable in size and colour. 
EtymologyNamed for Donald G. Newman of New Zealand, in recognition of his contributions to herpetology (Wells & Wellington 1985). 
  • Duncan, P. 1999. Behavioural and ecological factors affecting the trappability of two skink species in Nelson. Unpublished MSc thesis, University of Otago, Otago, 222 pp
  • East, K.T., East, M.R. & Daugherty, C.H. 1995. Ecological restoration and habitat relationships of reptiles on Stephens Island, New Zealand. New Zealand Journal of Zoology, 22, 249–261 - get paper here
  • Efford, M., Spencer, N. & Thomas, B. 2001. Comparative population dynamics of Oligosoma skinks at Lake Station, Upper Buller. New Zealand Journal of Zoology, 28 (3), 364
  • Efford, M.G., Spencer, N.J., Thomas, B.W. & Mason, R.F.S. 1997. [Abstract] A population study of sympatric skinks on Lake Station, upper Buller Valley. in: Whitaker, A. H. (Ed.), proceedings of the Society for Research on Amphibians and Reptiles in New Zealand. Abstracts of papers presented at the 7th conference New Zealand Journal of Zoology, 24 (4), pp. 326 - get paper here
  • Markwell, T. 1995. Seabirds as keystones on New Zealand offshore islands: ecological relationships of seabirds, lizards, and tuatara on Takapourewa (Stephens Island). New Zealand Journal of Zoology, 22, 402–403
  • McCann, C. 1955. The lizards of New Zealand. Gekkonidae and Scincidae. Dominion Museum Bulletin (17): 1—127.
  • McCann, C. 1956. Keys to the lizards of New Zealand. Tuatara 6:45-51
  • MELZER, SABINE; ROD A. HITCHMOUGH, TRENT BELL, DAVID G. CHAPPLE & GEOFF B. PATTERSON 2019. Lost and Found: Taxonomic revision of the speckled skink (Oligosoma infrapunctatum; Reptilia; Scincidae) species complex from New Zealand reveals a potential cryptic extinction, resurrection of two species, and description of three new species. Zootaxa 4623 (3): 441–484 [erratum in Zootaxa 4688 (4): 599-600] - get paper here
  • Mittleman, M.B. 1952. A generic synopsis of the Lizards of the Subfamily Lygosominae. Smithson. misc. Collns, 117: 1-35. - get paper here
  • Mockett, S., Bell, T., Poulin, R. & Jorge, F. 2017. The diversity and evolution of nematodes (Pharyngodonidae) infecting New Zealand lizards. Parasitology, 144 (5), 680–691 - get paper here
  • Nelson, Nicola J.; Richard L. Romijn, Terra Dumont, James T. Reardon, Joanne M. Monks, Rodney A. Hitchmough, Raewyn Empson, and James V. Briskie 2016. Lizard Conservation in Mainland Sanctuaries. in: Chapple, D.G. (ed). New Zealand Lizards. Springer, pp. 321-340 - get paper here
  • Smith, M.A. 1937. A review of the genus Lygosoma (Scincidae: Reptilia) and its allies. Records of the Indian Museum 39 (3): 213-234
  • Wells, R. W. and Wellington, C. R. 1985. A synopsis of the Amphibia and Reptilia of Australia. Australian Journal of Herpetology, Supplementary Series (1): 62-64.
  • Winkel, D. van, Baling, M. & Hitchmough, R. 2018. Reptiles and Amphibians of New Zealand: A field guide. Auckland University Press, Auckland, 376 pp.
  • Worthy, T. H. 1991. Fossil skink bones from Northland, New Zealand, and description of a new species of Cyclodina, Scincidae. Journal of the Royal Society of New Zealand 21: 329-348 - get paper here
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