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Pedioplanis serodioi PARRINHA, MARQUES, HEINICKE, KHALID, PARKER, TOLLEY, CHILDERS, CONRADIE, BAUER & CERÍACO, 2021

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Higher TaxaLacertidae, Eremiadinae, Sauria, Lacertoidea, Squamata (lizards)
Subspecies 
Common Names 
SynonymPedioplanis serodioi PARRINHA, MARQUES, HEINICKE, KHALID, PARKER, TOLLEY, CHILDERS, CONRADIE, BAUER & CERÍACO 2021
Eremias benguelensis – BOULENGER 1918: 5
Eremias benguelensis – BOULENGER 1921: 287
Eremias benguelensis – PARKER 1936: 134
Eremias benguelensis – MERTENS 1954: 177
Eremias benguellensis – MONARD 1937: 72
Eremias benguellensis – MERTENS 1971: 59
Eremias undata undata – LAURENT 1964: 60 [part]
Mesalina benguelensis – SZCZERBAK 1975: 24
Pedioplanis benguelensis – ARNOLD 1989: 213
Pedioplanis benguelensis – MAYER 1989: 135
Pedioplanis benguellensis – ARNOLD 1991: 785
Pedioplanis benguellensis – BRANCH 1998: 173
Pedioplanis benguellensis – CONRADIE et al. 2012: 95
Pedioplanis benguellensis – CERÍACO et al. 2016: 37
Pedioplanis benguellensis – MARQUES et al. 2018: 222 [part]
Pedioplanis sp. – CERÍACO et al. 2020: 401 [part] 
DistributionSW Angola (Benguela, Namibe, Huíla, Cunene Provinces)

Type locality: North side of the road from Namibe to Lubango, road marker 59, 1.8 km West (by road) of Caraculo [-15.01888°, 12.64014°, 491 m], Namibe Province, Angola  
Reproduction 
TypesHolotype: CAS 254906, adult male collected by Luis M.P. Ceríaco, E.L. Stanley, Arianna L. Kuhn, Jens V. Vindum, Sango de Sá, Suzana Bandeira and Hilária Valério on 6 December 2013. Paratypes (n = 11): CAS; MHNCUP; PEM 
DiagnosisDiagnosis: Pedioplanis serodioi can be distinguished from other Pedioplanis species in Angola and neighboring regions by the following combination of characters: (1) lower eyelid with a single blackedged, enlarged transparent scale; (2) four (rarely three, five or six) supralabials anterior to the subocular and two (rarely three) posteriorly; (3) One (sometimes two) row of small granules between the supraoculars and supraciliaries; (4) a group of 6–24 (<15 in 75% of specimens) small granules preceding the supraoculars; (5) ventral scales in ten longitudinal rows; (6) a pair of irregularly edged dorsolateral stripes or series of spots and a faint or absent vertebral stripe (Parrinha et al. 2021).

Comparisons: Pedioplanis serodioi is distinguished from P. gaerdesi by the number of supralabials anterior to the subocular (usually four in P. serodioi versus five to six in P. gaerdesi) and color pattern (dark dorsolateral stripes or series of spots in P. serodioi versus no dorsal stripes in P. gaerdesi); and from all the remaining species of the genus by consistently possessing a single transparent scale on the lower eyelid (versus two or more scales in other species). Regarding Angolan congeners, it can be further distinguished from P. benguelensis by a lower number of supralabials anterior to the subocular (usually four in P. serodioi versus five in P. benguelensis), one row of granules between supraoculars and supraciliaries (versus two in P. benguelensis), fewer granules anterior to the supraoculars (usually <15 in P. serodioi versus >13 in P. benguelensis) and color pattern (dorsolateral stripes often broken and vertebral stripe indistinct in P. serodioi versus all stripes distinct and well-defined in P. benguelensis); from P. haackei by the presence of one row of granules between supraoculars and supraciliaries (versus two in P. haackei), fewer granules anterior to the supraoculars (usually <15 in P. serodioi versus >11 in P. haackei) and color pattern (dorsolateral stripes often broken and vertebral stripe indistinct in P. serodioi versus dorsal stripes continuous and faded posteriorly in P. haackei); and from P. huntleyi by a smaller SVL (average 43 mm in P. serodioi versus 54 mm in P. huntleyi), a lower number of supralabials anterior to the subocular (four in P. serodioi versus five in P. huntleyi) and color pattern (dorsolateral stripes often broken and vertebral stripe indistinct in P. serodioi versus dorsal stripes continuous and faded posteriorly in P. huntleyi). (first author et al. 2021).

Color in life: Dorsum greyish brown to pale grey, often with extensive black speckling throughout. There may be a thin, dark vertebral stripe, but this is usually faint and indistinct, or reduced to irregular black streaks. A pair of irregularly edged, black dorsolateral stripes extend from the back of the head to the base of the tail, often broken into series of black spots on a reddish-brown background. A pale line separates the dorsolateral stripes from a lateral stripe that starts behind the eye and extends to the base of the tail, often faint and reticulated, with a series of yellow spots running along its lower edge. There is often a reddish stripe extending from the posterior labials to the hindlimb insertion, up to four scales wide, continuous or broken into series of streaks. The hindlimbs are often covered above by pale circles surrounded by black pigmentation. Venter white (Parrinha et al. 2021). 
CommentDistribution: The Ditsong National Museum of Natural History holds a series of specimens from northern Namibia (“Okjivakandu”, “Opuwo” and “Otjiwise”) that conform to P. serodioi in color pattern and the condition of the lower eyelid with a single transparent scale, a feature known only from P. gaerdesi and P. serodioi. If genetically confirmed, these records would expand the known distribution of P. serodioi into adjacent Namibia (Parrinha et al. 2021).

Synonymy: Previous records of Pedioplanis benguelensis from Angola, characterized by the presence of a single transparent scale on the lower eyelid, are referred to Pedioplanis serodioi (e.g. Boulenger 1921: 287; Conradie et al. 2012: 95; Ceríaco et al. 2016). The material referred by Laurent (1964: 60) to Pedioplanis undata undata comprises specimens of both Pedioplanis haackei and Pedioplanis serodioi.

Sympatry: It occurs sympatrically with other Angolan congeners in several localities across its range. 
EtymologyThe species is named after the Angolan scholar João Manuel Serôdio de Almeida (1943–present), professor of the Biology Department of the Faculty of Sciences of Agostinho Neto University, Luanda, Angola. João Serôdio has had a pivotal role in scientific research and biodiversity conservation in Angola, as manager of several conservation areas, Vice-Minister for the Environment (1997–2000) and by training several generations of Angolan biologists. Prof. Serôdio has been a strong supporter and advocate of the present herpetological research in Angola. The name is formed in the genitive masculine singular. We propose the English common name of Serôdio’s Sand Lizard, and the Portuguese common name of Lagartixa da Areia de Serôdio (Parrinha et al. 2021). 
References
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  • Arnold, E.N. 1991. Relationships of the South African lizards assigned to Aporosaura, Meroles and Pedioplanis (Reptilia: Lacertidae). Journal of Natural History 25: 783–807 - get paper here
  • Boulenger, G.A. 1918. A synopsis of the lizards of the genus Eremias. J. zool. Res. 3: 2
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  • Branch, W. R. 1998. Field Guide to the Snakes and Other Reptiles of Southern Africa. 3rd ed. Fully Revised and Updated to Include 83 New Species. Ralph Curtis Books (Sanibel Island, Florida), 399 pp.
  • Ceríaco, Luis M. P.; Mariana P. Marques, Ilunga André, Esteves Afonso, David C. Blackburn & Aaron M. Bauer 2020. ILLUSTRATED TYPE CATALOGUE OF THE “LOST” HERPETOLOGICAL COLLECTIONS OF MUSEU DO DUNDO, ANGOLA. Bulletin of the Museum of Comparative Zoology 162 (7): 379-440 - get paper here
  • Ceríaco, Luis M. P.; Sango dos Anjos Carlos de Sá, Suzana Bandeira, Hilária Valério, Edward L. Stanley, Arianna L. Kuhn, Mariana P. Marques, Jens V. Vindum, David C. Blackburn, and Aaron M. Bauer 2016. Herpetological Survey of Iona National Park and Namibe Regional Natural Park, with a Synoptic List of the Amphibians and Reptiles of Namibe Province, Southwestern Angola. Proceedings of the California Academy of Sciences, ser. 4, 63: 15-61 - get paper here
  • Conradie, Werner; G. John Measey, William R. Branch & Krystal A. Tolley 2012. Revised phylogeny of African sand lizards (Pedioplanis), with the description of two new species from south-western Angola. African Journal of Herpetology 61 (2): 91-112; DOI:10.1080/21564574.2012.676079 - get paper here
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  • Marques, Mariana P.; Luis M. P. Ceríaco , David C. Blackburn , and Aaron M. Bauer 2018. Diversity and Distribution of the Amphibians and Terrestrial Reptiles of Angola -- Atlas of Historical and Bibliographic Records (1840–2017). Proc. Cal. Acad. Sci. (Ser. 4) 65: 1-501 (Supplement II)
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  • PARRINHA, D.; Marques, M. P., Heinicke, M. P., Khalid, F., Parker, K. L., TOLLEY, K. A., CHILDERS, J.L.; CONRADIE, W.; BAUER, A.M. & CERÍACO, L. M. 2021. A revision of Angolan species in the genus Pedioplanis Fitzinger (Squamata: Lacertidae), with the description of a new species. Zootaxa, 5032 (1): 1-46 - get paper here
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