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Pholidoscelis erythrocephalus (SHAW, 1802)

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Higher TaxaTeiidae, Teiinae, Gymnophthalmoidea, Sauria, Squamata (lizards)
Common NamesE: Red-faced Groundlizard, St. Christopher Ameiva 
SynonymLacerta erythrocephala SHAW 1802: 236
Ameiva erythrocephala DAUDIN 1802: 22
Amiva erythrops COPE 1871: 221
Ameiva erythrops — BARBOUR 1923: 5
Ameiva nevisana SCHMIDT 1920
Ameiva erythrocephala — SCHWARTZ & HENDERSON 1991: 190
Ameiva erythrocephala — HOWER & HEDGES 2003
Ameiva erythrocephala — HARVEY et al. 2012
Pholidoscelis erythrocephala — GOICOECHEA et al. 2016
Pholidoscelis erythrocephalus — TUCKER et al. 2016 
DistributionLesser Antilles: St. Eustatius, St. Christopher, Nevis

Type locality: St. Christopher.  
TypesHolotype: Unlocated.
Synypes: (5) ANSP 9892-96; West Indies, St. Eustasia [erythrops]
Holotype: AMNH 1635, from Nevis Island [nevisana] 
DiagnosisDESCRIPTION: Size moderate (SVL to 135 mm in males, 109 mm in females); dorsal caudal scales keeled; ventral scales 10-12 (rarely 13) in a transverse row and 31-38 in a longitudinal row; fourth toe subdigital scales 70-92 (combined counts for both fourth toes); femoral pores 56-78 (combined counts for both series); fifteenth caudal verticil with 33-42 scales. Males' dorsal ground color dark olive green, tinged with russet; head lighter and more reddish olive, sides rosy; back and sides with narrower, more distinct lateral stripes running length of body but fading caudally; flanks dark with obscure light spotting and vermiculation; chin and throat pale flesh-color; mesoptychium black with white blotch or indentation; belly blue-gray; females similar to males except dark pencilings more numerous and distinct; suggestion of pale line anteriorly on each side of body (more distinct in juveniles) (Schwartz & Henderson 1991: 190).

Comparisons: Harvey et al. 2012: 94 (Table 7) 
CommentThis taxon was formally described the same year that Shaw described it, by Daudin (1802: 122), as Ameiva erythrocephala, and has been credited to Daudin in the literature ever since (e.g., Schwartz and Henderson, 1988: 63). However, as Daudin's volume 3 was published in August 1802, at least seven months after Shaw's work appeared, Daudin's name is a junior synonym of Lacerta
erythrocephala Shaw, Ameiva erythrocephala (Shaw, 1802) [SMITH & DAVID, from the introduction to the facsimile reprint of SHAW 1802]. 
Etymologynamed after the Greek words “erythros” (= red) and cephale = “head”, for the reddish head color. 
  • Barbour, Thomas 1923. West Indian investigations of 1922. Occasional Papers of the Museum of Zoology, University of Michigan (132): 1-9 - get paper here
  • Barbour, Thomas 1930. Some faunistic changes in the Lesser Antilles. Proc. New England Zool. Club 11: 73-85
  • Daudin, F. M. 1802. Histoire Naturelle, génerale et particulièredes reptiles, ouvrage faisant suite, a l'histoiure naturelle, générale et particulière composée par LECLERC DE BUFFON, et redigée par C. S. SONNINI, vol. 3. F. Dufart, Paris, 452 pp. - get paper here
  • Goicoechea, N., Frost, D. R., De la Riva, I., Pellegrino, K. C. M., Sites, J., Rodrigues, M. T. and Padial, J. M. 2016. Molecular systematics of teioid lizards (Teioidea/Gymnophthalmoidea: Squamata) based on the analysis of 48 loci under tree-alignment and similarity-alignment. Cladistics, doi: 10.1111/cla.12150 - get paper here
  • HARVEY, MICHAEL B.; GABRIEL N. UGUETO & RONALD L. GUTBERLET, Jr. 2012. Review of Teiid Morphology with a Revised Taxonomy and Phylogeny of the Teiidae (Lepidosauria: Squamata). Zootaxa 3459: 1–156 - get paper here
  • Hower, Lindsey M., and S. Blair Hedges 2003. Molecular phylogeny and biogeography of West Indian Teiid lizards of the genus Ameiva. Carib. J. Sci. 39 (3):298-306. - get paper here
  • Schmidt, K. P. 1920. A new Ameiva from Nevis Island, British West indies. Proc. Linn. Soc. New York 33: 1-2
  • Schwartz, A. & Henderson, R.W. 1991. Amphibians and Reptiles of the West Indies. University of Florida Press, Gainesville, 720 pp.
  • Shaw, GEORGE 1802. General zoology or systematic natural history, vol. 3, Pt 1. Thomas Davison, London, viii+312 pp - get paper here
  • Tucker, Derek B.; Guarino R. Colli, Lilian G. Giugliano, S. Blair Hedges, Catriona R. Hendry, Emily Moriarty Lemmon, Alan R. Lemmon, Jack W. Sites Jr., R. Alexander Pyron 2016. Methodological congruence in phylogenomic analyses with morphological support for teiid lizards (Sauria: Teiidae). Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 103: 75-84 - get paper here
  • ZERO, V. H. & EIFLER, D. A. & POWELL, R. 2009. Foraging behavior of the lizard Ameiva erythrocephala DAUDIN, 1802. Herpetozoa 22: - get paper here
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