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Rhampholeon spectrum (BUCHHOLZ, 1874)

IUCN Red List - Rhampholeon spectrum - Least Concern, LC

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Higher TaxaChamaeleonidae, Sauria, Iguania, Squamata (lizards)
Common NamesE: Cameroon Stumptail Chameleon 
SynonymChamaeleo spectrum BUCHHOLZ 1874: 298
Rhampholeon spectrum – GÜNTHER 1874: 443
Rhampholeon affinis STEINDACHNER 1911: 178
Rhampholeon spectrum – WERNER 1911: 45
Brookesia spectrum spectrum – LOVERIDGE 1951: 182
Brookesia spectrum – MERTENS 1966: 3
Brookesia spectrum spectrum – MERTENS 1966: 3
Rhampholeon spectrum – WRIGHT & BROADLEY 1973: 165
Rhampholeon spectrum — NECAS 1999: 258
Rhampholeon (Rhampholeon) spectrum — MATTHEE et al. 2004
Rhampholeon (Rhampholeon) spectrum — GLAW 2015
Rhampholeon spectrum —TAPONDJOU-NKONMENECK et al. 2022 
DistributionCameroon, Congo (Brazzaville), Equatorial Guinea (Bioko = Fernando Po), Central African Republic, Gabon

Type locality: Limbé und Bonjongo, Kamerun. Restricted to Bojongo (MERTENS 1938).  
ReproductionApparently the only known parthenogenetic chameleon (KUHN & SCHMIDT 2003, citing NIETZKE 1998 as source; P. Kornacker, another co-author of Nietzke, says in a personal communication [8 Jul 2010] the source is Petzold 1982). Cuellar & Kluge 1972 cite Hall 1970 as source. 
TypesSyntypes: ZMB 8026, 53420 (2 specimens)
Syntypes: NMW 16001:1-2 [Rhampholeon affinis] 
DiagnosisDiagnosis (genus): Rhampholeon are characterised by the possession of variably developed soft, scaly rostral processes, variably developed plantar accessory spines , smooth “cobblestoned” plantar surfaces, claws either strongly bicuspid or simple, a soft (or absent) supra-optic peak, and a leaf-vein pattern of two to three oblique side-stripes. The hemipenes are acalyculate in most of the taxa except for two of the described species (R. spectrum and R. temporalis) where truncal calyces are present. The hemipenal apex has dual ornamentation in all, although in those with truncal calyces the ornamentation is rather more complex than simple curved papillate horns. In a representative from each of the three Type II sub-genera as discussed below (spectrum, nchisiensis and marshalli), the parietal bone is trigonal but without the posterior saggital extension (Rieppel 1987) (from Matthee et al. 2004: supplement). 
CommentType Species: Chamaeleo spectrum BUCHHOLZ 1874 is the type species of the genus Rhampholeon GÜNTHER 1874.

Distribution: For a map with localities in Equatorial Guinea see SÁNCHEZ-VIALAS et al. 2022.

Phylogenetics: Tapondjou Nkonmeneck et al. 2022 present a phylogeny of all Rhampholeon species. 
EtymologyThe genus has been named after Greek “rhamphos” = beak and “leon” = lion: beaked lion, referring to the soft granulated rostral appendage present in the type species ofthis genus. 
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