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Sigaloseps conditus SADLIER, BAUER & WOOD, 2014

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Higher TaxaScincidae, Eugongylinae (Eugongylini), Scincoidea, Sauria, Squamata (lizards)
Common Names 
SynonymSigaloseps conditus SADLIER, BAUER & WOOD in SADLIER et al. 2014 
DistributionNew Caledonia (southern Grande Terre: Pourina River, Rivière Bleue) Type locality: Rivière Bleue, 4.7 km east of Pont Germain 22°06’S 166°41’E  
TypesHolotype: MNHN-RA 2011.0284 (formerly AMS R.147952) (collected R. Sadlier & G. Shea, 21 Sep. 1995). Paratypes: AMS R.125824, AMS R.125899 Rivière Bleue, Giant Kauri 22°06’S 166°39’E (collected H. Cogger & R. Sadlier, 25 Aug. 1987); AMS R.125895 Rivière Bleue, 1 km East of Giant Kauri 22°06’S 166°39’E (collected H. Cogger & R. Sadlier, 25 Aug. 1987); AMS R.135609-11 Rivière Bleue, vicinity of Giant Kauri 22°06’S 166°40’E (collected A. Greer, 24 Dec. 1988); AMS R.147916 Rivière Bleue, Haute Rivière Bleue Walk 22°05’S 166°37’E (collected R. Sadlier & G. Shea, 20 Sep. 1995); AMS R.147953 Rivière Bleue, 4.7 km East of Pont Germain 22°06’S 166°41’E (collected R. Sadlier & G. Shea, 21 Sep. 1995): AMS R.171426 Pourina River Valley 22°01’39”S 166°43’37”E (collected R. Sadlier, 13 Nov. 2008). 
DiagnosisDiagnosis: The following features of coloration and scalation in combination will distinguish Sigaloseps conditus n. sp. all other species of Sigaloseps except S. deplanchei s.s.: small adult size, maximum SVL for males 44 mm and for females 46 mm; short tail ~100% of SVL; subocular upper labial usually separated from the lower eyelid by a well deve- loped row of subocular scales; midbody scale rows 26-28; paravertebral scale rows 48-52; 4th toe lamellae scales 25-29; underside of body and tail pale yellow without obvious brown or black markings and underside of tail without dark markings; dorsal and lateral surface of tail brown to dull orange. Sigaloseps conditus n. sp. is most similar in overall appearance to Sigaloseps deplanchei s.s. from which it can be usually be distinguished in having a well developed row of subocular scales separating the lower eyelid from the subocular upper labial (vs subocular upper labial usually in contact with the lower eyelid). This character state will also distinguish S. conditus n. sp. from all other members of the genus. The suite of character states identified above allows Sigaloseps conditus n. sp. to be distinguished from its congeners as follows: - from Sigaloseps pisinnus n. sp. by its larger adult size (maximum SVL 46 vs 38 mm), significantly more midbody scale rows (26-28 vs 22-24), significantly more toe lamellae (25-29 vs 20-25), duller overall color to the tail (brown vs bold reddish-brown), and in having a uniformly pale underside to the tail (vs spotted with small brown blotches). - from Sigaloseps ruficauda by its smaller adult size (maximum SVL 46 vs 56 mm), significantly fewer paravertebral scales (48-52 vs 53-60), and duller overall color to the tail (brown to dull orange vs bright reddish). - from Sigaloseps ferrugicauda n. sp. by its smaller adult size (maximum SVL 46 vs 60 mm), and significantly fewer paravertebral scales (48-52 vs 53-56). - from Sigaloseps balios n. sp. by its smaller adult size (maximum SVL 46 vs 50 mm), paler yellow ventral coloration (dull yellow vs bold enamel yellow, and paler tail color (brown to dull orange vs nearly black). The high level of genetic differentiation between Sigaloseps conditus n. sp. and the other species in the genus provides strong support for the recognition of these evolutionary lineages as distinct taxa. 
EtymologyThe species epithet conditus is Latin for hidden or secret, and alludes to its unsuspected existence prior to the genetic studies undertaken here. 
  • SADLIER, Ross A.; Aaron M. BAUER, Perry L. WOOD Jr., Sarah A. SMITH, Anthony H. WHITAKER, Hervé JOURDAN & Todd JACKMAN 2014. Localized endemism in the southern ultramafic bio-region of New Caledonia as evidenced by the lizards in the genus Sigaloseps (Reptilia: Scincidae), with descriptions of four new species. Memoires du Museum National d'Histoire Naturelle, 206: 79-113.
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