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Sigaloseps ferrugicauda SADLIER, SMITH, SHEA & BAUER, 2014

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Higher TaxaScincidae, Eugongylinae, Scincoidea, Sauria, Squamata (lizards)
Common Names 
SynonymSigaloseps ferrugicauda SADLIER, SMITH, SHEA & BAUER in SADLIER et al. 2014 
DistributionNew Caledonia (S Grande Terre: Mt Ouin, elevation 1100 m, Mt Humboldt, 1350 m)

Type locality: Mt Ouin, track along northeast edge of Mt Ouin Range 22°00’S 166°28’E.  
TypesHolotype: MNHN-RA 2011.0286 (formerly R.165803) (collected R. Sadlier & G. Shea, 26 Dec. 2003). Paratypes: AMS R.148024 Mt Ouin 22°34”S 166°27’26”E (collected R. Sadlier & G. Shea, 26 Sep. 1995); AMS R.162964 Mt Ouin, saddle between Mt Ouin and Mt Dzumac 22°01’41”S 166°28’19”E (collected R. Sadlier & A. Bauer, 19 Sep. 2002); AMS R.172611 Massif du Humboldt 21°52’57”S 166°34’45”E at 1350 m (collected R. Sadlier & C. Beatson, 13 Oct. 2009). 
CommentThe following features of coloration and scalation in combination will distinguish Sigaloseps ferrugicauda n. sp. from all other species of Sigaloseps (except S. ruficauda s.s.): moderately large adult size, maximum SVL for females 60 mm; subocular upper labial usually in contact with the lower eyelid; paravertebral scale rows 53-56 (mean = 54.5); 4th toe lamellae scales 24-28 (mean = 26.1); underside of body and tail yellow without obvious brown or black markings ; dorsal and lateral surface of tail dull russet brown and with dark markings variably on the upper surfaces of the tail. Siga- loseps ferrugicauda n. sp. is most similar in morphology to Sigaloseps ruficauda, with no obvious differences in scalation and only a subtle difference in intensity of reddish tail coloration and of dark markings on the upper surface of the tail. The high level of genetic differentiation between Sigaloseps ferrugicauda n. sp. and Sigaloseps ruficauda provides strong support for the recognition of these evolutionary lineages as distinct taxa.
The suite of diagnostic characters identified above allows Sigaloseps ferrugicauda n. sp. to be distinguished from each of its congeners as follows:
- from Sigaloseps deplanchei s.s by its larger adult size (maximum SVL 60 vs 46 mm), more paravertebral scales (53- 56 vs 46-56).
- from Sigaloseps conditus n. sp. by its larger adult size (maximum SVL 60 vs 46 mm), more paravertebral scales (53-56 vs 48-52), in having the subocular upper labial usually in contact with the lower eyelid (vs separated from the lower eyelid by a well developed row of subocular scales).
- from Sigaloseps pisinnus n. sp. by its larger adult size (maximum SVL 60 vs 38 mm), in having significantly more midbody scale rows (26-28 vs 22-24); more paravertebral scales (53-56 vs 48-55); duller overall color to the tail (dull russet brown vs bold reddish-brown), and in having a relatively uniformly pale underside to the tail (vs spotted with small brown blotches).
- from Sigaloseps ruficauda by its duller overall color to the tail (dull russet brown vs bright reddish), and the presence (variably) of dark markings on the upper surfaces of the tail (vs upper surface of the tail unmarked).
- from Sigaloseps balios n. sp. by its larger adult size (maximum SVL 60 vs 50 mm), paler ventral coloration (moderate yellow-orange vs bold enamel yellow), and paler tail color (dull russet brown vs nearly black). 
EtymologyThe species epithet is from the Latin ferrugineus for rust-colored, and cauda for tail, alluding to the dull russet tail coloration of this species. 
  • 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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