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Sitana kalesari BAHUGUNA, 2015

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Higher TaxaAgamidae (Draconinae), Sauria, Iguania, Squamata (lizards)
Common Names 
SynonymSitana kalesari BAHUGUNA 2015
Sitana kalesari — DEEPAK et al. 2021 
DistributionIndia (Haryana)

Type locality: Paddal line (N 30°23'12.2”; E 077°01'44.5”; elevation 387.6 m), Kalesar National Park, Wildlife Sanctuary (District: Yammuna Nagar), Haryana, India  
TypesHolotype: ZSI-NRC 151 (Northern Regional Centre /Zoological Survey of India), an adult male (SVL: 22 mm; Tail length 41 mm) collected by S.J.S. Hattar and Archana Bahuguna on 3rd August 2008 (specimen no I, Fig.1, Table 1). Paratypes: NRC,ZSI 
DiagnosisDiagnosis: Sitana kalesari sp.nov. can be distinguished from known congeners by the following combination of characters, snout vent length: 22-23 mm (22.3± 0.5), tail length 41-45 mm (41.72 ± 1.3) (N=9) in male; snout vent length 31-32 mm ; tail length 62 mm in female; TL/SVL is 1.83-1.95 (1.86± 0.0) in male, 1.9-2.00 mm in female; relative head length to head width HL/HW 1.16 in male (1.16 ± 0.0) and 1.28 in female; relative snout vent length to head length SVL/HL 3.14-3.28 (3.18 ±0.0)in male, 3.4-3.5 mm in female, hind limb length 19-22 mm (19.3± 1.0)in male , 22 mm in female; forelimb length 12- 18.0 mm (12.6 ±2.0) in male, 18 mm in female; foot length 7 mm in male, 16 mm in female; hand length 4 mm in male, 7 mm in female; SVL/HL 3.14-3.28 (3.6 ± 0.1) in male, 3.4 - 3.5 in female, Heel to second largest toe 4 mm in male, 7mm in female; SVL/HW 3.6- 3.8 mm in male, 1.86 in female. Digital formula: fingers formula V< I< II = III< IV; toes formula: I > II = III< IV (Table 1). Supralabials in all specimens examined are 10/9 (left/ right) and infralabials are 9/9 (left/right). Number of scale rows between supralabial and orbit are 3 (left/right); numbers of large scales between tympanum and orbit are 6/6 (left/right); contact between nasal and supralabial noted to be full. Dorsal longitudinal rows counted at mid trunk are ten in male (N=9); nine in female (N=2) (Table 3). The ventral scales are triangular without keels. Dorsal pattern with five dark rhombi (one each at the limb insertions and three between them), which are more or less divided lengthwise by a narrow light vertebral line except the last one on tail (Fig. 5). Eyelids are light brown in both male and female. Group of scales around tympanum are also light brown. Dorsal rhombi dark brown without any margins. A light brown vertebral line divides the rhombi into two isosceles triangles. Inguinal mark is white with cream colored marks (Figs. 5,6). Gular region has brown blotch which is demarcated by light brown margins (Fig. 3). Venter is uniformly white with smooth scales.

Coloration and Sexual Dimorphism: Males are light brown however, the head has dark brown markings (Figs 1, 2, 3), lozenge pattern is of dark brown color, gular region with thin fold or streak (white in color). In female the color appears grey with dark grey pattern on head, tail and arms. Lozenge pattern is same as in male except the color is dark grey. Male mean SVL 22.3 mm, mean TL41.7 mm, Female mean SVL 32.5 mm, mean TL 75.5 mm. Inguinal scale is white with cream colored markings.

Comparisons with other allied species of Sitana Two species Sitana ponticeriana Cuvier and Sitana minor (Jerdon) are known from India. Sitana ponticeriana Cuvier is known to be distributed in Northern part of India. Holotype of Sitana ponticeriana Cuvier,1829, male (Registration no. 5051) examined from collection of Zoological Survey of India , has a large gular fan with snout vent length 36.8 mm, unlike that of Sitana kalesari sp.nov. Other morphometry characters also differ from that of Sitana kalesari sp.nov. as given in Tables 2 ,6. Sitana ponticeriana Cuvier has mean SVL 33.15 mm and tail length 50.3 mm unlike S. kalesari sp. nov. (SVL 22.3 mm, TL 41.7mm), mean relative head length/width 1.56, mean relative SVL/HL 2.72. Mean forelimb length 18.30mm, hindlimb length 36.88 mm, relative hind limb lengrh/forelimb length 2.01 and foot length 11.36 mm, relative foot length/length of second largest toe 2.9. Sitana kalesari sp. nov. has relative tail length/SVL 1.52, relative head length/width 1.56, relative SVL/HL 2.72,relative hind limb length/forelimb length 2.01, relative foot length/ length of second largest toe 2.9 (Table 3) According to Günther the characteristic features of Sitana ponticeriana Cuvier are forelimb does not extend on the vent, if laid backwards; the hind limb reaches to the orbit, if laid forward; the lower thigh is rather shorter than the foot (measured from the heel to the tip of the longest toe), the length of which is only three fourth of the distance between shoulder and hip joints. The species is known to attain to a length of 8 inches, of which tail takes 5 inches. The characteristic features of Sitana minor (Jerdon) as described by Jerdon are : „the forelimb extends beyond vent, if laid backwards; the hind limb to or beyond the extremity of the snout, if laid forwards; the lower thigh is considerably shorter than the foot, the length of which is more than the distance between the shoulder and hip joints. Both the species are brown in colour with a series of rhomboidal dark spots along the back, the spot on the neck being the darkest with a white line along each side of the back. Gular appendages are known to be tricoloured with blue, black and red colours. Sitana minor (Jerdon) is closely allied to other, but readily distinguished by its proportionally much longer limbs, the body of which measures two inches in length, being almost as long as that of Sitana ponticeriana Cuvier, the body of which is three inches long, the fully grown specimen reported to measure seven inches, of which the tail takes five inches.The gular appendages are equally well developed in both the species. Supralabials are nine in all specimens examined and infralabials are ten”.
Smith (1934) noted that there are two size variants with intermediates. Larger form (SNV=70-80mm, tail one and a half to twice the length of the head and body; hind limb not reaching to the snout; lateral scales not intermixed with larger ones; no enlarged scales on the occiput. This form appears to be confined to the district around Mumbai (Maharashtra). According to Smith this may possibly represent Jerdon‟s deccanensis. A smaller form with snout to vent 40-50mm, tail two to three times the length of the head and body; hind limb reaching to beyond the tip of snout; lateral and occipital scales intermixed with larger ones. This form ranges over the rest of India and Ceylon. The typical form is from Pondichery and Gunther‟s minor, from Chennai, is therefore, a synonym of it (Smith 1934). Thus S. minor is not considered for comparison with S.kalesari sp.nov. Statistical analysis (t test) further revealed the significant difference in morphometry between S.kalesari sp.nov and Sitana ponticeriana Cuvier (Table ). The SVL, TL, TL/SVL.HL, HW, HL/HW,SVL/HL,HLL, FL, FeL,SVL/HW, HLL/FL and HeL all parameters , thus analysed (t test) depicted highly significant differences (p value< 0.001) between the two species (Table 6 ).
Thus other allied species Sitana fusca Schleich and Kastle, Sitana schleichi Anders and Kastle, Sitana sivalensis Schleich, Kastle and Shah with thin gular region and smaller size reported from Nepal are thus considered for comparison.
Comparisons are done in a pair-wise manner by using morphometric data
provided by Schleich, Kastle and Shah 1998, Schleich & Kastle 1998b, Anders &
Kastle 2002. Satan fusca Schleich and Kastle has snout vent length 39.0 mm in male and 42.2 mm in female, tail length 86.2 mm in male and 83.0 mm in female (Table 2), whereas Sitana kalesari sp.nov. has mean SVL 22.3 mm, mean TL 41.7 mm in male and mean SVL 32.5 mm, mean TL 62.0 mm in female. Other measurements of body are also noted to differ from that of Satan kalesari sp.nov. (Table 3). In Sitana fusca supralabial scales are 8/9 (left/right) (Table 5) in male and 9/9 in female with some variations and infralabials are 9/8 (left/right) in male and 7/8 to9/9 in female whereas in Sitana kalesari sp. nov. supralabials are 10/9 (left/right) and infralabials are 9/9 (left/right) both in male and female. Number of scales from supralabial to orbit are 2/2.5*(* two broad and one narrow), unlike 3/3 in Sitana kalesari sp. nov. Tympanum to orbit, the number of scale rows is 6/6 as in case of Sitana kalesari sp. nov (Table 5). Dorsal longitudinal rows are 8 in male and 10 in female in S.fusca whereas in Satan kalesari sp. nov. these rows are 10 in male and 9 in female. A gradual change is noted from enlarged mid gular fan scales to small size ventrals in S. fusca. In Sitana kalesari sp. nov mid gular fan scales are triangular and smaller in size than of ventrals. Due to irregularities in scale size, shape and arrangement, the dorsal scale keel rows are frequently interrupted with small scales, however this feature is not present in Sitana kalesari sp. nov. (Fig.5). General pattern in S.fusca are identical with those of S. sivalensis , except blue stripe on the nuchal roach and blue spot on the upper eyelid, which are also noted to be absent in S.sivalensis sp. nov. Orange dorsolateral patches are recorded to be present, which are very resistant to darkening and never disappear entirely. The inguinal mark is noted to be of constant light orange which is of white colour in Sitana kalesari sp.nov. (Fig.6).Sexual dimorphism is noted in S.fusca species. Males have an enlarged tail size and a gular fan has rows of enlarged scales. Dorsal rhombiis composed of two isosceles triangles as in S. sivalensis, but their shape is composed of bell shaped and U shaped spots unlike Sitana kalesari sp.nov. S.fusca has gular pattern with a deep blue streak which is followed by a grayish brown blotch, unlike Sitana kalesari sp.nov. It is white with brown spots and brown lines with brown blotch in Sitana kalesari sp.nov (Fig. 3).Ventral is white, but it is reported to be always marked with brown in S. fusca, unlike Sitana
kalesari sp. nov., where it is uniformly white. Sitana schleichi Anders and Kastle has male mean SVL 35.0 mm; female mean SVL 37.3 mm, mean TL
66.9 mm (Tables 2), relative head length/head width 1.5 in male, 1.33 in female, relative SVL: HL 3.47 in male, 3.59 in female, hind limb length/forelimb length 2.45 in male and 2.09 in female; relative foot length/length of second largest toe 1.25 in male and 1.3 in female. This morphometry of the species is noted to be different from that of Sitana kalesari sp.nov. (Table 2). The pileus scales of Sitana schleichi are triangular with obtusely rounded tips with one sharp and dark keel (sometimes with two), seven to eight supralabials, seven or eight infralabials in male, two larger scale rows and a narrow one between the eye and orbit (Table 4). Scales of the throat at midline at the end of the dark post mental streak are pointed. About 8 enlarged and asymmetrical scales in one row are present near the gular midline. Enlarged dorsal scales in 10 longitudinal rows at mid body with sharp keels in male and female are present in Sitana schleichi (Table 5). The process of enlarged thigh scale is reported to be extremely developed in case of Sitana schleichi, but not in Sitana kalesari sp.nov (Fig. 6).Ventral scales are rounded with weak keels whereas in Sitana kalesari sp. nov.ventral scales are triangular without keels. Tail with strongly keeled scales which are regularly arranged in oblique rows. The ventral scales at the base of the tail are not keeled. At upper side of head, there are dark, grayish brown patches and supralabials are mottled with a blackish colour. In the region anterior and posterior of the tympanum, groups of scales are diffuse white, unlike Sitana kalesari sp. nov.Upper side of body: 5 blackish, regular dorsal rhombi with light margins. Sitana kalesari sp. nov.has rhombi without light margin (Fig 6). In Sitana schleichi a light brown ventral line divides the rhombi into two isosceles triangles and starts on the nape between two narrow dark patches and between the rhombi, the dorsum is beige like Sitana kalesari sp. nov. but with a brownish - orange enlarged dorsolateral scales unlike Sitana kalesari sp. nov. The holotype male of S. schleichi has a gular fan and a dark blue gular streak, unlike Sitana kalesari sp.nov. Behind it towards the foreleg insertion there is a wide lighter brown blotch in gular region, across the whole ventral side of the neck like Sitana kalesari sp.nov. (Fig.4). Sitana sivalensis Schleich, Kastle and Shah has mean snout vent length (SVL) 39.5 mm, mean tail length (TL) 80.3 mm in male; mean SVL 37.3 mm, mean TL 76.7 in female, relative head length (HL)/head width (HW) in male 1.36 and in female 1.32; relative SVL//HL3.84 in male and 3.87 in female; HL/FL 1.93 in male and 2.29 in female; relative foot length/length of the second largest toe 1.4 for male and 1.5 for female. These measurements are noted to be different from that of Sitana kalesari sp.nov. In Sitana kalesari sp.nov.snout vent length is 22-23 mm, tail length 41-45 mm in male (N=9) whereas in female it is 31-32 mm and tail length is 62 mm. relative head length (HL)/head width HW is 1.16 in male, 1.28 female;SVL/HL 3.14-3.28 in male, 3.4 - 3.5 in female (Table 1). In holotype of S. sivalensis,pileus is noted to be imbricate, unequal, rounded and polygonal with one keel. Three rows of elongated scales are present between the orbit and supralabials; supralabials (left/ right): 8/8, infralabials (left /right): 8/9 in male; unlike that of Sitana kalesari sp.nov.; six large scales counted in one row between the orbit and tympanum like that of Sitana kalesari sp. nov in male (Table 6) ; supralabials (left/right) max 10/9, min 8/8; infralabials 10/8 max, 8/8 min unlike that of Sitana kalesari sp. nov. (Table 5). Scales of gular fan are keeled but not in Sitana kalesari sp. nov.(Fig.4).Dorsal scale keeled, subtriangular, rounded with sharp keels, in eight-nine longitudinal rows. Scales in the two median (vertebral) rows are smaller than the lateral ones, unlike Sitana kalesari sp. nov.Ventral scales: regular, keeled, with indistinct transition zone laterally. The scale forms varied between triangular with straight sides, rounded tip and sub triangular with rounded sides. In case of Sitana kalesari sp. nov., the ventral scales are triangular without keels. Dorsal pattern with five dark rhombi (one each at the limb insertions and three between them, which are more or less divided lengthwise by a narrow light vertebral line in S.sivalensis is similar to Sitana kalesari sp. nov.The upper side of the anterior head is sepia brown with prefrontal triangle almost black unlike Sitana kalesari sp. nov. Eyelids are whitish grey with large diffuse spots of ultramarine blue unlike in Sitana kalesari sp. nov. Group of scales around tympanum are white unlike Sitana kalesari sp.nov. Dorsal rhombi colour is dark sepia brown with light orchre margins. A light brown vertebral line divides the rhombi into two isosceles triangles with the exception of the first one, which is divided by the ultramarine line unlike Sitana kalesari sp. nov.Inguinal mark is light grayish brown in S.sivalensis but it is white in Sitana kalesari sp. nov. (Fig.6).Gular sides are dotted with dark brown with dark gular streak composed of two parts i.e. the anterior dark ultramarine blue which is sharply delimited unlike that of Sitana kalesari sp. nov. It penetrates into a diffuse brown blotch which extends backwards between the forelegs, this brown blotch is also resent in Sitana kalesari sp. nov. Normally females show different hues of brown in Sitana sivalensis sp.nov.Venter is white but abdominal pattern consists of longitudinal streaks with mid ventral ones unlike Sitana kalesari sp. nov. The comparison study in the present study through t test between Sitana kalesari sp. nov and other species from Nepal could not be done because of lack of accesss to specimens from Nepal, but the published work by Schleich, Kastle and Shah 1998, Schleich & Kastle 1998b, Anders & Kastle 2002 has been used for comparison indicated the clear difference between the species from Nepal and Sitana kalesari sp. nov and based Sitana kalesari sp. nov., the small fanned lizards of genus Sitana belongs to on this the key was prepared . sivalensis complex. Sitana kalesari sp. nov., differs from congeners in various measurements (Tables 2) and other characters like pholidosis (Table 4) and features of gular region. As far as body measurements are concerned the differences from other allied species are noted in snout vent length, tail length and relative tail length/SVL, Head length HL, Head width HW, relative head length/width, relative SVL/HW, Forelimb length FL, Hind limb length HL, realtive Hindlimb length / forelimb length , Foot length FoT, Heel to second largest toe HeL (Table 1,2,3).
Pholidosis characters vary from that of other allied species mainly in number of supralabials (left/right), infralabials (left/right) and dorsal median rows (Table 5). Gular fan, a small fan in Sitana kalesari sp. noted to differ in scale pattern and colour from other allied species. The lonzenge pattern is different from other allied species in shape as well as in colour. It is U shaped in Sitana fusca (Schleich & Kastle 1998a) but it is V shaped in Sitana kalesari sp. that of Sitana schleichi and sivalensis. But there is no ultramarine or blue coloration noted in the pattern as reported in schleichi and sivalensis (Kastle 2002, Schleich, Kastle & Shah1998). The inguinal mark, major character of the genus is noted to be white in the sp. nov.whereas it is reported orange, creamish brown in other allied species. Sexual dimorphism is observed in the S.kalesari sp. nov with differences in morphometric and colouration, the presence of gular fan in male, but very little difference in pholidosis. Further molecular study is required to differentiate the described species of Sitana with that of S.kalesari sp.nov. 
CommentThis species may not have been properly published. The pdf has no Zoobank registration and there is no known hardcopy. The paper is also carried out poorly, e.g. with at least 6 tables cited in the text but only Table 2 present in the pdf.

Synonymy: S. kalesari is probably a synonym of S. sivalensis (Deepak Veerappan, pers. comm. 24 June 2018). 
EtymologySitana kalesari sp.nov. is named after the type locality Kalesar National Park and Wildlife Sanctuary, District Yammuna Nagar, Haryana , India. 
  • Bahuguna, Archana 2015. New Species of Genus Sitana (Sauria: Agamidae) from Kalesar National Park and Wildlife Sanctuary, Haryana, North Western India. International Journal of Advanced Research 3 (1): 526-535 - get paper here
  • DEEPAK, V., TILLACK, F., KAR, N. B., SARKAR, V., & MOHAPATRA, P. P. 2021. A new species of Sitana (Squamata: Agamidae) from the Deccan Peninsula Biogeographic Zone of India. Zootaxa, 4948(2): 261-274 - get paper here
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