Xenagama batillifera (VAILLANT, 1882)
Can you confirm these amateur observations of Xenagama batillifera?
|Higher Taxa||Agamidae (Agaminae), Sauria, Iguania, Squamata (lizards)|
|Common Names||E: Vaillant’s Strange Agama, (Dwarf) Turnip Tail Agama|
|Synonym||Uromastix batilliferus VAILLANT 1882: 10|
Aporoscelis batilliferus — BOULENGER 1885: 411
Agama batillifera — BOULENGER 1895: 533
Agama (Xenagama) batillifera — BOULENGER 1897: 130
Agama (Xenagama) batillifera — PARKER 1942: 54
Agama batillifera — WERMUTH 1967: 9
Xenagama batillifera — LANZA 1983: 209
Agama batillifera — BRYGOO 1988: 7
Xenagama batillifera — BARTS & WILMS 1997: 396.1
Xenagama batillifera — MANTHEY & SCHUSTER 1999: 111
Xenagama batilifera [sic]— BARTS 2001: 2
Xenagama batillifera — BARTS & WILMS 2003
|Distribution||NW Somalia, E Ethiopia ?|
Type locality: Pays Comalis [=Somalia region]; lectotype locality: ‘Bender-Meraya [=Bender-Meraio] chez les Comalis Medjourtines’
|Types||Lectotype: MNHN-RA 5830, adult male collected by G. Revoil; originally four specimens (MNHN-RA 5830, MNHN-RA 5830A-C) among which one was exchanged, another is lost or also exchanged (MNHN-RA 5830B-C) and one is paralectotype (MNHN-RA 5830A).|
|Diagnosis||Diagnosis (genus): A genus of small to medium-sized agamid lizards, with adult males up to 190 mm total length. Tails short, in most species (X. batillifera, X. taylori, X. sp. n.) shorter than the SVL. Dorsal scales heterogeneous, keeled or smooth. Nasal scale on the canthus rostralis. Usually a distinct dorsolateral fold from neck to groin and sometimes the hindlimbs. Distinct from most species of the genus Agama by its heterogeneous body scalation and from all species by its tail arranged in rings. From other whorl-tailed lizards, it can be distinguished by pos- sessing only one scale ring per whorl at the upper tail base, sometimes two towards the tail tip. Lower side of the tail base without whorls or two scale rings per whorl towards the tail tip in some species [from WAGNER et al. 2013].|
Diagnosis: A large Xenagama with males probably shorter than females. Head with the occipital scale not larger than other head scales and the nasal scale on the canthus rostralis. Ear hole sur- rounded in front and above by single short conical scales. No neck crest present. Body scalation heterogeneous, with smooth matrix scales, intermixed smooth to keeled enlarged scales and the ‘annectens scale type’ present. Gular and ventral scales smooth. Tail shorter than the body and head, discoidal part developed, but not as strongly as in X. taylori, longer than broad, gradually merging into the terminal filament. Discoidal part of the tail arranged in whorls with one scale ring each. Filament not arranged in distinct whorls [from WAGNER et al. 2013].
|Comment||Similar species: All “X. batillifera” in captivity are actually X. wilmsi. Since the revision of WAGNER et al. 2013 X. batillifera is the rarest species of the genus.|
Type species: Uromastix batilliferus VAILLANT 1882 is the type species of the genus Xenagama BOULENGER 1895: 534.
Phylogenetics: Pseudotrapelus forms a clade with Acanthocercus and Xenagama (e.g. Pyron et al. 2013) although the exact relationships remain controversial. for instance, Tamar et al. 2016 found Xenagama nested within Acanthocercus, indicating that it’s characteristic tail and other characters are derived and highly specialized.