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Xenagama zonura (BOULENGER, 1895)

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Higher TaxaAgamidae (Agaminae), Sauria, Iguania, Squamata (lizards)
Common NamesE: Ethiopian Ridgeback Agama 
SynonymAgama zonura BOULENGER 1895: 533
Agama zonura — WERMUTH 1967: 26
Stellio zonurus — MOODY 1980
Acanthocercus zonurus — BAIG & BÖHME 1997
Acanthocercus zonurus — LARGEN & SPAWLS 2006: 30
Xenagama zonura — WAGNER et al. 2013 
DistributionEthiopia, elevations between 2000 and 2500 m

Type locality: Wardergubberner, western Somali-Land, corrected to “Shek Mohamed, near Delo, 07° 15’ N, 40° 28’ E, near Ginir, Oromia Region, Ethiopia” [SCHNEIDER et al. 2012].  
TypesHolotype: BMNH, now 1946.8.28.10 
DiagnosisDiagnosis: A large Xenagama lizard (SVL of males up to 84.5 mm) with a triangular depressed head and the nasal scale keeled and on the canthus rostralis. Ear hole surrounded by single short conical scales, while tufts of elongated scales are lacking. Tympanum superficial. No neck crest present. Body scalation heterogeneous, with small matrix spinose scales and intermixed with keeled and spinose enlarged scales. Vertebral scales smooth to feebly keeled and larger than those on the flanks. Gular and ventral scales smooth. Tail slightly longer than the body and head, discoidal part not developed, but base of the tail distinctly broad. Tail base arranged in whorls with one scale ring each [from WAGNER et al. 2013]. 
CommentDistribution: not in Somalia, as indicated by the original type locality (”Somaliland”). 
  • Baig,K.J. & Böhme, W. 1997. Partition of the “Stellio” group of Agama into two distinct genera: Acanthocercus FITZINGER 1843, and Laudakia GRAY 1845 (Sauria: Agamidae). in: Bischoff, W.; Böhme, W. & Ziegler, T. (eds.) Herpetologia Bonnensis, Bonn (SEH), 416 pp.
  • Baig,K.J. & Böhme,W. 1995. Partition of the Stellio-group of Agama. 8th Ord. Gen. Meet. Soc. Europ. Herpet.: 36
  • Boulenger, G.A. 1895. An account of the reptiles and batrachians collected by Dr. A. Donaldson Smith in western Somaliland and the Galla Country. Proc. zool. Soc. London 1895: 530-540 - get paper here
  • Largen, M.J.; Spawls, S. 2006. Lizards of Ethiopia (Reptilia Sauria): an annotated checklist, bibliography, gazetteer and identification. Tropical Zoology 19 (1): 21-109 - get paper here
  • Largen, M.J.; Spawls, S. 2010. Amphibians and Reptiles of Ethiopia and Eritrea. Edition Chimaira, Frankfurt, 694 pp.
  • Mazuch, Tomáš 2013. Amphibians and Reptiles of Somaliland and Eastern Ethiopia. Tomáš Mazuch Publishing, 80 pp. ISBN: 978-80-905439-0-4 - get paper here
  • SCHNEIDER, C., M. BARTS & P. WAGNER 2012. Zur Typuslokalität von Acanthocercus zonurus (BOULENGER, 1895). Sauria 34 (1): 57-61 - get paper here
  • Spawls, Stephen; Tomáš Mazuch& Abubakr Mohammad 2023. Handbook of Amphibians and Reptiles of North-east Africa. Bloomsbury, 640 pp. - get paper here
  • WAGNER, PHILIPP, TOMAS MAZUCH and AARON M. BAUER 2013. An extraordinary tail – integrative review of the agamid genus Xenagama. J Zoolog Syst Evol Res doi: 10.1111/jzs.12016 - get paper here
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