Liolaemus dorbignyi Koslowsky 1898

Quinteros, Andrés Sebastián, Abdala, Cristian Simón & Lobo, Fernando José, 2008, Redescription of Liolaemus dorbignyi Koslowsky, 1898 and description of a new species of Liolaemus (Iguania: Liolaemidae), Zootaxa 1717, pp. 51-67 : 52-59

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Liolaemus dorbignyi Koslowsky 1898


Liolaemus dorbignyi Koslowsky 1898

( Fig. 1–4 View FIGURE 1 View FIGURE 2 )

Designation of a lectotype— ( Fig. 1 View FIGURE 1 ) Among the specimens of Liolaemus dorbignyi collected by Koslowsky (in his original description there is no mention of the number of specimens collected) which he used to write his description of this species, five adult specimens (three males and two females) are deposited in the Museo de La Plata (MLP). Koslowsky (1898) included a plate with three photographs of adult specimens (his Lam.

VIII). Both ventral and dorsal pictures corresponded to two male specimens, but none seem to correspond to the preserved males extant in the MLP collection. There is a picture of a lateral view of a head, but this picture does not allow us to compare with the specimens preserved. The description also does not provide enough information to allow a determination of which specimens were used for the type description. Ferraro and Williams (2006) studied the type material of amphibians and reptiles deposited in the Museo de La Plata, which includes the species described by Koslowsky. In relation to L. dorbignyi , they identified a syntype (MLP.S 844), and argued that it corresponded to the ventral picture of a specimen in Koslowsky’s plate. According to Art 73.2 of the ICZN, all specimens belonging to the type series are automatically considered syntypes, when no holotype or lectotype was designed, so the five specimens of the Koslowsky’s series are syntypes. We don’t agree with Ferraro and Williams (2006), and we consider that none of the specimens of Koslowsky’s series match the specimens illustrated, and therefore we designate as lectotype the individual catalogued as MLP.S 0 57 (in compliance with art 74, of ICZN), a specimen which better represent the species. Also, the specimens catalogued as MLP.S 057; 844–45; 990–91 are designated paralectotypes.

Designtion of the type locality— Since Koslowsky (1898) described the type locality of Liolaemus dorbignyi as “Catamarca province,” the identity of this species has been problematic. Unfortunately, Koslowsky’s field notes, which would be very helpful, are lost (Jorge Williams pers. comm.).

During the revision of materials deposited at the FML (Fundación Miguel Lillo, Tucumán) and MCN (Museo de Ciencias Naturales, Salta), we found specimens corresponding to different populations assigned to L. dorbignyi . Among these samples, only one individual (FML 1855) is similar to those collected by Koslowsky. However, these specimens had an incorrect label about their provenance (Saujil, National Road 60, 1550 m. Department Tinogasta, Catamarca Province). This incorrect label was confirmed during field trips, and O. Pagaburo (collector of FML 1855), told us that the specimens were collected in the Sierra de Fiambalá, over 3000 m. Later, from those mountains we collected specimens, which are similar to those collected by Pagaburo and Koslowsky.

Koslowsky (1898), in the original description of L. dorbignyi , designated as type locality “Catamarca Province.” To determine where Koslowsky could have collected the specimens, preserved specimens were compared to specimens of different populations collected in several localities of Catamarca province, Argentina. Also we analyzed the pictures from Koslowsky’s publication; because of the five preserved specimens only two retain the original color pattern, while the others have this pattern obscure and inconspicuous owing to their preservation conditions.

From the populations studied, those from Sierra de Fiambalá, Catamarca Province exhibit the same color pattern (with dark bands transverse to the body axis), flat and keeled dorsal scales, and better match with the preserved specimens, the pictures and the original description. There are no known records from Koslowsky’s journeys in Catamarca. However, the comparisons between the different populations of Catamarca with the preserved material ( Fig. 1 View FIGURE 1 ), allows us to restrict the type locality of L. dorbignyi to Sierra de Fiambalá, Catamarca province.

Diagnosis— Liolaemus dorbignyi belongs the L. montanus group ( Etheridge, 1995), because it has a blade-like process on posterior distal tibia, associated with a greatly hypertrophied M. tibialis anticus ( Abdala, et al. 2006). Within this group, the presence of scales of equal size on the posterior face of the femur differentiates it from the L. boulengeri group ( Abdala, 2007). Among the species that have not a patch of enlarged scales on the posterior face of the femur, L. dorbignyi is a robust and large sized Liolaemus (max SVL 98.3 mm) which distinguishes it from L. andinus Koslowsky , L. audituvelatus Núñez and Yáñez , L. disjunctus Laurent , L. eleodori Cei et al. , L. erroneus Núñez and Yáñez , L. etheridgei Laurent , L. fabiani Yáñez and Núñez , L. famatinae Cei , L. fittkaui Laurent , L. griseus Laurent , L. huacahuasicus Laurent , L. insolitus Cei and Péfaur , L. islugensis Ortiz and Marquet , L. molinai Valladares et al. , L. montanus Koslowsky , L. multicolor Koslowsky , L. ortizi Laurent , L. pantherinus Pellegrin , L. poconchilensis Valladares, L. poecilochromus Laurent , L. pulcherrimus Laurent , L. reichei Werner , L. rosenmanni Núñez and Navarro , L. ruibali Donoso- Barros, L. signifier Dumerill and Bibrón , and L. vallecurensis Pereyra , (max SVL 50–70 mm). Liolaemus dorbignyi has flat dorsal scales, imbricate, and slightly keeled, character states that distinguish it from L. andinus , L. audituvelatus , L. erguetae Laurent, L. erroneus Núñez and Yáñez , L. forsteri Laurent , L. insolitus , L. islugensis , L. molinai , L. patriciaiturrae Navarro and Núñez, L. poecilochromus, L. robertoi Pincheira-Donoso and Núñez, L. rosenmanni , and L. schmidti Marx (smooth and juxtaposed dorsal scales). It may also be distinguished from L. aymararum Ve lo s o et al., L. disjunctus , L. etheridgei , L. fittkaui , L. huacahuasicus , L. montanus , L. ortizi , L. polystictus Laurent, L. stolzmanni Steindachner , L. thomasi Laurent , and L. williamsi Laurent , which have dorsal scales imbricate but strongly keeled. Liolaemus chlorostictus Laurent , L. jamesi Boulenger , L. orientalis Müller , L. poconchilensis , L. robustus Laurent, L. signifier , and L. stolzmanni , have weakly keeled but juxtaposed dorsal scales, characteristic that distinguishes it from L. dorbignyi . The number of scales around midbody in L. dorbignyi is 48 to 59, fewer than in L. andinus , L. disjunctus , L. duellmani Cei, L. eleodori , L. erguetae , L. foxi Núñez et al., L. islugensis , L. molinai , L. multicolor , L. nigriceps Philippi, L. patriciaiturrae , L. pleopholis Laurent, L. poecilochromus, L. pulcherrimus , L. robertoi , L. rosenmanni , L. ruibali , L. signifer , and L. vallecurensis , which have 64 to 110. Females of L. dorbignyi have precloacal pores, differing from following species in which females lack precloacal pores, L. andinus (Koslowsky, 1895) , L. duellmani ( Cei, 1986) , L. fabiani (Pincheira-Donoso and Núñez, 2005) , L. islugensis ( Ortiz & Marquet, 1987) , L. jamesi (Pincheira-Donoso and Núñez, 2005) , L. melanogaster ( Lurent, 1998) , L. pantherinus ((Pincheira-Donoso and Núñez, 2005), L. puritamensis Núñez and Fox , L. robertoi , L. rosenmanni , L. signifer and L. stolzmanni (Pincheira-Donoso & Núñez, 2005) , and L vallecurensis . The presence of precloacal pores in females could be problematic for the diagnosis, because some species are known for few specimens, but we used this character because the new species show a high percentage of females with precloacal pores and in all the samples (from different localities), at least one female exhibit pores. The dorsal color pattern is formed by dark bands transverse to the longitudinal body axis, and which searate the laterals and the ventral color, distinguishing it from the others species of the L. montanus group.

Description of the Lectotype — MLP.S 057—Male, SVL 95.0. Trunk length 45.8. Head length 20.7. Head width 20.3. Head height (at parietal) 15.2. Eye diameter 3.2. Interorbital distance 9.7. Orbit-auditory meatus distance 8.9. Auditory meatus height 3.7, width 1.9. Orbit-commissure of mouth distance 2.7, distance between nares 3.2. Subocular scale 4.9. Femur 14.2, tibia 17.8, foot 25.0 and humerus 9.1.

Dorsal surface of the head smooth, with sixteen scales (From occiput to rostral sclae). Rostral scale wider than higher, bordered by six scales. Mental scale larger than rostral, trapezoidal, bordered by four scales. Rostral scale not in contact with nasal. Two internasals. Nasal scale surround by seven scales, separated from canthal by two scales. Five scales between rostral and supercilliaries. Six scales between rostral and frontal. Frontal horizontally divided. Two postrostrals. Interparietal smaller than or equal to parietals, surrounded by six scales. Twelve upper ciliaries. Supraorbital semicircles complete. Five supraoculars. Preocular scale separated from lorilabials row by one scale. Two projecting scales on anterior and superior margin of auditory meatus. Eight smooth horizontal temporals and six verticals. Nine lorilabials, five in contact with subocular scale. Seven supralabials, fourth larger than the others, without sense organs, not in contact with subocular scale. Four infralabials, second ventrally in contact with two scales. Four chinshields; second imbricate separated by two scales.

Forty eight scales around midbody. Forty nine dorsal scales, from occiput to forelimbs, with rounded anterior margins, and slightly keeled. Twenty seven rows of scales on dorsum. Ventrals larger than dorsals, flat, juxtaposed in abdominal region, and subjuxtaposed on chest and laterals regions. Thirty five subjuxtaposed and smooth gulars, between auditory meatus. Seven precloacal pores. Antehumeral scales flat and larger than dorsals. Postauricular, rictal and longitudinal nuchal folds present. Scales on the longitudinal fold smooth. Seventeen subdigital lamellae on IV finger, and twenty four on toe IV. Third and fourth left toes absent. Flanks scales triangulars, smooth with several small granular intercalated scales. Femoral patch absent. Infracarpals scales flat, imbricate and trifid. Infratarsals scales flat, imbricate and keeled.

Color in ethanol— Head gray dorsally, with dark brown tonalities, darker than the body. Trunk, lead-gray with seven to nine dark transverse bands, faded in vertebral and paravertebral regions. Fore and hind limbs with same pattern and color as trunk. Vertebral line absent, scapular spots and dorsolateral stripes absent. Lateral region dark gray, like the dorsum, showing projections of the dorsal transverse bands. Scales iridescent or with bright color, absent. Tail autotomyzed near the base.

Ventrally, from mental to cloacal region light gray, variegated, with dark and light spots. In belly region predominate dark brown spots.

Variation— Based on 4 paralectotypes and 17 additional specimens. Head longer (16.4–29.3; x = 19.8 than wider (14.7–20.3; x = 17.6). Head height 8.9–15.2, (x = 11.0). Neck wider than the head. Snout Vent Length 2.2 times longer than trunk length. Snout Vent Length 73.5–98.3, (x = 89.5). Tail length 78.0–117.4, (x = 96.6). Width of tail base 8.9–14.5, (x = 11.6). Humerus length 7.3–14.1, (x = 10.4). Tibial length 11.0–18.7, (x = 15.5). Foot length 21–27.2, (x = 24.4). Fourth finger length 8.3–11.4, (x =9.6) and IV toe 11.4–16.0, (x = 13.2). Dorsal surface of the head slightly rugose, with 14–19 (x = 16.5) scales. Six to 8 supercilliaries. Twelve to 14 upper cilliaries. Eight to 10 lorilabials in a single row equal in size to supralabials. Six to 8 supralabials scales. Frontal scale azygous or horizontally divided in 2.

Interparietal scale smaller, equal to, or larger than parietals, surrounded by 5–9 scales. Nasal scale surrounded by 6–8 scales. Four to 6 infralabials. Four scales in contact with the mental scale. Five to 9 smooth horizontal temporals and 4–7 verticals. Up to 4 auriculars scales on the anterior margin of the auditory meatus. Horizontal fold “Y” shaped, between shoulder and auditory meatus. Scales around midbody 48–59 (x = 54.7). Thirty two to 52 gulars scales and 35-45 on neck (from posterior margin of auditory meatus to shoulder, along horizontal fold). Dorsal scales between occiput and hindlimbs 45–56 (x = 50.6). Seventy seven to 94 (x = 85.9) ventrals scales. Precloacal pores in males 5–8 (x = 6.5). Three of six females with 5 to 6 precloacals pores. Gulars scales 32–52 (x = 40.3). Dorsal scales flat, imbricated and slightly keeled or unkeeled. Ventral scales same size as dorsal scales. Seventeen to 22 subdigital lamellae on the fourth finger and 21–26 on the fourth toe. Without femoral patch.

FIGURE. 6. Habitat of L. dorbignyi from Sierra de Fiambalá, Catamarca, Argentina. Photo: S. Quinteros.

Color in life— Sexual dichromatism present ( Fig. 2–4 View FIGURE 2 ). Dorsal head in males, black or dark brown; gray or brown in females, but never darker than males. Dorsum and sides of the body intense yellow or dark orange, with large paravertebral spots transverse to the body axis, divided on the sides of the body ( Fig. 2 View FIGURE 2 ). Paravertebral spots black or dark brown, band-shaped. In females the dorsal background is gray or reddishbrown. Without vertebral line, dorsolateral stripes nor scapulars spots. In males the tail is dorsally light gray or greenish-gray. Ventrally yellow or intense orange from the mental scale to the cloacal region, the tail ventrally exhibit same color of dorsum ( Fig. 3). Females exhibit the same pattern but lighter ( Fig. 4 View FIGURE 4 ).

Distribution— The main problem with the identification of Liolaemus dorbignyi , was the lack, in the original description, of the designation of a precise type locality. According to the results obtained in this work, the distribution of L. dorbignyi is restricted to Sierra de Fiambal, Catamarca Province, Argentina. Specifically we found populations in the localities known as Puesto la Lagunita, between 35 and 38 Km NW of Medanitos, at 4350 m, and in La Cienaga, Campo El Potrerito, 3900 m. However it is probable that L. dorbignyi is distributed along the entire Sierra de Fiambalá, over the 3500 m. ( Fig.5 View FIGURE 5 .)

Natural History— Liolaemus dorbignyi , inhabits large rocky areas of the Sierra de Fiambalá (Fig. 6). It is a viviparous species. No more data about its biology are known. It lives in syntopy with Phymaturus cf. antofagastensis , L. cf. andinus and L. cf. puna .














Liolaemus dorbignyi Koslowsky 1898

Quinteros, Andrés Sebastián, Abdala, Cristian Simón & Lobo, Fernando José 2008

L. fabiani (Pincheira-Donoso and Núñez, 2005 )

Pincheira-Donoso and Nunez 2005

L. jamesi (Pincheira-Donoso and Núñez, 2005 )

Pincheira-Donoso and Nunez 2005

L. stolzmanni (Pincheira-Donoso & Núñez, 2005 )

Pincheira-Donoso & Nunez 2005

L. melanogaster (

Lurent 1998

L. islugensis (

Ortiz & Marquet 1987

L. duellmani (

Cei 1986

L. andinus

Koslowsky 1895
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