Revision of the Western Australian pebble-mimic dragon species-group (Tympanocryptis cephalus: Reptilia: Agamidae)

Doughty, Paul, Kealley, Luke, Shoo, Luke P. and Melville, Jane (2015) Revision of the Western Australian pebble-mimic dragon species-group (Tympanocryptis cephalus: Reptilia: Agamidae). Zootaxa, 4039 1: 85-117. doi:10.11646/zootaxa.4039.1.3

Author Doughty, Paul
Kealley, Luke
Shoo, Luke P.
Melville, Jane
Title Revision of the Western Australian pebble-mimic dragon species-group (Tympanocryptis cephalus: Reptilia: Agamidae)
Journal name Zootaxa   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1175-5326
Publication date 2015-11-03
Year available 2015
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.11646/zootaxa.4039.1.3
Open Access Status Not Open Access
Volume 4039
Issue 1
Start page 85
End page 117
Total pages 33
Place of publication Auckland, New Zealand
Publisher Magnolia Press
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Recent work on species complexes of the pebble-mimic dragons of the Australian genus Tympanocryptis has greatly clarified evolutionary relationships among taxa and also indicated that species diversity has been severely underestimated. Here we provide a morphological and molecular appraisal of variation in the T. cephalus species-group and find evidence for recognizing five species-level lineages from Western Australia. Four species-level lineages are strongly supported with a combined mitochondrial and nuclear DNA Bayesian analysis (a fifth population from the Gascoyne region lacked tissue samples). Morphologically, we found subtle, yet consistent, differences among the populations in scalation, color and pattern. True T. cephalus Günther is restricted to the coastal Pilbara region and characterized by five dark blotches on the dorsum, keeled ventrals, and other characters. Two other lineages within the Pilbara, from the Hamersley range and Fortescue/northern Pilbara region, differed from T. cephalus senso stricto by possessing a more elongate body and a plain dorsum. Furthermore, the Hamersley lineage differed from the Fortescue lineage by possessing slightly more reddish coloration and feeble keeling on the snout. Although there are few specimens and no tissue samples available for the Gascoyne population, these individuals are larger, have rugose scales on the snout, and possess scattered enlarged tubercles with three large blotches on the dorsum. The name T. cephalus gigas Mitchell is available for this population. The most widespread lineage, and the one best represented in collections and in field guides, occurs throughout central Western Australia. These Goldfield populations are characterized by a protruding snout, narrow rostral, and uniform reddish-brown coloration, often with a dark wash. Based on the genetic and morphological differences, we redescribe T. cephalus, resurrect and elevate T. gigas to a full species and designate a neotype for this taxon, and describe three lineages as new species (T. diabolicus sp. nov., T. fortescuensis sp. nov., T. pseudopsephos sp. nov.).
Keyword Agamid lizard
Cryptic species
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2016 Collection
School of Biological Sciences Publications
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