- Additions to Philippine Slender Skinks of the Brachymeles bonitae Complex (Reptilia: Squamata: Scincidae) I: a new species from Lubang Island
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- Geheber, Aaron D., Davis, Drew R., Watters, Jessa L., Penrod, Michelle L., Feller, Kathryn D., Davey, Conner S., Ellsworth, Elyse D., Flanagan, Rachel L., Heitz, Brendan B., Moore, Tana, Nguyen, Marie D. C., Roberts, Austyn, Sutton, John, Sanguila, Marites B., Linkem, Charles W., Brown, Rafe M., Siler, Cameron D. (2016): Additions to Philippine Slender Skinks of the Brachymeles bonitae Complex (Reptilia: Squamata: Scincidae) I: a new species from Lubang Island. Zootaxa 4132 (1): 1-14, DOI: http://doi.org/10.11646/zootaxa.4132.1.1
- Brachymeles ligtas
Diagnosis. Following recent taxonomic revisions of Brachymeles (Siler et al. 2011; Davis et al. 2014) the new species is assigned to the B. bonitae Complex based on the following suite of morphological characters: (1) limbs present, (2) non-pentadactyl, (3) fore-limbs with 0 – 3 fingers, (4) hind limbs with 0 – 2 toes, (5) paravertebral scale rows ≥ 91, (6) presacral vertebrae 47 – 53, (7) supraoculars four, (8) enlarged, differentiated nuchals present, (9) longitudinal rows of dark spots around the body absent, and (10) auricular opening absent. Brachymeles ligtas sp. nov. can be distinguished from congeners by the following combination of characters: (1) body size small (SVL 60.7 – 79.6 mm), (2) fore-limbs bidactyl, (3) hind limbs digitless, (4) limb length short, (5) supralabials six, (6) infralabials six, (7) supraciliaries five, (8) supraoculars four, (9) midbody scale rows 22, (10) axilla – groin scale rows 74 – 76, (11) paravertebral scale rows 91 – 93, (12) prefrontal contact absent, (13) frontoparietal contact present, (14) enlarged chin shields in three pairs, (15) nuchals enlarged, (16) auricular opening absent, (17) presacral vertebrae 50, and (18) uniform body color (Tables 1, 2).
Etymology. The specific epithet is derived from the Tagalog (Filipino) term " nakaligtas, " meaning " survivor " and " ligtas, " meaning " salvation. " We name this species in honor of the people of Lubang Island who endured nearly three decades of violence and guerrilla warfare, from 1945 to 1974, led by the Imperial Japanese Army intelligence officer Hiroo Onoda, and four Japanese soldiers. After being driven into the jungle of Lubang Island by allied forces near the end of World War II, Onoda resisted surrender for 29 years believing the war was not yet over. Onoda would finally surrender in 1974, allowing the communities of Lubang to move on from the hardships faced during this time period, including the loss of over 30 lives and injuries to dozens more. Suggested common name: Lubang Slender Skink.
Holotype. PNM 9818 (CDS Field No. 3886, formerly KU 320472), adult female, collected on 26 April 2009 (14: 00 h) in Sitio Dangay, Barangay Vigo, Municipality of Lubang, Occidental Mindoro Province, Lubang Island, Philippines (13.79995 ° N, 120.163930 ° E; WGS 84; 45 m elev. elevation), by J. Fernandez and CDS. Paratypes (Paratopotypes). Four paratopotypes were also collected in Sitio Dangay, Barangay Vigo, Municipality of Lubang, Occidental Mindoro Province, Lubang Island, Philippines (13.79995 ° N, 120.163930 ° E; WGS 84; 45 m elev.), by J. Fernandez and CDS. One adult male (KU 320470) was collected on 24 April 2009 at 14: 00 h, two adult females (KU 320471, 320473) were collected on 26 April 2009 at 14: 00 h, and one juvenile (KU 320474) was collected on 29 April 2009 at 14: 00 h.
- Brachymeles ligtas