Monday, November 21, 2016

[Herpetology • 2015] Ameiva reticulata • An Endemic New Species of Ameiva (Squamata: Teiidae) from An isolated Dry Forest in southern Peru

Ameiva reticulata Landauro, Garcia-Bravo & Venegas, 2015

FIGURE 5. Ameiva reticulata sp. nov. (AD) and A. ameiva (E-F) in life:
 (A) adult female of A. reticulata (CORBIDI 10076); (B) adult male of A. reticulata; (C) juvenile paratype (CORBIDI 13621); (D) adult female (CORBIDI 10088);
(E) juvenile of A. ameiva from Madre de Dios; and (F) adult male of A. ameiva (CORBIDI 1713) from Yurimaguas.
Photographs by C.Z. Landauro (A–D) and P.J. Venegas (E–F).    DOI: 10.11646/zootaxa.3946.3.6


We describe a new species of Ameiva from an interandean dry forest in central-southern Peru. Ameiva reticulata sp. nov. represents the fifth species in the genus known to occur in Peru. The new species is similar to the species of the A. ameiva complex such as A. ameiva, A. atrigularis, A. pantherina, and A. praesignis, and is distinguished from these by  a smaller size, a lower  count of dorsal scales along the middorsal line and scales across the midbody, and by the gular coloration.

Keywords: Ameiva, dry forest, endemic, new species, Peru, Teiidae

Etimology. The specific epithet is an adjective derived from the latin word “reticulatus” meaning “net-like” and refers to the soft net-like dorsal pattern of this species.

Distribution and natural history observations. Ameiva reticulata is known from four localities, all in the valley of the Mantaro River, Region of Huancavelica, in southern Peru, at elevations between 1113 m and 2609 m a.s.l. (Fig. 6). The new species inhabits the seasonal dry forest of the Valle Seco del Mantaro (Fig. 7) at the localities Barropata, Jatuspata, Intivilca, and Pichiu. Probably this species also occurs in the deep valley of the Las Pampas River in the Region of Ayacucho. The habitat at the aforementioned localities is seasonal dry forest with scattered croplands with plantations of corn Zea mays, avocado pear Persea sp., citrics and several species of fruit trees. The agriculture is more intensive in the surrounding areas of Pichiu village. Most individuals of A. reticulata were found at midday foraging actively at the base of cacti, shrubs (mainly thorn shrubs such as Acacia macracantha) and stone walls. When threatened, individuals quickly hide under rocks or inside little self-dug burrows. The climate of the Mantaro River valley is usually dry and sunny.

Landauro, Caroll Z., Antonio Garcia-Bravo & Pablo J. Venegas. 2015. An Endemic New Species of Ameiva (Squamata: Teiidae) from An isolated Dry Forest in southern Peru.
  Zootaxa.3946(3): 387–400. DOI: 10.11646/zootaxa.3946.3.6 

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