Wednesday, January 18, 2017

[Herpetology • 2016] Celestus laf • A New Species of Celestus (Squamata: Anguidae) from western Panama

Celestus laf  
Lotzkat, Hertz & Köhler, 2016   

 We describe the second specimen of the anguid genus Celestus collected in Panama as representative of a new species. The holotype of this new taxon was collected in the Reserva Forestal La Fortuna, about halfway between the type localities of the Panamanian endemic C. adercus and the Costa Rican endemic C. orobius. The new form is most similar to these two species, but differs from them and all other Mesoamerican congeners in scalation and coloration. 

Key Words: Cryptozoic diversity, endemism, Lower Central America, Reserva Forestal La Fortuna, Talamancan highlands 


Etymology: The specific name is composed of the initials of the “Lost and Found” ecohostel and given in appreciation of the type locality. Ever since their first visit, which occurred at the beginning of their respective Ph.D. projects in May of 2008, Andreas Hertz and Sebastian Lotzkat have benefited greatly from the exceptional hospitality they always experienced at the ecohostel, and were happy to use its facilities as a convenient base for their herpetological explorations of the La Fortuna Forest Reserve and other areas nearby. Through this mutual partnership, the beautifully situated and by now widely known cloud forest lodge has contributed significantly to our herpetodiversity research in western Panama, and we are glad to honor this exceptional venture by dedicating the second new species we found on its grounds to it, well-timed in its 10th anniversary year.

Sebastian Lotzkat, Andreas Hertz and Gunther Köhler. 2016. A New Species of Celestus (Squamata: Anguidae) from western Panama. 
Mesoamerican Herpetology. 3; 962–975.

Resumen: Describimos el segundo espécimen hallado en Panamá del género ánguido Celestus como representante de una nueva especie. El holotipo de este nuevo taxón fue colectado en la Reserva Forestal La Fortuna, aproximadamente al medio entre las localidades tipo correspondientes al endémico panameño C. adercus y el endémico costarricense C. orobius. La nueva especie es más similar a estas dos especies, pero se diferencia de ellas, así como de las demás especies del género conocidas de Mesoamérica, en escamación y coloración. 
Palabras Claves: Baja Centroamérica, diversidad criptozoológica, endemismo, Reserva Forestal La Fortuna, tierras altas de Talamanca 

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