Thursday, December 6, 2018

[Herpetology • 2018] Apostolepis adhara • A New Species of Apostolepis (Serpentes, Dipsadidae, Elapomorphini) from the Cerrado of Central Brazil


Apostolepis adhara
França, Barbo, Silva-Júnior, Silva & Zaher, 2018


Abstract
We describe a new species of the genus Apostolepis found near São Salvador Hydroelectric Power Plant, municipality of São Salvador do Tocantins, in the central Cerrado ecoregion. The new species is distinguished from its congeners by the following combination of characters: presence of eleven dorsolateral stripes, five infralabial scales and the lack of preoculars scales. The new species shares some external characteristics mainly with A. arenaria, A. gaboi and A. nelsonjorgei, with which it is compared.

Keywords: Reptilia, Apostolepis arenariaA. gaboiAnelsonjorgei, Color pattern, Pholidosis, Skull osteology, Taxonomy

FIGURE 1. Dorsal (A) and ventral (B) views of the body; ventral (C), dorsal (D) and (E) lateral views of the head; dorsal (F), lateral (G) and middle views of the body; and dorsal (H) and ventral (I) views of the holotype (CEPB 6554) of Apostolepis adhara. Scale bar = 5 mm.

Apostolepis adhara sp. nov. 

Etymology. The specific epithet “adhara” refers to the name of the star Epsilon Canis Majoris (ε CMa), from the constellation of Canis Major, which means “maidens” or "(the) virgins" in Arabic (Al ʽAdhārā) (Allen 1963). In the Brazilian flag, this star represents the state of Tocantins. Curiously, Adhara is the second brightest star of its constellation, as well as the Cerrado, corresponds to the second largest biome in South America. 
We suggest the vernacular name "São Salvador burrow-snake".


Daniella França, Fausto E. Barbo, Nelson J. Silva-Júnior, Helder L. R. Silva and Hussam Zaher. 2018. A New Species of Apostolepis (Serpentes, Dipsadidae, Elapomorphini) from the Cerrado of Central Brazil. Zootaxa. 4521(4); 438–552. DOI: 10.11646/zootaxa.4521.4.3

Resumo: Descrevemos uma nova espécie do gênero Apostolepis, encontrada próxima à Hidrelétrica de São Salvador, Município de São Salvador do Tocantins, no centro da Ecoregião Cerrado. A nova espécie distingue-se de seus congêneres pelas seguinte combinação de caracteres: presença de onze estrias dorsolaterais, cinco escamas infralabiais e ausência das escamas preoculares. A espécie nova compartilha algumas características externas principalmente com A. arenariaA. gaboi e A. nelsonjorgei, com as quais é detalhadamente comparada. 
Palavras-chave: Apostolepis arenariaA. gaboiA. nelsonjorgei, folidose, padrão de coloração, taxonomia


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