Thursday, July 21, 2016

[Herpetology • 2016] Sitana marudhamneydhal • A New Species of Sitana Cuvier, 1829 from Tamil Nadu, southern India

Sitana marudhamneydhal  
Deepak, Khandekar, Varma & Chaitanya, 2016

Photo: Thalavai Pandi
DOI: 10.11646/zootaxa.4139.2.2


A new species of Sitana to the ponticeriana group is described herein from southern Tamil Nadu, India. Sitana marudhamneydhal sp. nov. is most similar to Sitana visiri, from which it differs in body scalation and dewlap size. Much like Sitana visiri, the breeding of this species coincides with the North-East monsoon rains (October to December), an adaptation related to its geographic location which receives higher rainfall during the North-East monsoon than the South-West monsoon.

Keywords: Reptilia, India, new species, Sitana

A. Kallidaikurichi B. Kanyakumari
  photos: Surya Narayanan

Type locality: Kallidaikurichi, Tirunelveli

"....My team and I have named a species of fan-throated lizard (Sitana marudhamneydhal) occuring in two of these landscapes. Marudhamneydhal a combination of two words Marudham (மருதம்) = cultivable grasslands, Neydhal (நெய்தல்) = land by the seashore. ..."

V. Deepak, Akshay Khandekar, Sandeep Varma and R. Chaitanya. 2016. Description of A New Species of Sitana Cuvier, 1829 from southern India.
Zootaxa. 4139(2); 167–182.