Herpetology of Ethiopia and Eritrea


Our records => Lacertidae, Oppel 1811


Heliobolus neumanni (TORNIER 1905)

Heliobolus neumanni - locality, Netch Sar, Arba Minch

Short description:
A small slender lizard. The body slightly dorso-ventraly compressed. Maximal snout vent lenght up to 50 mm, total lenght not more than 150 mm. The scales on the head smooth, not transversely carinate as H.spekii. Frontale in contact with supraoculare. Colar stright with 6 or 7 scales. The scales on the body small, keeled. 40 - 42 midbody scales rows. Ventrals in six rows, 25 to 26 in series. 10 - 11 femoral pores. Dorsum brown or red-brown, with orange limbs and tail. On the back vertebral, dark, light lined band in width of about 10 scales, which is lost on the base of the tail. On the sides a number of bright spots. Relatively easily determinable species.
Ausführliche Beschreibung. Schnauze verlängert und ziemlich spitz. Nasenloch zwischen 3 Schildern, gar nicht vorqnellend. Die Supranasalia stoßen zusammen und reichen vorn zwischen Rostrale und Nasenloch bis an das Labiale 1 und an das Postnasale, mit welchem sie unter dem Nasenloch in einer Furche zusammenstoßen. Frontonasalia wesentlich breiter als lang; getrennt vom Rostrale durch die oberen Nasalia. Alle Kopfschilder mit Neigung zum Rauhwerden. 2 Präfrontalia, die in ansehnlicher Naht aneinander stoßen. Eine starke Längsgrube durchzieht das ganze Frontale. Nur 2 Supraocularia; das 1. und 4. durch kleine Schuppen ersetzt. Zwischen den Supraocularen und Supraciliaren eine Reihe Körnerschuppen, dagegen nicht zwischen den Supraocularen und dem Frontale. Interparietale l½ mal so lang wie breit. Zwischen Interparietale und Occipitale ein Zwischenschild. 6 Supraciliaren. 2 Lorealen hintereinander. 5 (links) oder 6 (rechts) Oberlippenschilder vor dem Supraoculare, das nur schwach verschmälert die Mundspalte erreicht; dahinter noch 3 große Oberlippenschilder. Von den 5 Mentalschilderpaaren stoßen nur das 1. und 2. Paar aneinander. 2 lang gestreckte Temporalschilder neben dem Parietale. Obere Temporalschilder fast körnig, die untern wesentlich kleiner; alle ohne richtige Kielung. Ein lang gestrecktes Tympanicum oben an der Vorderseite des Ohres. Keine Ohrzotten. Unteres Augenlid schuppig. Eine wohl entwickelte Gularfalte. Das Halsband, gut entwickelt, glattrandig, lOschuppig. Rückenschuppen scharf gekielt, scharfspitzig, nur ganz schwach aufeinander liegend; die Schuppen der Körperseiten schwach gekielt oder glatt. 46 Rückenschuppen im Querschnitt. Bauchschilder in geraden Langs und Querreihen. 8 Längsreihen von Bauchschildern; die innerste und 4. Reihe jeder Körperseite kleiner als die 2. und 3. 26 Bauchschilder vom After zum Halsband. 2 größere Analschilder übereinander. 11 Femoralporen. Die 4. Zehe reicht bis zum Halsband. Eine Reihe sehr großer Schilder an der Vorderseite der Tibia; dahinter dann noch eine etwas kleinere Reihe.
Färbung: Eine weiße Längslinie verläuft über die Oberlippenschilder, durch die Unterseite des Ohrs und wird von der Achsel an zu einer Anzahl weißer Punkte in Längsreihe. Eine weiße Langslinie vom Auge, oben das Ohr berührend, löst sich an der Körperseite gleichfalls in eine Längsreihe schmaler weißer Striche auf. In der schwarzen Binde zwischen diesen beiden Linien sind 8 blaue Flecke; 2 davon gehören der Schwanzwurzel an. Eine weiße Linie, von der Außenkante des Parietale beginnend, geht ohne wesentliche Unterbrechung bis zur Schwanzwurzel, wo sie mit der entsprechenden Linie der andern Körperseite verwächst. Der Rückenraum zwischen diesen beiden Linien ist keine braune Fläche, sondern braungrau mit schwarzen Tupfen. Schwanz mehr als 2mal so lang wie der Körper. Alle Schwanzschuppen stark gekielt [TORNIER in original].

Distribution:
Little known area of distribution. Ethiopia, Kenya and Tanzania. Type locality Barsa Valley in south Ethiopia.
In Ethiopia southern Rift Valley, around lakes Chammo and Abaya (Netch Sar NP).

Note:
It inhabits grassy and bushy dry savannah. Poorly known species.

Description original:
Tornier, G.: Schildkröten und Eidechsen aus Nord-Ost Afrika und Arabien. Aus Carlo v. Erlanger’s und Oscar Neumann’s Forschungsreise. Zool. Jahrb. Syst. 22: 365-388

Common english name: Neumann’s sand lizard



Heliobolus spekii (GÜNTHER 1872)

Heliobolus spekii - Turmi, Gamo Gofa, south Omo, S Ethiopia

Short description:
Body slightly dorso-ventraly compressed, but bigger than H.neumanni. Height of the head is equal to distance between the front corner of eye and ear hole. The neck broad as the head, in young specimens and in females slightly narrowed. The fingers slender, slightly compressed. The tail 2x longer than the length of snout-vent lenght. The scales on the head flat, transversely crenate. Occipital scales very small or missing. Three nasale, the rear smallest. Four or five, rarelly seven supralabials. Lower eyelids opaque or semitransparent in the middle, with six or seven vertical enlarged scales. 17 to 27 gular scales, in a direct line between sublabials and middle collar plate. The colar slightly curved, not stright, consisting of 7-10 (rarelly 11) scales. Tiny rhombic scales on the body , on the back significantly diagonally keeled , larger and smooth or slightly keeled on the flanks. Midbody scale rows 60 to 77. Ventral shields in 6 rows, transversely 23 - 30. Dorsum brown or red brown with three longitudinal white stripes, other light band is located on the flanks and can be a more or less discontinuous. Between the dorsolateral stripes are placed dark flecks.
Specimens from FMNH, (Voi, Kenya; Lake Manka, Tanganiyka Territory; Mnazi, Tanganiyka Territory): Longitudinal dorsal scale-rows 61-75; longitudinal ventral scalerows 6; lamellae under fourth toe 22-26; subocular borders the lip. Largest specimen measures 153 (50+103) mm [LOVERIDGE].

Distribution:
Large area of distribution; from southern Sudan, Uganda, across south and east Ethiopia to Somalia, southwest to Kenya and Tanzania. In Ethiopia Deketa, Ogaden (Degeh Bur), Haud, Borana, Dolo Odo, Genale (in Somalia Juba) river, Turkana, south Omo.

Note:
Its inhabit semi-arid areas, mostly bushy and grassy savanna from the coast to altitude up to 1400 m asl. The female lays 4-6 eggs. Abundant species.
Heliobolus spekii sextaeniata (STEJNEGER, 1893) in Ethiopia

Description original:
Günther, A.: Description of three new species of Eremias. Ann. Mag. nat. Hist. (4) 9: 381-382

Common english name: Speke’s sand lizard

Heliobolus spekii - locality, Between Konso and Woyto, S Ethiopia


Latastia boscai BEDRIAGA 1884

Latastia boscai burii (BOULENGER, 1907) - North of Erigavo, Somaliland

Short description:
A medium-sized lizard, The head almost twice as long as wide. The rostral part of the head pointed. The neck broad as the head. The hind limbs reach to the colare. The fingers slender, compressed. The tail two times longer than snout-vent lenght. Interparietale two times longer than wide. Four supraoculare, the first small, seven superciliars. Lower eyelid opaque. Two overlapping postnasal. 5 or 6 supralabials. 42 to 46 midbody scale rows. The ventral scales in six rows, 25 - 28 scales in series. Series of 6 large transverse plates beneath the forearm of forelimb. The scales on top of the tibia small, strongly keeled. 10 or 11 femoral pores on both side. 24 or 25 subdigital lamellae on the fourth finger. The tail scales strongly diagonally keeled, at the bottom smooth, 26 to 32 scales on fourth annuli. The dorsum light brown, with three dark brown longitudinal stripes on each side. On the flanks a series of white or yellowish specks. The belly white.
Latastia boscai boscai: Diese Art unterscheidet sich von L.samharica, mit welcher sie hinsichtlich der Ausdehnung der Drüsenreihen vollkommen übereinstimmt, hauptsächlich dadurch, dass bei ihr die Bauchtafeln sich direct an diejenigen des Brustdreiecks anlegen, also ohne Vermittlung jener Gruppe kleiner Schildchen, welche wir sowohl bei der samharica, als auch bei der doriai kennen ge- lernt haben. Ausserdem differirt L.boscai von den vorhergehenden species durch ihre Kopfform und durch die Gestalt der Rückenschuppen. Ihr Kopf ist nämlich sehr niedrig, lang, niedergedrückt und allmälig nach vorn schmaler werdend. Die zwei supraocularia sind eher seitlich nach unten zu gesenkt; vorn werden sie von zwei kleinen, hinten von einem ebenfalls kleinen Schildchen begrenzt. Von den neuen Supralabialia ist es das sechste oder das siebente, das unter dem Auge sich befindet. Nur ein einziges Praeocularschildchen ist vorhanden. Der stark abgeplattete, gestreckte Rumpf ist oberwärts mit 107 Quer— und 42 Längsreihen von länglich-hexagonalen Schuppen bekleidet. Am Nacken sind die Schuppen rundlich, gewölbt und glatt; am Vorderrücken erscheinen sie sechsseitig mit abgerundeten Ecken und ungekielt, erst gegen den Schwanz hin erhalten sie undeutlich ausgeprägte Kiele. Am Unterleib zähle ich 24-27 Querschilderreihen. Die sogenannten Oberschildchen sind Vorhanden. Das nahezu ganzrandige Collare wird aus 5 bis 7 Plättchen gebildet. Die Hinterextremitaten reichen nur bis zu den Achseln hin. Die aus 10 Poren bestehenden Reihen erscheinen durch zwei Schildchen von der Kniebeuge getrennt. Am Schwanz zähle ich 107 Ringel. Sowohl die oberen als auch die unteren Caudalschuppen enden winklig. Die Maasse dieser kleinen Latastia-Art, die ich zu Ehren des Prof. Ed. Boscä. in Valencia als a Boscai bezeichnet habe, sind folgende: Gesammtlänge: 156 mm. Länge des Kopfes: 11 mm.; des Halses: 9 mm.; des Rumpfes: 38 mm.; des Schwanzes: 107 mm.; der Vorderextremität: 14 mm.; der Hinterextremität: 26 mm. Kopfhöhe: 4¼ mm.; Kopfbreite: 6 mm.; Pileus-Breite: 4½ mm.; Grösster Umfang des Kopfes: l2½ mm. Die Grunfarbe ist oben nussbraun, unten gelblich—oder grünlich weiss; auf der mittleren Rückenzone laufen vier dunkelbraune Streifen , welche an den hinteren Kanten der Pileustafeln ihren Ursprung nehmen und auf dem Anfange des Schwanzes enden. Zwischen diesen Streifen tritt der Grundton in Form von schmalen Binden auf. Am hinteren Rande der Augen entspringen jederseits zwei ziemlich breite, braunschwarze, von einem gelblich braunem Streifen getrennte Bänder und ziehen sich bis zu den Ansatzstellen der Hinterbeine hin. Dasjenige Band, das der Bauchgrenze zunächst gelegen ist, erscheint gelblichbraun gefleckt; diese Flecken treten als Ocelli auf. Sowohl die oberen als auch die vorderen, seitlichen Kopfschilder sind beinahe fleckenfrei. Die oben hellbraunen oder grünlichen Extremitäten sind spärlich dunkel gezeichnet. Der Schwanz ist oben ungefieckt; seitlich vorn mit einem dunklen, undeutlich ausgeprägten Streifen versehen. Habitat. — Die mir aus dem Museo Civico zu Genua zur Untersuchung zugesandten Exemplare dieser Species stammen aus dem Lande der Adäl (Rugdeia Sogheira) und aus dem Lande der Bogos (Keren) [BEDRIAGA in original].
Latastia boscai burii: Head small, elongate; snout acutely pointed. Two superposed postnasals; frontal narrowed posteriorly, grooved anteriorly; two large supraoculars, with a few small shields in front and behind, and a series of granules between them and the supraciliaries; interparietal much longer than broad, separated from the small occipital by a small shield; four supratemporals, first longest; a small tympanic; temporal scales minute, granular, smooth; no auricular denticulation; subocular bordering the lip, between the fifth and sixth or sixth and seventh upper labials. Gular scales smooth; collar toothed, with 9 or 11 shields. Dorsal scales small, hexagonal, juxtaposed, keeled, 42 to 45 across the middle of the body. Ventral plates in 6 or 8 longitudinal and 23 to 25 transverse series; the plates of the two median series a little narrower than the adjacent ones. A large praeanal, with a smaller one in front of it. The hind limb reaches between the collar and the ear; 12 to 14 femoral pores on each side. Upper caudal scales strongly keelel, basal subcaudals smooth. Bluish grey in front, pale reddish brown behind; three black lines along the name and two black streaks on each side of the head and neck; the median nuchal line and the two lateral streaks continued on the body, fading to reddish brown behind; lower parts uniform white [BOULENGER].
Latastia boscai arenicola: These specimens are the co-types (Note2*). The race has the head shields and proportions of the typical form, but has somewhat smaller dorsal scales, which are in 45 to 48 series at the middle of the body and are tectiform or keeled; femoral pores vary from 10 to 12. The colour pattern is very different from that of normal individuals of either the typical subspecies, or of burii. The dorsum is reddish brown, with, at most, the merest traces of longitudinal stripes, which instead of being darker than the background are a very pale blue, and the flanks and sides of the head are marked with regular narrow vertical bars of black and white; these markings vary in their intensity and may be almost completely absent or indicated by a dusky, dorso-lateral smudge. Specimens such as these can hardly be distinguished from occasional examples of the typical form such as have been mentioned above, but where the colour pattern is fully developed the two are markedly different. The name indicates that this southern subspecies inhabits a zone of sandy country with thick scrub, whereas both the northern races are found in stony or rocky localities. This difference of habitat probably accounts for another morphological difference; in arenicola the claws are very long and acutely pointed, whereas in the other races from the rocky or stony areas the claws are only about half as long and are comparatively blunt. The colour differences are closely paralleled by the conditions found in L. longicaudata. In both species the race found in the Haud and Ogaden is distinctly reddish and dark dorsal markings are absent or replaced by light ones. The specimens taken in May were found in copula [PARKER].

Distribution:
Ethiopia, Eritrea (Keren), Somalia and Djibouti.
In Ethiopia Dire Dawa, 70 km NE of Harar, Haud, Dolo!!(Kenya- Ethiopia - Somalia border).

Note1:
Unknown species. It Inhabits semi-arid areas at altitudes up to 1700 m. Oviparous.

Note2:
*Parker
♂ , ♀ Haud, 1900 ft., 7°55'N x 47°50'E ll.v.30.
♂ Haud, 2100 ft., 8°15'N x 46°20'E 4.3.- 9.iv.32.
♂ Ado, 2100 ft., 7°20'N x 45°15'E 26.xi.34. ♀ Dolo, Italian Somaliland, Coll. Citerni.

There are three ssp.:
Latastia boscai arenicola (PARKER, 1942) - southern and southeastern Ethiopia and southeastern Somalia.
Latastia boscai boscai (BEDRIAGA, 1884) - eastern Ethiopia, Djibouti and Eritrea.
Latastia boscai burii (BOULENGER, 1907) - northern Somalia (Somaliland).

Description original:
Bedriaga,J.von: Die neue Lacertiden-Gattung Latastia und ihre Arten. Annali del Museo Civico di Storia Naturale Giacomo Doria 20: 307-324

Common english name: Eritrea Longtail Lizard

Latastia boscai - locality, Eritrea


Latastia doriai BEDRIAGA 1884

Latastia doriai - Metahara, Shewa kefelhager, Ethiopia

Short description:
Medium sized lacertid lizard. Total lenght of about 300 mm, snout-vent lenght 80 mm; 4 - 7 femoral pores; dorsum gray, gray-brown or brown, dark vertebral stripe from head to tail. On the flanks two lighter stripes and two rows of dark spots, which can be connected in adults and then form a vertical strip. Sometimes on the side a series of several blue-green bordered dark spots.
In Parker, H. W. 1942. The lizards of British Somaliland - An analogous, but slightly different, form occurs to the south of the typical subspecies in the western boundary in the Ogo at altitudes of from 3500 to 5000 feet. The dorsal scales and colouring are essentially similar, though the latter is much more intense and defined, but the femoral pores are fewer in number, varying from 4 to 7, 5 and 6 being the commonest. If this montane race can be distinguished from revoili the name doriai Bedriaga (cotype examined) may be available. It should be pointed out that at altitudes of about 3500 ft. where the mountains drop down to the coastal plain both doriai and the typical form were taken side by side, but that, among a series of 12 of the former and 7 of the latter, there were no intermediates, there being a gap in the number of femoral pores between 7 and 10.

Distribution:
Eastern Ethiopia (Metahara, Awash, Dire Dawa .... etc), Eritrea, Somaliland and Djibouti

Note1:
Semi-desert shrubland and savannah, but also acacia-commiphora savanna from the coast to altitudes at about 1800 m (Eritrea). Poorly known species.

Note2:
Sometimes confused with L.longicaudata. Three subspecies -
Latastia doriai doriai - Ethiopia (Awash, Borama)
Latastia doriai martensi - Eritrea (Keren, Ailet, Arbascico)
Latastia doriai scorteccii - Somaliland (Berbera, Bihin Gaha, Zeila, Mandah)

Description original:
Bedriaga,J.von: Die neue Lacertiden-Gattung Latastia und ihre Arten. Annali del Museo Civico di Storia Naturale Giacomo Doria 20: 307-324

Common english name: Doria’s Long-tailed Lizard

Latastia doriai - locality, Metahara, Ethiopia


Latastia lanzai ARILLO, BALLETTO & SPANO 1967

Latastia lanzai - locality, Filtu, Bale kefelhager, Ethiopia

Short description:
In morphology and color similar to Latastia longicaudata, the males have 6 - 11 femoral pores. Frontale in front grooved; 3 nasal scales; 6 supralabials; 55 midbody scale rows. Ventral scales small, smooth, in six series. Scales on third series broader than in second series. The fingers of hindlimbs depressed, on the fourth finger 26 enlarged scales in a series.

Distribution:
It´s known from southern Somalia (Lugh, Uegit, Baidoa, Dinsor, Afmadu Brava) and from southern Ethiopia (Borana). Probably northern Kenya.

Note1:
Biology of this species unknown, but probably its not differ from other species of the genus. Oviparous. Diurnal.
As Latastia longicaudata lanzai - ARILLO, BALLETTO & SPANO 1967, also SPAWLS & ROTICH 1997 a KRONIGER & ZAWADZKI 2005.
Latastia lanzai — LANZA 1983

Description original:
Arillo, BALLETTO & SPANO: Il genere Latastia Bedriaga in Somalia. Boll. Musei Ist. Biol. Univ. Genova 35: 105-145

Latastia lanzai - locality, near El Sod, Ethiopia


Latastia longicaudata (REUSS 1834)


Short description:
Dorsum brown with 5 longitudinal series of small black or dark brown spots which tend to fuse longitudinally, more especially the mid-dorsal series; a broad dark brown dorso-lateral stripe or series of spots from the ear to the tail, above the limbs, which may include a series of blue ocelli ; flanks below this with one or two more longitudinal series of spots; the outermost dorsal, the dorso-lateral and lateral series show a strong tendency to form transverse (vertical) bars which in juveniles may be very pronounced and intensified by black lines.


A medium-sized lacertid, total lenght up to 400 mm, snout-vent lenght about 110 mm, tail very long. 7 - 14 femoral pores. Vantral scales smooth. The belly white, without pattern.

Distribution:
It occurs at large areas from Senegal to southern Egypt, south and east to Sudan, Eritrea, Djibuti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania and Somalia. It is also known from Yemen (Latastia longicaudata andersonii BOULENGER, 1921).

Note1:
Its inhabit mainly semi-arid and arid habitats, in Eritrea is known from extremely hot and dry locations around the port city Massawa, or from Dahlac archipelago. They lives also in Rift Valley, in Awash NP and elsewhere in north-east and eastern Ethiopia (Tigray, Wello, Harerge, Shewa). To the east, they occurrence may overlap with a species Latastia doriai. In Ethiopia, extend up to 2,000 m asl.
Insectivorous. Oviparous.

Note2:
Three subspecies is there:
Latastia longicaudata longicaudata (REUSS, 1834) - Most of the range
Latastia longicaudata revoili (VAILLANT, 1882) - Eastern Ethiopia, Somaliland (Borama, Goolis), Somalia, Kenya, Tanzania? 5-10 femoral pores; 22-48 gular scales; 22-27 lamellae under toe.
Latastia longicaudata andersonii BOULENGER, 1921 - Yemen

Description original:
Reuss,A.: Zoologische Miscellen, Reptilien. Abhandlungen aus dem Gebiete der beschreibenden Naturgeschichte. Museum Senckenbergianum, Frankfurt am Main 1 (6): 27-62

Common english name: Common Long-tailed Lizard

Latastia longicaudata - locality, Danakil, Tigray kefelhager, Ethiopia


Latastia caeruleopunctata PARKER 1935

Latastia caeruleopunctata - locality, Degeh Bur (Dhagaxbuur), Harerge kefelhager, E Ethiopia

Short description:
Brightly colored big "latastia", total lenght reach up 330 mm (snout-vent lenght about 85 mm), 6 - 11 femoral pores. Color unmistakable with other species of the genus.
Head narrow, its maximum width appreciably less than the distance between the tip of the snout and the frontoparietals, and its depth equal to the distance between the end of the snout and the anterior corner of the eye. Snout bluntly pointed, once and a third as long as the postocular part of the head, with angular canthus rostralis and vertical, but not concave, loreal region. Hind limb reaching the region of the collar. Foot once and a quarter as long as the head, with compressed digits. Head-shields as in Latastia longicaudata, except that the suture between the supranasals is longer than that between the prefrontals. Body with small, strongly-keeled scales above and on the sides; ventral plates in six longitudinal and 29 transverse series; a group of small irregular scales in the centre of the pectoral region; about 70 scales (including ventrals) around the middle of the body. Preanal region with about 20 slightly enlarged plates. Tail with narrow, quadrangular, slightly oblique scales, arranged in regular subequal whorls, those above and on the sides strongly keeled. Fore limbs with large plates anteriorly and small granules posteriorly; a series of enlarged plates beneath the forearm. Scales on the upper surfaces of the hind limbs very small, keeled. Subdigital lamelke bicarinate, the outer keel being feeble; twenty-eight beneath the fourth toe. Femoral pores very small, seven or eight in number, and apparently obsolescent. Ground-colour of dorsum and flanks brick-red; back with four rows of rather irregular, quincuncially arranged, widely spaced, pale blue spots, about eleven in each series between occiput and tail; some smaller indistinct spots of the same colour occur on the headshields. A dorso-lateral and two lateral rows of similar, but larger, oval spots, and between the lateral rows a series of six dark blue spots of the same size. The dorsolateral and the three lateral rows are arranged quincuncially with a black line between each vertical series; some of the dorso-laterals posteriorly are double, i.e., apparently derived from the fusion of two smaller circular spots. Taft bluish brown, with an indistinct darker zig-zag marking, or oblique cross-bars, dorsally and a series of indefinite, partially longitudinally fused blotches laterally. Hind limbs with circular light spots in a dark reticulum. Lower surfaces white [Parker].

Distribution:
Eastern Ethiopia (Ogaden), eastern and south Somalia and north-east part of Kenya.

Note:
It inhabits semi-arid Acacia-Commiphora savanna, at altitudes of about 1300 m asl. They are hiding in the root systems of trees and thorny shrubs.
Very shy and quickly moving diurnal lizard. Oviparous. Insectivorous.

Description original:
Parker, HAMPTON WILDMAN:Two new lizards from Somaliland. Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. (10) 16: 525

Common english name: Parker’s Long-tailed Lizard

Latastia caeruleopunctata - locality, near Degeh Bur (Dhagaxbuur), Harerge kefelhager, Ethiopia


Latastia taylori PARKER, 1942


Description:
Head flat, depressed, once and three quarters as long as broad, its depth a little less than the distance between the tip of the snout and the anterior corner of the eye, and its length contained 4.25 times in the length from snout to vent. Nostril pierced between four shields; upper nasals forming a suture half the length of the fronto-nasal which is a little broader than long and broader than the internarial space; prefrontals forming a median suture shorter than that between the nasals; frontal not grooved, a little longer than its distance from the rostral, once and two thirds as long as broad; interparietal not quite twice as long as broad, in contact with an occipital half its length; 4 supraoculars, the first divided into two, second and third large and subequal, fourth very small; a row of granules separating the supraoculars from the 5 supraciliaries. Lower eyelid scaly, translucent. Rostral not entering the nostril; two superposed post-nasals, the lower in contact with the first and second labials ; anterior loreal half as long as the second; five or six labials anterior to the subocular, which is much narrowed on the lip and separated by two scales from the posterior loreal; lateral edge of the parietal bordered by 3 elongate, narrow scales, of which the anterior is much the longest; anterior margin of the ear bordered by 3 or 4 scales of which the uppermost is the largest. Four pairs of chin-shields, the first 3 in contact and the last the largest; 31 gular scales between the chin-shields and the collar which has about nine scales on its edge, the median very large and the laterals grading into the granules of the neck. Dorsal scales oval, or subhexagonal, flat and smooth, in 39 series across the middle of the body and in 105 series between the occipital and the base of the tail (vertically over the vent); twenty-two in a transverse series between the hind limbs. Ventrals in six longitudinal series, with straight posterior borders, the two median series much narrower than the others; no group of small pectorals; twenty-five transverse series of ventrals; one very large preanal bordering the vent, preceded by another, but much smaller, shield. A series of enlarged plates beneath the fore-arm; upper tibial scales small, imbricate, keeled; ten or eleven femoral pores on each side; subdigital lamellae strongly bicarinate 26 beneath the fourth toe. Caudal scales in equal whorls, oblique and strongly keeled above, smooth beneath. Tip of the fourth toe reaching to midway between the arm and the ear.
Pale reddish brown above and on the tail, faintly marbled with grey anteriorly and on the head; flanks anteriorly and side of the neck with very irregular brown and greyish-white vertical marblings. Lower surfaces uniform white [According to Parker]

Distribution:
Somalia (Buran Valley, Nogal Valley)

Original description:
Parker, H. W. 1942. The lizards of British Somaliland. Bull. Mus. Comp. Zool. Harvard 91: 1—101



Philochortus

I. Usually no granules between the supraoculars and the frontal; dorsal and lateral scales in 28-46 rows at the middle of the body; 10-16 enlarged scales between the hind-limbs.

A. Parietals in contact, the interparietal small or absent, not reaching the occipital. Scales usually smooth. Colour pattern of six white lines, the median two bifurcating on the nape ... P. spinalis

B. Parietals separated by the interparietal and occipital which are in contact. Scales keeled. Colour pattern of six white lines, the median two bifurcating on the nape .... P. intermedius

C. Parietals usually separated by the interparietal and occipital, rarely in contact; scales smooth or obtusely keeled. Colour pattern of five white lines, the median bifurcating on the nape ........P.phillipsi

II. Usually a more or less complete ring of granules between the supraoculars and the frontal; dorsal and lateral scales in 22-28 (?30) rows at the middle of the body; keeled; 6-8 enlarged scales between the hind-limbs. Colour pattern of five white lines, the median bifurcating on the nape...... P.hardeggeri



Philochortus hardeggeri (STEINDACHNER 1891)

Philochortus hardeggeri - Somaliland

Short description:
A Small, slender lizard, total length about 200 mm (snout-vent lenght 50 mm), the frontale separated from supraoculare by several rows of tiny scales. Dorsal scales small, keeled, on the vertebral line conspicuously enlarged. 22-28 midbody scale rows.
Color brown or reddish brown with pale longitudinal stripes. The belly white, without pattern. Tail orange.
Head and body rather depressed. Head about 1,5 times as long as broad, its depth equal to the distance between the anterior corner or the centre of the eye and the tympanum, its length 4,3 to 5 times in length to vent; snout pointed, as long as postocular part of head, with rather sharp canthus. Pileus 1,75 to 2 times as long as broad. Neck as broad as the head or a little narrower. Hind limb reaching the shoulder, the collar, or between the collar and the ear; foot 1,4 to times as long as head; toes slender, compressed. Tail 2,4 to 3,25 times as long as head and body. Nostril between three shields, or separated from the upper labial and the postnasal by a narrow rim; nasals forming a suture behind the rostral, the suture 1/4 to 2/3 the length of the frontonasal, which is much broader than long and broader than the internarial space; praefrontals forming a short median suture; frontal as long as its distance from the end of the snout or a little shorter, 1,5 to 1,75 times as long as broad, angular or rounded in front, narrower behind, distinctly grooved; parietals 1,25 to 1,33 times as long as broad, in contact with the upper postocular; interparietal extremely narrow, in contact with or narrowly separated from the very small occipital. Two large supraoculars, subequal or anterior the shorter, entirely surrounded by a series of granules, of which larger ones represent the first and fourth supraoculars; 5 or 6 superciliaries. Lower eyelid somewhat transparent, with feebly enlarged scales in the middle, some of which may berd'eeper than the others. Rostral not entering the nostril; a single postnasal; anterior loreal shorter than second; 5 upper labials anterior tohthe subocular, which is narrower beneath than above. A long narrow upper temporal, followed by a shorter shield; temporal scales very small and granular above, much larger beneath; a small curved tympanic shield usually present. 4 pairs of chin—shields, first three in contact in the middle; 25 to 28 gular scales in a straight line in the middle, granular in front, gradually or abruptly enlarged, and imbricate towards the collar; no gular fold. Collar with strongly serrated edge, composed of 7 or 8 plates. Scales granular and smooth behind the occiput, rhombic, subimbricate, and keeled on the body; 4 or 6 series of hexagonal strongly keeled plates along the hack, 8 between the hind limbs. 24 to 28 plates and scales across the middle of the body. Ventral plates in 6 longitudinal and 27 to 30 transverse series, the border of the transverse series feebly notched between the plates, the median pair of which is narrower than the others. Praeanal plates small and irregular, or one enlarged. 11 to 13 femoral pores on each side. 25 to 31 lamellar scales under the fourth toe. Caudal scales in nearly equal whorls, upper oblique, strongly and diagonally keeled, pointed and more or less distinctly mucronate behind, lower keeled, except the basals; 22 to 28 scales in the fourth or fifth whorl behind the postanal granules. Young black above with five yellowish-white longitudinal streaks, the median bifurcatng on the nape, the two laterals as in the preceding species; head and limbs brown above, hind limbs with round White spots; throat and belly white, lower surface of hind limbs and tail coral-red. Adult brown above, with a more or less distinct yellow vertebral streak, bifurcating on the nape and extending some way down the tail; each of the dorsal plates with a small blackish spot; sides of body pale greyish brown, with a series of large blackish spots or bars; lower parts white [According to BOULENGER].
Specimen from FMNH, Haud, Ethiopia: Longitudinal dorsal scale-rows 25; lamellae under fourth toe 28; femoral pores 12. Total length 173 (57+116) mm [LOVERIDGE].
Der Kopf ist minder schlank, die Schnauze ein wenig kürzer als bei Lat. longicaudata, doch merklich gestreckter als bei Lat.spinalis Pet., der nächstverwandten Art. Die Nasenlöcher liegen zwischen einem schwachgewölbten grossen Supranasale, dem ersten Supralabiale und dem Postnasale. Die Supranasalia stossen breit aneinander und sind von trapezoidaler Form. Internasale nur massig, breiter als lang, nach hinten von dem Postnasale und dem vorderen ersten Frenale begrenzt; letzteres ist bedeutend kleiner als das zweite Frenale, doch zweimal grosser als das Postnasale. Praefrontalia unregelmässig viereckig, mit dem kurzen Innenrande aneinander stossend; vorderer und hinterer Rand derselben fast von gleicher bedeutender Länge; unterer Rand der Praefrontalia schwach convex. Frontale langgestreckt, vorne stumpfwinkelig, an den Seiten concav und hinten quer abgestutzt. Frontoparietalia kürzer als das Frontale, trapezoidal und kleiner als die beiden grossen Supraorbitalia, welche bei dem kleineren Exemplare unserer Sammlung vollständig, bei dem grösseren, auf Tafel XI abgebildeten Individuum nur zum kleinsten Theile durch eine Reihe kleiner kornähnlicher Schüppchen von dem Frontale und den Frontoparietalia getrennt sind. Parietalia sehr gross, durch ein ziemlich langes, sehr schmales Interparietale und ein kleines Occipitale von einander getrennt. Unter dem äusseren Rande jedes Parietale liegen zwei schmale Schildchen, von denen das vordere bedeutend länger als das hintere ist. Sieben bis acht Supralabialia, das fünfte und sechste durch das an den Lippenrand tretende Infraorbitale von einander getrennt. Ohröffnung senkrecht gestellt, am vorderen Rande oben von einer lamellenförmigen Schuppe, unten mit drei bis vier kleinen Schüppchen begrenzt. Sechs niedrige, mit Ausnahme der zwei bis drei vordersten sehr langgestreckte Infralabialia, von vier rasch an Grosse zunehmenden Submentalia begrenzt. Temporalschuppen convex, nach unten und vorne hin grosser; die vorderste unterste Temporalschuppe über dem sechsten Supralabiale besonders gross. Nackenschuppen grob granulirt, auf dem Rücken ein wenig grosser als seitlich. Die obersten mittleren, dem hinteren Rande der Parietalia zunächst gelegenen Nackenschuppen zeigen bereits eine zarte Kielung, nehmen nach hinten allmälig an Grosse zu und gehen schon in geringer Entfernung hinter den Parietalia in die beiden Reihen der grossen, dachziegelförmigen, stark gekielten Schuppen längs der Mitte des Rückens über, welche sich wieder in die mittleren Schuppenreihen des Schwanzes fortsetzen. Die Rückenschuppen der nächstfolgenden drei Reihen nehmen allmälig an Umfang ab, sind scharf gekielt und grosser als die seitlich gelegenen, schwach gewölbten Rumpfschuppen, welche ihrerseits gegen den Bauchrand ein wenig an Grosse zunehmen. Die kleinsten Seitenschuppen liegen über der Einlenkungsstelle der vorderen Gliedmassen bis zur seitlichen Nackenfalte. Kehlschuppen klein, zunächst dem Collare nehmen sie rasch an Grosse zu. Das Collare selbst wird von sechs bis sieben Schuppen gebildet, von denen die mittlere grösste am hinteren breiten Rande schwach convex, die übrigen mehr oder minder stark oval gerundet sind. Bauchschuppen in 6 Längs und 24 Querreihen. Die Schuppen der beiden mittleren Längsreihen sind bedeutend kleiner als die der nächstfolgenden Reihe. Präanalschuppen in drei Längsreihen; die der mittleren Reihe, drei an der Zahl, nehmen gegen die hinterste Schuppe rasch an Grosse zu. Femoralporen jederseits zwölf. Schwanz 2,5 - 2,75 mal länger als Kopf und Rumpf zusammen. Sämmtliche Schwanzschuppen schmal, lang, stark gekielt; nur die Subcaudalia der ersten zehn Reihen unmittelbar hinter der Analmündung etwas breiter, glatt oder theilweise sehr schwach gekielt. Schuppenreihe an der Unterseite der Finger bei dem kleineren Exemplare unserer Sammlung jederseits deutlich gekielt, bei dem grösseren Individuum sind diese Kiele nur mehr äusserst schwach angedeutet. Die hinteren Extremitäten reichen, nach vorne gelegt, bis zur Seitenfalte des Nackens. Eine Reihe sehr grosser und eine zweite Reihe kleinerer Subtibialplatten. Der gelbliche Rückenstreif zwischen den Kielen der beiden obersten Schuppenreihen am Rumpfe und Schwänze wird jederseits von einem breiteren, mehr oder minder intensiv dunkelbraunen Längsstreifen begrenzt. Bei Aufhellung des letzteren zeigen sich auf demselben dunkelbraune Fleckchen oder eine dunklere Umsäumung der hinteren Schuppenränder, insbesondere am Schwänze. Seiten des Rumpfes mit dunkelbraunen, quergestellten Flecken, die bedeutend höher als lang sind und sich nur über den vordersten Theil des Schwanzes fortsetzen [Original in STEINDACHNER].

Distribution:
Djibouti, Somaliland, and adjacent parts of Ethiopia.

Note:
Poorly known species. Acacia-Commiphora savanna at altitudes from 0 to 1200 m asl. Oviparous. Insectivorous.

Description original:
Steindachner, F.: Ueber neue und seltene Lacertiden aus der herpetologischen Sammlung des k. k. naturhistorisches Hofsmuseums. Ann. k. k. Hofmus. Wien 6: 371-378

Common english name: Hardegger's Orangetail Lizard



Philochortus intermedius BOULENGER 1917

Philochortus intermedius - Sheekh, Somaliland

Description:
Total length about 200 mm (snout-vent lenght 60 mm). The dorsal scales granulated, small, on the vertebral line conspicuously enlarged. 35 to 40 midbody scale rows, 14 - 18 femoral pores.
The body dark brown with lighter longitudinal stripes.
Head and body rather depressed. Head 1,4 to 1,7 times as long as broad, its depth equal to the distance between the anterior corner or the centre of the eye and the tympanum, its length 4 to 4.3 times in length to ivent in males, 4,3 to 5 times in females; snout obtuser pointed, as long as postocular part of head, with obtuse canthus. Pileus 2 to 2,2 times as long as broad. Neck as broad as the head or a little narrower. Hind limb reaching the elbow or the axil in females, the axil, the shoulder, or the collar in males; foot 1,3 to 1,5 times as long as head; toes slender, compressed. Tail 2 to 2.75 times as long as head and body. Nostril separated from the upper labial and the postnasal by a narrow rim; nasals forming a suture behind the rostral, the suture 1/3 to 2/3 the length of the frontonasal, which is broader than long and broader than the internarial space; praefrontals forming a short median suture; frontal as long as its distance from the end of the snout or a little shorter, 1,7 to 2 times as long as broad, angular or rounded in front, narrower behind, not or but feebly grooved; parietals 1,5 to 1,7 times as long as broad; interparietal 2 to 3 times as long as broad, in contact with the occipital, which is usually broader and about half as long. 4 supraoculars, first small, sometimes broken up into 2 or 3, and as often as not in contact with the frontal, second and third large and equal or second a little longer, fourth small and usually broken up into 2 or 3; 6 or 7 superciliaries, separated from the supraoculars by a complete series of granules, or first in contact with the first and second supraoculars. Lower eyelid somewhat transparent, with feebly enlarged scales in the middle, some of which may be deeper than the others. Rostral not entering the nostril; a single postnasal; anterior loreal shorter than the second; 5, rarer 4, upper labials anterior to the subocular which is narrower beneath than above. A long narrow upper temporal, usually in contact with the fourth supraocular, usually, followed by one or two small shields; temporal scales very small and granular above, much larger beneath; a curved tympani shield. 4 pairs of chin-shields, sometimes followed by a small fifth first three in contact in the middle; 21 to 28 gular scales in: straight line in the middle, granular in front, gradually abruptly enlarged and imbricate towards the collar; no gular fold. Collar with strongly serrated edge, composed of 7 to 11 (exceptionally 4) plates. Scales granular and smooth on the nape, rhombic and keelet on the body; 2 or 4 series of hexagonal plates along the back more or less strongly keeled, rarely faintly keeled; 33 to 40 plates and scales across the middle of the body; 12 to 18 large keeled scales in a transverse series betWeen the hind limbs. Ventral plates in 6 longitudinal and 27 to 32 transverse serie (27 to 30 in males, 30 to 32 in females), the border of the transverse series feebly notched between the plates, the median pair which is narrower than the others. Praeanal plates small and irregular, or two or three enlarged ones in the middle, in a serie or three forming a triangle. 12 to 18 femoral pores on each side. 24 to 30 lamellar scales under the fourth toe. Caudal scales in alternately somewhat longer and shorter whorls, upper oblique, strongly and diagonally keeled, rounded or obtusely pointed behind, lower keeled; 24 to 28 scales in the fourth or fifth whorl behind the postanal granules. Young black on the upper surface of the body, with 6 yellow streaks, the median pair diverging towards the occiput, to embrace an additional pair of short streaks, or each streak bifurcating just before reaching the occiput; the upper lateral streak extends from behind the eye to the base of the tail, passing above the tympanum, the lower from the upper lip, through the tympanum and above the fore limb, to the thigh; head and upper surface of fore limbs brown, hind limbs and tail coral—red, throat and belly white. These markings may persist more or less distinctly in the adult, which vary much in colour; the blackish bands between the light streaks may be much Spotted with whitish, or broken up into spots, or the upper parts may be grey, brown, or reddish with 7 blackish longitudinal streaks (9 behind the occiput) or merely with two series of blackish spots on each side. Tail often reddish towards the end [According to BOULENGER].

Distribution:
Somalia and Somaliland, adjacent parts of Ethiopia.

Note:
Unknown species. It inhabit Acacia-Commiphora savanna at altitudes up to 1700 m asl. Oviparous.

Description original:
Boulenger, G.A.: On the lizards of the genus Philochortus MATSCHIE. Proc. Zool. Soc. London 1917: 145-157

Common english name: Boulenger’s Shield-backed Lizard



Philochortus phillipsi (BOULENGER 1898)

Philochortus phillipsi - in situ, Awash NP, Hot Springs, Ethiopia

Short description:
Head and body rather depressed. Head about 1,5 times as long as broad, its depth equal to the distance between the centre of the eye and the tympanum, its length a little more than 4 times in length to vent; snout obtuser pointed, as long as postocular part of head, with obtuse canthus. Pileus twice as long as broad. Neck a little narrower than the head. Hind limb reaching the ear-opening; foot 1,5 to 1,75 times as long as head; toes slender, compressed. Tail 2,5 to 2,75 times as long as head and body. Nostril pierced between 3 shields; nasals forming a suture behind the rostral, the suture to 1/3 to 1/2 the length of the frontonasal, which is much broader than long and broader than the internarial space; praefrontals forming a short median suture; frontal as long as its distance from the end of the snout, nearly twice as long as broad, angular in front, much narrower behind, feebly grooved; parietals 1,75 times as long as broad, meeting on the median line between the narrow or very small interparietal and the small triangular occipital. 4 supraoculars, first small, divided into two and in contact with the frontal, second and third large and subequal, fourth small and sometimes divided into two; 5 or 6 superciliaries, separated from the supraoculars, by a series of granules. Lower eyelid transparent in the middle, with feebly enlarged scales, some of which are deeper than the others. Rostral not entering the nostril; a single postnasal; anterior loreal shorter than second; 4 upper labials anterior to the subocular, which is a little narrower beneath than above. A long narrow upper temporal, in contact with the fourth supraocular, followed by two small shields; upper temporal scales small and granular, lower large; a distinct tympanic shield. 4 pairs of chin-shields, first three in contact in the middle; 21 gular scales in a straight median line, granular in front, gradually enlarged and imbricate towards the collar, which is formed, of 9 plates. Scales flat, granular on the nape, subimbricate and smooth or faintly keeled on the body, with the two series on the spine much enlarged and plate—like, hexagonal, and twice as broad as long; 28 or 30 plates and scales across the middle of the body. Ventral plates in 6 longitudinal and 26 transverse series, the border of the transverse series notched between the plates, the median pair of which is narrower than the others. Two enlarged praeanal plates, one in front of the other, with smaller plates anteriorly and laterally. 13 femoral pores on each side. 27 to 30 lamellar scales under the fourth toe. Caudal scales forming alternately somewhat longer and shorter whorls, upper oblique, rather strongly keeled, obtusely pointed behirid; 20 scales in the fourth or fifth whorl.
Young dark brown above, with 5 yellowish longitudinal streaks, the median bifurcating on the nape, each branch extending to the middle of the posterior border of the parietal shield; the lateral streaks occupying the same position as in P. spinalis. Adult grey above, with 3 lemon—yellow longitudinal streaks, the median forked on the nape, and with crowded black dots forming a band from the temple to above the hind limb; limbs speckled with black. Lower parts white. Tail red in the young [According to BOULENGER].
A small species. Maximal lenght 180 mm, the tail lenght 115 mm, the head 10 mm long and 6 mm wide. The head small, snout short, rounded. One postnasale, the frontale backwards narrowed, slightly grooved. Suboculare reach to the lips between the fourth and fifth supralabiale. The colare curved, composed of 8-9 scales. Dorsal scales round, rhombic, two rows of scales along the spine noticeably enlarged, twice broader than long. 28 - 30 midbody scale rows. Ventral scales in six rows, 26 in series. Two enlarged preanal shields. 13 femoral pores. Tail very long. The basic color gray, with three yellow longitudinal stripes. The middle stripes on the neck divided. The flanks and himbs dark mottled. The belly white. The tail red.

Distribution:
Northern Somalia (Somaliland) and adjacent parts of Ethiopia, from east to Awash NP.

Note:
Biology unknown. Probably like other species of the genus. Shy lizard. It moves very quickly. Oviparous. Insectivorous.

Description original:
Boulenger, G. A.: On a second collection of reptiles made by Mr. E. Lord-Phillips in Somaliland. Ann. Mag. nat. Hist. (7) 2: 130-133

Common english name: Philipps’ Shield-backed Lizard

Philochortus phillipsi - locality, Awash, Shewa, Ethiopia


Philochortus spinalis (PETERS 1874)


Description:
Head and body feebly depressed. Head 1,5 to 1,75 times as long as broad, its depth equal to the distance between the anterior corner of the eye and the tympanum, its length 4 to 4,3 times in length to vent; snout obtusely pointed, as long as postocular part of head, with obtuse canthus. Pileus twice as long as broad. Neck as broad as the head or a little narrower. Hind limb reaching the shoulder, or between the shoulder and the ear in males, the axil or the shoulder in females; foot 1,3 to 1,4 times as long as head; toes slender, feebly compressed. Tail 2 to 2,5 times as long as head and body. Nostril pierced between 3 shields; nasals forming a suture behind the rostral, the suture 1/3 to 2/3 the length of the frontonasal, which is much broader than long and broader than the internarial space; praefrontals forming a short median suture; frontal as long as its distance from the end of the snout, 1,5 to 1,75 times as long as broad, angular in front, much narrower behind, not or but very feebly grboved in front; parietals 1,25 to 1,5 times as long as broad, meeting on the median line, the interparietal being small and separated from the oocipital, or all together absent; occipital small, triangular. Two large subequal supraoculars, preceded and followed by a small one (first and fourth), often broken up into two or more small shields or granules, the first in contact with the frontal; 6 or 7 superciliaries, separated from the supraoculars by a series of granules. Lower eyelid opaque or somewhat translucid, with feebly enlarged scales in the middle, some of which are deeper than the others. Rostral not entering the nostril; a single postnasal; anterior loreal shorter than the second; 4, rarely 5, upper labials anterior to the subocular, which is usually narrower beneath than above. A long narrow upper temporal, usually in contact with the fourth supraocular, followed by one or two small shields; upper temporal scales small and granular or hexagonal, lower larger; a more or less distinct tympanic shield. 4 pairs of chin-shields, first two or three in contact in the middle; 21 to 29 gular scales between the symphysis of the chin-shields and the median collar—plate, granular in front, gradually or abruptly enlarged and imbricate behind, those of the last row often as large as the plates of the collar; no gular fold. Collar with strongly serrated edge, composed of 7 to 10 plates. Scales granular on the nape; 2, 4, or, rarely, 6, rows of hexagonal plates along the back, usually smooth, sometimes very feebly keeled; these plates rather small and usually merging gradually into the granular, flat, smooth, or obtusely keeled scales on the sides; 30 to 42 plates and scales across the middle of the body. Ventral plates in 6 longitudinal and 27 to 32 transverse series, the border of the transverse series notched between the plates the median pair of which is narrower than the others. Praeanal plates small and irregular, or two median enlarged. 11 to 15 femoral pores on each side. 27 to 30 lamellar scales under the fourth toe. Caudal scales forming alternately longer and shorter whorls, upper oblique, rather strongly and diagonally keeled, rounded or obtusely pointed behind, lower feebly keeled, basals smooth; 21 to 28 scales in the fourth or eifth whorl behind the postanal granules.
Young dark brown or black on the body, with 6 yellowish-white longitudinal streaks, the median pair bifurcating on the nape, the outer branch extending to the snperciliary edge, and uniting on the base of the tail; the upper lateral streak from the eye to the tail, passing above the tympanum, the lower from the upper lip to the thigh, passing through the tympanum and above the fore limb, reappearng on the back of the thigh; upper surface of head pale brown, with or without darker mottling; upper surface of fore limb pale brown, the shields dark-edged, of hind limb brown with round white spots; lower parts white; tail coral-red. These markings may entirely disappear in the adult, or the dark spaces between the light streaks may be replaced by longitudinal series of dark brown or black spots on a yellowish-brown ground [According to BOULENGER].
Maximum lenght to 180 mm (snout vent lenght 60 mm). The coloring less contrasting than the species P.rudolfensis or P.phillipsii. The dorsal scales small, granular and smooth, 30 - 43 midbody scale rows. Dorsum brown, less pronounced longitudinal stripes, in adult males the back dark marbled patterned. The belly white, without pattern.

Distribution:
Eritrea, Ethiopia and Somaliland.

Note:
It inhabit dry semi-arid areas around the Red Sea, in Ethiopia extend to inland (Awash, Ogaden). They feed insects. The female lays eggs.

Description original:
Peters, Wilhem Carl Hartwig: Über einige neue Reptilien (Lacerta, Eremias, Diploglossus, Euprepes, Lygosoma, Sepsina, Ablepharus, Simotes, Onychocephalus). Monatsber. königl. Akad. Wiss. Berlin. 1874 (Juni): 368-377

Common english name: Eritrea Orangetail Lizard

Philochortus spinalis - locality, Metahara, Shewa, Ethiopia


Philochortus rudolfensis PARKER 1932
Philochortus intermedius rudolfensis PARKER 1932

Short description:
Maximum lenght to 180 mm (snout-vent lenght to 50 mm). Head a little depressed, about once and two-thirds as long as broad, its depth equal with distance between the centre of the eye and the tympanum. Snout pointed, with rounded canthus rostralis. Hind limb reaching to half-way between the fore limb and the ear; foot once and and half as long as the head. Nostril separated from the first upper labial and the postnasal by a narrow rim ; prefrontal separated by a median granule ; frontal as long as its distance from the tip of the snout, once and a half as long as broad; parietels once and a third as long as broad; interparietal rhomboidal, once and twoo-thirds as long an broad, separated {from the occipital by a group of three granules; four supraoculars the fourth broken up into four scales; five supraciliaries, separated from the second and third supraoculars by a row of granules. Rostral not entering the nostril; a single postnasal; anterior loreal shorter than the, second; five upper labials anterior to the subocular; a long narrow temporal along almost the whole outer margin of the parietal. Scales feebly keeled posteriorly, smooth enteriorly; two median rows largest; 32 dorsals and laterals across the middle of the body; 14 enlarged, feebly keeled scales between the hind limbs. Ventralia in 6 longitudinal and 28 transverse-series; 20 gular scales in a longitudinal median series ; 7 plates in the collar; caudal scales strongly keeled, 22 in the fourth whorl; 10 femoral pores on each side, 27 lamellae beneath the fourth toe. [Parker]

Distribution:
Northern Kenya, southern Ethiopia (Dolo, south Omo) and southern Somalia.

Note:
It inhabit Acacia-Commiphora savanna, otherwise as other species of the genus.

Description original:
Parke,H.W.: Scientific results of the Cambridge expedition to the east African lakes, 1930-31. 5. Reptiles and amphibians. J. Linn. Soc. London, Zool. 38: 213-229

Common english name: Southern Shield-backed Lizard



Mesalina martini (BOULENGER 1897)


Description:
Small lacertid lizard, total lenght up to 150 mm (snout-vent lenght 50 mm). Snout moderately long, obtusely pointed. Nostril between three swollen nasals; frontonasal separated from the rostrale by the upper nasals; two praefrontals; no frontal groove; four supraoculars, first and fourth very small first in contact with the loreal, second in contact with the praefrontal; a series of granules between the two principal supraoculurs and the supraciliaries; interparietal elongate: pentagonal, in contact with a small occipital; temporal scales granular, smooth; no auricular denticulation; lower eyelid scaly; suboeular bordering the lip, between the fourth and fifth upper labials; the three anterior pairs of chin-shields in contact. A feeble transverse gular fold, connecting the ears; collar distinct only at the sides. Dorsal scales rhomboidal, subimbricate, ohtusely tectit'orm, 37 across the middle of the body. Ventral plates in straight longitudinal and transverse series, broader than long and subequal in size, in 8 longitudinal and 26 transverse series. A large rteanal shield, bordered by two semicircles of scales. The hind limb reaches halfway between the arm and the ear. One series of large and two series of small suhbibial shields. 12 femoral pores. Tail twice and a half the length of head and body; upper caudal scales strongly keeled, lower smooth. Sandy grey above, with three blackish streaks on each side, the middle one broadest, extending to the eye and separated from the lower one by a pure White stripe; lower parts uniform white. [Boulenger]

Distribution:
Red Sea coast from Egypt through Sudan,Eritrea,Somalia to Djibuti. In Ethiopia the border region with Somalia. Known also from Yemen.

Note:
It inhabits hot and dry coastal plains, in Eritrea it is also known from Dahlak islands. In Ethiopia and Somalia reaches even further inland. They prefers rocky and sparsely covered habitats. Oviparous.

Description original:
Boulenger, G. A:. Description of a new lizard from Obok. Ann. Mag. nat. Hist. (6) 19: 467-468

Common english name: Martin’s Desert Racer



Key to the species of the genus Pseuderemias
1. Upper head shields smooth or rugose, not striated ..............................................3
2. Upper head shields striated ...........................................................................11
3. More than 60 scales across middle of dorsum. Upper caudal scales strongly keeled ...5
4. Less than 60 scales across middle of dorsum. Upper caudal scales feebly keeled
...........................................................................................................P.erythrosticta BOULENGER
5. Ventral plates at most in 8 longitudinal series .....................7
6. Ventral plates at least in 10 longitudinal series ........................................P. savagei LAURENT & GANS
7. 5 dorsal stripes ....................................................9
8. 7 dorsal stripes .................................................................................P. septemstriata PARKER
9. Ventral plates in 6-8 longitudinal series. Subocular frequently bordering the mouth. Posterior subcaudals smooth ...............................................................................................P. mucronata BLANFORD
10. Ventral plates in 8-10 longitudinal series. Subocular not reaching the mouth. Posterior subcaudals keeled
.........................................................................................................P. smithii BOULENGER
11. Upper head-shields strongly striated. Subocular bordering mouth. 13-18
femoral pores on each side
.........................................................................................................P. striata PETERS
12. Upper head-shields finely striated. Subocular not reaching mouth. 20-24
femoral pores on each side ...................................................................P. brenneri PETERS



Pseuderemias erythrosticta (BOULENGER, 1891)


Short description:
A small lacertid lizard, maximal lenght of the males 182 mmm, the females 145 mm. Tail about 130 mm (fem.98 mm). The head long 13 - 15 mm, broad 7 - 9 mm. The body slightly dorsoventral compressed. The snout significantly long and narrow. The nasal scales markedly convex. Nostril surrounded    by four labels. Other head labels smooth. Frontonasale longer than broad. Two preafrontale, frontale grooved. Three large supraoculare. The temporal scales granulated, slightly keeled. Scaly lower eyelid. Six to eight supralabials. The dorsal scales granulated, round or hexagonal, keeled, 53 - 60 midbody scale rows. Eight rows of ventral shields, 24 to 27 in series. The limbs long, hind limb reaches to the eye or up to half of the distance between the nostril and the eye. The foot long. The thigh scales significantly larger than the dorsal scales, imbricated and keeled. 15 to 20 (usually 17 - 19) femoral pores on one side. The tail twice long as SVL. , scales on the upper side of the tail significantly keeled on ventral side smooth. The color sandy, on the back reddish-brown or nearly black spots, the tail one colored or can also be spotted. Juveniles with five elongated brown stripes. Belly white.

Distribution:
The type locality between Obbia and Berbera in Somaliland. In Ethiopia is the occurrence uncertain but possible.

Behavior:
Biology unknown. Very fast moving lizard. Insectivorous. Oviparous.

Description original:
Boulenger, G.A. 1891. On some Reptiles collected by Sig. L. Bricchetti Robecchi in Somaliland. Ann. Mus. St. nat. Genova (2) 12: 5-15 [1892?]

Common english name: Boulenger's Racerunner



Pseuderemias brenneri (PETERS 1869)


Short description:
The maximum lenght up to 180 mm. Head once and two-thirds to twice as long as broad. Upper head-shields closely and finely striated; frontonasal as long as broad or longer than broad ; anterior supraocular not bordered with granules; interparietal small, in one specimen divided into three, separated from the verysmall occipital by another small shield; an elongate shield on the outer border of the parietals; temporal scales granular, keeled; subocular not reaching the lip, wedged in between the sixth and seventh upper labials; the two or three anterior pairs of chin-shields in contact. Collar with 7 to 9 shields. Dorsal scales rhomboidal, juxtaposed or subimbricate, keeled, some even tricarinate, 65 to 68 across the middle of the body. Six longitudinal series of ventral plates, with a rudimentary outer series; 25 to 27 transverse series. A more or less enlarged median prwanal. The hind limb reaches the eye or the nostril; foot as long as the distance between the arm and the end of the snout; scales on the limbs strongly pluricarinate. 20 to 22 femoral pores on each side (23 or 24 in the types of E. edwardsii). Tail twice to twice and a half as long as head and body; upper caudal scales stronl keeled and striated. Six reddish-white lines along the body, separated by broader black interspaces or stripes, along each of which runs a series of small round whitish spots; limbs with a black network enclosing large round reddish-white spots; tail striped with black at the base, uniform coralline-red in its posterior half ; lower parts uniform white. [Boulenger]

Distribution:
Somaliland, Djibuti and adjacent parts of Ethiopia (Degah Bur).

Note:
Poorly known species. It inhabits shrubby savanna from the coast to inland up to 1,100 m asl. They quickly moving between shrubs. They feed insects. Oviparous.

Description original:
Peters,W.C.H.: Über neue Gattungen und neue oder weniger bekannte Arten von Amphibien (Eremias, Dicrodon, Euprepes, Lygosoma, Typhlops, Eryx, Rhynchonyx, Elapomorphus, Achalinus, Coronella, Dromicus, Xenopholis, Anoplodipsas, Spilotes, Tropidonotus). Monatsber. k. preuss. Akad. Wiss. Berlin, 1869: 432-447

Common english name: Brenner's Racerunner

Pseuderemias brenneri - locality, Degeh Bur (Dhagaxbuur), Harerge keflehager, Ethiopia


Pseuderemias mucronata (BLANFORD 1870)

Pseuderemias mucronata - Dire Dawa, E Ethiopia

Short description:
The maximum lenght up to 175 mm (SVL 50 mm). Head once and two-thirds to twice as long as broad. Upper head-shields smooth, or frontoparietals and parietals slightly sculptured; frontonasal as long as broad or longer than broad; anterior supraocular not bordered with granules; interparietal small, separated from the very small occipital by one or two small shields; an elongate shield on the outer border of the parietal; temporal scales granular, smooth ; subocular usually bordering the lip, between the fifth and sixth or sixth and seventh, rarely seventh and eighth or eighth and ninth, upper labial shields; the subocular, however, sometimes excluded from the labial border, its point wedged in between two labial shields; the two or three anterior pairs of chin—shields in contact. Collar with 6 to 12 shields. Dorsal scales granular, flat, smooth, 65 to 78 across the middle of the body. Six or eight longitudinal series of ventral plates, the outer series, if developed, formed of very narrow shields; 25 to 29 transverse series. A large median praeanal, sometimes replaced by three smaller shields forming a triangle. The hind limb reaches the eye or between the eye and the nostril; foot as long as the distance between the arm and the nostril or the tip of the snout, or slightly longer; scales on limbs unicarinate. 15 to 22 femoral pores on each side. Tail twice to twice and a half as long as head and body; upper caudal scales strongly keeled. Whitish, pale greyish, yellowish or pale buff above, dotted, marbled, or vermiculate with blackish or rust-red, with a more or less distinct dark, light-edged vertebral stripe; limbs with large dark marblings. Young with five dark dorsal stripes separated by whitish ones, the vertebral uniform black, the others brown or blackish speckled with white; these markings sometimes persisting in adult females. Belly white. [Boulenger]
Specimens from FMNH, (Betteran, Somaliland; Suakin, Sudan): Longitudinal dorsal scale-rows 63-75; longitudinal ventral rows 6-8; subocular borders the lip in the Suakin series but not in the lizards from Betteran. Boulenger has, however, pointed out that this is an inconstant character. Largest specimen measures 152 (48+104) mm [LOVERIDGE].

Distribution:
South Egypt, North Sudan, Eritrea (Anseba), along the Red Sea coast to south to Djibouti, Somaliland and Ethiopia (Ogaden, Dire Dawa).

Note:
It inhabits semi-arid and arid areas, coastal plains and dry shrubby savanna. In the inland extends to at altitude up to 1500 m asl.
Very fast moving lizard. Insectivorous. Oviparous.

Description original:
Blanford, W.T.: Observations of the geology and zoology of Abyssinia, made 1867-68. McMillan (London), xii + 487 pp.

Common english name: Blanford’s Sand Racer

Pseuderemias mucronata - locality, Dire Dawa, Harerge keflehager, Ethiopia


Pseuderemias septemstriata PARKER&HAMPTON 1942


Short description:
A small lacertid lizard, maximum lenght 150 mm, the tail 110 mm. Head shields smooth or very feebly rugose, disposed and proportioned as in E.brenneri, except that the subocular, though narrowed inferiorly, broadly enters the lip; snout long, with a fronto-nasal slightly longer than broad; constantly 4 nasals. Dorsal and lateral scales juxtaposed, smooth or feebly unicarinate, in 54 to 68 series across the middle of the body; ventrals in 8 longitudinal series; enlarged brachials and subcaudals smooth or keeled in conformity with the dorsals. Femoral pores 15-20. Dorsum white or light brown, with seven dark brown longitudinal stripes. Broad lateral stripe is directed from the suboculare across the top of the ear hole over limbs to tail. The belly white, limbs brown, with a numerous of rounded white blotches.

Distribution:
North Somalia (Somaliland, Puntland), and adjacent parts of Ethiopia.
Buran Valley, Haud.

Note:
Poorly known species. It inhabits dry areas at altitudes of about 1,500 m als. Oviparous.

Description original:
Parker, H. W.: The lizards of British Somaliland. Bulletin of the Museum of Comparative Zoology, Harvard University, 91: 1—101





Pseuderemias smithii (BOULENGER 1895)

Pseuderemias smithii - Kenya
Pseuderemias smithii - Kenya

Short description:
Head once and a half or once and three-fifths as long as broad. Upper head—shields rugose, sculptured and pitted, but not striated; frontonasal as long as broad; three large supraoculars, first in contact with second or separate, the second and third forming together an oval disk surrounded with granules which here and there may be in two rows; interparietal usually separated from the occipital by one or two small shields; an elongate shield on the outer border of the parietal ; temporal scales granular, smooth; subocular not reaching the lip, resting on the sixth and seventh, rarely seventh and eighth, upper labials; the two anterior pairs of chin-shields in contact. Collar with 7 to 11 shields. Dorsal scales granular, juxtaposed, smooth, 72 to 82 acrOSs the middle of the body. Eight longitudinal series of ventral plates, sometimes with an outer series of smaller, imperfectly developed plates; 26 to 30 transverse series. Preanal region with small shields, or with an enlarged median shield. The hind limb reaches the ear or the eye ; foot as long as the distance between the arm and the nostril or the tip of the snout. 17 to 22 femoral pores on each side. Tail twice and one-third to twice and three-fourths as long as head and body; upper caudal scales strongly keeled. Pale reddish brown or brick-red above, with four longitudinal rows of small round white or bluish dark-edged spots ; limbs brown, with round pale spots.

Distribution:
Southern and northern Somalia, northern Kenya, eastern and southeastern Ethiopia.

Note:
Poorly known species. Inhabits semi-arid areas, Acacia-Commiphora savanna from the coast to inland.

Description original:
Boulenger, G.A.: An account of the reptiles and batrachians collected by Dr. A. Donaldson Smith in western Somaliland and the Galla Country. Proc. zool. Soc. Lond.: 530-540

Common english name: Smith's Racerunner



Pseuderemias striatus (PETERS 1874)


Short description:
Maximum lenght up to 160 mm(snout-vent lenght to 50 mm). Head once and a half to once and three-fourths as long as broad. Upper head—shields striated, but more coarsely than in E. brenneri, in this respect intermediate between the latter and E. smithii; frontonasal a little broader than long; anterior supraocular not bordered with granules, the two others bordered with granules except on their horizontal sutures; interparietal small but much larger than the occipital, from “hich it is often separated by an additional small shield; an elongate shield on the outer border of the parietal, variable in length and sometimes so short or broken up as to be indistinguishable; temporal scales granular, obtuser keeled ; subocular bordering the lip, between the fifth and sixth or sixth and seventh upper labials 1; the three anterior pairs of chin-shields in contact 2. Collar with 9 to 12 shields, usually 10 or 11. Dorsal scales rhomboidal, juxtaposed, keeled, 53 to 67 across the middle of the body. Eight longitudinal series of ventral plates, outer narrow ; 25 to 28 transverse series. A large median praeanal, sometimes followed by another or a pair, the three forming a triangle. The hind limb reaches the eye, or between the eye and the nostril; foot as long as the distance between the arm and the nostril or the tip of the snout. 13 to 18 femoral pores on each side. Tail twice and a half to three times as long as head and body; upper caudal scales strongly keeled, basal subcaudals smooth. Cream—colour or pale buff; above, with seven brown or black stripes as wide as or wider than the interspaces between them ; lower parts white. Young striped black and white above; belly black or blackish, at least on the sides.

Distribution:
Djibouti, Somaliland, eastern Ethiopia (the Ogaden and southern Borana).

Note:
A little-known species. They inhabit dry shrubland savanna. They feed small insect. Oviparous.

Description original:
Peters, Wilhem Carl Hartwig: Über einige neue Reptilien (Lacerta, Eremias, Diploglossus, Euprepes, Lygosoma, Sepsina, Ablepharus, Simotes, Onychocephalus). Monatsber. königl. Akad. Wiss. Berlin. 1874 (Juni): 368-377

Common english name: Peters’ sand lizard



Acanthodactylus boskianus (DAUDIN, 1802)


Short description:
Total lenght reach up 270 mm. Males larger than females. Four (rarely 5) supraoculare, suboculare does not reach the edges of the mouth. temporale smooth or slightly notched front edge of the ear usually significantly jagged. The dorsal scales keeled, imbricated, rhomboid, much larger on vertebral part than between the legs or on the flanks. Ventral labels much broader than long, in straight longitudinal rows, 10 (rarely 12) scales in transverse row (ventrals). 32 - 55 dorsals in midbody rows. The dorsum red-brown, brown or grey. Longitudinal light stripes with small light spots around. The color of the species is variable.
Subspecies A.boskianus asper live in most parts of the distribution area, including Eritrea.

Distribution:
It inhabits a large area of northern Africa and the Middle East, including the Arabian Peninsula. To the south extends to Eritrea.

Note:
Typical species for the arid and semiarid areas of the North Africa and the Middle East. It inhabits sandy and stony semi-desert. He does not live in a a pure, sandy deserts and semi-deserts,  where it can be replaced by other species. The females lay 6-8 eggs, incubation period about 60 days. Males are territorial.

Description original:
Daudin, F. M.: Histoire Naturelle, génerale et particulièredes reptiles, ouvrage faisant suite, a l'histoiure naturelle, générale et particulière composée par LECLERC DE BUFFON, et redigée par C. S. SONNINI, vol. 3. F. Dufart, Paris.

Common english name: Bosk's Fringe-fingered Lizard






















































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