The British Herpetological Society

The Herpetological Journal is the Society's prestigious quarterly scientific journal. Articles are listed in Biological Abstracts, Current Awareness in Biological Sciences,Current Contents, Science Citation Index, and Zoological Record.

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pdf 02. Two new chameleons of the genus Calumma from north east Madagascar, with observations on hemipenial morphology in the Calumma furcifer group (Reptilia, Squamata, chamaeleonidae)


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Authors: Franco Andreone, Fabio Mattioli , Riccardo Jesu And Jasmin E. Randrianirina

Abstract: During herpetological surveys in N. E. Madagascar two new species of Calumma chameleons belonging to the C. furcifer group were found and are described here. The first species, Calumma vencesi n. sp., was found at three rainforest sites: Ambolokopatrika (corridor between the Anjanaharibe-Sud and Marojejy massifs), Besariaka (classified forest south of the AnjanaharibeSud Massif), and Tsararano (forest between Besariaka and Masoala). This species is related to C. gastrotaenia, C. guillaumeti and C. marojezensis. C. vencesi n. sp. differs in having a larger size, a dorsal crest, and - in females - a typical green coloration with a network of alternating dark and light semicircular stripes. Furthermore, it is characterized by a unique combination of hemipenis characters: a pair of sulcal rotulae anteriorly bearing a papillary field; a pair of asulcal rotulae showing a double denticulated edge; and a pair of long pointed cylindrical papillae bearing a micropapillary field on top. The second species, Calumma vatosoa n. sp., found in ericoid habitat on the summit of the Tsararano Chain, is conspicuous due to its bright greenish coloration, with a longitudinal midlateral whitish band, and a yellowish spot in the middle of each flank. The hemipenis ornamentation includes a feature exclusive to this species which has not been described in any other species of the genus Calumma: the coexistence of three pairs of rotulae. This species is perhaps related to C. peyrierasi. The distribution of the species belonging to the C. furcifer group is also discussed from the point of view of biogeographic patterns and refuge massifs.

Keywords: Calumma, Madagascar, chameleon, hemipenial morphology

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