A New Species of the Genus Acanthosaura Gray, 1831 (Reptilia: Agamidae) from Central Vietnam

Luan Thanh Nguyen, Dang Trong Do, Ha Van Hoang, Thang Tai Nguyen, Timothy E. M. McCormack, Truong Quang Nguyen, Nikolai L. Orlov, Vu Dang Hoang Nguyen, Sang Ngoc Nguyen


We describe a new agamid species of the genus Acanthosaura from Khanh Hoa and Phu Yen provinces, central Vietnam based on morphological and molecular data. The new species, Acanthosaura murphyi sp. nov., most closely resembles the Indochinese horned lizard (A. capra) and the Natalia horned lizard (A. nataliae), however, it can be differentiated from other congeners by the following characters: a large-sized species (snout-vent length = 103.7 – 127.3 mm in adult males, 123.0 mm in the adult female); cylindrical spine above posterior margin of eye present; spine on occiput between tympanum and nuchal crest absent; two scale rows between rostral scute and nostril; small slightly keeled scales on flank randomly intermixed with keeled medium and large scales; nuchal crests strongly developed; dorsal crests developed and separate from nuchal crests by a diastema; coloration in life of body varies from gray in adult to brown or emerald green in subadult, and brown to whitish gray ventral skin; and tail brown or greenish with indistinct light bands. Genetically, uncorrected sequence divergences of COI between the new species and its closest species, A. capra, is 6.5%. To date, the new species has been found in evergreen forest between 84 – 1060 m in Phu Yen and Khanh Hoa provinces only.


Acanthosaura capra species complex; Acanthosaura murphyi sp. nov.; COI; Langbian Plateau

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.30906/1026-2296-2018-25-4-259-274


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