Two New Lygosomine Skinks of the Genus Sphenomorphus Fitzinger, 1843 (Sauria, Scincidae) from Northern Vietnam

Ilya S. Darevsky, Nikolai L. Orlov, Thu Cuc Ho


Two new species of Sphenomorphus are described from different parts of northern Vietnam (northeastern Tonkin and northern Annam). The paper reports some details of their natural history. Sphenomorphus cryptotis sp. nov. lives in habitats closely associated with water, being a good swimmer and diver. The secretive ear opening and the presence of a long laterally compressed tail in S. cryptotis are regarded as adaptive markers of its aquatic mode of life. Sphenomorphus devorator sp. nov. is an arboreal species, commonly hunting for and eating arboreal grasshoppers (genus Gigantettix Gorochov 1998) on the trunks of big trees.


Sphenomorphus; Scincidae; Vietnam; new species; taxonomy; hunting behavior; external ear opening; Gigantettix

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