Research Article
Print
Research Article
Three new species of Diploderma Hallowell, 1861 (Squamata, Agamidae) from the Hengduan Mountain Region, south-western China
expand article infoShuo Liu§, Mian Hou|, Dingqi Rao§, Natalia B. Ananjeva
‡ Kunming Natural History Museum of Zoology, Kunming, China
§ Kunming Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Kunming, China
| Sichuan Normal University, Chengdu, China
¶ Zoological Institute, Russian Academy of Sciences, St. Petersburg, Russia
Open Access

Abstract

Three new species of Diploderma are described from the Hengduan Mountain Region in south-western China, based on morphological and genetic data. The first new species from Yulong County, Yunnan Province is morphologically most similar and phylogenetically closely related to D. brevicauda, but it can be diagnosed from the latter by having a relatively longer tail; the second new species from Xiangcheng County, Sichuan Province is phylogenetically closely related to D. bowoense, but it can be diagnosed from the latter by the absence of a distinct gular spot; and the third new species from Yongsheng County, Yunnan Province is phylogenetically closely related to D. yulongense, but it can be diagnosed from the latter by having different colourations of the ventral and ventrolateral surfaces of the body. Taxonomy and diversity survey are the basis of species conservation, our discoveries contributing to better conservation of the species of this genus.

Keywords

Molecular, morphological, ND2, Sichuan, taxonomy, Yunnan

Introduction

Diploderma Hallowell, 1861, is a genus including 36 species recognised currently (Uetz et al. 2022; Wang et al. 2022). Of the total diversity, 34 species are distributed in China, of which 22 species are only distributed in the Hengduan Mountain Region of south-western China (Wang et al. 2021a, 2022).

In the Hengduan Mountain Region, species of Diploderma mainly inhabit the hot-dry river valleys and most species are micro-endemic and only found in a specific section of a given river valley (Wang et al. 2022). Amongst the river valleys in the Hengduan Mountain Region, the Jinsha River Valley has the highest diversity of this genus, especially the upper and middle Jinsha River Valley (Wang et al. 2021a, b).

During our field survey in the Hengduan Mountain Region, China, in April 2022, some specimens of Diploderma were collected from the middle Jinsha River Valley in Yongsheng County, the area nearby the upper Jinsha River in Yulong County and the valley of a tributary of the upper Jinsha River in Xiangcheng County in Yunnan and Sichuan provinces, respectively (Fig. 1). Morphologically, these specimens could not be assigned to any recognised species of the genus. Phylogenetic analysis indicated that these populations represent three distinct, undescribed lineages. Herein, we describe these populations as three new species of Diploderma.

Figure 1. 

Map showing the type localities of Diploderma limingense sp. nov. (black triangle), Diploderma shuoquense sp. nov. (black dot) and Diploderma yongshengense sp. nov. (black square) in the Hengduan Mountain Region, south-western China. The elevation data were obtained from Geospatial Data Cloud (2022).

Materials and methods

Sampling

Specimens were all collected during the day. Photographs were taken to document the colour pattern in life prior to euthanasia. Liver tissues were stored in 99% ethanol and lizards were preserved in 75% ethanol. Specimens were deposited at Kunming Natural History Museum of Zoology, Kunming Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences (KIZ).

Morphology

Specimens were measured using a digital caliper to the nearest 0.1 mm. Measurements were taken on the left side of the specimen and values for paired pholidosis characters were recorded on both sides of the body, with counts provided in left/right order. The following morphometric characters were measured following Wang et al. (2022):

F4S fourth finger subdigital lamellae number, subdigital lamellae scale from the base between third and fourth finger to the tip of fourth finger, excluding the claw;

FLL fore-limb length, measured between the point of insertion at axillary to the tip of fourth finger, excluding the claw, measured as the straightened limb;

HD head depth, measured as the perpendicular distance at the temporal region of head;

HL head length, measured from the tip of snout to the rear border of the angle of jaw;

HLL hind-limb length, measured between the point of insertion at groin to the tip of fourth toe, excluding the claw, measured as the straightened limb;

HW head width, measured between the widest points of the head;

IL infralabial scale number, enlarged, modified labial scales from mental to the corner of mouth;

MD mid-dorsal crest scale number, modified crest scales longitudinally from the first nuchal crest to the scale above cloaca;

NSL nasal-supralabials scale rows, number of horizontal rows of small scales between the first supralabial and the nasal;

SEL snout-eye length, measured between the tip of snout and anterior edge of orbital bone;

SL supralabial scale number, enlarged, modified labial scales from rostral to the corner of mouth;

SOR suborbital scale rows, longitudinal rows of scales between supralabials and inferior-most edge of orbit circle, excluding fine ciliary scales in the orbit;

SVL snout-vent length, measured from the snout tip to anterior edge of the cloaca;

T4L fourth toe length, measured between the tip of fourth toe to the base between third and fourth toe, excluding the claw;

T4S fourth toe subdigital lamellae number, subdigital lamellae scales from the base between third and fourth toe to the tip of fourth toe, excluding the claw;

TAL tail length, measured from the anterior edge of the cloaca to the tip of tail;

TRL trunk length, measured between the limb insertion points between axillary and groin;

VN ventral scale number, ventral body scales counted in a straight line along the medial axis between the transverse gular fold and the anterior edge of cloaca.

We compared morphological characters of the new species with other members of the genus relying on original species descriptions (Hallowell 1861; Günther 1864; Anderson 1878; Boulenger 1906, 1918; Barbour and Dunn 1919; Stejneger 1924; Mertens 1926; Smith 1935; Gressitt 1936; Bourret 1937; Song 1987; Ota 1989; Ota et al. 1998; Li et al. 2001; Gao and Hou 2002; Manthey et al. 2012; Wang et al. 2015, 2016, 2017, 2019b, d, 2021a, b, 2022; Ananjeva et al. 2017; Rao et al. 2017; Liu et al. 2020) and the additional data from Wu et al. (2005), Manthey (2008) and Wang et al. (2017, 2018, 2019b, c, 2021a).

Molecular analysis

Total genomic DNA for the new collected specimens was extracted from liver tissues with the standard extraction method (Sambrook et al. 1989). The mitochondrial gene NADH dehydrogenase subunit 2 (ND2) was amplified and sequenced by using published primers (Wang et al. 2019a). PCR and sequencing methods followed Liu et al. (2020). Sequences were edited and manually managed using SeqMan in Lasergene 7.1 (DNASTAR Inc., Madison, WI, USA) and MEGA 11 (Tamura et al. 2021). Representative species of Pseudocalotes Fitzinger were chosen as outgroups according to Wang et al. (2022). Genetic data for 32 species of Diploderma and two species of outgroup taxa were obtained from GenBank (Table 1).

Table 1.

GenBank accession numbers for the sequences used in this study.

Species Voucher Locality Accession Numbers
Diploderma angustelinea KIZ 029704 Muli, Sichuan, China MT577930
Diploderma angustelinea KIZ 029705 Muli, Sichuan, China MT577924
Diploderma aorun KIZ 032733 Benzilan, Yunnan, China MT577938
Diploderma aorun KIZ 032734 Benzilan, Yunnan, China MT577939
Diploderma batangense KIZ 09404 Zhubalong, Tibet, China MK001412
Diploderma batangense KIZ 019276 Batang, Sichuan, China MK001413
Diploderma brevicauda KIZ 044304 Lijiang, Yunnan, China MW506023
Diploderma brevicauda KIZ 044305 Lijiang, Yunnan, China MW506021
Diploderma brevicauda KIZ 044306 Lijiang, Yunnan, China MW506022
Diploderma bowoense KIZ 044757 Muli, Sichuan, China MW506020
Diploderma bowoense KIZ 044758 Muli, Sichuan, China MW506019
Diploderma brevipes NMNS 19607 Taiwan, China MK001429
Diploderma brevipes NMNS 19608 Taiwan, China MK001430
Diploderma chapaense KIZ 034923 Lvchun, Yunnan, China MG214263
Diploderma chapaense ZMMU NAP-01911 Chapa, Vietnam MG214262
Diploderma drukdaypo KIZ 027627 Jinduo, Tibet, China MT577950
Diploderma drukdaypo KIZ 027628 Zhuka, Tibet, China MT577952
Diploderma dymondi KIZ 040639 Dongchuan, Yunnan, China MK001422
Diploderma dymondi KIZ 040640 Dongchuan, Yunnan, China MK001423
Diploderma flaviceps KIZ 01851 Luding, Sichuan, China MK001416
Diploderma flaviceps KIZ 01852 Luding, Sichuan, China MK001417
Diploderma flavilabre KIZ 032692 Baiyu,Sichuan, China MT577916
Diploderma flavilabre KIZ 032694 Baiyu,Sichuan, China MT577917
Diploderma formosgulae KIZ 044420 Deqin, Yunnan, China MW506024
Diploderma formosgulae KIZ 044421 Deqin, Yunnan, China MW506025
Diploderma iadinum KIZ 027697 Yunling, Yunnan, China MT577956
Diploderma iadinum KIZ 027702 Yunling, Yunnan, China MT577957
Diploderma laeviventre KIZ 014037 Basu, Tibet, China MK001407
Diploderma laeviventre KIZ 027691 Basu, Tibet, China MT577892
Diploderma luei NMNS 19604 Taiwan, China MK001433
Diploderma luei NMNS 19605 Taiwan, China MK001434
Diploderma makii NMNS 19609 Taiwan, China MK001431
Diploderma makii NMNH 19610 Taiwan, China MK001432
Diploderma menghaiense KIZ L0030 Menghai, Yunnan, China MT598655
Diploderma menghaiense KIZ L0031 Menghai, Yunnan, China MT598656
Diploderma micangshanense KIZ 032801 Shiyan, Hubei, China MK578665
Diploderma micangshanense KIZ 023231 Xixia, Henan, China MK578664
Diploderma panchi KIZ 032715 Yajiang, Sichuan, China MT577946
Diploderma panchi KIZ 032716 Yajiang, Sichuan, China MT577944
Diploderma panlong KIZ 040137 Miansha, Sichuan, China MT577906
Diploderma panlong KIZ 040138 Miansha, Sichuan, China MT577907
Diploderma polygonatum NMNS 19598 Taiwan, China MK001427
Diploderma polygonatum NMNS 19599 Taiwan, China MK001428
Diploderma qilin KIZ 028332 Balong, Yunnan, China MT577941
Diploderma qilin KIZ 028333 Balong, Yunnan, China MT577942
Diploderma qilin KIZ 028335 Balong, Yunnan, China MT577943
Diploderma slowinskii CAS 214906 Gongshan, Yunnan, China MK001405
Diploderma slowinskii CAS 214954 Gongshan, Yunnan, China MK001406
Diploderma splendidum KIZ 015973 Yichang, Hubei, China MK001418
Diploderma splendidum LSUMZ 81212 Unknown AF288230
Diploderma swild KIZ 034914 Panzhihua, Sichuan, China MN266299
Diploderma swild KIZ 034894 Panzhihua, Sichuan, China MN266300
Diploderma swinhonis NMNS 19592 Taiwan, China MK001419
Diploderma swinhonis NMNS 19593 Taiwan, China MK001420
Diploderma varcoae WK-JK 011 Yuxi, Yunnan, China MT577903
Diploderma varcoae KIZ 026132 Mengzi, Yunnan, China MK001421
Diploderma vela KIZ 019299 Quzika, Tibet, China MK001414
Diploderma vela KIZ 034925 Quzika, Tibet, China MK001415
Diploderma yangi SWFU 005410 Chayu, Tibet, China OL449603
Diploderma yangi SWFU 005412 Chayu, Tibet, China OL449604
Diploderma yulongense KIZ 028291 Hutiaoxia, Yunnan, China MT577921
Diploderma yulongense KIZ 028292 Hutiaoxia, Yunnan, China MT577922
Diploderma yulongense KIZ 028300 Baishuitai, Yunnan, China MT577923
Diploderma yulongense KIZ 09399 Xianggelila, Yunnan, China MK001410
Diploderma yulongense KIZ 043196 Xianggelila, Yunnan, China MK001411
Diploderma yunnanense CAS 242271 Baoshan, Yunnan, China MK001408
Diploderma yunnanense KIZ 040193 Yingjiang, Yunnan, China MK578658
Diploderma zhaoermii KIZ 019564 Wenchuan, Sichuan, China MK001425
Diploderma zhaoermii KIZ 019565 Wenchuan, Sichuan, China MK001426
Diploderma limingense sp. nov. KIZ2022013 Liming, Yunnan, China OP428781
Diploderma limingense sp. nov. KIZ2022014 Liming, Yunnan, China OP428782
Diploderma limingense sp. nov. KIZ2022015 Liming, Yunnan, China OP428783
Diploderma limingense sp. nov. KIZ2022017 Liming, Yunnan, China OP428784
Diploderma shuoquense sp. nov. KIZ2022004 Xiangcheng, Sichuan, China OP428773
Diploderma shuoquense sp. nov. KIZ2022005 Xiangcheng, Sichuan, China OP428774
Diploderma shuoquense sp. nov. KIZ2022006 Xiangcheng, Sichuan, China OP428775
Diploderma shuoquense sp. nov. KIZ2022007 Xiangcheng, Sichuan, China OP428776
Diploderma yongshengense sp. nov. KIZ2022008 Yongsheng, Yunnan, China OP428777
Diploderma yongshengense sp. nov. KIZ2022009 Yongsheng, Yunnan, China OP428778
Diploderma yongshengense sp. nov. KIZ2022010 Yongsheng, Yunnan, China OP428779
Diploderma yongshengense sp. nov. KIZ2022011 Yongsheng, Yunnan, China OP428780
Pseudocalotes brevipes MVZ 224106 Vinh Phuc, Vietnam AF128502
Pseudocalotes kakhiensis KIZ 015975 Gongshan, Yunnan, China MK001435

Sequences were aligned using MUSCLE (Edgar 2004) integrated in MEGA 11 (Tamura et al. 2021). The best substitution model GTR + Γ was selected using jModelTest 2.1.10 (Darriba et al. 2012). Bayesian Inference (BI) was performed in MrBayes 3.2.7 (Ronquist et al. 2012), based on the selected substitution model. Two runs were performed simultaneously with four Markov chains. The chains were run for 10,000,000 generations and sampled every 1,000 generations. The first 25% of the sampled trees was discarded as burn-in and then the remaining trees were used to estimate Bayesian posterior probabilities (BPP); nodes with BPP values of 0.95 and higher being considered well-supported (Huelsenbeck et al. 2001; Wilcox et al. 2002). Maximum Likelihood (ML) analysis was performed in IQ-TREE 1.6.12 (Nguyen et al. 2015) using the selected substitution model. One thousand bootstrap pseudoreplicates via the ultrafast bootstrap (UFB) approximation algorithm were used to construct a final consensus tree, nodes with UFB values of 95 and above being considered significantly supported (Minh et al. 2013). Uncorrected genetic pairwise distances (p-distances) between species were calculated in MEGA 11 (Tamura et al. 2021) with the pairwise deletion option for handling alignment gaps and missing data.

Results

The obtained sequence alignment is 1031 bp in length. The resulting topologies from BI and ML analyses are consistent (Fig. 2). The specimens from Yulong County formed a clade sister to the clade consisting of Diploderma qilin Wang, Ren, Che & Siler, 2020 and D. brevicauda (Manthey, Denzer, Hou & Wang, 2012) with strong support by BI, the specimens from Xiangcheng County formed a clade sister to D. bowoense Wang, Gao, Wu, Siler & Che, 2021 with strong support by both BI and ML and the specimens from Yongsheng County formed a clade sister to D. yulongense (Manthey, Denzer, Hou & Wang, 2012) with strong support by both BI and ML. The minimum average genetic distance between the specimens from Yulong County and other species of Diploderma is 4.1% (between D. brevicauda), the minimum average genetic distance between the specimens from Xiangcheng County and other species of Diploderma is 6.3% (between D. bowoense) and the minimum average genetic distance between the specimens from Yongsheng County and other species of Diploderma is 5.8% (between D. yulongense) (Suppl. material 1).

Figure 2. 

Bayesian phylogram of the genus Diploderma inferred from mitochondrial gene ND2 (1031 bp). Numbers before slashes indicate BPP values and numbers after slashes indicate UFB values. The symbol “–” represents the value below 0.90/90.

Taxonomy

Diploderma limingense sp. nov.

Figs 3, 4, 5

Holotype

KIZ2022014, adult male, collected on 21 April 2022 by Shuo Liu from Liming Village, Liming Township, Yulong County, Lijiang City, Yunnan Province, China (27°2′0″N, 99°40′42″E, 2300 m elevation).

Paratypes

KIZ2022013, KIZ2022015, KIZ2022017, three adult males, collecting information the same as the holotype.

Etymology

The specific epithet refers to Liming Township, where the new species was discovered.

Diagnosis

Diploderma limingense sp. nov. can be diagnosed from congeners by a combination of the following morphological characteristics: (1) body size medium, SVL 55.6–56.8 mm in males; (2) tail relatively long, TAL/SVL 1.92–2.09 in males; (3) head moderately wide, HW/HL 0.71–0.74 in males; (4) limbs relatively long, FLL/SVL 0.47–0.52 in males, HLL/SVL 0.74–0.82 in males; (5) MD 45–48; (6) F4S 15–16, T4S 21–22; (7) tympanum concealed; (8) nuchal and dorsal crest scales feebly developed, no skin folds under nuchal and dorsal crest scales in males; (9) distinct transverse gular fold present; (10) ventral head and body scales strongly keeled; (11) ventral head scales heterogeneous in size; (12) gular spot present in males, yellowish-white in life; (13) dorsolateral stripes jagged in males, light yellow in life; (14) ventral surfaces of body, limbs and tail light brick red in males in life; (15) five radial stripes around the eye on each side; (16) inner lips bright yellow, tongue light orange, remaining oral cavity mostly light flesh colour in life.

Description of holotype

Adult male, SVL 56.2 mm; tail relatively long, TAL 117.5 mm, TAL/SVL 2.09; limbs relatively long, FLL 26.5 mm on left side, FLL/SVL 0.47, HLL 41.8 mm on left side, HLL/SVL 0.74. Head relatively robust, HW/HL 0.74, HD/HW 0.85; snout moderately long, SEL/HL 0.36. Rostral elongated, bordered by five small postrostral scales; dorsal head scales heterogeneous, all strongly keeled; indistinct Y-shaped ridge on dorsal snout. Nasal oval, separated from first supralabial by single row of scales; loreals small, keeled; suborbital scale rows 4/3, keeled; canthus rostralis elongated, greatly overlapping with each other; enlarged, keeled scales forming single lateral ridge from posteroinferior eye to posterosuperior tympanum on each side; tympanum concealed under scales; SL 8/8, feebly keeled. Mental pentagonal; IL 9/9; enlarged chin shields 4/5, smooth, first one contacting IL on each side, remaining ones separated from IL by two rows of small scales; ventral head scales homogeneous in size, smooth or weakly keeled; distinct transverse gular fold present; gular pouch weakly developed.

Distinct shoulder fold present; dorsal body scales heterogeneous in size and shape, all keeled, tip pointing backwards; axillary scales much smaller than remaining dorsals; enlarged dorsal scales roughly forming four longitudinal rows from neck to pelvis on each side of body. Nuchal and dorsal crests continuous, scales of nuchal and dorsal crests approximately same in size and shape; no skin fold under nuchal and dorsal crests; MD 45. Dorsal limb scales strongly keeled, homogeneous on fore-limbs and heterogeneous on hind limbs; F4S 15/16, T4S 22/22. Ventral body scales approximately parallel, almost homogeneous, all strongly keeled, VN 63. Ventral limb scales parallel, small on fore-limbs and larger on hind limbs, all strongly keeled. Tail scales all strongly keeled, ventral tail scales larger than dorsal tail scales.

Colouration of holotype in life

Dorsal surface of head brownish-grey. A distinct black transverse band anteriorly and an indistinct black transverse band posteriorly present between orbits on dorsal surface of head. Lateral surfaces of head brownish-grey. Five brownish-black radial stripes around eye on each side. Upper lips greyish-white. Inner lips bright yellow, tongue light orange, remaining oral cavity mostly light flesh colour.

Dorsal surface of body brown. A light yellow jagged dorsolateral stripe present from neck to pelvis on each side of body. Some brownish-black triangular patches distributed along vertebral line between dorsolateral stripes from neck to base of tail, all of which pointing posteriorly. Some yellowish-white spots scattered below dorsolateral stripe on each side of body. Dorsal surfaces of limbs greyish-brown with indistinct dark transverse bands. Dorsal surface of tail brownish-grey with some indistinct dark transverse bands.

Ventral surface of head greyish-white. A roughly triangular, yellowish-white gular spot present on posterior central part, many grey stripes forming reticulated pattern present on other region of ventral head. Ventral surfaces of body, limbs and tail light brick red with no patterns.

Variations

The variations of morphological character of the type series are provided in Table 2. The variations of colouration in life are very small: the paratype KIZ2022013 has few yellowish-white spots below dorsolateral stripe on each side of body, except for this, all other paratypes closely resemble the holotype.

Table 2.

Morphological data of the type series of Diploderma limingense sp. nov. Morphometric measurements are in mm. For measurement methods and abbreviations, see the Materials and methods section.

KIZ2022014 Holotype ♂ KIZ2022013 Paratype ♂ KIZ2022015 Paratype ♂ KIZ2022017 Paratype ♂
SVL 56.2 56.8 55.6 56.1
TAL 117.5 110.1 113.5 107.7
HL 18.0 18.5 18.0 18.0
HW 13.3 13.2 13.2 13.1
HD 11.3 11.2 11.0 11.4
SEL 6.5 6.7 6.3 6.9
FLL 26.5 27.5 28.7 27.6
HLL 41.8 44.9 45.6 43.4
T4L 10.7 10.9 11.2 9.9
TRL 25.1 24.2 23.6 24.9
TAL/SVL 2.09 1.94 2.04 1.92
SEL/HL 0.36 0.36 0.35 0.38
HW/HL 0.74 0.71 0.73 0.73
HD/HW 0.85 0.85 0.83 0.87
FLL/SVL 0.47 0.48 0.52 0.49
HLL/SVL 0.74 0.79 0.82 0.77
TRL/SVL 0.45 0.43 0.42 0.44
SL 8/8 8/8 8/9 9/9
IL 9/9 8/9 10/8 9/9
NSL 2/1 1/1 1/1 1/1
MD 45 45 47 48
F4S 15/16 16/16 15/16 16/16
T4S 22/22 22/22 22/21 21/21
SOR 4/3 3/4 3/3 3/3
VN 63 58 59 63

Comparisons

From species of Diploderma which are only distributed on East Asian islands, Diploderma limingense sp. nov. differs from D. brevipes (Gressitt, 1936), D. luei (Ota, Chen & Shang, 1998), D. makii (Ota, 1989), D. polygonatum Hallowell, 1861 and D. swinhonis (Günther, 1864) by the presence of a transverse gular fold (vs. absence).

From species of Diploderma which are distributed on mainland, but relatively distant from that of Diploderma limingense sp. nov., Diploderma limingense sp. nov. differs from D. chapaense (Bourret, 1937), D. fasciatum (Mertens, 1926), D. hamptoni (Smith, 1935), D. menghaiense Liu, Hou, Wang, Ananjeva & Rao, 2020, D. micangshanense (Song, 1987), D. ngoclinense (Ananjeva, Orlov & Nguyen, 2017) and D. yunnanense (Anderson, 1878) by the presence of a transverse gular fold (vs. absence); from D. dymondi (Boulenger, 1906), D. varcoae (Boulenger, 1918), by having concealed tympana (vs. exposed); from D. grahami (Stejneger, 1924) by having a much longer tail (TAL/SVL 1.92–2.09 vs. 1.64) and a distinct transverse gular fold (vs. feeble); and from D. splendidum (Barbour & Dunn, 1919) by having jagged dorsolateral stripes in males (vs. smooth).

From species of Diploderma which occupy distributions relatively close to that of Diploderma limingense sp. nov. in the Hengduan Mountain Region, Diploderma limingense sp. nov. differs from D. panlong Wang, Che & Siler, 2020, D. slowinskii, (Rao, Vindum, Ma, Fu & Wilkinson, 2017) and D. swild Wang, Wu, Jiang, Chen, Miao, Siler & Che, 2019 by having concealed tympana (vs. exposed); from D. angustelinea Wang, Ren, Wu, Che & Siler, 2020, D. aorun Wang, Jiang, Zheng, Xie, Che & Siler, 2020, D. bowoense, D. batangense (Li, Deng, Wu & Wang, 2001), D. flavilabre Wang, Che & Siler, 2020, D. formosgulae Wang, Gao, Wu, Dong, Shi, Qi, Siler & Che, 2021, D. iadinum (Wang, Jiang, Siler & Che, 2016), D. laeviventre (Wang, Jiang, Siler & Che, 2016), D. yangi Wang, Zhang & Li, 2022, D. yulongense and D. zhaoermii (Gao & Hou, 2002) by having a yellowish-white gular spot in males in life (vs. chartreuse, blue, green, lilac, orange or yellow); from D. drukdaypo (Wang, Ren, Jiang, Zou, Wu, Che & Siler, 2019) by having strongly keeled ventral scales of body (vs. smooth or weakly keeled); from D. flaviceps (Barbour & Dunn, 1919) by the presence of a colourful gular spot in males in life (vs. absence) and no skin fold under dorsal and nuchal crests in males (vs. strongly developed and erected); from D. panchi Wang, Zheng, Xie, Che & Siler, 2020 by having bright yellow inner lips in life (vs. inner lips flesh colour); and from D. vela (Wang, Jiang & Che, 2015) by having feebly developed crests without strongly erected crest scales or skin fold in males in life (vs. distinctively erected crest scales on continuous, well-developed skin fold).

Figure 3. 

Dorsal view (top) and ventral view (bottom) of type series of Diploderma limingense sp. nov. in preservative.

Figure 4. 

Holotype (KIZ2022014) of Diploderma limingense sp. nov. in life A dorsal view B lateral view C ventral view D close-up view of the dorsolateral side of the head E close-up view of the ventral side of the head F close-up view of the oral cavity.

Figure 5. 

Paratypes of Diploderma limingense sp. nov. in life A dorsolateral view of the paratype KIZ2022013 B ventral view of the paratype KIZ2022013 C dorsolateral view of the paratype KIZ2022015 D ventral view of the paratype KIZ2022015.

Diploderma limingense sp. nov. is phylogenetically sister to D. qilin and D. brevicauda, but Diploderma limingense sp. nov. can be differentiated from D. qilin by having bright yellow inner lips and light orange tongue in life (vs. both inner lips and tongue light flesh colour) and from D. brevicauda by having a relatively longer tail in males (TAL/SVL 1.92–2.09 vs. 1.40–1.84) and more mid-dorsal crest scales (MD 45–48 vs. 34–43).

Distribution

This species is known only from the type locality, Liming Township, Yulong County, Lijiang City, Yunnan Province, China (Fig. 1).

Natural history

All specimens were collected between 9 and 11 a.m. on the ground in coniferous and broad-leaved mixed forest and there was no water body nearby (Fig. 12A, B). No female or juvenile was found. The population density of this species was moderate and as the habitats of this species not being threatened. According to IUCN Criteria, we recommend listing this new species as Least Concern (LC).

Diploderma shuoquense sp. nov.

Figs 6, 7, 8

Holotype

KIZ2022004, adult male, collected on 23 April 2022 by Shuo Liu from the Shuoqu River Valley, Qingde Town, Xiangcheng County, Ganzi Prefecture, Sichuan Province, China (28°48′50″N, 99°49′47″E, 2700 m elevation).

Paratypes

KIZ2022005–KIZ2022007, three adult males, collecting information the same as the holotype.

Etymology

The specific epithet refers to the Shuoqu River, by which the new species was discovered.

Diagnosis

Diploderma shuoquense sp. nov. can be diagnosed from congeners by a combination of the following morphological characteristics: (1) body size small, SVL 48.2–52.3 mm in males; (2) tail moderately long, TAL/SVL 1.87–1.97 in males; (3) limbs moderately long, FLL/SVL 0.45–0.49 in males, HLL/SVL 0.69–0.74 in males; (4) head moderately wide, HW/HL 0.72–0.74 in males; (5) MD 34–40; (6) F4S 13–16, T4S 19–21; (7) tympanum concealed; (8) nuchal and dorsal crest scales feebly developed, not distinctively erected or raised on skin folds in males; (9) distinct transverse gular fold present; (10) ventral head scales smooth or weakly keeled and ventral body scales strongly keeled; (11) ventral head scales homogeneous in size; (12) no distinct gular spot in males; (13) dorsolateral stripes jagged in males, yellowish-white or greyish-white in life; (14) 8–10 radial stripes around the eye on each side; (15) oral cavity, inner lips and tongue pink in life.

Description of holotype

Adult male, SVL 52.3 mm; tail moderately long, TAL 98.3 mm, TAL/SVL 1.88; limbs moderately long, FLL 23.4 mm on left side, FLL/SVL 0.45, HLL 36.6 mm on left side, HLL/SVL 0.70. Head relatively robust, HW/HL 0.74, HD/HW 0.82; snout relatively short, SEL/HL 0.34. Rostral rectangular, bordered by six small postrostral scales; dorsal head scales heterogeneous, all strongly keeled; indistinct Y-shaped ridge on dorsal snout. Nasal oval, separated from first supralabial by single row of scales; loreals small, keeled; suborbital scale rows 3/4, keeled; canthus rostralis elongated, greatly overlapping with each other; enlarged, keeled scales forming single lateral ridge from posteroinferior eye to posterosuperior tympanum on each side; tympanum concealed under scales; SL 10/10, feebly keeled. Mental pentagonal; IL 9/9; enlarged chin shields 6/5, smooth, first one contacting IL on left side and first two contacting IL on right side, remaining ones separated from IL by one or two rows of small scales; ventral head scales homogeneous in size, smooth or weakly keeled; distinct transverse gular fold present; gular pouch weakly developed.

Distinct shoulder fold present; dorsal body scales heterogeneous in size and shape, all keeled, tip pointing backwards; axillary scales much smaller than remaining dorsals; enlarged dorsal scales roughly forming four or five longitudinal rows from neck to pelvis on each side of body. Nuchal and dorsal crests feebly developed, slightly raised compared to dorsals, not erect; no skin fold under nuchal and dorsal crests; MD 40. Dorsal limb scales strongly keeled, homogeneous; F4S 15/16, T4S 21/20. Ventral body scales approximately parallel, almost homogeneous, all strongly keeled, VN 61. Ventral limb scales parallel, almost homogeneous, approximately equal in size to ventrals, all strongly keeled. Tail scales all strongly keeled, ventral tail scales slightly larger than dorsal tail scales.

Colouration of holotype in life

Dorsal surface of head grey. Two distinct black transverse bands present between orbits on dorsal surface of head and two indistinct greyish-black transverse bands present on dorsal surface of snout. Lateral surfaces of head greyish-white. Ten black radial stripes around eye on each side. Upper lips light orange. Oral cavity, inner lips and tongue pink.

Dorsal surface of body greyish-black. A light yellowish-white dorsolateral longitudinal stripe with strongly jagged upper edge and relatively straight lower edge present on each side of body from occipital region to pelvis. Some indistinct dark and light transverse bands present between two dorsolateral stripes. Some white spots scattered below dorsolateral stripe on each side of body. Dorsal surfaces of limbs dark grey. Some irregular, greyish-white transverse bands present on dorsal surfaces of limbs. Dorsal surface of tail grey with some very indistinct dark transverse bands.

Ventral surface of head white with distinct black vermiculate stripes. A little yellowish colouration present on centre of gular pouch. Ventral surfaces of body, limbs and tail white with no patterns.

Variations

The variations of morphological character of the type series are provided in Table 3. The variations of colouration in life are as follows: the paratypes resemble the holotype in most aspects, except that the dorsal colouration is darker in the paratype KIZ2022007, the light orange colouration on upper lips is more indistinct in the paratypes KIZ2022005 and KIZ2022006, there is no yellowish colouration on the centre of the gular pouch in the paratypes KIZ2022006 and KIZ2022007 and there is some yellowish colouration on the chest in the paratype KIZ2022005.

Table 3.

Morphological data of the type series of Diploderma shuoquense sp. nov. Morphometric measurements are in mm. For measurement methods and abbreviations, see the Materials and methods section.

KIZ2022004 Holotype ♂ KIZ2022005 Paratype ♂ KIZ2022006 Paratype ♂ KIZ2022007 Paratype ♂
SVL 52.3 48.2 48.4 50.5
TAL 98.3 90.3 95.4 96.3
HL 16.7 14.3 15.4 15.7
HW 12.4 10.5 11.1 11.3
HD 10.2 8.7 9.2 9.8
SEL 5.7 5.4 5.4 5.6
FLL 23.4 22.6 23.5 23.7
HLL 36.6 33.4 36.0 36.4
T4L 8.6 7.8 8.7 8.6
TRL 23.6 22.1 22.5 21.3
TAL/SVL 1.88 1.87 1.97 1.91
SEL/HL 0.34 0.38 0.35 0.36
HW/HL 0.74 0.73 0.72 0.72
HD/HW 0.82 0.83 0.83 0.87
FLL/SVL 0.45 0.47 0.49 0.47
HLL/SVL 0.70 0.69 0.74 0.72
TRL/SVL 0.45 0.46 0.46 0.42
SL 10/10 10/10 9/9 9/8
IL 9/9 11/11 10/10 10/11
NSL 1/1 1/1 1/1 1/1
MD 40 34 39 34
F4S 15/16 14/13 15/15 15/14
T4S 21/20 20/19 20/20 20/19
SOR 3/4 4/4 3/4 4/4
VN 61 59 57 56

Comparisons

From species of Diploderma which are only distributed on East Asian Islands, Diploderma shuoquense sp. nov. differs from D. brevipes, D. luei, D. makii, D. polygonatum and D. swinhonis by the presence of a transverse gular fold (vs. absence).

From species of Diploderma which are distributed on mainland, but relatively distant from that of Diploderma shuoquense sp. nov., Diploderma shuoquense sp. nov. differs from D. chapaense, D. fasciatum, D. hamptoni, D. menghaiense, D. micangshanense, D. ngoclinense and D. yunnanense by the presence of a transverse gular fold (vs. absence); from D. dymondi, D. varcoae, by having concealed tympana (vs. exposed); from D. grahami by having a much longer tail (TAL/SVL 1.87–1.97 vs. 1.64) and a distinct transverse gular fold (vs. feeble); and from D. splendidum by having jagged dorsolateral stripes in males (vs. smooth).

From species of Diploderma which occupy distributions relatively close to that of Diploderma shuoquense sp. nov. in the Hengduan Mountain Region, Diploderma shuoquense sp. nov. differs from D. panlong, D. slowinskii and D. swild by having concealed tympana (vs. exposed); from D. angustelinea, D. aorun, D. batangense, D. flavilabre, D. formosgulae, D. iadinum, D. laeviventre, D. yangi, D. yulongense and D. zhaoermii by the absence of a distinct gular spot in males in life (vs. presence of a distinct colourful gular spot); from D. brevicauda by having a relatively longer tail in males (TAL/SVL 1.87–1.97 vs. 1.40–1.84) and pink inner lips and tongue in life (vs. inner lips light yellow and tongue light orange); from D. drukdaypo by having strongly keeled ventral scales of body (vs. smooth or weakly keeled); from D. flaviceps by the presence of distinct radial stripes around the eyes (vs. absence) and the absence of a skin fold under dorsal crest in males in life (vs. presence); from D. panchi by having less mid-dorsal crest scales (MD 34–40 vs. 42–46) and smooth or weakly keeled ventral scales of head (vs. distinctively keeled); from D. qilin by having a relatively shorter tail in males (TAL/SVL 1.87–1.97 vs. 2.01–2.18); and from D. vela by having feebly developed crests without strongly erected crest scales or skin fold in males in life (vs. distinctively erected crest scales on continuous, well-developed skin fold).

Figure 6. 

Dorsal view (top) and ventral view (bottom) of type series of Diploderma shuoquense sp. nov. in preservative.

Figure 7. 

Holotype (KIZ2022004) of Diploderma shuoquense sp. nov. in life A dorsal view B lateral view C ventral view D close-up view of the lateral side of the head E close-up view of the ventral side of the head F close-up view of the oral cavity.

Figure 8. 

Paratypes of Diploderma shuoquense sp. nov. in life A dorsolateral view of the paratype KIZ2022005 B ventral view of the paratype KIZ2022005 C dorsolateral view of the paratype KIZ2022007 D ventral view of the paratype KIZ2022007.

Diploderma shuoquense sp. nov. is phylogenetically sister to D. bowoense, but Diploderma shuoquense sp. nov. can be differentiated from the latter by the absence of a light chrome orange gular spot in males in life (vs. presence) and having a wider head (HW/HL 0.72–0.74 vs. 0.65–0.71) and smooth or weakly keeled ventral scales of head (vs. distinctively keeled).

Diploderma shuoquense sp. nov. differs from Diploderma limingense sp. nov. by having a smaller body size in males (SVL 48.2–52.3 mm vs. 55.6–56.8 mm), vermiculate stripes covering the whole ventral head (vs. stripes not reaching the centre of gular pouch), white ventral surfaces of body, limbs and tail in males in life (vs. light brick red), pink inner lips and tongue in life (vs. inner lips bright yellow, tongue light orange) and more radial stripes around the eyes (8–10 vs. five on each side).

Distribution

This species is known only from the type locality, Qingde Town, Xiangcheng County, Ganzi Prefecture, Sichuan Province, China (Fig. 1).

Natural history

This species is terrestrial, inhabiting the hot-dry valley. There are many thorny shrubs and some rock piles at the type locality (Fig. 12C, D). All specimens were collected between 1 and 3 p.m. when they were basking on rock piles, no female or juvenile being found. We found many locusts at the type locality, which may be the main prey of this species; however, the population density of this species was very low and the habitats at the type locality being threatened by human activities. According to IUCN Criteria, we recommend listing this new species as Vulnerable (VU).

Diploderma yongshengense sp. nov.

Figs 9, 10, 11

Holotype

KIZ2022009, adult male, collected on 24 April 2022 by Shuo Liu from the Jinsha River Valley, Songping Township, Yongsheng County, Lijiang City, Yunnan Province, China (27°2′2″N, 100°28′16″E, 1700 m elevation).

Paratypes

KIZ2022008, KIZ2022010–KIZ2022011, three adult males, collecting information the same as the holotype.

Etymology

The specific epithet refers to Yongsheng County, where the new species was discovered.

Diagnosis

Diploderma yongshengense sp. nov. can be diagnosed from congeners by a combination of the following morphological characteristics: (1) body size moderate, SVL 56.5–58.5 mm in males; (2) tail long, TAL/SVL 2.02–2.20 in males; (3) limbs relatively long, FLL/SVL 0.48–0.51 in males, HLL/SVL 0.79–0.87 in males; (4) head moderately wide, HW/HL 0.66–0.75 in males; (5) MD 38–41; (6) F4S 16–19, T4S 22–25; (7) tympanum concealed; (8) nuchal and dorsal crests moderately developed on weak skin folds in males; (9) distinct transverse gular fold present; (10) ventral scales of head and body strongly keeled; (11) ventral head scales heterogeneous in size; (12) gular spot present in males, blue or green in life; (13) dorsolateral stripes jagged in males, light yellow in life; (14) radial stripes around the eyes indistinct; (15) oral cavity, inner lips and tongue light flesh colour in life.

Description of holotype

Adult male, SVL 58.5 mm; tail long, TAL 128.7 mm, TAL/SVL 2.20; limbs relatively long, FLL 27.9 mm on left side, FLL/SVL 0.48, HLL 46.5 mm on left, HLL/SVL 0.79. Head relatively robust, HW/HL 0.75, HD/HW 0.87; snout moderately long, SEL/HL 0.37. Rostral elongated, bordered by five small postrostral scales; dorsal head scales heterogeneous, all strongly keeled; distinct Y-shaped ridge on dorsal snout. Nasal oval, separated from first supralabial by single row of scales; loreals small, keeled; suborbital scale rows 4/4, keeled; canthus rostralis elongated, greatly overlapping with each other; enlarged, keeled scales forming single lateral ridge from posteroinferior eye to posterosuperior tympanum on each side; tympanum concealed under scales; SL 9/9, feebly keeled. Mental pentagonal; IL 11/10; enlarged chin shields 5/5, smooth, first one contacting IL on each side, remaining ones separated from IL by two rows of small scales; ventral head scales heterogeneous in size with the ones on the centre of gular pouch largest, all strongly keeled; distinct transverse gular fold present; gular pouch well developed.

Distinct shoulder fold present; dorsal body scales heterogeneous in size and shape, all keeled, tip pointing backwards; axillary scales much smaller than remaining dorsals; enlarged dorsal scales irregularly scattered on lateral surface of body. Nuchal crest scales approximately same in size and shape as dorsal crest scales; moderately developed skin fold under nuchal crest and feeble skin fold under dorsal crest; MD 38. Dorsal limb scales strongly keeled, mostly homogeneous, except a few enlarged, conical scales on postaxial thighs; F4S 17/16, T4S 23/23. Ventral body scales approximately parallel, almost homogeneous, all strongly keeled, VN 59. Ventral limb scales parallel, almost homogeneous, approximately equal in size to ventrals, all strongly keeled. Tail scales all strongly keeled, ventral tail scales larger than dorsal tail scales.

Colouration of holotype in life

Dorsal surface of head brown with no transverse bands. Lateral surfaces of head brownish-white. No radial stripes present around eyes, only two brownish-black stripes present behind eye on each side. Oral cavity, inner lips and tongue light flesh colour.

Dorsal surface of body brown. A light yellow dorsolateral longitudinal stripe with relatively straight upper edge and strongly jagged lower edge present on each side of body from occipital region to pelvis. Some brownish-black transverse bands present between two dorsolateral stripes. Some light yellow spots scattered below dorsolateral stripe on each side of body. Dorsal surfaces of limbs greyish-brown. Some indistinct dark transverse bands present on dorsal surfaces of limbs. Dorsal surface of tail brownish-grey with some indistinct dark transverse bands.

Ventral surface of head yellowish-white. A triangular, light yellow edged light blue gular spot present on posterior central part, indistinct brown stripes present on other region of ventral head. Ventral surfaces of body, limbs and tail white with no patterns.

Variations

The variations of morphological character of the type series are provided in Table 4. The variations of colouration in life are as follows: the paratypes resemble the holotype in most aspects, except that there are indistinct transverse bands on the dorsal surface of the head in all paratypes; the gular spot is light green in the paratypes KIZ2022008 and KIZ2022010; the dorsal colouration is darker, the stripes on the ventral surface of head are more distinct in the paratypes KIZ2022008 and KIZ2022011; and there are some brown speckles on the ventral surfaces of body, limbs and tail in the paratype KIZ2022008.

Table 4.

Morphological data of the type series of Diploderma yongshengense sp. nov. Morphometric measurements are in mm. For measurement methods and abbreviations, see the Materials and methods section.

KIZ2022008 Paratype ♂ KIZ2022009 Holotype ♂ KIZ2022010 Paratype ♂ KIZ2022011 Paratype ♂
SVL 56.5 58.5 56.7 57.6
TAL 117.2 128.7 114.5 123.0
HL 17.9 18.7 17.0 18.8
HW 12.8 14.1 12.1 12.5
HD 11.1 11.0 10.6 11.3
SEL 6.6 6.9 6.3 6.9
FLL 28.6 27.9 27.8 27.4
HLL 49.1 46.5 45.5 47.9
T4L 12.6 11.8 11.3 13.1
TRL 24.3 27.0 24.9 26.1
TAL/SVL 2.07 2.20 2.02 2.14
SEL/HL 0.37 0.37 0.37 0.37
HW/HL 0.72 0.75 0.71 0.66
HD/HW 0.87 0.78 0.88 0.90
FLL/SVL 0.51 0.48 0.49 0.48
HLL/SVL 0.87 0.79 0.80 0.83
TRL/SVL 0.43 0.46 0.44 0.45
SL 10/10 9/9 8/8 9/9
IL 11/10 11/10 10/12 10/10
NSL 1/1 1/1 1/1 1/1
MD 41 38 41 39
F4S 17/18 17/16 19/18 16/17
T4S 22/23 23/23 25/24 24/24
SOR 4/4 4/4 4/4 4/4
VN 55 59 58 54

Comparisons

From species of Diploderma which are only distributed on East Asian Islands, Diploderma yongshengense sp. nov. differs from D. brevipes, D. luei, D. makii, D. polygonatum and D. swinhonis by the presence of a transverse gular fold (vs. absence).

From species of Diploderma which are distributed on mainland, but relatively distant from that of Diploderma yongshengense sp. nov., Diploderma yongshengense sp. nov. differs from D. chapaense, D. fasciatum, D. hamptoni, D. menghaiense, D. micangshanense, D. ngoclinense and D. yunnanense by the presence of a transverse gular fold (vs. absence); from D. dymondi, D. varcoae, by having concealed tympana (vs. exposed); from D. grahami by having a much longer tail (TAL/SVL 2.02–2.20 vs. 1.64) and a distinct transverse gular fold (vs. feeble); and from D. splendidum by having jagged dorsolateral stripes in males (vs. smooth).

From species of Diploderma which occupy distributions relatively close to that of Diploderma yongshengense sp. nov. in the Hengduan Mountain Region, Diploderma yongshengense sp. nov. differs from D. panlong, D. slowinskii and D. swild by having concealed tympana (vs. exposed); from D. drukdaypo and D. vela by the presence of a colourful gular spot in males in life (vs. absence); from D. angustelinea, D. bowoense, D. brevicauda, D. formosgulae, D. laeviventre, D. qilin and D. zhaoermii by having a blue or green gular spot in males in life (vs. chartreuse, lilac, orange or yellow); from D. aorun by having less distinct radial stripes around the eyes (vs. more distinct), less distinct stripes on the ventral surface of head (vs. more distinct speckles or vermiculated patterns) and heterogeneous ventral head scales (vs. homogeneous); from D. batangense by having white ventral surface of body in males in life (vs. yellow); from D. flaviceps by the presence of a colourful gular spot in males in life (vs. absence); from D. flavilabre by having light flesh coloured inner lips in life (vs. yellow); from D. iadinum by having brown dorsal ground colouration in males in life (vs. emerald green); from D. panchi by having less mid-dorsal crest scales (MD 38–41 vs. 42–46) and heterogeneous ventral head scales (vs. homogeneous); and from D. yangi by having jagged dorsolateral stripes in males (vs. smooth).

Diploderma yongshengense sp. nov. is phylogenetically sister to D. yulongense, but Diploderma yongshengense sp. nov. can be differentiated from the latter by having a blue or green gular spot in males in life (vs. chartreuse or opaline green), more distinct stripes on the ventral surface of head (vs. less distinct), white ventral and ventrolateral surface of body in males in life (vs. green) and light yellow dorsolateral stripes and enlarged scales on each side of body in males in life (vs. greenish-yellow).

Diploderma yongshengense sp. nov. differs from Diploderma limingense sp. nov. by having less mid-dorsal crest scales (MD 38–41 vs. 45–48), a blue or green gular spot in males in life (vs. yellowish-white), white ventral surfaces of body, limbs and tail in males in life (vs. light brick red) and light flesh coloured inner lips and tongue in life (vs. inner lips bright yellow, tongue light orange).

Figure 9. 

Dorsal view (top) and ventral view (bottom) of type series of Diploderma yongshengense sp. nov. in preservative.

Figure 10. 

Holotype (KIZ2022009) of Diploderma yongshengense sp. nov. in life A dorsolateral view B lateral view C ventral view D close up-view of the lateral side of the head E close-up view of the ventral side of the head F close-up view of the oral cavity.

Figure 11. 

Paratypes of Diploderma yongshengense sp. nov. in life A dorsolateral view of the paratype KIZ2022008 B ventral view of the paratype KIZ2022008 C lateral view of the paratype KIZ2022010 D ventral view of the paratype KIZ2022010.

Diploderma yongshengense sp. nov. differs from Diploderma shuoquense sp. nov. by having a larger body size in males (SVL 56.5–58.5 vs. 48.2–52.3), a relatively longer tail in males (TAL/SVL 2.02–2.20 vs. 1.87–1.97), relatively longer hind limbs in males (HLL/SVL 0.79–0.87 vs. 0.69–0.74), more subdigital lamellae of fourth toe (22–25 vs. 19–21) and strongly keeled ventral scales of head (vs. smooth or weakly keeled) and the presence of a distinct colourful gular spot in males in life (vs. absence).

Distribution

This species is presently known from Yongsheng and Ninglang counties, Lijiang City, Yunnan Province, China, it probably occurs in adjacent Muli County, Sichuan Province, China (Fig. 1).

Natural history

This species is terrestrial, inhabiting the hot-dry valley. There are a few trees and many rocks at the type locality (Fig. 12E, F). All specimens were collected between 2 and 4 p.m. when they were basking on large rocks, no female or juvenile being found. The population density of this species was relatively high, however, the habitats of this species being seriously threatened by human activities. According to IUCN Criteria, we recommend listing this new species as Near Threatened (NT).

Figure 12. 

Habitats of the new species A distant view of the type locality of Diploderma limingense sp. nov. B close view of the type locality of Diploderma limingense sp. nov. C distant view of the type locality of Diploderma shuoquense sp. nov. D close view of the type locality of Diploderma shuoquense sp. nov. E distant view of the type locality of Diploderma yongshengense sp. nov. F close view of the type locality of Diploderma yongshengense sp. nov.

Discussion

Species of Diploderma can be roughly divided into two ecotypes, one inhabiting mountain forests (i.e. D. brevicauda, D. chapaense, D. dymondi, D. fasciatum, D. menghaiense, D. swild, D. varcoae, D. yunnanense and Diploderma limingense sp. nov., etc) and the other inhabiting hot-dry river valleys (i.e. D. aorun, D. bowoense, D. drukdaypo, D. formosgulae, D. laeviventre, D. vela, D. yangi, Diploderma shuoquense sp. nov. and Diploderma yongshengense sp. nov. etc). Mountain forest is often distributed in large areas. Unless there are very high mountains or very large rivers through the forest, different populations living in the forest will not be completely separated and there can be gene exchange between them. Therefore, the species inhabiting forests are usually widely distributed and their diversity is usually low. However, in the Hengduan Mountain Region, there are high mountains between the numerous river valleys, in addition, the altitude drop in different sections of the same river is usually large. Different populations living in the valleys are usually separated from each other and it is difficult for them to make gene exchange. Therefore, in contrast to the species inhabiting forests, the species inhabiting river valleys usually have very small distribution ranges and their diversity is usually very high.

Large areas of forest are not easy to be destroyed completely. Even if some parts are destroyed, there will still be many spaces for species to survive. Therefore, the species inhabiting forests are relatively less threatened by humans. On the contrary, if a section of a river valley is destroyed, such as by expansion of townships and agricultural lands, construction of tourist sites, development of highways and construction of hydroelectric plants (Wang et al. 2016, 2019b, 2021a), the endemic species there may become extinct. Therefore, the species inhabiting river valleys are more vulnerable to human threats. We should focus the conservation efforts on the species that inhabit river valleys and strengthen the protection of the ecological environment of the river valleys in the Hengduan Mountain Region. In addition, we should strengthen the survey of this region to clarify the species diversity of this region, so as to better protect the endemic species in this region.

Acknowledgements

Thanks to the curator of Kunming Natural History Museum of Zoology, Kunming Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, for his support of the field survey and this study. We also thank the editors and reviewers for their comments on the manuscript. This work was supported by Science-Technology Basic Condition Platform from the Ministry of Science and Technology of the People’s Republic of China (2005DKA21402); state theme of Zoological Institute, Russian Academy of Sciences (122031100264-8); the funds from National Science Foundation of China (NSFC) to DQ Rao (NSFC-39570090 and NSFC-31970404); the project of Ministry of Ecology and Environment of China: Investigation and evaluation of amphibian and reptile diversity in Yunling Mountains (2019HB2096001006); and national important research and development project: Biodiversity Conservation and Restoration Technology in High Mountain and Valley Regions of south-western China (2017YFC0505202).

References

  • Ananjeva NB, Orlov NL, Nguyen TT (2017) A new species of Japalura (Agamidae: Lacertilia: Reptilia) from central highland, Vietnam. Asian Herpetological Research 8(1): 14–21. https://doi.org/10.16373/j.cnki.ahr.160031
  • Anderson J (1878) Anatomical and Zoological Researches: Comprising an Account of the Zoological results of two expeditions to Western Yunnan in 1868 and 1875; and a Monograph of the Two Cetacean Genera Platanista and Orcella. Bernard Quaritch, London, 985 pp. https://doi.org/10.5962/bhl.title.50434
  • Bourret R (1937) Notes herpétologiques sur l’indochine française. XV. Lézards et serpents reçu au laboratoire des Sciences Naturelles de l’Université au cours de l’année 1937. Descriptions de deux espèces et de deux varieties nouvelles. Bulletin Générale de l’Instruction Publique 5. Gouvernement Généneral de l’Indochine 1937: 57–82.
  • Darriba D, Taboada GL, Doallo R, Posada D (2012) jModelTest 2: More models, new heuristics and parallel computing. Nature Methods 9(8): 772. https://doi.org/10.1038/nmeth.2109
  • Edgar RC (2004) MUSCLE: Multiple sequence alignment with high accuracy and high throughput. Nucleic Acids Research 32(5): 1792–1797. https://doi.org/10.1093/nar/gkh340
  • Gao ZF, Hou M (2002) Description of a new Japalura species from western Sichuan Province, China. Sichuan Journal of Zoology 21(2): 3–5.
  • Geospatial Data Cloud (2022) SRTMDEMUTM 90m resolution digital elevation data. http://www.gscloud.cn/ [Accessed on 13.05.2022]
  • Gressitt JL (1936) New reptiles from Formosa and Hainan. Proceedings of the Biological Society of Washington 49: 117–121.
  • Hallowell E (1861) Report upon the Reptilia of the North Pacific Exploring Expedition, under command of Capt. John Rogers. Proceedings. Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia 12: 480–510.
  • Huelsenbeck JP, Ronquist F, Nielsen R, Bollback JP (2001) Bayesian inference of phylogeny and its impact on evolutionary biology. Science 294(5550): 2310–2314. https://doi.org/10.1126/science.1065889
  • Li C, Deng QX, Wu Y, Wang Y (2001) A New Species of Japalura from Sichuan (Agamidae Gray. Japalura). Journal of Sichuan Teachers College 22(4): 329–331.
  • Manthey U (2008) Agamid Lizards of Southern Asia – Agamen des südlichen Asien - Draconinae 1. Terralog, Vol. 7a. Edn. Chimaira, Frankfürt am Main, 160 pp.
  • Manthey U, Denzer W, Hou M, Wang XH (2012) Discovered in historical collections: two new Japalura species (Squamata: Sauria: Agamidae) from Yulong Snow Mountains, Lijiang Prefecture, Yunnan, PR China. Zootaxa 3200(1): 27–48. https://doi.org/10.11646/zootaxa.3200.1.2
  • Mertens R (1926) Herpetologische Mitteilungen – X. Eine neue Japalura – Art. Senckenbergiana 8: 146–149.
  • Minh Q, Nguyen MAT, von Haeseler A (2013) Ultrafast approximation for phylogenetic bootstrap. Molecular Biology and Evolution 30(5): 1188–1195. https://doi.org/10.1093/molbev/mst024
  • Nguyen L, Schmidt HA, von Haeseler A, Minh BQ (2015) IQ-TREE: A fast and effective stochastic algorithm for estimating maximum-likelihood phylogenies. Molecular Biology and Evolution 32(1): 268–274. https://doi.org/10.1093/molbev/msu300
  • Ota H, Chen SL, Shang GS (1998) Japalura leui: a new agamid lizard from Taiwan (Reptilia: Squamata). Copeia 86(3): 649–659. https://doi.org/10.2307/1447794
  • Rao DQ, Vindum JV, Ma XH, Fu MX, Wilkinson JA (2017) A new species of Japalura (Squamata, Agamidae) from the Nu River valley in southern Hengduan Mountains, Yunnan, China. Asian Herpetological Research 8(2): 86–95. https://doi.org/10.16373/j.cnki.ahr.160053
  • Ronquist F, Teslenko M, van der Mark P, Ayres DL, Darling A, Hçhna S, Larget B, Liu L, Suchard MA, Huelsenbeck JP (2012) MrBayes 3.2: Efficient Bayesian phylogenetic inference and model choice across a large model space. Systematic Biology 61(3): 539–542. https://doi.org/10.1093/sysbio/sys029
  • Sambrook J, Fritsch EF, Maniatis T (1989) Molecular Cloning: a Laboratory Manual. Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press, New York, 145 pp.
  • Smith MA (1935) The fauna of British India, including Ceylon and Burma. Reptiles and Amphibia. Vol. II. Sauria. Taylor and Francis, London, 185 pp.
  • Song MT (1987) Survey of the reptiles of southern Shaanxi. Acta Herpetologica Sinica 6(1): 59–64.
  • Stejneger LH (1924) Herpetological novelties from China. Occasional papers of the Boston Society of Natural History 5: 119–121.
  • Wang K, Jiang K, Pan G, Hou M, Siler CD, Che J (2015) A new species of Japalura (Squamata: Agamidae) from upper Lancang (Mekong) valley of eastern Tibet, China. Asian Herpetological Research 6(3): 159–168. https://doi.org/10.16373/j.cnki.ahr.140042
  • Wang K, Ren JL, Jiang K, Yuan ZY, Che J, Siler CD (2017) Rediscovery of the enigmatic Mountain Dragon, Japalura yulongensis (Reptilia: Sauria: Agamidae), with notes on its natural history and conservation. Zootaxa 4318(2): 351–363. https://doi.org/10.11646/zootaxa.4318.2.8
  • Wang K, Jiang K, Wang YF, Poyarkov Jr NA, Che J, Siler CD (2018) Discovery of Japalura chapaensis Bourret, 1937 (Reptilia: Squamata: Agamidae) from southeast Yunnan Province, China. Zoological Research 39(2): 105–113. https://doi.org/10.24272/j.issn.2095-8137.2017.064
  • Wang K, Che J, Lin SM, Deepak V, Aniruddha D, Jiang K, Jin JQ, Chen HM, Siler CD (2019a) Multilocus phylogeny and revised classification for mountain dragons of the genus Japalura s.l. (Reptilia: Agamidae: Draconinae) from Asia. Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society 185(1): 246–267. https://doi.org/10.1093/zoolinnean/zly034
  • Wang K, Jiang K, Ren JL, Zou DH, Wu JW, Che J, Siler CD (2019b) A new species of dwarf Japalura sensu lato (Reptilia: Squamata: Agamidae) from the upper Mekong River in eastern Tibet, China, with notes on morphological variation, distribution, and conservation of two congeners along the same river. Zootaxa 4544(4): 505–522. https://doi.org/10.11646/zootaxa.4544.4.3
  • Wang K, Ren JL, Jiang K, Wu JW, Yang CH, Xu HM, Messanger K, Lei KM, Yu HL, Yang JY, Siler CD, Li JT, Che J (2019c) Revised distributions of some species in the genus Diploderma (Reptilia: Agamidae) in China. Sichuan Journal of Zoology 38(5): 481–495. https://doi.org/10.11984/j.issn.1000-7083.20180405
  • Wang K, Wu JW, Jiang K, Chen JM, Miao BF, Siler CD, Che J (2019d) A new species of Mountain Dragon (Reptilia: Agamidae: Diploderma) from the D. dymondi complex in southern Sichuan Province, China. Zoological Research 40(5): 456–465. https://doi.org/10.24272/j.issn.2095-8137.2019.034
  • Wang K, Gao W, Wu JW, Dong WJ, Feng XG, Shen WJ, Jin JQ, Shi XD, Qi Y, Siler CD, Che J (2021a) Two New Species of Diploderma Hallowell, 1861 (Reptilia: Squamata: Agamidae) from the Hengduan Mountain Region in China and Rediscovery of D. brevicaudum (Manthey, Wolfgang, Hou, Wang, 2012). Zootaxa 4941(1): 1–32. https://doi.org/10.11646/zootaxa.4941.1.1
  • Wang K, Ren JL, Wu JW, Jiang K, Jin JQ, Hou SB, Zheng PY, Xie F, Siler CD, Che J (2021b) Systematic revision of Mountain Dragons (Reptilia: Agamidae: Diploderma) in China, with descriptions of six new species and discussion on their conservation. Journal of Zoological Systematics and Evolutionary Research 59(1): 222–263. https://doi.org/10.1111/jzs.12414
  • Wang K, Zhang YP, Li XQ (2022) A New Species of Diploderma (Reptilia: Squamata: Agamidae) from the upper Salween River in Eastern Tibet, China. Zootaxa 5099(2): 201–220. https://doi.org/10.11646/zootaxa.5099.2.3
  • Wilcox TP, Zwickl DJ, Heath TA, Hillis DM (2002) Phylogenetic relationships of the Dwarf Boas and a comparison of Bayesian and bootstrap measures of phylogenetic support. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 25(2): 361–371. https://doi.org/10.1016/S1055-7903(02)00244-0
  • Wu JW, Gao ZF, Qin AM (2005) A re-description of Japalura batangensis. Sichuan Journal of Zoology 24(3): 344–345.

Supplementary material

Supplementary material 1 

Uncorrected genetic pairwise distances (p-distances) (%) between species based on the mitochondrial ND2 gene sequences

Shuo Liu, Mian Hou, Dingqi Rao, Natalia B. Ananjeva

Data type: Xls file.

This dataset is made available under the Open Database License (http://opendatacommons.org/licenses/odbl/1.0/). The Open Database License (ODbL) is a license agreement intended to allow users to freely share, modify, and use this Dataset while maintaining this same freedom for others, provided that the original source and author(s) are credited.
Download file (37.00 kb)