Redescription of the rare South American worm lizard Amphisbaena rozei (Squamata: Amphisbaenidae)

in Amphibia-Reptilia
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Amphisbaena rozei is endemic to the Caura River basin in Venezuela, and known only from the holotype and one paratype. Its original description is very brief, lacking relevant information used by taxonomists today. Additionally, A. rozei appears to be similar to A. spurrelli, a species from northwestern Colombia and southern Panama. We present a redescription of A. rozei based on the examination of the type specimens and compare this taxon to the other known South American amphisbaenids, especially A. spurrelli. We conclude A. rozei is a valid name, and the species is diagnosed mainly by the presence of four precloacal pores, a lateral sulcus, 205–209 body annuli, 20 caudal annuli, 15–16 dorsal and 14 ventral segments on a midbody annulus, and dorsal surface of tail covered by strong tubercles.

Redescription of the rare South American worm lizard Amphisbaena rozei (Squamata: Amphisbaenidae)

in Amphibia-Reptilia

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References

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Figures

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    Amphisbaena rozei. (A) Adult female (Holotype MCNC 178). (B) Adult male (Paratype MCNC 13). Scale bars, 10 mm. Photos: J.C. Señaris.

  • View in gallery

    Holotype female MCNC 178 of Amphisbaena rozei. Dorsal (A), lateral (B) and ventral (C) views of the head. Dorsal (D) and ventral (E) views of tail. White arrow indicates the autotomy constriction. Scale bars, 1 mm in A–C and 5 mm in D–E. Photos: J.C. Señaris.

  • View in gallery

    Paratype male MCNC 13 of Amphisbaena rozei. Dorsal (A), lateral (B) and ventral (C) views of the head. Dorsal (D) and ventral (E) views of tail. Scale bars, 1 mm in A–C and 5 mm in D–E. Photos: J.C. Señaris.

  • View in gallery

    Geographic distribution of Amphisbaena rozei and the morphologically similar A. spurrelli in South America (upper left); relative location of the type locality of A. rozei in Venezuela (lower left); and, detail of the Caura River basin at southern Venezuela, showing the type locality, some relevant rivers and relief of the watershed (right).

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