The Taxonomic Status of the Red-Banded Butterfly Lizard, Leiolepis rubritaeniata Mertens, 1961, with Distributional and Natural History Notes

Timo Hartmann, Sovath Sothanin, Markus Handschuh, Wolfgang Böhme


In this paper, we argue for specific rank for Leiolepis rubritaeniata, formerly assigned as a subspecies to either L. belliana or to L. reevesii. In addition, we present a new country record of L. rubritaeniata for Cambodia, give first brief ecological information on this species and dismantle intraspecific trends of geographical variation in male flank coloration patterns.


Squamata: Agamidae: Leiolepis rubritaeniata; Cambodia; new record; male color pattern; male-male interaction

Full Text:



Böhme W. (1982), «Über Schmetterlingsagamen, L. b. belliana (Gray, 1827) der Malayischen Halbinsel und ihre parthenogenetischen Linien (Sauria: Uromastycinae)», Zool. Jb. Syst., 109, 157 – 169.

Böhme W. (2003), «Zur Kenntnis aggressiver Auseinandersetzungen frei lebender Schmetterlingsagamen (Gattung Leiolepis Cuvier), mit einer bei Wirbeltieren bisher unbekannten Lokomotionsform», Draco, 4(14), 34 – 39.

Boulenger G. A. and Power J. H. (1921), «A revision of the South African agamas allied to Agama hispida and A. atra», Trans. Roy. Soc. S. Africa, 9, 229 – 287.

Darevsky I. S. and Kupriyanova L. A. (1993), «Two new all-female lizard species of the genus Leiolepis Cuvier, 1829 from Thailand and Vietnam (Squamata: Sauria: Uromastycinae)», Herpetozoa, 6(1), 3 – 20.

Darevsky I. S. and Nguyen V. S. (2004), «Leiolepis reevesii rubritaeniata. Geographic distribution», Herpetol. Rev., 35(3), 288.

Das I. (2010), A Field Guide to the Reptiles of South-East Asia, New Holland Publishers (UK) Ltd., London.

Glaw F. and Vences M. (2007), A Field Guide to the Amphibians and Reptiles of Madagascar, Vences and Glaw Verlag, Cologne.

Grismer L. L., Neang T., Chav T., Wood Jr. P. L., Oaks J. R., Holden J., Grismer J. L., Szutz T. R., and Youmans T. M. (2008a), «Additional amphibians and reptiles from Phnom Samkos Wildlife Sanctuary in northwestern Cardamom Mountains, Cambodia, with comments on their taxonomy and the discovery of three new species», Raffles Bull. Zool., 56(1), 161 – 175.

Grismer L. L., Neang T., Chav T., and Grismer J. L. (2008b), «Checklist of the amphibians and reptiles of the Cardamom region of southwestern Cambodia», Camb. J. Nat. Hist., 1, 12 – 28.

Grismer J. L. and Grismer L. L. (2010), «Who’s your mommy? Identifying maternal ancestors of asexual species of Leiolepis Cuvier, 1829 and the description of a new endemic species of asexual Leiolepis Cuvier, 1829 from Southern Vietnam», Zootaxa, 2433, 47 – 61.

Köhler G. (2008), Reptiles of Central America, Herpeton, Offenburg.

Lin L.-H., Ji X., Diong C.-H., Du Y., and Li C.-X. (2010), «Phylogeography and population structure of the Reeve’s Butterfly Lizard (Leiolepis reevesii) inferred from mitochondrial DNA sequences», Mol. Phylogenet. Evol., 56, 601 – 607.

Losos J. B. (2009), Lizard in an Evolutionary Tree: Ecology and Adaptive Radiation of Anoles, Univ. of California Press, Berkeley.

Mertens R. (1961), «Die Rassen der Schmetterlingsagame, Leiolepis belliana», Senckenberg. Biol., 42, 507 – 510.

Pauwels O. S. G. and Chimsunchart C. (2007), «Die Augenfleck-Schmetterlingsagame Leiolepis ocellata Peters, 1971 in Thailand», Elaphe, 15(1), 60 – 52.

Peters G. (1971), «Die intragenerischen Gruppen und die Phylogenese der Schmetterlingsagamen (Agamidae: Leiolepis)», Zool. Jb. Syst., 98, 11 – 130.

Schmitz A., Vences M., Weitkus S., Ziegler T., and Böhme W. (2001), «Recent maternal divergence of the parthenogenetic lizard Leiolepis guentherpetersi from L. guttata: molecular evidence (Reptilia: Squamata: Agamidae)», Zool. Abh. Mus. Tierkd. Dresden, 51, 356 – 360.

Srikulnath K., Matsubara K., Uno Y., Thongpan A., Suputtitada S., Apisitwanich S., Matsuda Y., and Nishida C. (2009), «Karyological characterization of the butterfly lizard (Leiolepis reevesii rubritaeniata, Agamidae, Squamata) by Molecular Cytogenetic Approach», Cytogen. Genome Res., 125, 213 – 223.

Srikulnath K., Matsubara K., Uno Y., Thongpan A., Suputtitada S., Nishida C., Matsuda Y., and Apisitwanich S. (2010), «Genetic relationship of the three butterfly lizard species (Leiolepis reevesii rubritaeniata, Leiolepis belliana belliana, Leiolepis boehmei, Agamidae, Squamata) inferred from nuclear gene sequence analyses», Kasetsart J. Nat. Sci., 44(3), 424 – 435.

Stuart B. L. (1999), «Amphibians and reptiles», in: J. W. Duckworth, R. E. Salter and K. Khounboline (eds.), Wildlife in Lao PDR: 1999 Status Report, IUCN-The World Conservation Union, Vientiane, pp. 43 – 67.

Swan R. S. and Daltry J. C. (2002), «Reptiles and amphibians», in: J. C. Daltry (ed.), Social and Ecological Surveys of Phnom Aural Wildlife Sanctuary, Cardamom Mountains, Cambodia. Fauna and Flora International, Phnom Penh, pp. 23 – 40.

Teynié A., David P., Ohler A., and Lauanglath K. (2004), «Notes on a collection of amphibians and reptiles from southern Laos, with a discussion of the occurrence of Indo-Malayan species», Hamadryad, 29, 33 – 62.

Wagner P. (2007), «Studies in African Agama. I. On the taxonomic status of Agama lionotus usambarae Barbour and Loveridge, 1928», Herpetozoa, 20(1), 69 – 73.

Wagner P., Burmann A., and Böhme W. (2008), «Studies on African Agama. II. Resurrection of Agama agama kaimosae Loveridge, 1935 (Squamata: Agamidae) from synonymy and its elevation to species rank», Russ. J. Herpetol., 15(1), 1 – 7.

Weitkus S. (1999), Untersuchungen zur Systematik, Ethologie und Ökologie südostasiatischer Schmetterlingsagamen (Sauria: Agamidae: Leiolepis). Unpublished Diploma Thesis, University of Bonn, Bonn.



  • There are currently no refbacks.

You can subscribe to the print or electronic version of the journal on the site of EastView Company. If you have any questions, please write to the email