Aspidoscelis gypsi 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Reptilia Squamata Teiidae

Scientific Name: Aspidoscelis gypsi (Wright & Lowe, 1993)
Common Name(s):
English Little White Whiptail
Cnemidophorus gypsi Wright & Lowe, 1993
Taxonomic Notes: This taxon was first described as a subspecies of Cnemidophorus inornatus (Aspidoscelis inornata). Crother et al. (2000) and Collins and Taggart (2002) treated it as a distinct species. Samples from Edge of Sands have characteristics that suggest earlier gene exchange with Aspidoscelis inornata llanuras; there is no evidence at present for direct contact between gypsi and llanuras (Wright and Lowe 1993).

Reeder et al. (2002) examined phylogenetic relationships of the whiptail lizards of the genus Cnemidophorus based on a combined analysis of mitochondrial DNA, morphology, and allozymes. They determined that Cnemidophorus in the traditional sense is paraphyletic and thus in need of nomenclatural revision. Rather than subsume all cnemidophorine species (including Kentropyx) in a single large genus (Ameiva), they proposed a split that placed the North American "Cnemidophorus" clade in the monophyletic genus Aspidoscelis; under this arrangement, South American taxa remain in the genus Cnemidophorus.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Vulnerable D2 ver 3.1
Year Published: 2007
Date Assessed: 2007-03-01
Needs updating
Assessor(s): Hammerson, G.A.
Reviewer(s): Cox, N., Chanson, J.S. & Stuart, S.N. (Global Reptile Assessment Coordinating Team)
Listed as Vulnerable because it is known from only a single location.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species is restricted to a small area in the southwest of the United States. Its range includes the White Sands region, in south-central New Mexico (Wright and Lowe 1993). The White Sands region encompasses about 712 sq. km, and the lizard inhabits only a portion of this area.
Countries occurrence:
United States
Additional data:
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:The entire range of this species can be regarded as comprising only one occurrence or subpopulation. The total adult population size is unknown but may exceed 10,000 (assuming at least 10 adults per ha [1,000 per sq. km] over at least 10 sq. km; however, density and area of occupancy are unknown). Population trends are unknown but probably stable.
Current Population Trend:Stable
Additional data:

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:This lizard is restricted or nearly restricted to dunes of white sand (Wright and Lowe 1993). Dixon (1967) reported finding individuals as far as 50 m from the dunes, on what he called "adobe soil."

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): No major threats have been identified.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: This lizard occurs on the White Sands National Monument and White Sands Missile Range.

Citation: Hammerson, G.A. 2007. Aspidoscelis gypsi. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2007: e.T64269A12759727. . Downloaded on 25 September 2018.
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