Aspidoscelis septemvittata 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Reptilia Squamata Teiidae

Scientific Name: Aspidoscelis septemvittata (Cope, 1892)
Common Name(s):
English Mexican Plateau Spotted Whiptail, Plateau Spotted Whiptail
Aspidoscelis gularis ssp. septemvittatus (Cope, 1892)
Cnemidophorus gularis ssp. septemvittatus Cope, 1892
Cnemidophorus septemvittatus Cope, 1892
Taxonomic Notes: 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.

Taxonomy is unstable with respect to whether septemvittata is a species (Forstner et al. 1998) or a subspecies of A. gularis (Walker 1981, Walker et al. 2001) or A. scalaris (Smith et al. 1996, if septemvittata is not included in A. gularis). See Walker et al. (2001) for a detailed discussion of taxonomic uncertainties. Crother et al. (2000, 2003) listed A. septemvittatus as a distinct species that includes scalaris. See Crother et al. (2000) for discussion of their selection of C. septemvittatus (= A. septemvittata) as the proper name when septemvittata, scalaris, and semifasciata are all considered synonyms.

Aspidoscelis septemvittata hybridizes with A. gularis in several areas (Walker 1986, Forstner et al. 1998).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2007
Date Assessed: 2007-03-01
Assessor(s): Hammerson, G.A. & Lavin, P.
Reviewer(s): Cox, N., Chanson, J.S. & Stuart, S.N. (Global Reptile Assessment Coordinating Team)
Taxonomic uncertainties exist with this species. It was initially assessed at the workshop as part of A. gularis. Regardless of the potential taxonomic split, this species is Least Concern in view of the fairly large and probably relatively stable extent of occurrence, area of occupancy, number of subpopulations, and population size. No major threats are known.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:Taxonomic ambiguities obscure the range of this species. The range minimally extends from the Big Bend region of southwestern Texas south into northern Mexico. Walker et al. (2001) restricted the range of septemvittata (in the strict sense) to Presidio County, Texas, and northeastern Chihuahua; they identified as undescribed species certain additional populations in Texas and Mexico that previously have been allocated to A. septemvittata; moreover, they believed that septemvittata should be treated as a subspecies of A. gularis. Here we provisionally regard A. gularis and A. septemvittata as distinct species and include in the range of A. septemvittata the undescribed species as well as populations assigned to scalaris, which we regard as conspecific with A. septemvittata. Hence the range of A. septemvittata includes several counties in southwestern Texas (Dixon 2000) and the Mexican states of Chihuahua, Coahuila, northeastern Durango, Zacatecas, and San Luis Potosi.
Countries occurrence:
Mexico; United States
Additional data:
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:This species is represented by an uncertain number of occurrences or subpopulations. Walker et al. (2001) assigned to A. septemvittata 29 localities in Chihuahua and several localities in Presidio County, Texas. The species is represented by many additional occurrences or subpopulations when scalaris is included in A. septemvittata. The total adult population size is unknown but probably exceeds 10,000. The species is fairly common in suitable habitat in Texas (Bartlett and Bartlett 1999). Population trends are not documented but is probably relatively stable.
Current Population Trend:Stable
Additional data:

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:Habitat includes rocky terrain with sparse vegetation, from canyons and low desert foothills to mountains (Conant and Collins 1991, Bartlett and Bartlett 1999). Eggs are laid underground.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): There appear to be no major threats to this widespread species.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: It may be present in some protected areas, although this needs to be confirmed. Other than general research, no direct conservation measures are currently needed for this species.

Citation: Hammerson, G.A. & Lavin, P. 2007. Aspidoscelis septemvittata. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2007: e.T64286A12753562. . Downloaded on 20 October 2017.
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