RAUK - Archived Forum - Help - Correct Species Order

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Help - Correct Species Order:

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Davew
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Joined: 12 Jan 2004
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Posted: 13 Jun 2005

Hi,

As I've finally photographed all six native and the three introduced British Reptiles I'm thinking of framing the best shots. Could someone advise me of the correct order in which to display them. I'll be putting the three intro's at the bottom but the correct order for the three would also be appreciated. Additionally the full scientific name including the sub-species if applicable would be lovely. Thanks in advance. So far I've got the order to;

Grass Snake (Cheshire), Adder (Norfolk), Smooth Snake (Dorset), Common Lizard (Cheshire), Slow Worm (Dorset), Sand Lizard (Dorset) - Aesculapian Snake, Wall Lizard, Green Lizard.


Vicar
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Joined: 02 Sep 2004
No. of posts: 1181


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Posted: 13 Jun 2005

Damn nice going, bagging all of those.....especially the Aesculapian. Did you establish that Dice snake was not present ?

Not sure what you mean by correct order ?

How about posting some of the pics ??


Steve Langham - Chairman    
Surrey Amphibian & Reptile Group (SARG).
Davew
Senior Member
Joined: 12 Jan 2004
No. of posts: 99


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Posted: 13 Jun 2005

Hi Vicar,

Ahhh now Dice Snake/Viperine Snake. I got the site details, can't remember if it was from you but thanks if it was. TBH I haven't been and was sort of hoping someone would post some info. I'm slightly bending the rules by labelling it something like "All confirmed self supporting British Species as of June 2005" This gets me out of the Sea Turtle dillema which, lets be honest very few people are going to see or photograph all of those four or is it five? recorded in British waters. Apart from the above I was bit troubled by European Pond Terrapin which may be hanging on somewhere and being kept quiet - understandably so. As for Red-eared Terrapin although they've laid under heat lamps I don't think they could ever be classed as self supporting. Trying to do the same with Butterflies and Dragonflies with about 10 to go on each. Amphibs after that but as any newt out of water looks like a dog turd I'll need to accompany a licensed catcher and set up a tank thingy - next year for that I think. I've posted Aesculapian Snake, Wall Lizard, Sand Lizard, Green Lizard on here previously and don't really want to waste bandwidth as the remaining are just average shots.

Getting the order right is a bit tricky - with birds it's easy, using the standard Voous order (basically putting the species down in scientific order ie Divers first with New World Orioles last)  but all reptile resources I've looked at seem to all have a different combination anyone know what the offical order is before I go to the framers. It's just basically how to present them, do I put Grass Snake first followed by Adder etc

Forgot to mention another achievment have been struck at by all four Snakes but all missed - must be faster than I look

Davew38516.8366782407
Iowarth
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Joined: 12 Apr 2004
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Posted: 14 Jun 2005

Hi Dave

I'm afraid I'm not even going to tackle the "right order" question! I have no idea that such a thing has ever been agreed by anyone - and as you say - all sorts of orders are used! All I can really say is that they should certainly be grouped. e.g. Smooth,Grass Aesculapian Snakes are Colubrids; Green, Sand, Wall, Common are Lacertids but the latter is very distinct from the first two (arguably different genus) and the next to last definitely is. Lizards as a whole are regarded as marginally more primitive that Lizards and the vipers as the most advanced of snakes. I think the anguidae are the more primitive of the Lizards!

Re Latin names, taxonomists have been playing with them. Below are the current names with the prior ones in brackets. (please note that there seems to be continuing debate about the grammatical formation of some species/sub-spp names)

Grass Snake - Natrix natrix helvetica

Adder - Vipera berus berus

Smooth Snake - Coronella austriaca (not aware of any sub-species)

Common Lizard - Zootoca (Lacerta) vivipara (not aware of any sub-species)

Slow-worm - Anguis fragilis fragilis

Sand Lizard - Lacerta agilis agilis

Aesculapean Snake - Zamenis longissimus (Elaphe longissima) (not aware of any sub-species)

Wall Lizard - Podarcis muralis (there are numerous sub-species but they are difficult to differentiate without knowing their origin - and we don't know this for most UK colonies)

Green Lizard - Lacerta bilineata (Lacerta viridis bilineata). Very recent change in species status (which I don't agree with, genetics or not) but the Bournemouth animals exhibit features which identify them as a western form - thus NOT Lacerta viridis viridis.

Hope this helps rather than hinders/confuses!


Chris Davis, Site Administrator
Co-ordinator, Sand Lizard Captive Breeding Programme
Vicar
Senior Member
Joined: 02 Sep 2004
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Posted: 14 Jun 2005

OOo, has common lizard reverted back to Zootoca ? I'd just got used to Lacerta (Lv).

Or am I having a another forgetfulness spasm ?


Steve Langham - Chairman    
Surrey Amphibian & Reptile Group (SARG).
Iowarth
Admin Group
Joined: 12 Apr 2004
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Posted: 14 Jun 2005

Hi Steve

You may be more up to date than me - it seems to have gone back and forth like a yo-yo.

If anyone has the absolute cast iron dead cert guaranteed up to date permanent genetic status I would love to know!


Chris Davis, Site Administrator
Co-ordinator, Sand Lizard Captive Breeding Programme
-LAF
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Joined: 03 Apr 2003
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Posted: 14 Jun 2005
Not sure on the current taxonomic status of the Lacerta genus, but it does seem to be being pulled apart at an alarming rate over the last few years. The vivip. lizard has a whole bunch of non-conformities to the other european Lacerta (assuming they're also going to remain Lacerta - who coined that name and what was the type secies???) so my best guess would be that vivips. belong elsewhere. I'll be sticking to Zootoca until something better arrives.

Lee.
Lee Fairclough
Iowarth
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Posted: 14 Jun 2005

Hi Lee

Yeap - you are right about genus Lacerta. I well remember many, many years ago looking at what are now Podarcis and Lacerta and wondering why on earth they were in the same genus! As years went by and I had the opportunity to compare Lv with other small lacertids such as L. praticola I tended towards the same view regarding these. As a consequence I agree totally re Common Lizards in their own monotypic genus. Re lacerta origins I think this rests with Linnaeus - it is, after all, latin for "Lizard". I have no idea what the type species was but at that time even the newts were placed in genus Lacerta - e.g. Smooth Newt - Lacerta vulgaris.


Chris Davis, Site Administrator
Co-ordinator, Sand Lizard Captive Breeding Programme
Vicar
Senior Member
Joined: 02 Sep 2004
No. of posts: 1181


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Posted: 14 Jun 2005

OK, I've been looking into this.....

One of the 'best' net resources I can find is: the EMBL Database:

http://www.embl-heidelberg.de/~uetz/LivingReptiles.html

However, if you try to find our Common lizard through their hierarchy, you (I mean I) come unstuck.

Via the search link I found it by hitting search, selecting 'REPTILIA' entering '*vivipara' as species and hitting 'DoQuery' button.

Looks damn confusing to me, but it appears to suggest Zooertica is the current thinking...even tho subspecies are labelled as Lacerta !

I'm going to lie down for a bit, my head hurts.

Vicar38517.6114467593
Steve Langham - Chairman    
Surrey Amphibian & Reptile Group (SARG).
Iowarth
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Joined: 12 Apr 2004
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Posted: 14 Jun 2005

EMBL is certainly one of the definitive reptile taxonomy sites - they regard Zootoca as a sub-genus of lacerta. Unfortunately this seems to have left them with a problem of how/where to link it in their own site.

Another excellent site is that which has been worked on for some time by Jeroen Speybroeck, a member of this group. He has entered into voluminous correspondence and investigation into taxonomy and distribution of European herps. He shows Lacerta v as an invalid synonym for Zootoca vivipara.

This useful site can be found at http://intramar.ugent.be/nemys/start.asp?group=16&c=1


Chris Davis, Site Administrator
Co-ordinator, Sand Lizard Captive Breeding Programme
Davew
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Joined: 12 Jan 2004
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Posted: 14 Jun 2005

Thanks for all the help guys - as always this proves to be one of the most helpful and freindly forums around!!! I've now printed off the labels and will drop the lot off at the printers so please no one make any taxonomic changes or discover any new British breeding species for the next couple of years

Would I be right in thinking that the only British reptile, excluding Wall Lizard, with more than one sub species within this country is Sand Lizard? or are these just forms and not true sub species?


Iowarth
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Joined: 12 Apr 2004
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Posted: 14 Jun 2005

Hi Dave

No native British reptile has sub-species within this country (yet!). The only likely contender was the Sand lizard but a genetic study in recent years showed them to be a single sub-species - simply different races.

As for no taxonomic changes - my word you're an optimist. I wake up each expecting to find something else re-classified at the moment!


Chris Davis, Site Administrator
Co-ordinator, Sand Lizard Captive Breeding Programme

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