Zonosaurus laticaudatus — Broad-tailed Girdled Lizard
Some other names for this species:
Western Girdled Lizard
This huge Zonosaurus was ensconced on a granite slab overlooking the trail. At the time I assumed it was the very common and widespread Zonosaurus madagascariensis. But after studying the photos, I now think that it is more likely Z. laticaudatus, based on differences in pattern: The stripes start behind the head and extend all the way down the body and a portion of the tail, and the top of the head is a solid tan color. In Z. madagascariensis the stripes start on the head behind the eye, and fade away before reaching the tail. However, Glaw and Vences don't show any records of Z. laticaudatus very close to this part of the country. Also, the scalation on the head is hard to discern in any of my photos, but it appears that the prefrontal head scales are separated, which would match Z. madagascariensis rather than Z. laticaudatus. So the identification is far from certain. If you know any better than I do, please send me email.
Here is a list of all the reptiles and frogs I saw on this trip to Madagascar.
- Glaw, F., Vences, M. 1994. A Fieldguide to the Amphibians and Reptiles of Madagascar, Second Edition
- Glaw, F., Vences, M. 2007. A Field Guide to the Amphibians and Reptiles of Madagascar, Third Edition
- Henkel, F., Schmidt, W. 2000. Amphibians and Reptiles of Madagascar and the Mascarene, Seychelles, and Comoro Islands