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Text and photos by Nick Baker, unless otherwise credited.
Copyright ゥ Ecology Asia 2022

 
     
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

   
   
 
Burmese Green Crested Lizard
   
   

Family : Agamidae
Species : Bronchocela burmana
Size (snout to vent) : up to 9.4 cm
Size (total length) : ~39 cm

This slender, brightly coloured lizard inhabits wet evergreen forest in peninsular Myanmar and parts of peninsular Thailand (i.e. that part of Thailand that lies west of the Gulf Of Siam), including Phetchaburi Province.

In southernmost Thailand and Peninsular Malaysia, this small-bodied Bronchocela lizard is replaced by other species including the widespread Green Crested Lizard (Bronchocela cristatella) which is much larger in size.

First described in 1878, but subsequently not generally recognised as a distinct species, Bronchocela burmana was resurrected as a valid species in 2017 (Zug et al, 2017).

The typical colouration of the Burmese Green Crested Lizard is bright green with narrow bands of pale spots on the flanks, a pale marking beneath the tympanum (external ear drum) and a yellowish throat. The tail is greenish to brownish, with pale bands. (In the example shown here the pale markings on the body and beneath the tympanum are light blue.)

The nuchal spines (at the back of the neck) are triangular and noticeably smaller than some related species. There is an absence of any noticeable spines on the trunk.

Zug et al interpret that the extremely long tail (greater than 3 times head-body length) of this and other Bronchocela species is an adaptation which allows exploration of the extreme tips of slender branches of trees and shrubs.


Figs 1 and 2 : Example from Kaeng Krachan National Park, Phetchaburi province, Thailand.

Fig 3 : Streamside habitat of this example from Kaeng Krachan.

All photos thanks to Charles Currin.


References :

George R. Zug, Daniel G. Mulcahy, Jens V. Vindum. (2017). Resurrection of Bronchocela burmana Blanford, 1878 for the Green Crested Lizard (Squamata, Agamidae) of southern Myanmar. ZooKeys, (657), 141-156.

 

Fig 1
  

ゥ  Charles Currin
  

Fig 2
  

ゥ  Charles Currin
 

Fig 3
   

ゥ  Charles Currin