Let's play....Name that Skink!

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spinifer
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Let's play....Name that Skink!

Post by spinifer » May 12th, 2011, 5:36 pm

Ok test your ID skills on 10 Delmarva specimens.

Skink 1
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Skink 2
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Skink 3
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Skink 4
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Skink 5
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Skink 6
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Skink 7
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Skink 8
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Skink 9
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Skink 10
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Carl Brune
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Re: Let's play....Name that Skink!

Post by Carl Brune » May 12th, 2011, 7:21 pm

1- fasciatus
2- fasciatus
3- fasciatus
4- fasciatus
5- fasciatus
6- fasciatus
7- fasciatus
8- laticeps
9- fasciatus
10- fasciatus

bobassetto
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Re: Let's play....Name that Skink!

Post by bobassetto » May 13th, 2011, 7:49 am

1. Mario
2. Veronica
3. Gertrude
4. Dracula
5. Pat
6. Pearlie
7. Carmela
8. Nick
9. Vinnie
10. Theresa

millside
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Re: Let's play....Name that Skink!

Post by millside » May 14th, 2011, 6:51 am

wow, I don't know, but will be interested to learn about the differences,
they all look the same to me, so every skink is a five lined until I can learn the details.

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Kelenken
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Re: Let's play....Name that Skink!

Post by Kelenken » May 14th, 2011, 8:40 am

Carl, could you talk about what field marks you're using? I only know fasciatus, and wouldn't have any idea how to identify laticeps, so it'd be helpful :)
Carl Brune wrote:1- fasciatus
2- fasciatus
3- fasciatus
4- fasciatus
5- fasciatus
6- fasciatus
7- fasciatus
8- laticeps
9- fasciatus
10- fasciatus

will lattea
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Re: Let's play....Name that Skink!

Post by will lattea » May 16th, 2011, 10:29 am

Carl, could you talk about what field marks you're using? I only know fasciatus, and wouldn't have any idea how to identify laticeps, so it'd be helpful
Without giving too much away for the game, it's a matter of one different scale on their face.

I agree with Carl on the IDs. I can't imagine how many skinks you had to chase to catch 10 haha.

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spinifer
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Re: Let's play....Name that Skink!

Post by spinifer » May 16th, 2011, 1:46 pm

There is one screwball in there, that I was positive of ID in the field, but now question based on the limited photographic evidence.

As you can see, the scalation that is typically used (labials & post labials) is variable within the species. However there is one character that I think I see on one that I have never seen on the other.

Carl, I too would like to hear your explanation or anyone else who would like to take a guess.

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Carl Brune
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Re: Let's play....Name that Skink!

Post by Carl Brune » May 16th, 2011, 8:09 pm

So yes, I'm going by the labials and post labials.

Upper labials (between rostral and first upper labial that reaches the eye, exclusive):
4 -> fasciatus
5 -> laticeps
This is far from 100%. In Ohio, it seems like ~15% of fasciatus have 5 on one side. I've never seen one with 5 on both sides, but I'm sure if I play this game long enough it will happen. You definitely want to photograph both sides.

Post Labials - scales in front of the ear opening, behind the upper labials. Disregard tiny scales.
2 larger, roughly equal-sized scales -> fasciatus
none, or 1 larger scale -> laticeps

I'm calling #7 a 4/5 upper-labial fasciatus.

I've read that young laticeps may show 7 lines, not sure where. I have no first-hand experience with that. I can see that on #8 and (perhaps) on #7.

There are also supposed to be some differences in the scalation on the toes, but I've never pursued that.

heavenscloud
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Re: Let's play....Name that Skink!

Post by heavenscloud » May 17th, 2011, 8:19 am

Nate, are there any good articles that compare the morphology of these skinks? Also, do we know for a fact that fasciatus and laticeps are reproductively isolated?

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KingCam
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Re: Let's play....Name that Skink!

Post by KingCam » May 17th, 2011, 8:21 am

Can someone maybe put this into terms I can understand without having a degree? :lol: I want to be able to understand how to tell the difference, but I'm not savvy on the terminology.



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kyle loucks
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Re: Let's play....Name that Skink!

Post by kyle loucks » May 18th, 2011, 6:46 am

I'm gonna post all the skinks we found and took time getting good id pics...

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spinifer
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Re: Let's play....Name that Skink!

Post by spinifer » May 18th, 2011, 6:12 pm

Carl Brune wrote: Upper labials (between rostral and first upper labial that reaches the eye, exclusive):
4 -> fasciatus
5 -> laticeps
This is far from 100%. In Ohio, it seems like ~15% of fasciatus have 5 on one side. I've never seen one with 5 on both sides, but I'm sure if I play this game long enough it will happen. You definitely want to photograph both sides.
Yes and I have had broadheads with 4 labials on one side (no pictures unfortunately though). But lets review the 10 skinks:

Skink #1,2,3,5,6,&10 have 4 labials on each side of the head. This should be enough to conclude fasciatus

#8 has 5 labials on each side of the head, therefore laticeps.

#9 has 4 on the right, 3 on the left - fasciatus
#4 has 4 on the right, 5 on the left - this alone is an inconclusive trait
#7 has 5 on the right, 4 on the left - this alone is an inconclusive trait
Carl Brune wrote:Post Labials - scales in front of the ear opening, behind the upper labials. Disregard tiny scales.
2 larger, roughly equal-sized scales -> fasciatus
none, or 1 larger scale -> laticeps
I used to think post labials were a better character than labials, but now I am starting to notice some variation making it less clear. Again lets review:

#1,2,3,4,5,6,9,10 have 2 postlabials on both sides of the head - fasciatus

#8 has 1 small postlabial on the right, but 2 on the left however they are very small, therefore likely laticeps

#7 has 1 medium postlabial on the left, however on the right, I am not sure if there is 1 or 2 postlabials, the upper scale is extra large and might not be a postlabial but instead split from one of the other scales - for me this is an inconclusive trait
Carl Brune wrote:I'm calling #7 a 4/5 upper-labial fasciatus.
This is where we differ.
Carl Brune wrote:I've read that young laticeps may show 7 lines, not sure where. I have no first-hand experience with that. I can see that on #8 and (perhaps) on #7.
#8 clearly shows 7 stripes, therefore laticeps. You can see 3 lateral stripes in the photo. 3 lateral stripes + 3 lateral stripes on the other side of the body + 1 mid-dorsal stripe = 7.

#7 to me, also shows a third lateral stripe, although it is very low.

Finally a size reference for #7.

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I was certain in the field #7 was laticeps. I continue to lean towards laticeps because of the 7 stripes (but is it really 7 stripes), but the postlabials are really bothersome. This specimen might have to be Plestiodon sp.

Any further thoughts?

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Carl Brune
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Re: Let's play....Name that Skink!

Post by Carl Brune » May 19th, 2011, 2:21 am

I agree that #7 is ambiguous. I don't see the extra stripes, but it looks pretty big to have a blue tail...

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kyle loucks
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Re: Let's play....Name that Skink!

Post by kyle loucks » May 19th, 2011, 4:25 am

Carl Brune wrote:I agree that #7 is ambiguous. I don't see the extra stripes, but it looks pretty big to have a blue tail...
I concur on this one.

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spinifer
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Re: Let's play....Name that Skink!

Post by spinifer » May 19th, 2011, 4:51 am

Carl Brune wrote:but it looks pretty big to have a blue tail...
I thought so too.

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kyle loucks
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Re: Let's play....Name that Skink!

Post by kyle loucks » May 19th, 2011, 12:32 pm

another 4/5 that I had trouble with in the field due to aging eyes.

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bobassetto
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Re: Let's play....Name that Skink!

Post by bobassetto » May 21st, 2011, 5:35 pm

"I CONCUR"?????........REALLY??....... :crazyeyes:

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kyle loucks
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Re: Let's play....Name that Skink!

Post by kyle loucks » May 23rd, 2011, 2:48 pm

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spinifer
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Re: Let's play....Name that Skink!

Post by spinifer » May 23rd, 2011, 2:54 pm

looks like a five-lined.

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kyle loucks
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Re: Let's play....Name that Skink!

Post by kyle loucks » May 23rd, 2011, 2:57 pm

Ok, I will submit it as such...

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spinifer
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Re: Let's play....Name that Skink!

Post by spinifer » May 23rd, 2011, 2:59 pm

no full body pics, or size reference?

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kyle loucks
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Re: Let's play....Name that Skink!

Post by kyle loucks » May 23rd, 2011, 3:20 pm

I didnt really question it as it was normal 5 lined size... just lookin labials...

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spinifer
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Re: Let's play....Name that Skink!

Post by spinifer » August 7th, 2011, 3:24 pm

Give this one a try - from MD eastern shore.

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Mike VanValen
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Re: Let's play....Name that Skink!

Post by Mike VanValen » August 8th, 2011, 4:44 pm

Five labials on each side say laticeps. I'm still learning with these, but it seems there are 2 post-labials. So maybe undetermined?

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Carl Brune
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Re: Let's play....Name that Skink!

Post by Carl Brune » August 8th, 2011, 6:32 pm

Well, I see 5 upper labials on each side, but 2 large post labials on each side and it lacks the 6/7th lines on the sides. I would lean towards fasciatus, but can't be 100% sure. Go catch some more from that litter...

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spinifer
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Re: Let's play....Name that Skink!

Post by spinifer » August 9th, 2011, 1:20 pm

Carl Brune wrote:Well, I see 5 upper labials on each side, but 2 large post labials on each side and it lacks the 6/7th lines on the sides. I would lean towards fasciatus, but can't be 100% sure. Go catch some more from that litter...
That is my inclination as well. We have already documented both laticeps and fasciatus from this site. All the broadhead juveniles I have found so far have the additional stripes, but I am not sure that is always the case. I should have counted the mid-dorsal scale rows on this one.

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