The Postcranial Skeleton of Lanthanotus borneensis (Reptilia, Lacertilia) Olivier Rieppel Paläontologisches Institut und Museum der Universität, Künstlergasse 16, CH-8006 Zürich, Switzerland Abstract. The postcranial skeleton of Lanthanotus borneensis is described and compared to that of Heloderma and Varanus. In an evolutionary sense, Lathanotus is intermediate in structure between Heloderma showing relatively primitive and Varanus showing relatively advanced character states. This conclusion is well supported by the structure of the tarsus. Cladistically, Lanthanotus is the sister-taxon of Varanus, the two lineages together forming the sister-taxon of Heloderma, a conclusion based on the distribution of shared derived characters. Introduction Lanthanotus borneensis is still a poorly known lizard from the Sarawak region of Borneo. Until very recently it has been represented by few specimens only in museum collections, but by now a fair number has accumulated. The first specimens of Lanthanotus to be known have been classified with the Helodermatidae by BOULEN- GER (1885, 1899) and CAMP (1923). The status of Lanthanotus has been extensively reviewed by McDOWELL and BOGERT (1954) who concluded, in contrast to BOULEN- GER and CAMP, that "Lanthanotus is not a primitive pre-platynotan intermediate between the Helodermatidae and the Varanidae, but rather is an advanced and specialised
Amphibia-Reptilia – Brill
Published: Jan 1, 1980
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