East African Flood Plain Caecelian
© 2016 Dr. Joachim Nerz (1 of 12)
Description: Both male and female adults range from 160 to 330 mm in snout-vent length (Harper et al. 2010). Total lengths for Shistometopum gregorii are between 150 mm and 350 mm. Average number of primary annuli is 114.3 for males and 114.5 for females (ranging from 110 to 119) (Harper et al. 2010; Nussbaum and Pfrender 1998). Average number of secondary annuli is 46. Average number of complete secondary annuli is about 11 (Nussbaum and Pfrender 1998). Small scales can be found in the skin. S. gregorii has visible eyes. (Channing and Howell 2006).
Coloration: S. gregorii has a black body that is grey to brown throughout. The head is usually a shade of grey and is usually different from the body coloration. (Channing and Howell 2006; Harper et al. 2010).
Distribution and Habitat
Country distribution from AmphibiaWeb's database: Kenya, Tanzania, United Republic of
Life History, Abundance, Activity, and Special Behaviors
While little is known about reproduction in S. gregorii, it is a viviparous and most likely a precocial species. Adults eat soil macroinvertebrates such as earthworms and termites. (Channing and Howell 2006; Harper et. al. 2010).
Trends and Threats
S. gregorii was named for the geologist, J.W. Gregory who discovered the holotype (Channing and Howell 2006; Nussbaum and Pfrender 1998). The species was previously named Dermophis gregorrii and Bdellophis unicolor (Frost 2011).
The two populations of S. gregorii might be distinct species. Cloaca in S. gregorii have similar morphology to that of S. thomense. Also, the mid-dorsal region of the phallodeum in two Tanzanian specimens of S. gregorii have a greater resemblance to the morphology of S. thomense than to the single, examined specimen of a Kenyan S. gregorii (Gower and Wilkinson 2002).
Channing, A., and Howell, K. M. (2006). Amphibians of East Africa. Cornell University Press, Ithaca.
Frost, D. (2011). Amphibian Species of the World: an Online Reference. Version 5.5.
Gower, D. J., and Wilkinson, M. (2002). ''Phallus morphology in caecilians (Amphibia: Gymnophiona) and its systematic utility.'' Bulletin of the Natural History Society of London (Zoology), 68, 143-154.
Harper, E. B., Measey G. J., Patrick D. A., Menegon M., and Vonesh J. R. (2010). Field Guide to Amphibians of the Eastern Arc Mountains and Coastal Forests of Tanzania and Kenya. Camerapix Publishers International, Nairobi, Kenya.
Loader, S., Howell, K., Gower, D., Measey, J., and Wilkinson, M. (2004). Schistometopum gregorii. In: IUCN 2010. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2010.4. www.iucnredlist.org. Downloaded on 14 April 2011.
Nussbaum, R.A. and Pfrender, M.E. (1998). ''Revision of the African caecilian genus Schistometopum Parker (Amphibia: Gymnophiona: Caeciliidae).'' Miscellaneous Publications Museum of Zoology, University of Michigan, 187, 1-32.
Written by Karen Sorenson, Yu-Huan Wu, and Mary Watson (kmsorenson AT ucdavis.edu, yuwu AT ucdavis.edu, marywatson87 AT gmail.com), UC Davis
First submitted 2011-04-21
Edited by Mingna (Vicky) Zhuang, Kellie Whitaker (2012-03-22)
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