Mount Cooper Striped Lerista

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Vulnerable

Description

The Mount Cooper Striped Lerista is a pale grey or grey-brown reptile growing to 6.5 cm with faint, dark-brown flecks on the head and back, a broad, dark-brown stripe from snout to tail, whitish belly, absent forelimbs, single-digit hind limbs and 18 mid-body scale rows (Cogger 2000; Greer et al. 1983).

Habitat

Mount Cooper area

In the Mount Cooper area, south-west of Charters Towers, the species has been found in a variety of habitats. These include (Brigalow Belt Reptiles Workshop 2010; Cogger et al. 1993; Wilson & Knowles 1988):

  • Ironbark (Eucalyptus crebra and E. melanophloia) and bloodwood (Corymbia clarksonia and C. intermedia) dominated woodland with shrub and/or grassy ground layers on deep red earths (QLD RE 11.5.9), undulating plains and steep hills on granitic rocks (QLD RE 9.12.1a)
  • Semi-Evergreen Vine Thicket (QLD RE 11.5.15), which extends onto areas of ironstone (duricrust)
  • Spinifex communities.

Four specimens identified in the Mt.Cooper area were found under leaf litter, loose soil under logs, and inside rotten logs in vegetation approximating semi-evergreen vine thicket (QLD RE 11.5.15) (Shea in Cogger et al. 1993). The soils observed at these recorded locations were deep, porous, coarse, yellow-red sandy soils on sandstone and adjacent to heavier, ironstone-based substrates (Brigalow Belt Reptiles Workshop 2010; Greer et al. 1983). A large proportion of semi-evergreen vine thicket and adjacent woodland communities (QLD RE 11.5.15) in the region has been cleared for agriculture. However, the species may be found in areas where regrowth of this vegetation type is currently mapped as cleared by the Queensland Department of Environment and Resource Management (Brigalow Belt Reptiles Workshop 2010).

Einasleigh Uplands

Specimens found in the Einasleigh Uplands Bioregion, approximately 100–200 km NNW of Hughenden, have been found in vegetation approximating (Brigalow Belt Reptiles Workshop 2010; Cogger et al. 1993):

  • Cotton Tree (Cochlospermum gregorii)/Kapok Bush (Cochlospermum gillivaraei) dominated low woodland to low open woodland (QLD RE 9.12.36a)
  • Narrow-leafed Ironbark (Eucalyptus crebra)/Inland Yellow-jacket (E. similis) dominated grassy, low open woodland on undulating plains and granitic rises (QLD RE 9.12.14)
  • Ironbark and Lemon-scented Gum (Corymbia citriodora) dominated open forest, with a well-developed grassy understorey on red and yellow earths and sandy soils on the margins of high-altitude, sandstone plateaus (QLD RE 2.10.3)
  • Cloncurry Box (E. leucophylla), Inland Bloodwood (Corymbia terminalis) and Darwin Box (E. tectifica) dominated woodlands on flat sandy plains and deep yellow podzolic soils (QLD RE 2.5.10).

References

Potential habitat of the Mount Cooper Striped Lerista

Potential habitat of the Mount Cooper Striped Lerista (Qld Government)

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