A new limb-reduced, loam-swimming skink (Reptilia: Squamata: Scincidae: Genus Brachymeles) from central Luzon Island, Philippines
We describe a new species of scincid lizard of the genus Brachymeles from montane forests (1400–1450 m) of Mt. Palali, Caraballo Mountain Range, in central Luzon Island, Philippines. The new species is the second known species of Brachymeles that has only three digits on both the forelimb and hindlimbs. Additional morphological characters include unique scale pigmentation and absence of a pineal eyespot and an auricular opening. The new species is the eighth known Brachymeles from Luzon Island and the twelfth non-pentadactyl species. With this new discovery, the Luzon Faunal Region holds the greatest diversity of species of the genus Brachymeles in the world.