The first published report of a large treeskink from Rarotonga, Cook Islands, appeared in 1988. The first museum voucher specimen was collected in 1984. Although this skink seems likely to be a recent arrival to the island of Rarotonga, it represents a unique member of the Emoia samoensis species group. We compare this population with other members of the E. samoensis group and describe the population as Emoia tuitarere n. sp., distinguished by a suite of external characters including SVL, number of dorsal scale rows, and number of subdigital lamellae of the fourth toe. We provide preliminary definitions for the concolor and samoensis species subgroups proposed by Brown (1991), although current molecular data do not support their monophyly (Hamilton et al., 2010). © 2011. Magnolia Press.
Publication Source (Journal or Book title)
Zug, G., Hamilton, A., & Austin, C. (2011). A new emoia samoensis group lizard (Squamata: Scincidae) from the cook Islands, South-central pacific. Zootaxa (2765), 47-57. https://doi.org/10.11646/zootaxa.2765.1.4