Microcaecilia iwokramae

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Microcaecilia iwokramae
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Amphibia
Family: Siphonopidae
Genus: Microcaecilia
Species: M. iwokramae
Binomial name
Microcaecilia iwokramae
(Wake and Donnelly, 2010)[2]

Caecilita iwokramae Wake and Donnelly, 2010

Microcaecilia iwokramae is a species of caecilian in the family Siphonopidae. It is endemic to Guyana and only known from its type locality in the Iwokrama Forest.[3] It was first described as Caecilita iwokramae in the monotypic genus Caecilita,[2] before being recognised as belonging to Microcaecilia.[4]

Microcaecilia iwokramae was first thought to be the second known species of lungless caecilian and first from a terrestrial habitat,[2][5] the other lungless species being the aquatic Atretochoana eiselti. Microcaecilia iwokramae is small and terrestrial, and does have a lung. The holotype, found in Guyana, in the scrub of Iwokrama Forest, was 11.2 centimetres (4.4 in) in length, with 102 annuli. Its colour in life was not recorded, but in preservative it was light yellow-brown with mottling. Unlike previously reported, this species does have open external nares, and possesses a single, well-developed lung, and it is similar to other Microcaecilia in having an orbit mostly covered by bone (closed).[4]

Microcaecilia iwokramae appears to be reasonably common in the vicinity of the type locality. Specimens could be found by digging soil, particularly under rotting wood or leaf litter or between the buttress roots of trees.[4]


  1. ^ IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group (2013). "Caecilita iwokramae". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 18 June 2014. 
  2. ^ a b c Wake, M. H.; Donnelly, M. A. (2009). "A new lungless caecilian (Amphibia: Gymnophiona) from Guyana". Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences. 277 (1683): 915. PMC 2842721Freely accessible. PMID 19923127. doi:10.1098/rspb.2009.1662. 
  3. ^ Frost, Darrel R. (2014). "Microcaecilia iwokramae (Wake and Donnelly, 2010)". Amphibian Species of the World: an Online Reference. Version 6.0. American Museum of Natural History. Retrieved 18 June 2014. 
  4. ^ a b c Wilkinson, Mark; P.J.R. Kok; F. Ahmed; D.J. Gower (2014). "Caecilita Wake & Donnelly, 2010 (Amphibia: Gymnophiona) is not lungless: implications for taxonomy and for understanding the evolution of lunglessness". Zootaxa. 3779 (3): 383–388. doi:10.11646/zootaxa.3779.3.6. 
  5. ^ Kaplan, Matt (18 November 2008). "Giant Lungless "Worm" Found Living on Land". National Geographic News. Retrieved 14 January 2009.