Bradypodion melanocephalum
Scientific name Common name(s) alternate scientific names described by year size brood

Bradypodion melanocephalum

Black-Headed Dwarf Chameleon Microsaura melancephalum, Chamaeleon melanocephalus, Lophosaura melanocephala kentamica, Chamaeleo pumilum melanocephalus
see a species list of Bradypodion
Gray 1865 Small Live

Bradypodion melanocephalum is considered to be part of the B. pumilum complex and is considered a subspecies of B. pumilum by Klaver and Boehme (1997) although Raw (1976) and Necas (1999) have given it species status.

B. melanocephalum is found among the trees, bushes and grass and reed stalks of dry forest regions along the eastern coasts of the Cape and Natal Provinces of South Africa as far north as southern Mozambique. this species appears to be locally abundant. The low casque curves upward and narrows at its posterior end. The dorsal crest extends onto the tail but it is only weakly developed, composed of small, compressed tubercles. The gular crest is not well developed and is composed or small, conical tubercles or small, scaled skin flaps. Body scalation is largely granular but with two irregular rows of enlarged, flattened tubercular scales along the flanks. Total length 5-6 inches. The interstitial skin of the gular region is white. Basic body coloration is bown but the shades are variable. When sleeping it is a paler shade of brownish gray. Colors darken during sexual and agonistic encounters.

B. melanocephalum has up to 12 live young born in a single clutch. Number of clutches per year is unknown.

Contributed by E. Pollak

Klaver, C. & W. Boehme. 1997. Chamaeleonidae. Das Tierreich, 112: i-xiv' 1 - 85. Verlag Walter de Gruyter & Co., Berlin, New York.
Necas, P. 1999. Chameleons: Nature's Hidden Jewels. Krieger Publishing Company, Malabar, FL.
Raw, L. R. G., 1976. A survey of the dwarf chameleons of Natal, South Africa, with descriptions of three new species (Sauria: Chamaeleonidae), Durban Museum Novitates 11 (7): 139-161.

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