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Cnemaspis auriventralis RUJIRAWAN, YODTHONG, AMPAI, TERMPRAYOOON, AKSORNNEAM, STUART & AOWPHOL, 2022

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Higher TaxaGekkonidae, Gekkota, Sauria, Squamata (lizards: geckos)
Subspecies 
Common NamesE: Erawan Rock Gecko
Thai: จง้ิจกนว้ิยาวเอราวณั (JingJokNiew Yao Erawan) 
SynonymCnemaspis auriventralis RUJIRAWAN, YODTHONG, AMPAI, TERMPRAYOOON, AKSORNNEAM, STUART & AOWPHOL 2022
Cnemaspis huaseesom — YODTHONG et al. 2022: 160 
DistributionThailand (Kanchanaburi)

Type locality: Thailand, Kanchanaburi Province, Si Sawat District, Tha Kradan Subdistrict, Erawan National Park, Tham Phra That Protection Unit (14.39730N, 99.0818E; 747 m elevation  
Reproduction 
TypesHolotype. (Figs 3–6). ZMKU R 01001, adult male, collected 18 November 2021 by Attapol Rujirawan, Siri- porn Yodthong, Natee Ampai and Akrachai Aksornneam.
Paratypes. (Figs 7, 8). Two adult males and two adult females. ZMKU R 01002 (adult female), same collection data as the holotype. ZMKU R 01003 (adult female), same collection data as the holotype, except collected 20 No- vember 2021. ZMKU R 00999–01000 (two adult males) same collection data as the holotype, except collected 26 November 2019 by Attapol Rujirawan, Siriporn Yodthong, Korkhwan Termprayoon and Akrachai Aksornneam. 
DiagnosisDiagnosis: Cnemaspis auriventralis sp. nov. can be distinguished from all other species in the C. siamensis group by having the following combination of morphological and colour pattern characters: SVL 36.7–38.6 mm in adult males (N = 3), 32.9–36.9 mm in adult females (N = 2); eight to ten supralabials; seven to nine infralabials; ventral scales smooth; six or seven precloacal pores in males; 16–17 paravertebral tubercles linearly arranged; tubercles on the lower flanks present; lateral caudal furrows present; no caudal tubercles in the lateral furrows; ventrolateral caudal tubercles present anteriorly; caudal tubercles not encircling tail; subcaudals smooth bearing a single median row of enlarged smooth scales; two post-cloacal tubercles on each side; no shield-like subtibial scales; subtibial scales smooth; no enlarged submetatarsal scales; 23–27 subdigital lamellae on the fourth toe; sexually dimorphic in dorsal and ventral colour pattern; prescapular marking absent; gular marking absent; and yellow colouration in life on all ventral surfaces of head, body and tail in adult males. (Rujirawan et al. 2022)

Description of holotype. Adult male; SVL 38.0 mm; head oblong in dorsal profile, moderate in size (HL/SVL 0.28), somewhat narrow (HW/SVL 0.19), flat (HD/HL 0.40), distinct from neck; snout moderate (ES/HL 0.42), snout slightly concave in lateral profile; postnasal region concave medially; scales of rostrum round, weakly keeled, raised, larger than similarly-shaped scales on occiput; weak supraorbital ridges; weak frontorostral sulcus; canthus rostralis smoothly rounded; eye large (ED/ HL 0.24); extra-brillar fringe scales small in general, but slightly larger anteriorly; pupil round; ear opening oval, taller than wide; rostral concave dorsally, dorsal 80% divided by longitudinal groove; rostral bordered posteriorly by supranasals, one small azygous internasal and nostrils; bordered laterally by first supralabials; 8R/9L (right/left)
raised supralabials of similar size, but smallest posteriorly; 8R/8L infralabials, decreasing gradually in size posteriorly; nostrils small, elliptical, orientated dorsolaterally; bordered posteriorly by single, flat, enlarged postnasal scales; mental large, triangular, flat, extending to level of second infralabials, bordered posteriorly by three postmentals, medial postmental smaller than laterals; gular scales smooth, flat, round or oval, juxtaposed; throat scales smooth, raised, round, juxtaposed to subimbricate.
Body slender, elongate (AG/SVL 0.42); small, raised, weakly keeled, dorsal scales generally equal in size throughout body, intermixed with numerous, large, multi-keeled, linearly arranged tubercles; enlarged, multi-keeled, conical tubercles on flanks; tubercles extend from the occiput to base of the tail and continue on tail in whorls; body tubercles slightly smaller anteriorly; 17 paravertebral tubercles; pectoral and abdominal scales smooth, flat, imbricate; abdominal scales larger than pectoral and dorsal scales; seven contiguous, pore-bearing, precloacal scales; precloacal pores round to elongate.
Fore-limbs moderately long, slender; dorsal scales raised, weakly keeled, juxtaposed; ventral scales of brachia smooth, raised, juxtaposed; scales beneath forearm smooth, slightly raised, subimbricate; digits long with an inflected joint; claws recurved; subdigital lamellae unnotched; subdigital lamellae wide throughout length of digits, bearing a larger scale at digital inflections; interdigital webbing absent; fingers increase in length from first to fifth, with fourth and fifth nearly equal in length; relative length of fingers I < II < III < V ≤ IV; total subdigital lamellae on fingers I–V: 12– 18–21–25–22 (right), 12–18–22–broken-broken (left). Hind-limbs slightly longer and thicker than fore-limbs; dorsal scales keeled, raised, juxtaposed; ventral scales of thigh and subtibial scales smooth, flat, imbricate; plantar scales smooth, raised, subimbricate; enlarged submetatarsal scales beneath first toes absent; digits elongate with an inflected joint; claws recurved; sub-
digital lamellae unnotched; lamellae wide throughout length of digits; enlarged scales at digital inflections; interdigital webbing absent; toes increase in length from first to fourth and fifth nearly equal in length; relative length of toes I < II < III < V ≤ IV; total subdigital lamellae on toes I–V: 11–18–22–23–22 (right), 11–17–21–24–21 (left).
Tail original (broken at tip), long, slender, TL = 45.9 mm (TL/SVL 1.21); dorsal, caudal scales arranged in segmented whorls; caudal scales keeled, raised, juxtaposed; mid-dorsal and lateral, caudal furrows present; subcaudals smooth; median row of enlarged subcaudal scales present; paravertebral, dorsolateral and lateral rows of large, keeled, caudal tubercles extend length of tail; ventrolateral rows of tubercles present only anteriorly; caudal tubercle rows do not encircle tail; tubercles absent from lateral caudal furrow; enlarged postcloacal tubercles 2R/2L on lateral surface of hemipenial swellings at base of tail. (Rujirawan et al. 2022)

Colouration in life. (Figs 3–5). Dorsal ground colour of head, nape and fore-limbs grey; dorsal ground colour of trunk and hind-limbs yellowish-grey; dorsal ground colour of tail yellow; top of head bearing small, diffuse, faint, dark and light markings; dark postorbital stripes faint extending to occiput; pair of dark, diffuse, blotches on nape; large, light, irregularly-shaped, vertebral blotches extend from nape to base of tail, continuing on to tail as light yellow caudal bands; small, light, irregularly-shaped blotches in shoulder regions and flanks; limbs mottled with small, diffuse light and dark blotches; digits light grey bearing thin, dark bands; all ventral surfaces of head, body and tail yellow; ventral surfaces of limbs light grey with yellow speckling. (Rujirawan et al. 2022)

Colouration in preservative. (Fig. 6). Dorsal and lateral surfaces of head, body, limbs and tail darker grey than in life, with some fading of markings. Ventral surfaces of head, body, limbs and tail creamy-white, with minute dark speckling on gular region, limbs and tail regions. (Rujirawan et al. 2022)

Variation. Cnemaspis auriventralis sp. nov. shows significant sexual dimorphism in colour pattern. All female paratypes lack yellow colouration on the tail and ventral surfaces. Female paratype ZMKU R 01003 was darker coloured in life than other members of the type series. Two male paratypes ZMKU R 00999–01000 were lighter coloured than the holotype in life. Dark markings on the dorsum of all paratypes are more prominent than the holotype. The female paratypes (ZMKU R 01002–01003) lack precloacal pores and have postcloacal tubercles that are relatively smaller than those in males. One male paratype (ZMKU R 01000) has six (2R/4L) pore-bearing pre-cloacal scales separated by a single scale lacking pore. Variation in morphometric and meristic data amongst specimens in the type series are presented in Table 4. (Rujirawan et al. 2022)

Comparisons. Cnemaspis auriventralis sp. nov. is distinguishable from all other members of the C. siamensis group by a combination of morphological and colour pattern characteristics (see Table 5 for additional comparisons). Cnemaspis auriventralis sp. nov. differs from C. adangrawi by having a smaller maximum SVL of 38.6 mm (vs. 44.9 mm); ventral scales smooth (vs. keeled); 16–17 paravertebral tubercles (vs. 23–25); paravertebral tubercles linearly arranged (vs. randomly); tubercles on lower flanks present (vs. absent); caudal tubercles in lateral furrow absent (vs. present); enlarged median subcaudal scales row present (vs. absent); subcaudal scales smooth (vs. keeled); single median row of subcaudals smooth (vs. keeled); two postcloacal tubercles on each side in males (vs. one); subtibial scales smooth (vs. keeled); sexual dimorphism of dorsal colour pattern present (vs. absent); light or yellowish prescapular crescent absent (vs. present); yellow colouration on original tail in males present (vs. absent); and yellow colouration on all ventral surfaces of head, body and tail in males (vs. yellowish colouration only on gular region, abdominal region and caudal region).
Cnemaspis auriventralis sp. nov. differs from C. chanardi by having ventral scales smooth (vs. keeled); 16–17 paravertebral tubercles (vs. 20–30); paravertebral tubercles linearly arranged (vs. randomly); ventrolateral caudal tubercles anteriorly present (vs. absent); subcaudal scales smooth (vs. keeled); two postcloacal tubercles on each side in males (vs. one); subtibial scales smooth (vs. keeled); sexual dimorphism of dorsal colour pattern present (vs. absent); light or yellowish prescapular crescent absent (vs. present); yellow colouration on original tail in males present (vs. absent); and yellow colouration on all ventral surfaces of head, body and tail in males (vs. yellow colouration only on gular region, belly, underside of hind-limbs and subcaudal region).
Cnemaspis auriventralis sp. nov. is most closely related in mitochondrial DNA to C. huaseesom (Fig. 2), but differs in morphology from C. huaseesom by having a smaller maximum SVL of 38.6 mm (vs. 43.5 mm); 16–17 paravertebral tubercles (vs. 18–24); caudal tubercles in lateral furrow absent (vs. present); ventrolateral caudal tubercles anteriorly present (vs. absent); enlarged median subcaudal scales row present (vs. absent); yellow dorsal colouration on fore-limbs in males absent (vs. present); and yellow colouration on all ventral surfaces of head, body and tail in males (vs. yellow colouration only on gular region, throat, pectoral region, underside of fore-limbs and subcaudal region).
Cnemaspis auriventralis sp. nov. differs from C. kamolnorranathi by having 16–17 paravertebral tubercles (vs. 19–24); caudal tubercles in lateral furrow absent (vs. present); ventrolateral caudal tubercles anteriorly present (vs. absent); subcaudal scales smooth (vs. keeled); single median row of subcaudals smooth (vs. keeled); sexual dimorphism of dorsal colour pattern present (vs. absent); yellow colouration on original tail in males present (vs. absent); and yellow colouration on all ventral surfaces of head, body and tail in males (vs. lacking yellow colouration on ventral surfaces).
Cnemaspis auriventralis sp. nov. differs from C. lineatubercularis by having ventral scales smooth (vs. keeled); 16–17 paravertebral tubercles (vs. 19–21); enlarged median subcaudal scales row present (vs. absent); subcaudal scales smooth (vs. keeled); single median row of subcaudals smooth (vs. keeled); two postcloacal tubercles on each side in males (vs. one); subtibial scales smooth (vs. keeled); sexual dimorphism of dorsal colour pattern present (vs. absent); light or yellowish prescapular crescent absent (vs. present); yellow colouration on original tail in males present (vs. absent); and yellow colouration on all ventral surfaces of head, body and tail in males (vs. yellowish colouration only on anterior gular, abdominal and subcaudal regions).
Cnemaspis auriventralis sp. nov. differs from C. omari by having ventral scales smooth (vs. keeled); 6–7 precloacal pores in males (vs. 4); 16–17 paravertebral tubercles (vs. 22–29); ventrolateral caudal tubercles anteriorly present (vs. absent); enlarged median subcaudal scales row present (vs. absent); caudal tubercles not encircling the tail (vs. encircling); two postcloacal tubercles on each side in males (vs. one); subtibial scales smooth (vs. keeled); sexual dimorphism of dorsal colour pattern present (vs. absent); light or yellowish prescapular crescent absent (vs. present); and yellow colouration on all ventral surfaces of head, body and tail in males (vs. yellow colouration only on gular region, belly, underside of hind-limbs, and subcaudal region).
Cnemaspis auriventralis sp. nov. differs from C. phangngaensis by having 7–9 infralabials (vs. 10); ventral scales smooth (vs. keeled); 6–7 precloacal pores in males (vs. 4); 16–17 paravertebral tubercles (vs. 22); tubercles on lower flanks present (vs. absent); enlarged median subcaudal scales row present (vs. absent); subcaudal scales smooth (vs. keeled); single median row of subcaudals smooth (vs. keeled); subtibial scales smooth (vs. keeled); 23–27 subdigital lamellae on the fourth toe (vs. 29); light or yellowish prescapular crescent absent (vs. present); and yellow colouration on all ventral surfaces of head, body and tail in males (vs. yellow coloura-
tion only on anterior gular region, abdomen and subcaudal region).
Cnemaspis auriventralis sp. nov. differs from C. punctatonuchalis by having a smaller maximum SVL of 38.6 mm (vs. 49.6 mm); 6–7 precloacal pores in males (vs. 0); 16–17 paravertebral tubercles (vs. 24–27); 23–27 subdigital lamellae on the fourth toe (vs. 29–31); ocelli on brachium and side of neck in males absent (vs. present); yellow colouration on original tail in males present (vs. absent); and yellow colouration on all ventral surfaces of body and tail in males (vs. orange colouration on throat and subcaudal region).
Cnemaspis auriventralis sp. nov. differs from C. roticanai by having a smaller maximum SVL of 38.6 mm (vs. 47.0 mm); ventral scales smooth (vs. keeled); 16–17 paravertebral tubercles (vs. 25–27); paravertebral tubercles linearly arranged (vs. randomly); ventrolateral caudal tubercles anteriorly present (vs. absent); subcaudal scales smooth (vs. keeled); single median row of subcaudals smooth (vs. keeled); subtibial scales smooth (vs. keeled); light or yellowish prescapular crescent absent (vs. present); yellow colouration on original tail in males present (vs. absent); and yellow colouration on regenerated tail absent (vs. present).
Cnemaspis auriventralis sp. nov. differs from C. selenolagus by having 7–9 infralabials (vs. 10); paravertebral tubercles linearly arranged (vs. randomly); tubercles on lower flanks present (vs. absent); lateral caudal furrow present (vs. absent); ventrolateral caudal tubercles anteriorly present (vs. absent); enlarged median subcaudal scales row present (vs. absent); caudal tubercles not encircling the tail (vs. encircling); enlarged submetatarsal scales on the first toe absent (vs. present); 23–27 subdigital lamellae on the fourth toe (vs. 22); orange-yellow colouration on anterior 1/2 of body in males absent (vs. present); ocelli on brachium and side of neck in males absent (vs. present); light or yellowish prescapular crescent absent (vs. present); yellow dorsal colouration on fore-limbs in male absent (vs. present); yellow colouration on original tail in males present (vs. absent); and having yellow colouration on all ventral surfaces of head, body and tail in males (vs. yellow colouration only on anterior part of body).
Cnemaspis auriventralis sp. nov. differs from C. siamensis by having ventral scales smooth (vs. keeled); 6–7 precloacal pores in males (vs. 0); 16–17 paravertebral tubercles (vs. 19–25); paravertebral tubercles linearly arranged (vs. randomly); ventrolateral caudal tubercles anteriorly present(vs.absent);subcaudalscalessmooth(vs.keeled); single median row of subcaudals smooth (vs. keeled); subtibial scales smooth (vs. keeled); sexual dimorphism of dorsal colour pattern present (vs. absent); lineate gular marking absent (vs. present); and yellow colouration on all ventral surfaces of head, body and tail in males (vs. yellow colouration only on gular region, throat and pectoral region).
Cnemaspis auriventralis sp. nov. differs from C. thachanaensis by having ventral scales smooth (vs. keeled); 6–7 precloacal pores in males (vs. 0); enlarged median subcaudal scales row present (vs. absent); subcaudal scales smooth (vs. keeled); single median row of subcaudals smooth (vs. keeled); two poscloacal tubercles on each side in males (vs. 0); subtibial scales smooth (vs. keeled); lineate gular marking absent (vs. present); and yellow colouration on all ventral surfaces of head, body and tail in males (vs. yellowish-orange colouration only on gular region).
Cnemaspis auriventralis sp. nov. differs from C. vandeventeri by having a smaller maximum SVL of 38.6 (vs. 44.7 mm); ventral scales smooth (vs. keeled); 6–7 precloacal pores in males (vs. 4); 16–17 paravertebral tubercles (vs. 25–29); paravertebral tubercles linearly arranged (vs. randomly); tubercles on lower flanks present (vs. absent); ventrolateral caudal tubercles anteriorly present (vs. absent); subcaudal scales smooth (vs. keeled); single median row of subcaudals smooth (vs. weakly keeled); subtibial scales smooth (vs. keeled); sexual dimorphism of dorsal colour pattern present (vs. absent); light or yellowish prescapular crescent absent (vs. present); and yellow colouration on all ventral surfaces of head, body and tail in males (vs. orange colouration on gular region, throat, pectoral region, underside of limbs, belly and subcaudal region). (Rujirawan et al. 2022) 
Comment 
EtymologyThe species epithet auriventralis is derived from aurum (L.) for gold and ventralis (L.) for venter in reference to the new species having distinct yellow coloura- tion on all ventral surfaces of the head, body and tail in adult males. 
References
  • Rujirawan, A., Yodthong, S., Ampai, N., Termprayoon, K., Aksornneam, A., Stuart, B. L., & Aowphol, A. 2022. A new rock gecko in the Cnemaspis siamensis group (Reptilia, Gekkonidae) from Kanchanaburi Province, western Thailand. Zoosystematics and Evolution, 98(2), 345-363 - get paper here
 
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