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Gehyra polka DOUGHTY, BAUER, PEPPER & KEOGH, 2018

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Higher TaxaGekkonidae, Gekkota, Sauria, Squamata (lizards: geckos)
Common NamesE: Large-spotted Mid-west Rock Gehyra 
SynonymGehyra polka DOUGHTY, BAUER, PEPPER & KEOGH 2018: 22 
DistributionAustralia (Western Australia: Pilbara region)

Type locality: 6 km north-west of Noondie Outstation (27.0744°S, 117.0789°E)  
TypesHolotype: WAM R132290, an adult male collected 6 km north-west of Noondie Outstation (27.0744°S, 117.0789°E) by B. Maryan on 11 April 1998, all from Western Australia.
PARATYPES: WAM R119368–9 (males), 50 km south-west of Yalgoo (28.65°S, 116.30°E); WAM R127414–5 (males), 10.3 km south of Yinnietharra Homestead (24.7202°S, 116.1197°E); WAM R127543 (female), Barnong Homestead (28.6333°S, 116.2833°E); WAM R132291 (male), as for holotype; WAM R132294 (male), Marlandy Hill (28.1216°S, 117.2331°E).
DiagnosisDIAGNOSIS: Differs from non-Australian Gehyra by lack of extensive webbing between toes III and IV and a cutaneous fold along the posterior margin of the hindlimb, and the presence of transversely widened subcaudal scales. Distinguished from other Australian Gehyra by possession of moderate body size (up to 61 mm SVL) and widened snout, well-developed jaw adductor musculature, moderately gabled rostral, upper postnasal 1/3 the size of lower, 9–10 supralabials, first supralabial slightly taller and narrower than second, inner chin shields in contact with second infralabial, first parinfralabial in contact with posterior edge of second infralabial, mental scale long, penetrating along half the length of the inner chin shields with straight sides or slight concavity when in contact with first infralabial, subdigital lamellae on fourth finger 6–7, fourth toe 7–8, lamellae divided and without basal wedge of granules; background colour reddish-brown with large dark and pale spots not in contact, canthal stripe weak, loreal and temporal stripes variably expressed, no post-orbital stripes, tail with alternating dark and pale bands.
Further distinguished from other reddish-brown Gehyra in the mid-west and Pilbara regions as follows. It resembles G. punctulata sp. nov. most closely, but differs by possessing a more plain and reddish background with larger spots. From G. media sp. nov., G. micra sp. nov. and G. peninsularis sp. nov. by larger body size, longer and more depressed snout and more numerous supralabials and subdigital lamellae; from G. punctata by slightly smaller body size, first parinfralabial encroaching on posterior edge of second (vs third) infralabial and dark and pale spots on dorsum not in contact; from G. macra sp. nov. by smaller body size, fewer subdigital lamellae and pre-cloacal pores, more reddish dorsum, clearly demarcated spots and lack of a pale, narrow vertebral stripe; from G. pilbara and G. montium by larger body size, longer snout, and distinct markings on dorsum without background reticulations. 
CommentHabitat: Rocky outcrops, including sandstone, granite and metamorphosed rocks.

Similar species: many photographs of ‘G. punctata’ are actually Gehyra polka ((e.g. Storr et al. 1990, plate 10, Figure 1; Bush et al. 2007).

Distribution: see map in Doughty et al. 2018: 7 (Fig. 2). 
EtymologyPolka is an allusion to the polka dot patterns on the dorsum of this species. The Bohemian ‘polka dance’ was fashionable in the mid-19th century, and polka was appended to the names of many goods and objects, but only ‘polka dot’ is in use today. The word may have been a modification of the Czech pulka, meaning ‘half’, in reference to the quick steps employed in the dance. Used as a noun in apposition. 
  • Doughty, Paul; Aaron M. Bauer, Mitzy Pepper and J. Scott Keogh 2018. Spots before the eyes: revision of the saxicoline geckos of the Gehyra punctata (Squamata: Gekkonidae) species complex in the Pilbara region of Western Australia. Records of the Western Australian Museum 33: 001–050 - get paper here
  • Ellis, Ryan J.; Paul Doughty and Aaron M. Bauer 2018. An annotated type catalogue of the geckos and pygopods (Squamata: Gekkota: Carphodactylidae, Diplodactylidae, Gekkonidae, Pygopodidae) in the collection of the Western Australian Museum. Records of the Western Australian Museum 33: 051–094 - get paper here
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