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Gekko gulat (BROWN, DIESMOS, DUYA, GARCIA & RICO, 2010)

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Higher TaxaGekkonidae, Gekkota, Sauria, Squamata (lizards: geckos)
Common Names 
SynonymLuperosaurus gulat BROWN, DIESMOS, DUYA, GARCIA & RICO 2010
Gekko (Pseudosundagekko) gulat — WOOD et al. 2019
Gekko (Balawangekko) gulat — WOOD et al. 2020 
DistributionPhilippines (Palawan)

Type locality: 1300m elevation, 3.4 km west, 0.60 km south of Mt. Mantalingajan peak, Barangay Ransang, area known locally as ‘‘Gunob,’’ Municipality of Rizal, Palawan Province, Palawan Island, Philippines (8°48’48.7’’N; 117°38’59.1’’E)  
Reproductionoviparous (manual and phylogenetic imputation, fide Zimin et al. 2022) 
TypesHolotype: PNM 9282 (Field Collection number ELR 1579), adult male, by Uldarico Dodong Carestia and H. J. D. Garcia, 5 July 2007. 
DiagnosisDiagnosis. Although the new species further blurs the distinction between the genera Luperosaurus and Gekko (as defined by Brown et al., 2000, 2007), we refer it to Luperosaurus by virtue of (1) its possession of a robust body and stout limbs; (2) vestiges of interdigital webbing between some fingers and toes; (3) minute cutaneous folds bordering the posterior edge of the hind limb; (4) small scales encircling the tail (enlarged, strongly differentiated subcaudals absent); (5) scattered, irregular flat, convex, to slightly spinose dorsal tubercles on dorsolateral portions of body and tail (trunk tubercles not arranged in rows); (6) minimal differentiation between dorsal and ventral body scales; and (7) postmentals not slender and elongate as in most members of genus Gekko (Brown et al., 2000, 2007, 2008, 2009). We acknowledge the phenotypic similarity between selected members of the genus Luperosaurus (L. kubli, L. macgregori, L. gulat) and members of the genus Gekko. Therefore, to be clear that this new taxon cannot be confused with any known species of Southeast Asian Gekko, we also diagnose it from these species (below). The new species is readily differentiated from all species of Luperosaurus on the basis of (1) its relatively large body size, (2) the near complete absence of interdigital webbing (vs. greater extent of webbing present in all other species), (3) the reduction of cutaneous expansions bordering the limbs (vs. more extensive in all other species except L. kubli), (4) the presence of moderately enlarged postmentals (vs. more reduced or undifferentiated in other species), (5) the presence of flat to convex tail tubercles limited to dorsolateral portions of body and tail, and (6) high numbers of precloacofemorals. A summary of the distribution of diagnostic character states in Philippine Luperosaurus is presented in Table 1; for extensive comparisons between all Luperosaurus species, see Brown et al., 2007:table 1. Luperosaurus gulat differs from all known Philippine species of Gekko by (1) minimal differentiation between dorsal and ventral body scales (vs. scales on dorsum small, juxtaposed, scales on venter strongly imbricate and greatly enlarged), (2) the presence of only moderately enlarged postmentals (vs. greatly enlarged, elongate, and slender in all Philippine species except G. gecko), and (3) the absence of enlarged subcaudals (present in all Philippine Gekko). Luperosaurus gulat and G. athymus lack dorsal tubercles on anterior portions of the body; in all other Philippine Gekko, dorsal tubercles are present and arranged in longitudinal rows of varying regularity. Additionally, L. gulat has a lower precloacofemoral pore-bearing scale count than G. mindorensis (46–60), G. gigante (54–66), G. palawanensis (65–72), G. romblon (69– 80), and G. porosus (74–82). See Brown et al. (2008, 2009) for recent summaries of the distribution of diagnostic morphology in Philippine members of the genus Gekko. 
CommentPhylogeny: Based on DNA sequences, Luperosaurus gulat is related to the genus Gekko (BROWN et al. 2012), and hence may have to be renamed.

Definition (subgenus Pseudosundagekko): Pseudosundagekko is the sister lineage to a crown clade of Philippine endemics described below. At present containing a single species (G. [P.] gulat), the new subgenus is intended to include any species discovered in the future to share a more recent common ancestor with G. (P.) gulat than with any of the type species of other subgenera recognized here.

Abundance: only known from the type specimen (Meiri et al. 2017).

Type species: Luperosaurus gulat BROWN et al. 2010 is the type species of the subgenus Pseudosundagekko WOOD et al. 2019 and its replacement name Balawangekko Wood et al. 2020. 
EtymologyPseudosundagekko is a masculine noun, formed in reference “Pseudo,” meaning false, “Sunda” in reference to the landmasses of the Sunda Shelf, and “gecko,” for gekkonid lizards; this name is chosen in reference to recent changes in understanding biogeographical relationships and evolutionary history of many iconic vertebrate lineages endemic to the island of Palawan Island (Blackburn et al., 2010; Esselstyn et al., 2010; Siler et al., 2012; Brown et al., 2016), erroneously and over simplistically assumed previously to be a simple faunal extension of the Sunda Shelf island of Borneo.

The specific epithet is taken from the Tagalog (Filipino) term gulat, meaning something unexpected, a surprise, or an astonishing finding. 
  • Brown, R.M., Diesmos, A.C., Duya, M.V., Garcia, H.J.D., & Rico, E.L. 2010. New forest gecko (Squamata; Gekkonidae; Genus Luperosaurus) from Mt. Mantalingajan, southern Palawan Island, Philippines. Journal of Herpetology 44 (1): 37–48 - get paper here
  • Brown, Rafe M.; Arvin C. Diesmos, and Carl H. Oliveros 2011. New Flap-Legged Forest Gecko (Genus Luperosaurus) from the Northern Philippines. Journal of Herpetology 45 (2): 202-210. - get paper here
  • Meiri, Shai; Aaron M. Bauer, Allen Allison, Fernando Castro-Herrera, Laurent Chirio, Guarino Colli, Indraneil Das, Tiffany M. Doan, Frank Glaw, Lee L. Grismer, Marinus Hoogmoed, Fred Kraus, Matthew LeBreton, Danny Meirte, Zoltán T. Nagy, Cristiano d 2017. Extinct, obscure or imaginary: the lizard species with the smallest ranges. Diversity and Distributions - get paper here
  • Rafe M. Brown, Cameron D. Siler, Indraneil Das, Yong Min 2012. Testing the phylogenetic affinities of Southeast Asia’s rarest geckos: Flap-legged geckos (Luperosaurus), Flying geckos (Ptychozoon) and their relationship to the pan-Asian genus Gekko. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 63: 915-921 - get paper here
  • Wood Jr, Perry L.; Xianguang Guo, Scott L. Travers, Yong-Chao Su, Karen V. Olson, Aaron M. Bauer, L. Lee Grismer, Cameron D. Siler, Robert G. Moyle, Michael J. Andersen, Rafe M. Brown 2019. Parachute geckos free fall into synonymy: Gekko phylogeny, and a new subgeneric classification, inferred from thousands of ultraconserved elements. bioRxiv 717520 [preprint] - get paper here
  • Wood, P. L., Guo, X., Travers, S. L., Su, Y. C., Olson, K. V., Bauer, A. M., Grismer, L. L., Siler, C. D., Moyle, R. G., Andersen, M. J. and Brown, R. M. 2020. Parachute geckos free fall into synonymy: Gekko phylogeny, and a new subgeneric classification, inferred from thousands of ultraconserved elements. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 146: 106731 [corrigendum: MPE 164: 107255] - get paper here
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