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Gekko verreauxi TYTLER, 1865

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Higher TaxaGekkonidae, Gekkota, Sauria, Squamata (lizards: geckos)
Common NamesE: Andaman giant gecko 
SynonymGekko verreauxi TYTLER 1865: 546
Gekko stentor – BOULENGER 1885 (part)
Gekko smithii – SMITH 1935 (part)
Gekko verreauxi — KLUGE 1993
Gekko verreauxi — RÖSLER 2000: 82
Gekko (Gekko) verreauxi — WOOD et al. 2019
Gekko (Gekko) verreauxi — WOOD et al. 2020 
DistributionIndia: Andaman Islands

Type locality: Andaman Islands.  
TypesLectotype: BMNH (designated by Ota et al. 1991). Paralectotype. NHMUK 1868.4.3.65, an adult female from the same location. Other specimens: ZSI/ANRC (Andaman and Nicobar Islands Regional Centre). 
DiagnosisDiagnosis. A large-bodied species of Gekko (SVL 140.06– 146.48 mm) characterized by: 12–14 supralabials; 9–13 infralabials; two elongate inner pairs of postmentals in broad contact with each other; two smaller, separated
outer pairs of postmentals; 11–13 precloacal pores in males; absence of femoral pores; two internasals in contact with each other; distinct ventrolateral dermal folds; 26–29 transverse rows of imbricate ventrals; 12 or 13 transverse rows of enlarged, rounded, dorsal tubercles; two to three enlarged post-cloacal spurs on each side of the vent; 18–20 undivided subdigital lamellae on toe IV; presence of five legible, dark, transverse bands in juveniles and subadults transforming into a nearly uniform dark-brown dorsal coloration in adults with a pale-white to light-brown venter (Chandramouli et al. 2021).

Description and variation. A large species of Gekko, measuring 109.55–146.49 mm SVL. Head large (mean HL:SVL 0.26), longer than broad (mean HL:HW 1.19) with a blunt, rounded snout tip. Eyes moderately large (mean ED:HL 0.25) with a vertically elliptical pupil approximately one-half the length of the snout (mean ED:ES 0.53); nostrils situated closer to the snout tip than to the eyes (mean EN:ES 0.79). Trunk one-half as long as the body (mean AG:SVL 0.46). Overall habitus depressed. Supralabials 12–14 on each side; infralabials 9–13 on each side; two moderately enlarged postmentals in broad medial contact, followed by three smaller pairs of scales. Dorsum bearing 11–13 transverse rows of enlarged tubercles. Ventrals imbricate, in 27–29 transverse rows at midbody. A pair of enlarged, rounded cloacal spurs at the base of the vent. Anterior subcaudals not enlarged, posterior ones slightly enlarged. Upper arm shorter than lower arm (mean UAL:LAL 0.79); palm enlarged with five fingers; the first one with an indistinct claw; relative lengths of fingers IV>III>V>II>I. Thighs
short (mean FEL:SVL 0.16), robust bearing a few tuberculated scales on the dorsal surface. Tibia as long as the thighs (mean TBL:SVL 0.16); toes with entire, undivided subdigital lamellae, 18–20 on toe IV; relative lengths of toes IV>III>V>II>I. Fingers and toes free, lacking membranous skin flaps. Males have a series of 11–13 precloacal pores and lack femoral pores (Chandramouli et al. 2021).

Coloration in life. Overall dorsal coloration uniform dark- to light-brown with five to six darker transverse bands on the body and five or six on the tail. Venter uniform brown and lacking any specific pattern. Eyes with vertically elliptical pupils and a greenish yellow iris (Chandramouli et al. 2021). 
CommentSynonymy: Partly after Chandramouli et al. 2021. Has been synonymized previously with Gekko smithii GRAY 1842 (by SMITH 1935 and others). 
EtymologyNamed after Jean Baptiste Edouard Verreaux (1810-1868) and Jules Pierre Verreaux (1807-1873), naturalists, collectors, and dealers. 
  • Aengals, R.; V.M. Sathish Kumar & Muhamed Jafer Palot 2013. Updated Checklist of Indian Reptiles. Privately published, 24 pp.
  • Bauer, Aaron M.; Montri Sumontha , & Olivier S. G. Pauwels 2008. A new red-eyed Gekko (Reptilia: Gekkonidae) from Kanchanaburi Province, Thailand. Zootaxa 1750: 32-42 - get paper here
  • Beolens, Bo; Michael Watkins, and Michael Grayson 2011. The Eponym Dictionary of Reptiles. Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, USA - get paper here
  • Chandramouli SR, Gokulakrishnan G, Sivaperuman C, Grismer LL. 2021. A new species of the genus Gekko Laurenti, 1768 (Squamata: Gekkonidae) from the Nicobar Archipelago, with an overview of congeners from the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. Amphibian & Reptile Conservation 15(1) [Taxonomy Section]: 108–125 (e276) - get paper here
  • MEESOOK, WORAWITOO; MONTRI SUMONTHA, NATTASUDA DONBUNDIT, OLIVIER S. G. PAUWELS 2021. A new cave-dwelling Gekko (Gekko) from Lopburi Province, central Thailand (Squamata, Gekkonidae). Zootaxa 4969: 318–330 - get paper here
  • Mohan, Ashwini Venkatanarayana 2020. An update to species distribution records of geckos (Reptilia: Squamata: Gekkonidae) on the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Bay of Bengal. Herpetology Notes 13: 631-637 - get paper here
  • Ota,H.; Hikida,T. & Matsui,M. 1991. Re-evaluation of the status of Gekko verreauxi Tytler 1864, from the Andaman Islands, India. Journal of Herpetology 25 (2): 147-151 - get paper here
  • Rösler, H. 2000. Kommentierte Liste der rezent, subrezent und fossil bekannten Geckotaxa (Reptilia: Gekkonomorpha). Gekkota 2: 28-153
  • Rösler, H. 2001. Studien am Tokeh: 1. Gekko gecko azhari MERTENS 1955 (Sauria: Gekkonidae). Gekkota 3: 33-46
  • Skipwith, P.L., Bi, K., Oliver, P.M. 2019. Relicts and radiations: Phylogenomics of an Australasian lizard clade with east Gondwanan origins (Gekkota: Diplodactyloidea). Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution (2019), doi: - get paper here
  • Smith, M.A. 1935. The fauna of British India, including Ceylon and Burma. Reptiles and Amphibia, Vol. II. Sauria. Taylor and Francis, London, 440 pp.
  • Tytler, R. C. 1865. Observations on a few species of geckos alive in the possession of the author. J. Asiatic Soc. Bengal 33 [1864]:535—548. - get paper here
  • Venugopal, P.D. 2010. An updated and annotated list of Indian lizards (Reptilia: Sauria) based on a review of distribution records and checklists of Indian reptiles. Journal of Threatened Taxa 2 (3): 725-738. - get paper here
  • Vesely,M. 1999. A note on the morphology and natural history of Gekko verreauxi TYTLER 1864. Senckenbergiana biologica 79 (1): 95-99
  • Vogel, Gernot 2014. Die Andamanen – Ein wenig bekanntes Tierparadies. Terraria-Elaphe 2014 (6): 44-55 - 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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