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Hemidactylus chipkali MIRZA & RAJU, 2017

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Higher TaxaGekkonidae, Gekkota, Sauria, Squamata (lizards: geckos) 
Common NamesE: Central Indian Leaf-toed Gecko 
SynonymHemidactylus chipkali MIRZA & RAJU 2017 
DistributionIndia (Madhya Pradesh)

Type locality: from a cliff along the road leading to Pachmarhi town, Hoshangabad District, Madhya Pradesh (22.485050°, 78.449340°, 1,092 m).  
TypesHolotype: NCBS AT107, adult male, collected on 09 May 2014 by Rajesh Sanap, David Raju, and Zeeshan Mirza.
Paratypes (four specimens): NCBS AT109 and BNHS 2426, adult males; NCBS AT108 and BNHS 2427, adult females, same data as holotype. 
CommentDiagnosis: A moderate sized species of the genus measuring 54.3–74.2 mm; TRL/SVL 36–43.6%; HL/SVL 26–31%; ear opening oval; anterior postmental width equal to first infralabial; posterior postmental width equal to second infralabial, posterior postmental not in contact with first infralabial; enlarged, keeled, tubercles, fairly regularly arranged in 15–16 longitudinal rows on dorsum; two angular series of seven precloacal femoral pores on each side separated by diastema of eight non- pored scales; non-pored scales equal to size of pored scales; scales bordering anterior edge of pored scales half the size of pored scales; five lamellae on digit I and seven (rarely eight) on digit IV of manus as well as pes; lamellae on digit IV and V of pes absent on basal ~25% of the digit; limbs long and slender FL/SVL 0.15 and CL/ SVL 0.18; ventral aspect of tail with broad caudal scales covering ~80% of the tail; two subconical post cloacal spurs, anterior spur slightly larger than the posterior spur.

Comparison: Hemidactylus chipkali sp. nov. differs from most Indian congeners in bearing the following set of differing and non-overlapping characters: SVL 54.3– 74.2 mm (vs. SVL > 80 mm in H. maculatus Duméril and Bibron, H. graniticolus Agarwal, Giri, and Bauer, H. giganteus Stoliczka, H. gujaratensis Giri, Bauer, Vyas, and Patil, H. prashadi Smith, H. acanthopholis Mirza and Sanap, H. aaronbaueri Giri, H. yajurvedi Murthy, Bauer, Lajmi, Agarwal, and Giri), dorsum with keeled tubercles fairly arranged in 15–16 longitudinal rows (vs. tubercles absent or few or irregularly arranged in H. aq- uilonius Zug and Mcmahan, H. flaviviridis Rüppell, H. frenatus Schlegel, H. garnotii Duméril and Bibron, H. leschenaultii Duméril and Bibron, H. hemchandrai Dandge and Tiple), presence of seven femoral pores sepa- rated medially by a diastema of eight non-pored scales (vs. precloacal pores in H. sataraensis Giri and Bauer, H. gracilis Blanford, H. reticulatus Beddome, H. albofas- ciatus Grandison and Soman, H. scabriceps Annandale, H. persicus Anderson, H. robustus Heyden, H. turcicus Linnaeus), dorsal tubercles sub-trihedral (vs. tubercles trihedral in H. triedrus Daudin and H. subtriedrus Jer- don), lacking webbing on hind feet and a fringe of skin on lateral aspect of tail (vs. present in H. platyurus Schneider), lamellae divided (undivided in H. anamal- lensis Günther).
Hemidactylus chipkali sp. nov. is most similar to members of the Hemidactylus brookii group and is here compared with taxa considered valid by Mahony (2011) and Kathriner et al. (2014). Hemidactylus chipkali sp. nov. differs from H. brookii (as defined by Mahony 2011) in larger SVL 74 mm (vs. SVL 55.8 mm in H. brookii,
SVL 43.1 mm in H. gleadowi Murray, SVL 45–51.4 mm in H. kushmorensis Murray, 51.5 mm in H. parvimacu- latus Deraniyagala); anterior postmental width equal to first infralabial; posterior postmental width equal to sec- ond infralabial, posterior postmental not in contact with first infralabial or with narrow contact Figs. 10A–E (vs. width of posterior postmental shorter than width of sec- ond infralabial in H. brookii, width of posterior postmen- tal shorter than width of second infralabial, posterior in contact with first infralabial in H. gleadowi, anterior, pos- terior postmental in broad contact with first infralabial in H. kushmorensis, width of anterior postmental longer than first infralabial, and anterior postmental in contact with first and second infralabials in H. treutleri Mahony); seven precloacal femoral pores separated medially by a diastem of eight non-pored scales Figs. 11A–E (vs. 12–13 precloacal femoral pores separated medially by a diastem of one non-pored scale in H. brookii and H. gleadowi, 10–11 precloacal femoral pores separated by 2–3 non- pored scales in H. kushmorensis, 12–15 pores separated by 2–4 non-pored scales in H. parvimaculatus, 7–8 sepa- rated by 5–6 non-pored scales in H. subtriedroides (An- nandale); lamellae series on digit IV do not extend to base Figs. 12A–C (vs. lamellae series cover the entire digit IV in H. brookii, H. cf. murrayi Gleadow, H. subtriedroides, H. tenkatei Lidth de Jeude, H. treutleri and H. kushmo- rensis); scales bordering anteriorly the precloacal pores half the size of pored scales (vs. scales bordering anteri- orly the precloacal pores ≥ the size of pored scales in H. brookii); keeled dorsal tubercles in 15–16 fairly longitu- dinal rows (vs. 19–20 in H. kushmorensis); five lamellae on digit I of pes (vs. 6–7 in H. treutleri); lamellae on digit IV of pes 7 rarely 8 (vs. 10 in H. kushmorensis, 8 in H. cf. murrayi, 9 in H. treutleri, 11 in H. mahendrai Shukla); caudal plates enlarged and cover ~80% of the underside of the tail (vs. tail plates not covering entire tail in H. gleadowi, H. kushmorensis, H. subtriedroides, H. tenkatei); two sub-conical postcloacal spurs, anteri- or one slight larger than the posterior (vs. 2–3 medium sized with or without an additional large spur in H. sub- triedroides and H. cf. murrayi, two very small ones in H. gleadowi, a single domed spur in H. kushmorensis, three enlarged spurs in H. treutleri); sub-caudal completely transverse the tail width (sub-caudal not as enlarged as in H. gleadowi, H. kushmorensis, H. subtriedroides, H. tenkatei, H. brookii, H. cf. murrayi), FL/SVL 0.15 (vs. 0.13 in, H. kushmorensis, H. subtriedroides, H. brookii, 0.12 in H. gleadowi, H. cf. murrayi); CL/SVl 0.18 (vs. 0.15 in H. brooki, H. gleadowi, 0.14 in H. kushmorensis, 0.16 in H. tenkatei, H. subtriedroides). 
EtymologyThe specific epithet “chipkali” is the Hindi word for gecko. 
  • Mirza ZA, Raju D. 2017. A new rupicolous species of gecko of the genus Hemidactylus Oken, 1817 from the Satpura Hills, Central India. Amphibian & Reptile Conservation 11(1) [General Section]: 51–71 (e137) - get paper here
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