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Hemidactylus kurdicus SAFAEI-MAHROO, GHAFFARI, GHAFOOR & AMINI, 2017

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Higher TaxaGekkonidae, Gekkota, Sauria, Squamata (lizards: geckos) 
Common Names 
SynonymHemidactylus kurdicus SAFAEI-MAHROO, GHAFFARI, GHAFOOR & AMINI 2017 
DistributionNE Iraq (Sulaimani Province: Qara Dagh Mountain)

Type locality: Qara-Dagh Mountains (35°14.057’ N, 45°22.871’ E, elevation 1139 m), south west of Qara Dagh village, Sulaimani Province, Northeastern Iraq  
TypesHolotype: CAS 262258 (MorphoBank M452298-M452302), collected by Barbod Safaei-Mahroo on 05 September 2016 at 20h45. Paratypes: CAS 262259, MorphoBank M452303-M452307) and (CAS 262260, MorphoBank M452308-M452312), were collected by Barbod Safaei-Mahroo on 05 and 06 September 2016 from 23h30 to 01h00 in the Qara-Dagh Mountains (35°14.588’ N, 45°22.644’ E, elevation 1293 m), south west of Qara Dagh village, Sulaimani Province, Northeastern Iraq. 
DiagnosisA species of the Arid species group of Hemidactylus that may be distinguished from other members of this group by the following morphological characters (based on 3 subadult types): single pair of postmental scales more-or-less in posterior contact with each other; 14–16 longitudinal rows of tubercles that are smallest dorsolaterally; 9–10 subdigital lamellae under first toe of pes, and 13 lamellae under fourth toe of pes.

Comparisons. Safaei-Mahroo et al. compared Hemidactylus kurdicus sp. nov. from the Kurdistan region of Iraq with the Hemidactylus species listed in their Appendix I (Baha el Din 2003, 2005; Busais & Joger 2011; Carranza & Arnold 2012; Garcia-Porta et al. 2016; Moravec et al. 2011; Šmíd et al. 2013, 2015, 2016; Torki 2011; Vasconcelos & Carranza 2014). H. kurdicus sp. nov. is distinguished from all other related Arid clade Hemidactylus species of the Middle East by having a single pair of postmental scales, also it differs from the species below based on the number of lamellae under the first and fourth toes of the pes (1st/ 4th). H. kurdicus sp. nov. has 9–10 lamellae under the first toe and 13 lamellae under the fourth toe of pes, which is more than the following species (mean values reported) H. adensis Šmíd, Moravec, Kratochvíl, Nasher, Mazuch, Gvoždík & Carranza, 2015 (5.3/ 9.3), H. alfarraji Šmíd, Shobrak, Wilms, Joger & Carranza, 2016 (7.1/10.8), H. alkiyumii Carranza & Arnold, 2012 (7/10.8), H. asirensis Šmíd, Shobrak, Wilms, Joger & Carranza, 2016 (6.2/10.1), H. awashensis Šmíd, Moravec, Kratochvíl, Nasher, Mazuch, Gvoždík & Carranza, 2015 (8/11.4), H. dawudazraqi (6.6/10.9), H. endophis Carranza & Arnold, 2012 (6/9), H. festivus Carranza & Arnold, 2012 (6.9/11.2), H. foudaii Baha El Din, 2003 (7/10.3), H. granosus Heyden, 1827 (7.4/11.5), H. hajarensis (8/12.1), H. homoeolepis Blanford, 1881 (5/9.8), H. inexpectatus Carranza & Arnold, 2012 (6/10.5), H. jumailiae Busais & Joger, 2011 (6.9/10.9), H. lavadeserticus (7.4/11.4), H. lemurinus Arnold, 1980 (7/11), H. mandebensis Šmíd, Moravec, Kratochvíl, Nasher, Mazuch, Gvoždík & Carranza, 2015 (5.3/8.3), H. masirahensis Carranza & Arnold, 2012 (6/10), H. mindiae Baha El Din, 2005 (6.2/10), H. minutus Vasconcelos & Carranza, 2014 (4.4/7.9), H. montanus Busais & Joger, 2011 (6.4/10.2), H. paucituberculatus Carranza & Arnold, 2012 (4.9/8.3), H. robustus (6.1/9.8), H. romeshkanicus Torki, 2011 (–/9), H. saba Busais & Joger, 2011 (8.1/11.1), H. shihraensis (6/10), H. sinaitus (5.2/9.7), H. turcicus (6.8/10.2), H. ulii Šmíd, Moravec, Kratochvíl, Gvoždík, Nasher, Busais, Wilms, Shobrak, Carranza, 2013 (5.4/8.6), and H. yerburii Anderson, 1895 (6.9/10.4). 
CommentHabitat: oak woodlands covered with grass, hiding inside cracks in the ground or moving among boulders. 
EtymologyThe generic nomen kurdicus is derived from the word “Kurd” which refers to the name for the Kurdish nation (Kurdistan Region), the location where the new species was found. 
  • SAFAEI-MAHROO, BARBOD; HANYEH GHAFFARI, ARAM GHAFOOR & SAYWAN AMINI 2017. A new species of Hemidactylus (Squamata: Gekkota: Gekkonidae) from Qara Dagh Mountains, Kurdistan Region, with a key to the genus in Iraq. Zootaxa 4363 (3): 377–392 - get paper here
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