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Hemiphyllodactylus serpispecus ELIADES, PHIMMACHAK, SIVONGXAY, SILER & STUART, 2019

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Higher TaxaGekkonidae, Gekkota, Sauria, Squamata (lizards: geckos) 
Subspecies 
Common Names 
SynonymHemiphyllodactylus serpispecus ELIADES, PHIMMACHAK, SIVONGXAY, SILER & STUART 2019 
DistributionLaos (Houaphanh Province)

Type locality: Tham Ngou Leium Cave, Viengxay District, Houaphanh Province, Laos, 20.40725°N, 104.23068°E, WGS84 (Fig. 1A), 889 m elevation.  
Reproduction 
TypesHolotype: NUOL 00476 (field number BLS 17278), adult male, collected 19 September 2015 by BLS, SP, Fongfany Lybounyasao, and Phousavanh Inthapanya. 
DiagnosisDiagnosis. Hemiphyllodactylus serpispecus sp. nov. can be distinguished from all congeners by having the following combination of characters: supralabials 11; infralabials nine; precloacofemoral pores 11 in males (females unknown); subdigital lamellae on Fingers II–V 3-4-4-4; total lamellae on hand 15; subdigital lamellae on Toes II–V 3-4-4-5; total lamellae on foot 16; dorsal scales across midbody within one orbital diameter 26; ventral scales across midbody within one orbital diameter 10; cloacal spurs two; chin scales seven; and internasals two.

Comparisons. Hemiphyllodactylus serpispecus sp. nov. can be differentiated from all other congeners in mainland Southeast Asia and southern China by a combination of the following characters: chin scales seven (versus ≥9 in H. aurantiacus and H. zugi); postmentals distinctly enlarged (versus not enlarged in H. aurantiacus); circumnasal scales three (versus ≥4 in H. flaviventris H. khlonglanensis, H. kiziriani, and H. linnwayensis); internasal scales two (versus 4–11 in H. banaensis); supralabial scales 11 (versus eight or nine in H. tonywhitteni); dorsal scales within one orbital diameter 26 (versus ≤22 in H. aurantiacus, H. banaensis, H. changningensis, H. chiangmaiensis, H. flaviventris, H. huishuiensis, H. khlonglanensis, H. linnwayensis, H. montawaensis, H. tonywhitteni, H. yunnanensis, and H. zugi); ventral scales within one orbital diameter 10 (versus ≤8 in H. changningensis, H. linnwayensis, H. montawaensis, and 14–16 in H. zugi); total lamellae on hand 15 (versus ≤13 in H. aurantiacus, H. chiangmaiensis, H. longlingensis, and H. yunnanensis); total lamellae on foot 16 (versus ≤13 in H. aurantiacus, H. chiangmaiensis and 19 in H. banaensis, H. dushanensis, H. flaviventris, and H. zugi); subdigital lamellae on Finger I four (versus three in H. huishuiensis, H. tonywhitteni and ≥5 in H. banaensis, H. dushanensis, H. flaviventris, H. jinpingensis, H. khlonglanensis, H. kiziriani, and H. longlingensis); subdigital lamellae on Toe I four (versus three in H. huishuiensis and ≥ 5 in H. dushanensis, H. flaviventris, H. jinpingensis, H. khlonglanensis, H. kiziriani, and H. longlingensis); and continuous precloacofemoral pores 11 (versus ≥13 in H. aurantiacus, H. banaensis, H. changningensis, H. chiangmaiensis, H. dushanensis, H. jinpingensis, H. khlonglanensis, H. longlingensis, H. montawaensis, H. tonywhitteni, and H. zugi).
 
Comment 
EtymologyThe specific epithet is derived from the Latin serpens for snake and specus for cave, in reference to the type locality of Tham Ngou Leium, which means “Python Cave” in the Lao language. 
References
  • ELIADES, SAMUEL J.; SOMPHOUTHONE PHIMMACHAK, NIANE SIVONGXAY, CAMERON D. SILER, BRYAN L. STUART 2019. Two new species of Hemiphyllodactylus (Reptilia: Gekkonidae) from Laos Zootaxa 4577 (1): 131–147 - get paper here
 
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