Hemiphyllodactylus tonywhitteni GRISMER, WOOD, THURA, ZIN, QUAH, MURDOCH, GRISMER, LI, KYAW & LWIN, 2017
Can you confirm these amateur observations of Hemiphyllodactylus tonywhitteni?
|Higher Taxa||Gekkonidae, Gekkota, Sauria, Squamata (lizards: geckos)|
|Common Names||E: Phapant dwarf gecko|
|Synonym||Hemiphyllodactylus tonywhitteni GRISMER, WOOD, THURA, ZIN, QUAH, MURDOCH, GRISMER, LI, KYAW & LWIN 2017: 11|
Type locality: Phapant Cave, 25.2 km north-east of Taunggyi, Taunggyi District, Shan State, Myanmar (21°11.472N, 96°33.214E; elevation 1270 m)
|Reproduction||oviparous. Two gravid females (NJNUh00321, NJNUh00323) each contained two eggs.|
|Types||Holotype: LSUHC 13026, Adult male, collected on 18 October 2016 at 1600 hours by Evan S. H. Quah, Perry L. Wood, Jr., Matthew L. Murdoch, Thaw Zin, Myint Kyaw Thura, Htet Kyaw, Marta S. Grismer, and L. Lee Grismer.|
Paratypes: LSUHC 13027 and 13030, Adult females and juvenile female (LSUHC 13028) and juvenile male (LSUHC 13029) bear the same data as the holotype.
|Comment||Habitat: Phapant Cave is a complex of three caves situated around a small depression along a narrow river. The karstic ridge and outcroppings surround a small monastery which incorporates the caves for worship. The hilly area connecting the caves is composed of highly eroded limestone walls bearing many cracks and pores. Large limestone boulders that have broken away from the cliff face line the base of the shallow escarpment (Figure 7). We believe Hemiphyllodactylus tonywhitteni sp. nov. is a karst-adapted species. A specimen of H. tonywhitteni sp. nov. was found just inside a small opening of one of the caves nearly 4 m above the cave entrance. More specimens were found on the boulders at the base of the cliff and one on one of the cement buildings of the monastery. Syntopic with H. tonywhitteni sp. nov. on both the karst outcroppings and the cement building was an undescribed species of Hemidactylus. Hemidactylus sp. nov. was also found on wooden structures and vegetation where H. tonywhitteni sp. nov. was absent.|
|Etymology||This specific epithet ‘tonywhitteni’ honours Dr Tony Whitten of Fauna & Flora International who has championed a broad range of conservation efforts in Indonesia and the Asia Pacific for well over a quarter of a century. His tireless efforts to conserve and help manage karst ecosystems have been a great inspiration to the senior author (LLG) herein.|