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Pachydactylus maraisi HEINICKE, ADDERLY, BAUER & JACKMAN, 2011

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Higher TaxaGekkonidae, Gekkota, Sauria, Squamata (lizards: geckos)
Common Names 
SynonymPachydactylus maraisi HEINICKE, ADDERLY, BAUER & JACKMAN 2011
Pachydactylus maraisi — SCHLEICHER 2020 
Distributioncoastal C Namibia

Type locality: Namibia, Erongo Region, Swakopmund District, Hentiesbaai Road, 2.7 km S Wlotzkasbaken  
Reproductionoviparous (not imputed, fide Zimin et al. 2022) 
TypesHolotype: CAS 193888, adult female; coll. A.M. Bauer, H.E. Robeck, D. King, and J.V. Vindum, 25 June 1993. (Note that this specimen will be donated to the National Museum of Namibia.) 
DiagnosisDiagnosis:*SVL to at least 40.9 mm. A small, rupicolous Pachydactylus with a depressed body form. Dorsum atuberculate, with smooth, flat, round granules, grading to subimbricate scales on flanks. OrbD smaller than EyeEar. Rostral excluded from nostril rim. Enlarged conical scales restricted to dorsal side of crus. Tail indistinctly segmented with juxtaposed to subimbricate scalation. Dorsal pattern uniform dark brown with numerous white flecks throughout.
Pachydactylus maraisi is most similar to other members of the ‘northwestern clade’ of Pachydactylus. Within this clade, Pachydactylus maraisi can be readily distinguished from P. angolensis, P. boehmei, P. gaiasensis, P. oreophilus, P. otaviensis, P. parascutatus, P. sansteynae, and P. scutatus by its lack of enlarged, keeled dorsal scales or tubercles (present in others). From P. bicolor, P. caraculicus, and P. scherzi, P. maraisi differs in colour pattern, lacking transverse bands or blotches (Fig. 1C, 2) (present in other species). In addition, P. caraculicus differs from P. maraisi in having subimbricate dorsal scales, some of which are keeled, having imbricate scales on the tail (juxtaposed to subimbricate in P. maraisi), having fewer adhesive lamellae (three or four per digit, vs. five to seven in P. maraisi), and, in males, having only two scales per cloacal spur (four to five in P. maraisi). Pachydactylus punctatus and P. scherzi differ from P. maraisi in body shape, being noticeably rounder in cross section with weakly convex snouts, having fewer adhesive lamellae (three or four per digit), having the first supralabial sometimes participating in nostril rim, having an unsegmented tail, and having three granules separating the dorsal postnasals. The most similar species to P. maraisi is P. bicolor, but P. bicolor (in addition to colouration differences) has a more robust, thickset appearance, with noticeably shorter limbs and digits (CrusL/SVL ratio mean 0.18 in 13 measured P. maraisi, 0.16 in 16 measured P. bicolor; t-test p=0.002), has fewer adhesive lamellae (up to 5 per digit; always 6 on at least some digits in P. maraisi), and has imbricate scalation on the tail [from HEINICKE et al. 2011]. 
Etymology”Named for our friend and colleague Johan Marais, collector of some individuals of the type series, and in recognition of his contributions to both academic and popular herpetology in southern Africa. The epithet is formed in the masculine genitive.” [from HEINICKE et al. 2011]. 
  • HEINICKE, MATTHEW P.; LAUREN M. ADDERLY, AARON M. BAUER & TODD R. JACKMAN 2011. A long-known new species of gecko allied to Pachydactylus bicolor (Squamata: Gekkonidae) from the central Namibian coast. African Journal of Herpetology 60 (2): 11-129 - get paper here
  • Herrmann, H.-W.; W.R. Branch 2013. Fifty years of herpetological research in the Namib Desert and Namibia with an updated and annotated species checklist. Journal of Arid Environments 93: 94–115 - get paper here
  • Kwet, Axel 2012. Liste der im Jahr 2011 neu beschriebenen Reptilien. Terraria-Elaphe 2012 (3): 46-57 - get paper here
  • Schleicher, Alfred 2020. Reptiles of Namibia. Kuiseb Publishers, Windhoek, Namibia, 271 pp.
  • Zimin, A., Zimin, S. V., Shine, R., Avila, L., Bauer, A., Böhm, M., Brown, R., Barki, G., de Oliveira Caetano, G. H., Castro Herrera, F., Chapple, D. G., Chirio, L., Colli, G. R., Doan, T. M., Glaw, F., Grismer, L. L., Itescu, Y., Kraus, F., LeBreton 2022. A global analysis of viviparity in squamates highlights its prevalence in cold climates. Global Ecology and Biogeography, 00, 1–16 - get paper here
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