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Thecadactylus rapicauda (HOUTTUYN, 1782)

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Higher TaxaPhyllodactylidae, Gekkota, Sauria, Squamata (lizards: geckos) 
Subspecies 
Common NamesE: Turniptail Gecko
G: Rübenschwanzgecko 
SynonymGekko Rapicauda HOUTTUYN 1782: 323
Stellio perfoliatus SCHNEIDER 1792: 26 (nom. subst. pro G. rapicauda)
Gekko laevis DAUDIN 1802: 112
Gekko surinamensis DAUDIN 1802: 126
Gecko laevis — CUVIER 1837
Platydactylus theconyx DUMÉRIL & BIBRON 1836: 306
Pachydactylus tristis HALLOWEL 1854: 98
Platydactylus theconyx - GUICHENOT 1855: 11
Thecadactylus rapicaudus — BOULENGER 1885: 111
Pachydactylus tristis — BOULENGER 1885: 200
Thecadactylus rapicaudus - GOELDI 1902: 511
Thecadacrylus [sic] rapicaudus - AMARAL 1949: 109
Thecadactylus rapicauda - MIRANDA-RIBEIRO 1955
Thecadactylus rapicaudus — ORTLEB & HEATWOLE 1965
Thecadactylus rapicauda — SCHWARTZ & HENDERSON 1991: 551
Thecadactylus rapicauda — KLUGE 1993
Thecadactylus rapicaudus — LINER 1994
Thecadactylus rapicauda — RÖSLER 1995: 159
Thecadactylus rapicauda — DIRKSEN & DE LA RIVA 1999
Thecadactylus rapicaudus — GORZULA & SEÑARIS 1999
Thecadactylus rapicauda — KÖHLER & VESELY 2011 
DistributionMexico (Chiapas, Tabasco, Yucatan, Campeche, Quintana Roo), Belize, Guatemala,
Honduras (incl. Islas de la Bahia and Utila), Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama,
Trinidad, Tobago, Antilles, Leeward Islands (Los Testi, Bonaire, Curacao), Aruba, Antigua, Barbuda
Colombia (Valle del Cauca, Chocó), Ecuador, French Guiana, Surinam, Guyana, Venezuela (incl. Cojedes), Isla Margarita, Brazil (Amapa, Para, Amazonas, Roraima, Rondônia, Acre)

Type locality: "American Islands"; resticted to Chichén Itzâ, Yucatán, México, by Smith and Taylor, 1950, and to Paramaribo, Suriname, by Hoogmoed, 1973. Map legend:
TDWG region - Region according to the TDWG standard, not a precise distribution map.

NOTE: TDWG regions are generated automatically from the text in the distribution field and not in every cases it works well. We are working on it.
 
Reproductionoviparous 
TypesHolotype: Unlocated, probably lost.
Neotype: RMNH-16267 
CommentIllustrations: Hoogmoed, 1973; MacLean, 1982; Schwartz and Henderson, 1985.

Taxonomy: Kronauer et al. (2005) and BERGMANN & RUSSELL (2007) suggested that the southwestern clade represents a cryptic species based on morphology and DNA sequence data.

Distribution: According to BERGMANN & RUSSELL (2007) not in Bolivia. Not in Peru (fide T. DOAN, pers. comm., 4 June 2012).

Abundance in Honduras: rare

Behavior: nocturnal.

REDEFINITION OF T. RAPICAUDA (HOUTTUYN): The loss of the original holotype of Thecadactylus rapicauda (Hoogmoed, 1973) and the current description of T. solimoensis, rendering the genus polytypic, necessitates the designation of a new type series for T. rapicauda (ICZN, 1999: article 75), based on specimens from the likely original type locality (Hoogmoed, 1973). It is undisputed that the lost holotype of T. rapicauda originated from outside of the range of T. solimoensis (Hoogmoed, 1973; Avila-Pires, 1995). Published descriptions of T. rapicauda (Daudin, 1802; Beebe, 1944; Vanzolini, 1968; Hoogmoed, 1973; Schwartz & Henderson, 1991; Avila-Pires, 1995; Breuil, 2002; Russell & Bauer, 2002a) remain valid. Although individuals of this species may possess a postocular stripe, this is virtually never directed dorsally. The distribution of T. rapicauda is also reduced in light of the description of a second species (from BERGMANN & RUSSELL 2007).

Description: (Fig. 7B) 119 mm SVL, 73 mm TL, 37 mm HL, 24 mm HW, 4 mm IND; regenerated tail, only slightly broader than more proximal stump and regularly streaked; 4 nasal granules, dorsalmost enlarged; internasals with broad contact medially; 14 supralabials, 7 anterior to the eye; 13 infralabials; rostral partly divided; 10 spinose supraciliaries; post-mentals elongate; 6 post-postmentals, medial one enlarged; 10 post-infralabials; dorsal forearm, tail base and ventral neck scales granular; hind limb web scales imbricate; 1 single-apexed, tuberculate cloacal spur; cloacal sacs absent; total manual lamellae on digits I, IV and V, 17, 23 and 19, respectively; total pedal lamellae on digits I, IV and V, 15, 24, 21, respectively; scansors on manual and pedal digits IV, 11 and 12, respectively; subdigital sulcus divides all lamellae on manual digit II, but only some on digit I; lateral stripe absent; dorsal colour and pattern light, mottled, with no diamonds; paravertebral spots absent; nuchal spot absent; postocular stripes project posterolaterally, but do not continue as a series of spots; 12 teeth occluded by rostral; 26 presacral, 2 cervical vertebrae without ribs; 23 ribs, 3 anterior to medial level of clavicles, 5 shortened; cloacal bones absent; paraphalanges visible in radiographs. Characters not included here, but included for the description of the holotype of T. solimoensis, represent data that could not be obtained from any T. rapicauda specimens (from BERGMANN & RUSSELL 2007).

Type species: Gekko laevis DAUDIN 1802 is the type species of the genus Thecadactylus GOLDFUSS 1820: 157. Thecodactylus WAGLER 1830: 142 is a nomen substitutum pro Thecadactylus GOLDFUSS 1820. 
References
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