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Aristelliger praesignis (HALLOWELL, 1856)

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Higher TaxaSphaerodactylidae, Gekkota, Sauria, Squamata (lizards: geckos)
Common NamesE: Jamaican Croaking Gecko, Woodslave (Cayman Island), Croaking Lizard (Jamaica) 
SynonymHemidactylus praesignis HALLOWELL 1856: 222
Aristelliger praesignis — BOULENGER 1885: 146
Aristelliger praesignis — GRANT 1941: 14
Aristelliger praesignis — SCHWARTZ & HENDERSON 1991: 364
Aristelliger praesignis praesignis — BAUER & RUSSEL 1993
Aristelliger praesignis — RÖSLER 2000: 60
Aristelliger praesignis — MCCRANIE 2018 
DistributionJamaica, including Bogue Is., Morant Cays, Pedro Cays; Cayman Is.

Type locality: Jamaica.  
TypesSyntypes: ANSP 7443-44 
DiagnosisDESCRIPTION: Size moderate (SVL in males to 85 mm, in females to 65 mm); 0-3
enlarged postmentals; fourth finger lamellae 18-33; fourth toe lamellae 17-35; "friction pads" only on 1 finger and 1 toe. Dorsal pattern develops from a series of dorsal rhombs and prominent scapular ocelli, frequently fading to more or less unicolor in adults; dorsum plain gray with about 9 diamond-shaped reticulations from snout to sacrum, sometimes continuing onto tail with about 7 more rhombs (regenerated tail without markings or with irregular longitudinal lines), or dorsum gray with a frosting or stippling of scattered, white granules, especially on head; sides often heavily spotted with brick-red or orange, these colors at times extending onto dorsum, base of tail, and snout, on a yellowish (rather than gray) ground; a darker gray, dark brown, or deep orange line from snout along sides; scapular pattern (vivid in young) usually present in adults as a dark gray patch outlined by darker pigment and by white, frequently containing white dots; venter yellowish to clear white, chin and throat striped with gray to varying degrees or dusky; tail grayish, rings (when present) showing on underside, or with 7+ vivid, white ocelli, bordered with black; at night, almost black (from Schwartz & Henderson 1991: 364).

Detailed description: Grant 1941.

Original description: Hallowell 1856: 222 
CommentIllustrations: see Hecht, 1951; Hecht, 1952. 
EtymologyNamed after the Latin “prae” (= before) and “signe” (=mark), probably referring to the color pattern. 
  • Barbour, T. 1910. Notes on the herpetology of Jamaica. Bull. Mus. Comp. Zool. Harvard 52: 273—301 - get paper here
  • Barbour, Thomas 1914. A Contribution to the Zoögeography of the West Indies, with Especial Reference to Amphibians and Reptiles. Memoirs of the Museum of Comparative Zoölogy 44 (2): 205-359 - get paper here
  • Bauer, A. M. and A. P Russell. 1993. Aristelliger praesignis. Catalogue of American Amphibians and Reptiles (571) - get paper here
  • Bauer, A.M. and A.P. Russell 1993. Aristelliger. Catalogue of American Amphibians and Reptiles (565): 1-4 - get paper here
  • Boulenger, G.A. 1885. Catalogue of the lizards in the British Museum (Nat. Hist.) I. Geckonidae, Eublepharidae, Uroplatidae, Pygopodidae, Agamidae. London: 450 pp. - get paper here
  • Garman, S. 1887. On the reptiles and batrachians of Grand Cayman. Proc. Amer. Philos. Soc. 24: 273-277 - get paper here
  • Grant C. 1940. Notes on the reptiles and amphibians of Jamaica, with diagnoses of new species and subspecies. In: Jamaica Today. Hazell, Watson, and Viney, London and Aylesbury, p.151-157.
  • Grant, C. 1940. The herpetology of Jamaica Il. The reptiles. Bull. Inst. Jamaica., Sci. Ser. 1: 61-148.
  • Grant, C. 1941. The herpetology of the Cayman Islands. Bulletin of the Institute of Jamaica, Science Series [1940] (2):1-56
  • Griffing, Aaron H., Deboer, Jonathan C., Campbell, Patrick D., Wilson, Byron S. and Bauer, Aaron M. 2017. Aristelliger praesignis (Jamaican Croaking Lizard) Maximum size. Herpetological Review 48 (1): 184-185 - get paper here
  • Hallowell, E. 1856. Notes on reptiles in the collection of the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia. Proc. Acad. Nat. Sci. Philadelphia 8: 221-238 - get paper here
  • Hecht, M.K. 1951. Fossil lizards of the West Indian genus Aristelliger (Gekkonidae). American Museum Novitates (1538): 1-33 - get paper here
  • Hecht, M.K. 1952. Natural selection in the lizard genus Aristelliger. Evolution 6: 112-24. - get paper here
  • Henkel,F.W. & Schmidt,W. 1991. Geckos. Biologie, Haltung und Zucht. Ulmer Verlag, Stuttgart [ISBN 3-8001-7242-9]
  • Hilgenhof, R. J. 1998. Eine herpetologische Reise nach Nordost - Jamaika unter besonderer Berücksichtigung der Gattung Anolis Daudin, 1802 - Teil II. Sauria 20 (3): 3-10 - get paper here
  • McCranie, James R. 2015. A checklist of the amphibians and reptiles of Honduras, with additions, comments on taxonomy, some recent taxonomic decisions, and areas of further studies needed. Zootaxa 3931 (3): 352–386 - get paper here
  • McCranie, James R. 2018. The Lizards, Crocodiles, and Turtles of Honduras. Systematics, Distribution, and Conservation. Bulletin of the Museum of Comparative Zoology, Special Publication Series (2): 1- 666 - get paper here
  • Pagoda, P. 2011. Ein Monat als Volontär in der Karibik - der Blauen wegen. Elaphe 19 (1): 65-72
  • Rösler, H. 2000. Kommentierte Liste der rezent, subrezent und fossil bekannten Geckotaxa (Reptilia: Gekkonomorpha). Gekkota 2: 28-153
  • Schwartz, A. & Henderson, R.W. 1991. Amphibians and Reptiles of the West Indies. University of Florida Press, Gainesville, 720 pp.
  • Solís, J. M., L. D. Wilson, and J. H. Townsend. 2014. An updated list of the amphibians and reptiles of Honduras, with comments on their nomenclature. Mesoamerican Herpetology 1: 123–144 - get paper here
  • WHYTE, DAMION L.; ADRIAN THOMAS, GAVIN CAMPBELL & ERIC GARRAWAY. 2021. ARISTELLIGER PRAESIGNIS (Jamaican Croaking Lizard). AQUATIC FORAGING BEHAVIOR. Herpetological Review 52 (1): 138–139. - get paper here
  • Wilson, B.S. & Vogel, P. 2000. A survey of the herpetofauna of the Hellshire Hills, Jamaica, including the rediscovery of the Blue-tailed Galliwasp (Celestus duquesneyi Grant). Carib. J. Sci. 36: 244-249
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