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Goggia hewitti (BRANCH, BAUER & GOOD, 1995)

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Higher TaxaGekkonidae, Gekkota, Sauria, Squamata (lizards: geckos)
Common NamesE: Hewitt’s Dwarf Leaf-toed Gecko, Hewitt’s Leaf-toed Gecko 
SynonymPhyllodactylus hewitti BRANCH, BAUER & GOOD 1995
Phyllodactylus lineatus rupicolus — FITZSIMONS 1943: 29 (part.)
Goggia hewitti — BAUER et al. 1997
Goggia hewitti — RÖSLER 2000: 83
Goggia hewitti — BATES et al. 2014: 110 
DistributionRepublic of South Africa (S Cape Fold Mountains)

Type locality: 3 km east from Swartberg Pass along summit road on Groot Swartberg (33° 20’ 40’’ S, 22° 04’ 17’’ E), elevation 1403 m.  
TypesHolotype: PEM R7829 
DiagnosisDiagnosis: Distinguished from other members of the P. linealus complex by a combination of the following features: usually four preanal pores in males, a high number of midbody scale rows (77-91), 10-13 scales between the nostril and anterior margin of the orbit, usually only 1 (0-3) nasorostrals, and a dorso-ventrally flattened head and body. In addition, it differs by 4-7 fixed alleles from the other taxa examined electrophoretically (Branch et al. 1995: 42).

Description: Holotype. PEM R7829, adult female. Head dorso-ventrally flattened (width 7.19, depth 3.21, length 9.41 mm); snout rounded, and at nearly twice (0.91) the eye diameter (1.87 mm); ear opening small, obliquely rounded, and without enlarged lobules or a tympanic shield; rostra! subpentagonal with a median cleft above; nostril pierced between rostral, 1st supralabial and three nasals, the largest bordering the rostral; a single nasorostral granule; pupil vertical, constricting to two pin holes; nine supralabials and eight infralabials on each side; mental subpentagnlar bordered by three chinshields, the middle being considerably smaller than those on either side; chinshields bordered by seven granules that are much smaller than largest chinshields. A series of 12 granules between nostril and anterior margin of orbit, and a series of 17 granules across the crown between dorsal margin of orbit at the front of the eye. Body short (snout-vent length 37.47 mm) and dorsoventrally flattened, covered dorsally with uniform, smooth, flattened, subimbricate granules; belly covered in smooth, hexagonal, imbricate scales that are much larger than on back; 91 scales around mid-body. Limbs moderate and covered in uniform, flattened, subimbricate granules; digits flattened basally, with three rows of subdigital granules, the median series (10 in longitudinal series under 4th toe) slightly broader; toe tips rounded, only slightly expanded and bearing a pair of large, subrectangular scansors and small claws. Preanal pores absent; a series of three slightly enlarged tubercles on either side of the tail base. Tail (30.2 mm) partly-regenerated (last 22 mm) and covered above and below with regular rows of uniform, smooth granules (Branch et al. 1995: 43, Fig. 1B).

Colour (in preservative): Dorsum light brown-tan with seven irregular dark drown, slightly oblique, crossbars, formed by fusion of the anterior dark margins of palecentred scallops. A vague dark brown band extends from the nostril, through the eye and temporal region, and fading on the neck. The ventrum is pale cream with a faint dark stipple that is heaviest below the hind limbs and margin of the throat. The general brown tan colour of the dorsum extends on to the regenerated tail, which is heavily stippled (especially below) and has scattered dark flecks. The uoregenerated basal section bears three 'cross bars' from the fusion in the midline of two scallops (Branch et al. 1995: 43).

Variation: see Branch et al. 1995: 43). 
EtymologyNamed after John Hewitt (1880-1961), director of the Albany Museum from 1910 to 1958. 
  • Bates, M.F.; Branch, W.R., Bauer, A.M.; Burger, M., Marais, J.; Alexander, G.J. & de Villliers, M.S. (eds.) 2014. Atlas and Red List of the Reptiles of South Africa, Lesotho, and Swaziland. Suricata 1. South African National Biodiversity Institute, Pretoria, 512 pp.
  • Bauer A M. Good D A. Branch W R. 1997. The taxonomy of the Southern African leaf-toed geckos (Squamata: Gekkonidae), with a review of Old World "Phyllodactylus" and the description of five new genera. Proc. Cal. Acad. Sci. 49 (14): 447-497. - get paper here
  • Beolens, Bo; Michael Watkins, and Michael Grayson 2011. The Eponym Dictionary of Reptiles. Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, USA - get paper here
  • Branch, W. R., A. M. BAUER & D. A. GOOD 1995. Species limits in the Phyllodactylus lineatus complex (Reptilia: Gekkonidae), with the elevation of two taxa to specific status and the description of two new species. J. Herp. Assoc. Africa 44 (2): 33-54. - get paper here
  • CONRADIE, WERNER; WILLIAM R. BRANCH, & GILLIAN WATSON 2019. Type specimens in the Port Elizabeth Museum, South Africa, including the historically important Albany Museum collection. Part 2: Reptiles (Squamata). Zootaxa 4576 (1): 001–045 - get paper here
  • FitzSimons, V.F. 1943. The lizards of South Africa. Transvaal Museum Memoir No.1 (Pretoria), 528 pp.
  • Rösler, H. 2000. Kommentierte Liste der rezent, subrezent und fossil bekannten Geckotaxa (Reptilia: Gekkonomorpha). Gekkota 2: 28-153
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