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Hemidactylus gujaratensis GIRI, BAUER, VYAS & PATIL, 2009

IUCN Red List - Hemidactylus gujaratensis - Vulnerable, VU

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Higher TaxaGekkonidae, Gekkota, Sauria, Squamata (lizards: geckos)
Common NamesE: Gujarat gecko 
SynonymHemidactylus gujaratensis GIRI, BAUER, VYAS & PATIL 2009
Hemidactylus gujaratensis — LAJMI et al. 2018 
DistributionIndia (Gujarat)

Type locality: Vagheshwari Mata Temple, Junagadh City, Junagadh District, Saurashtra Peninsula, Gujarat, Gujarat, India (21°31.3489’N, 70°28.8639E, 179 m elevation.  
Reproductionoviparous (manual imputation, fide Zimin et al. 2022) 
TypesHolotype: BNHS = BNHM 1818, Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS), an adult female, collected by Sunny Patil and Raju Vyas on 27 October 2007. 
DiagnosisDiagnosis: A medium-sized Hemidactylus, SVL to at least 65.0 mm. Twelve to 14 rows of irregularly arranged, flattened to weakly conical tubercles. First supralabial scale narrowly contacting nasal. Two well-developed pairs of postmentals, the inner pair larger and in broad contact behind mental. Ventrolateral folds indistinct, 28–30 scale rows across venter between lowest rows of tubercles. Ten to 11 enlarged scansors beneath fourth digit and 7–9 beneath first digit of both manus and pes. Twelve to 14 femoral pores on each thigh, separated by a median diastema at least five scales in males. Original tail depressed, oval in transverse section, slightly constricted at base, tuberculate with a median dorsal furrow; a single median row of transversely enlarged subcaudal plates. Dorsal pattern with a pale vertebral stripe and eight irregular pairs of alternating light and dark transverse markings. Among its south Asian congeners (24 occur- ring in India, plus the endemic Sri Lankan Hemidactylus depressus Gray, and Hemidactylus turcicus (Linnaeus), and Hemidactylus robustus Heyden, both recorded from Pakistan) H. gujaratensis may be distinguished from Hemidactylus gracilis Blanford, Hemidactylus reticulatus Beddome, Hemidactylus albofasciatus Grand- ison and Soman, Hemidactylus imbricatus Bauer et al., Hemidactylus sataraensis Giri and Bauer, and Hemidactylus anamallensis (Günther) on the basis of its divided subdigital lamellae (vs. lamellae undivided or only distal lamellae divided or notched), from Hemidactylus scabriceps Annandale by its juxtaposed (vs. imbricate) dorsal scalation, from Hemidactylus platyurus (Schneider) by its lack of a distinct lateral skin flap, from Hemidactylus frenatus Dume ́ril and Bibron, Hemidactylus garnotii Dume ́ril and Bi- bron, and Hemidactylus karenorum by its longer first digit of the manus (more than half the length of digit II vs. less than half the length of digit II), and from H. robustus, H. persicus, H. turcicus, and H. porbandarensis by its greater number of precloacal femoral pores in males (12–14 on each thigh with a median diastema of five or more scales vs. 13 or fewer precloacal pores in a continuous series and no femoral pores). In the presence of 12–16 rows of irregularly arranged, slightly enlarged, feebly keeled, flattened to weakly conical tubercles H. gujaratensis n. sp. differs from Hemidactylus giganteus Stoliczka, Hemidactylus cf. bowringii (Gray), Hemidactylus flaviviridis Ru ̈ ppel, and Hemidactylus leschenaultii Duméril and Bibron, (tubercles small, few and scattered or absent entirely) and from Hemidactylus maculatus Duméril and Bibron, Hemidactylus depressus, Hemidactylus triedrus Daudin, Hemidactylus subtriedrus, Hemidactylus brookii Gray, Hemidactylus prashadi Smith, and Hemidactylus mahendrai (14 or more rows of large, strongly conical, keeled, subtrihedral, or trihedral tubercles). The new species bears some resemblance to the recently described Hemidactylus aaronbaueri Giri but differs (H. aaronbaueri vs. H. gujaraten- sis) with respect to maximum size (128 mm vs. 65 mm SVL), dorsal pholidosis (18–20 vs. 12–16 rows of dorsal tubercles), scansors beneath the fourth toe (11–13 vs. 10–11), femoral pores on each side (15–19 vs. 12–14), supraciliary scales (large, mucronate; posterior scales forming short, stout, projecting spines versus small, pointed, those at the anterior end of orbit only slightly enlarged), and coloration (dorsal pattern of five relatively well-defined, dark, transverse, undulating crossbars between occiput and sacrum versus eight clearly demarcated to ill-defined alternating light and dark irregular to straight-edged bands). 
CommentThis medium-sized, chiefly rupicolous gecko may be distinguished from its south Asian congeners by having 12–16 rows of irregularly arranged, flattened to weakly conical dorsal tubercles, 7–9 subdigital lamellae on digit I of the pes and 10–11 on digit IV, and 12–14 femoral pores on each thigh separated by a median diastema.

This is the second Hemidactylus currently regarded as endemic to Gujarat and the 10th member of the genus recorded for the state, despite the fact that it is more closely related to SE Asian species of Hemidactylus (Lajmi et al. 2018).

Abundance: only known from its original description (Meiri et al. 2017). 
EtymologyThe species is named for the western Indian state of Gujarat. 
  • Bauer, Aaron M.; Todd R. Jackman, Eli Greenbaum, Varad B. Giri, Anslem de Silva 2010. South Asia supports a major endemic radiation of Hemidactylus geckos. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 57 (1): 343-352 - get paper here
  • Giri, Varad B.; Aaron M. Bauer, Raju Vyas, and Sunny Patil 2009. New Species of Rock-Dwelling Hemidactylus (Squamata: Gekkonidae) from Gujarat, India. Journal of Herpetology 43 (3): 385-393 - get paper here
  • LAJMI, APARNA; ANIRUDDHA DATTA-ROY, RAJU VYAS, ISHAN AGARWAL, PRAVEEN KARANTH 2018. The curious case of Hemidactylus gujaratensis (Squamata: Gekkonidae). Zootaxa 4388 (1): 137-142 - get paper here
  • Meiri, Shai; Aaron M. Bauer, Allen Allison, Fernando Castro-Herrera, Laurent Chirio, Guarino Colli, Indraneil Das, Tiffany M. Doan, Frank Glaw, Lee L. Grismer, Marinus Hoogmoed, Fred Kraus, Matthew LeBreton, Danny Meirte, Zoltán T. Nagy, Cristiano d 2017. Extinct, obscure or imaginary: the lizard species with the smallest ranges. Diversity and Distributions - get paper here
  • Patel H, Vyas R, Dudhatra B, Naik V, Chavda A, Chauhan D, et al . 2019. Preliminary report on Herpetofauna of Mount Girnar, Gujarat, India. JAD 2019; 1 (2) - get paper here
  • Patel, Harshil; and Raju Vyas 2019. Reptiles of Gujarat, India: Updated Checklist, Distribution, and Conservation Status. Herpetology Notes 12: 765-777 - get paper here
  • Venugopal, P.D. 2010. An updated and annotated list of Indian lizards (Reptilia: Sauria) based on a review of distribution records and checklists of Indian reptiles. Journal of Threatened Taxa 2 (3): 725-738. - get paper here
  • VYAS, R. & V. PRAJAPATI 2010. Notizen zu Reptilien aus den Salher Hills, Nord - Sahyadri, Bundesstaat Maharashtra, Indien. Sauria 32 (4): 70-74 - get paper here
  • 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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