Hemidactylus kolliensis AGARWAL, BAUER, GIRI & KHANDEKAR, 2019
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|Higher Taxa||Gekkonidae, Gekkota, Sauria, Squamata (lizards: geckos)|
|Common Names||E: Kolli rock gecko|
|Synonym||Hemidactylus kolliensis AGARWAL, BAUER, GIRI & KHANDEKAR 2019|
Hemidactylus kolliensis — AMARASINGHE et al. 2021
|Distribution||India (Tamil Nadu)|
Type locality: below Sollakadu on Kolli Hills Road (11.323295° N, 78.344492° E; ca. 900 m asl.), Namakkal District, Tamil Nadu state, India
|Types||Holotype. BNHS 2537, adult male, collected by Aparna Lajmi, Aniruddha Datta-Roy and Ishan Agarwal on 23 March 2011.|
|Diagnosis||Diagnosis. A medium-sized Hemidactylus, SVL 80 mm (n=8 including holotype). Dorsal pholidosis hetero- geneous, comprising subcircular granular scales intermixed with fairly regularly arranged longitudinal rows of enlarged, strongly keeled, pointed tubercles, that are heterogeneous in shape and size, extending from occiput to tail; enlarged tubercles on the two most medial parasagittal rows smaller than rest on dorsum and these rows most broadly spaced from one another, gradually increasing in size and becoming conical towards flanks, last two rows on flanks are smaller and strongly conical; 15 or 16 dorsal tubercle rows at mid-body, 16–18 tubercles in paraverte- bral rows. Ventrolateral folds indistinct; about 29–34 ventral scale rows at mid-body. Digits with enlarged scansors, lamellae in straight transverse series, all divided except the apical and a few basal that are undivided, nine or 10 lamellae beneath first digit of manus, eight or nine beneath first digit of pes and 10 or 11 beneath fourth digit of manus and 10–12 beneath fourth digit of pes. Males with 21–25 femoral pores on each side separated by two or three poreless scales. Tail with 4–8 much enlarged, strongly keeled, conical tubercles forming whorls; median row of subcaudal plates large, covering almost entire portion of the tail; two subequal postcloacal spurs on each side that are much smaller than dorsal tubercles at mid-body. Dorsal colouration brown with five indistinct transversely arranged dark saddle-shaped markings running from the occiput to the sacrum, limbs with purple-grey bars (Khandekar et al. 2020: 89).|
Comparison with members of the prashadi group. Hemidactylus kolliensis sp. nov. has over 16–25% uncorrected ND2 sequence divergence from other members of the prashadi group (Table 2). Hemidactylus kolliensis sp. nov. can be distinguished from other members of the prashadi group by the presence of 15–16 fairly regularly arranged longitudinal rows of strongly keeled, enlarged tubercles at midbody) from H. aaronbaueri (18–20 longitudinal rows of enlarged, rounded, weakly-keeled tubercles at midbody); H. graniticolus (16–18 rows of subtrihedral tubercles), H. paaragowli (22–24 longitudinal rows of subtrihedral tubercles), H. prashadi (14–16 rows of subtrihedral tubercles), H. scabriceps (homogenous dorsal pholidosis of imbricate scales and no enlarged tubercles); number and arrangement of femoral pores (21 femoral pores separated by two poreless scales) and body size (SVL up to at least 79.5 mm) from H. acanthopholis (19–21 FP separated by 13 or 14 poreless scales), H. hunae (22–24 pores separated by 3–6 poreless scales; SVL >100 mm), H. kangerensis (21 FP separated by four poreless scales, SVL up to 95 mm), H. sahgali Mirza, Gowande, Patil, Ambekar & Patel (11–15 FP separated by three poreless scales), H. siva (17–18 FP separated by five poreless scales, SVL up to 105 mm), H. sushilduttai (20–23 FP separated by 3–6 poreless scales, SVL up to 105 mm), H. triedrus (7–9 FP separated by 1–3 poreless scales), H. vanam (17–22 FP separated by 10 or 11 poreless scales), H. whitakeri Mirza, Gowande, Patil, Ambekar & Patel (seven or eight FP separated by three poreless scales). Hemidactylus kolliensis sp. nov. is similar in body size to H. depressus and H. pieresii (both Sri Lankan), from which it differs in dorsal scalation (15 or 16 fairly regularly arranged longitudinal rows of strongly keeled, enlarged tubercles at midbody) and femoral pore arrangement (21 femoral pores separated by two poreless scales): H. depressus (13–16 longitudinal rows of enlarged subtrihedral tubercles at midbody, 15–19 femoral pores separated medially by 2–4 poreless scales); H. pieresii (17–19 longitudinal rows of enlarged subtrihedral tubercles at midbody, 17–20 femoral pores separated medially by 1–3 poreless scales).
|Comment||Habitat: The holotype was collected about an hour after dark on a high rock wall along the mountain road leading up to Solakkadu.|
Sympatry: The only sympatric gecko was a Hemidactylus cf. triedrus at the base of the rock wall. Agarwal et al. did not see any large Hemidactylus above this elevation and found H. cf. graniticolus below 500 m asl.
|Etymology||The specific epithet is a toponym for the Kollimalai Massif, the only known locality of the species.|
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