Hemidactylus tamhiniensis KHANDEKAR, THACKERAY & AGARWAL, 2021
Can you confirm these amateur observations of Hemidactylus tamhiniensis?
|Higher Taxa||Gekkonidae, Gekkota, Sauria, Squamata (lizards: geckos)|
|Common Names||E: Tamhini giant rock gecko or Basalt giant rock gecko|
|Synonym||Hemidactylus tamhiniensis KHANDEKAR, THACKERAY & AGARWAL 2021|
Hemidactylus aaronbaueri — LAJMI et al. 2020
Type locality: Tamhini Ghat (18.398402°N, 73.385258°E; ca. 390 m asl.), Raigad district, Maharashtra state, India
|Types||Holotype. NRC-AA-1131 (AK 1285; Figures 2, 3, 4A, 5A, 6A, 7A, 8A), adult male, collected by Akshay Khandekar, Satpal Gangalmale and Swapnil Pawar on 16 June 2019.|
Paratypes. NRC-AA-1132 (AK 1286; Figures 4B, 5B), NRC-AA-1133 (AK 1287; Figure 5C), BNHS 2805 (AK 1288; Figure 5D), adult females, same data as holotype; BNHS 2806 (AK 1289; Figure 5E), adult female, BNHS 2807 (AK 1290; Figure 4C, 5F), sub-adult female, same collection data as holotype except collected from Tamhini Ghat (18.472910°N, 73.420590°E; ca. 680 m asl.), Pune district, Maharashtra state, India.
|Diagnosis||Diagnosis: A large-sized Hemidactylus, maximum SVL 126 mm (n=6). A single enlarged internasal scale between two supranasal scales; dorsal pholidosis at mid-body heterogenous, composed of small, subcircular, smooth and flattened granular scales intermixed with fairly regularly arranged rows of enlarged, subcircular, weakly to strongly keeled and pointed tubercles; 17–21 dorsal tubercle rows at mid-body; 29–32 tubercles in paravertebral rows; ventrolateral folds distinct; 54–59 transverse ventral scale rows at mid-body; digits with transversely enlarged scansors, lamellae in straight transverse series; 8–10 undivided basal lamellae beneath first finger and 6–8 beneath first toe; 2–4 undivided basal lamellae beneath fourth finger and 4–6 beneath fourth toe; 12–14 lamellae (including undivided and divided) beneath first finger and 10–12 beneath first toe; 12 or 13 lamellae (including undivided and divided) beneath fourth finger and 13–15 beneath fourth toe; male with series of 18 (on right side) and 17 (on left side) femoral pores separated medially by seven poreless scales (n=1); tail with 4–12 enlarged, keeled, conical tubercles forming whorls; median row of subcaudal plates large, covering almost entire underside of tail. Dorsal colouration brown with five transversely arranged dark wavy markings outlined by black and light grey running from the occiput to the sacrum, numerous off-white blotches on side of throat, flanks, back of femur and lateral edge of tail.|
Comparison with members of the prashadi group. Hemidactylus tamhiniensis sp. nov. can be easily distinguished from members of the prashadi group based on the following differing or non-overlapping characters: male with 17 or 18 FP and seven SBFP (versus 19–21 FP and 13 or 14 SBFP in H. acanthopholis Mirza & Sanap; 15–19 FP and 2–4 SBFP in H. depressus; 23–28 FP and 1–3 SBFP in H. graniticolus Agarwal, Giri & Bauer; 22–24 FP and 3–6 SBFP in H. hunae Deraniyagala; 18–21 FP and four SBFP in H. kangerensis Mirza, Bhosale & Patil; 21–25 FP and two or three SBFP in H. kolliensis Agarwal, Bauer, Giri & Khandekar; 10–12 FP and 16–18 SBFP in H. paaragowli Srikanthan, Swamy, Mohan & Pal; 17–20 FP and 1–3 SBFP in H. pieresii; 17–20 FP and three SBFP in H. prashadi; 11–15 FP and three SBFP in H. sahgali; 16–18 FP and 13–15 SBFP in H. sirumalaiensis Khandekar, Thackeray, Pawar & Agarwal; 17 or 18 FP and five SBFP in H. siva Srinivasulu, Srinivasulu & Kumar; 20–23 FP and 3–6 SBFP in H. sushilduttai Giri, Bauer, Mohapatra, Srinivasulu & Agarwal; 7–9 FP and 1–3 SBFP in H. triedrus; 17–22 FP and 10 or 11 SBFP in H. vanam Chaitanya, Lajmi & Giri; seven or eight FP and three SBFP in H. whitakeri Mirza, Gowande, Patil, Ambekar & Patel; FP absent, only precloacal pores present in H. scabriceps); 54–59 MVSR (versus 35–40 in H. acanthopholis; 28–36 MVSR H. depressus; 40–46 MVSR in H. graniticolus; 28–30 MVSR in H. kangerensis; 32–34 MVSR in H. kolliensis; 28–34 MVSR in H. maculatus; 33–39 MVSR in H. paaragowli; 36–38 MVSR in H. prashadi; >30 MVSR in H. sahgali; 36–38 MVSR in sirumalaiensis; 27–30 MVSR in H. siva; 30–33 MVSR in H. sushilduttai; 30–32 MVSR in H. triedrus; 34–40 MVSR in H. vanam; 28–30 MVSR in H. whitakeri); maximum SVL up to 126 mm (n=6) (versus SVL up to 108 mm in H. acanthopholis; SVL up to 76 mm in H. depressus; SVL up to 111 mm in H. graniticolus; SVL up to 95 mm in H. kangerensis; SVL up to 80 mm in H. kolliensis and H. pieresii; SVL up to 78 mm in H. sahgali; SVL up to 48 mm in H. scabriceps; SVL up to 95 mm in H. sirumalaiensis; SVL up to 105 mm in H. siva and H. sushilduttai; SVL up to 76 mm in H. triedrus; SVL up to 112 mm in H. vanam; SVL up to 60 mm in H. whitakeri) (Khandekar et al. 2021).
Hemidactylus tamhiniensis sp. nov. closely resembles H. aaronbaueri and H. cf. aaronbaueri however, it can be easily distinguished from both on the basis of the following differing or non-overlapping characters: a single enlarged internasal scale separating supranasal scales behind rostral (n=6) (versus two small internasal scales separating supranasal scales behind rostral (n=4) or internasals in contact (n=2) in H. aaronbaueri and 2–4 small internasal scales between supranasal scales behind rostral in H. cf. aaronbaueri (n=11); Figure 5); dorsal pholidosis at mid-body heterogenous, composed of small, subcircular, smooth and flattened granular scales intermixed with fairly regularly arranged rows of enlarged, subcircular, weakly to strongly keeled, pointed tubercles (versus dorsal pholidosis at mid-body heterogenous, composed of small, subcircular, smooth and flattened granular scales intermixed with fairly regularly arranged rows of enlarged, subcircular, smooth to very weakly keeled, flattened tubercles in H. aaronbaueri; Figure 6); 8–10 undivided lamellae under first finger (versus six or seven undivided lamellae under first finger in H. aaronbaueri and five or six undivided lamellae under first finger in H. cf. aaronbaueri; Figure 6); dark dorsal bands with light centre, numerous white blotches on side of neck and flanks (versus dark dorsal bands with similar coloured centre, few white spots on lateral aspects of body in H. aaronbaueri; Figure 4,7) (Khandekar et al. 2021).
Colouration in life. (Figure 4A, 7A, 8A) Dorsal ground colour of head, body, limbs and tail grey-brown; numerous white blotches along side of neck, flanks, back of femur and lateral edge of tail. A fine, light preorbital streak runs from anterior of eye to nostril and continues as a thicker postorbital streak till above tympanum. Labials off-white with some indistinct darker bands/ spots. Head with irregular black markings and white blotches. Dorsal pattern of five dark transverse markings each roughly formed by the fusion of three diamonds, single band on nape, three on back and one on tail base; bands dark black on the edges, outlined by light grey and with numerous fine yellow/ brown spots toward the centre. original portion of tail with four light and four dark bands, regenerated portion purplish-grey. Dorsum of limbs and digits with irregular black and light grey bands and numerous light grey spots. Ventral surfaces dirty white with faint pale saffron-yellow speckles, most prominent and mixed with dark markings on underside of tail; gular region with dark markings; palm and sole grey. Iris bronze (Khandekar et al. 2021).
For abbreviations see Darko et al. 2022.
|Etymology||The specific epithet is a toponym for Tamhini Ghat in Pune and Raigad Districts of Maharashtra, the type and currently only known locality for this species.|