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Kolekanos plumicauda (HAACKE, 2008)

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Higher TaxaGekkonidae, Gekkota, Sauria, Squamata (lizards: geckos)
Common Names 
SynonymAfrogecko plumicaudus HAACKE 2008
Phyllodactylus sp. HAACKE 1996
Afrogecko sp. BAUER et al. 1997
Afrogecko plumicaudus — MASHININI & MAHLANGU 2013
Kolekanos plumicaudus — HEINICKE et al. 2014 
DistributionSW Angola (Namibé [= Mossamedes] district)

Type locality: “Tambor” (= turn-off of track to the south towards the Coroca River crossing into the Iona Park and the Kunene River mouth, marked by an empty 200 litre drum) 16º08’08”S, 12º25’47”E (1612Ab), Namibé (= Mossamedes) district, Angola.  
TypesHolotype: DNMNH (= TM) 40527, adult male, coll. W. D. Haacke, 1 April 1971. 
DiagnosisDefinition (genus). Kolekanos is distinguishable from all other geckos based on the following combination of characters: size moderate (46 mm max. SVL), with a flattened head, flattened but slender body, and flat, broad tail bearing numerous long, spiny lateral projections. Digits are free and bear a single pair of dilated terminal adhesive pads (‘leaf toes’); claws are present on all digits. Dorsal scala- tion consists of small, smooth granules. Preanal pores are absent; two cloacal spurs are present. The eye bears a ver- tical pupil with crenate margins. The skull displays no co- ossification with the overlying skin. Nasals are unfused; frontal single; parietal paired; stapes imperforate; 14 scleral ossicles; 11 premaxillary, more than 40 maxillary and more than 40 dentary teeth; hyoid with second cerato- branchial cartilages. There are 26 presacral vertebrae and one pair of cloacal bones. The phalangeal formula is 2-3- 4-5-3 (manus)/2-3-4-5-4 (pes); paraphalangeal elements are absent.
Kolekanos plumicaudus exhibits the following non- homoplastic apomorphic characters: anterior portion of premaxilla narrow, maxilla thus extends to the more anterior portion of the snout (30-0, Fig. 9); ascending nasal process of the premaxilla narrow (34-0); jugal bone very reduced, almost vestigial (113-2); anterolateral corner of parietal does not clasp the frontal (162-1, Fig. 9); postero- lateral process of parietal broad and flat (180-1, Fig. 9); length and width of palatine subequal (199-1, Fig. 19); ectopterygoid width more or less constant along the length of the bone (220-2); entocarotid fossa exclusively in the parabasisphenoid and not extending into the otooccipital (265-1); prootic contacts the epipterygoid far behind from the posterior process of the postorbitofrontal (278-1, Fig. 14); groove associated with the surangular foramen (316- 1, Fig. 14); coronoid abuts the dentary (339-1); between 40 and 44 maxillary teeth loci (370-8); between 40 and 49 dentary teeth loci (376-4); basihyal broad, shield like (393-1, Fig. 19).
Kolekanos is readily distinguished from all other genera of African leaf-toed geckos based on its uniquely flattened tail with pointed lateral projections. These projections are formed by the flattening and elongation of the scales on the lateral two or three scale rows on the distal two-thirds of the tail. In addition, the jaw has more numerous, smaller teeth, the skull is extremely depressed – perhaps more so than in any other gekkonid, and the postorbito- frontal is extremely reduced – a condition seen in some other Afro-Malagasy gekkonids, but not in other leaf-toed taxa [Heinicke et al. 2014]

Diagnosis. A small, very flat but slender, crevice-inhabiting, leaf-toed gecko. It is distinguished from all other similar sized geckosby the tail, which is about as long as, and as wide and flat as, the body. The most noticeable aspect is the fact that the distal half of the tail is fringed by a few rows of elongated spine-like scales, creating a finely serrated edge, which gives the tail a feather-like appearance. Dorsal scales are smooth and atuberculate, no rostral cleft present, first upper labial enters nostril, slightly enlarged postmental scales may be present, pupil with crennelated margins, preanal pores absent, two cloacal spurs present on either side with the posterior one slightly smaller, especially in females, no sexual dichromatism evident.
CommentThis description was only published in 2009 (fide J. Schmidt, pers. comm.).

Type species: Afrogecko plumicaudus HAACKE 2008 is the type species of the genus Kolekanos HEINICKE et al. 2014. 
EtymologyKolekanos is a Greek word meaning a long, thin person. It is given based on the elongate, depressed body form of the type species. The gender is masculine

The name of this new species refers to the featherlike appearance of the tail (Latin “cauda”).

The species name needs to be plumicauda, according to ICZN Article 34.2.1 which states that the gender of a noun in apposition must not be changed to agree in gender with the generic name, The Latin noun for tail is cauda and of female gender. For further explanations and examples see Böhme & Denzer (2019). 
  • Agarwal, I., Ceríaco, L.M.P., Bauer, A.M. & Bandeira, S. 2017. Kolekanos plumicaudus (Slender Feather-tailed Gecko) Habitat use. Herpetological Review 48 (3): 649-650. - get paper here
  • Barts, M. 2013. Das Porträt: Afrogecko plumicaudus HAACKE, 2008. Sauria 35 (1): 1-2 - get paper here
  • Barts, M. & HAACKE, W. 2009. Afrogecko plumicaudus (Haacke, 2009) Reproduction. African Herp News (50): 38 - get paper here
  • Bauer, A.M. 2013. Geckos - The Animal Answer Guide. Johns Hopkins University Press, 159 pp.
  • Bauer, Aaron M., Luis M. P. Ceríaco, Matthew P. Heinicke and David C. Blackburn. 2015. Geographic Distribution. Pachydactylus barnardi FitzSimons, 1941, Barnard's Rough Gecko. African Herp News (62): 35-37 - get paper here
  • Böhme, W. & Denzer, W. 2019. Warum die Endungen adjektivischer Artnamen dem Geschlecht der Gattungsnamen angepasst werden müssen Sauria 41 (1): 55–62 - get paper here
  • Gamble, T; Greenbaum, E; Jackman, TR; Russell, AP; Bauer, AM 2012. Repeated Origin and Loss of Adhesive Toepads in Geckos. PLoS One 7 (6):10.1371/journal.pone.0039429 - get paper here
  • Haacke, W.D. 2008. A new leaf-toed gecko (Reptilia: Gekkonidae) from south-western Angola. African Journal of Herpetology 57(2): 85-92 - get paper here
  • Heinicke, Matthew P.; Juan D. Daza, Eli Greenbaum, Todd R. Jackman & Aaron M. Bauer 2014. Phylogeny, taxonomy and biogeography of a circum-Indian Ocean clade of leaf-toed geckos (Reptilia: Gekkota), with a description of two new genera. Systematics and Biodiversity 12 (1): 23-42, DOI:10.1080/14772000.2013.877999 - get paper here
  • Marques, Mariana P.; Luis M. P. Ceríaco , David C. Blackburn , and Aaron M. Bauer 2018. Diversity and Distribution of the Amphibians and Terrestrial Reptiles of Angola -- Atlas of Historical and Bibliographic Records (1840–2017). Proc. Cal. Acad. Sci. (Ser. 4) 65: 1-501 (Supplement II)
  • Mashinini, P. L. and Mahlangu, L. M. 2013. An annotated catalogue of the types of gekkonid lizards (Reptilia: Squamata: Gekkonidae) in the Herpetology collection of the Ditsong National Museum of Natural History, South Africa. Annals of the Ditsong National Museum of Natural History 3: 165-181
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