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Pachydactylus monicae BAUER, LAMB & BRANCH, 2006

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Higher TaxaGekkonidae, Gekkota, Sauria, Squamata (lizards: geckos)
Common NamesE: Monica’s Gecko 
SynonymPachydactylus monicae BAUER, LAMB & BRANCH 2006: 664
Pachydactylus weberi — BRANCH 1998: 263
Pachydactylus weberi — BARTS 2011
Pachydactylus monicae — MASHININI & MAHLANGU 2013
Pachydactylus monicae — CONRADIE et al. 2019 
DistributionNamibia (Lüderitz, Karasburg districts); Republic of South Africa (Northern Cape Province).

Type locality: South Africa, Northern Cape Province, Richtersveld National Park, Sendelingsdrif  
TypesHolotype: CAS 200034* (Figs. 82–83 in Bauer et al. 2006): Adult male, coll. A.M. Bauer, W.R. Branch and D.A. Good, 20 September 1995, paratypes: CAS, TM, PEM 
DiagnosisDIAGNOSIS.—A large species, to 47.9 mm SVL. Pachydactylus monicaemay be distinguished from all other members of the P. serval/weberi group by the combination of the following characters: nostril rim not strongly inflated laterally; rostral excluded from nostril; supranasals in variable contact; scales on snout and canthus smooth, flattened to weakly domed; interorbital and parietal regions with smaller granules interspersed with domed to weakly conical tubercles; scales on snout comparable in size to interorbital tubercles, much larger than granular scales of parietal table; dorsal scalation heterogeneous, with moderately large, rounded, strongly keeled tubercles in 16–18 regular rows; thighs bearing scattered moderately enlarged conical to keeled tubercles; toes relatively short, toe pads relatively wide; typically five undivided lamellae beneath digit IVof pes; tail annulate, bearing whorls of moderately large, oval, strongly keeled tubercles, some with striated surfaces, usually separated from each other by a single narrow scale; adult pattern of three broad pale bands (one on nape, one anterior of midbody, one on lumbar region), each bordered by narrow dark edges, on a grayish- to yellowish-brown background; dark edges often fade with age/size and dark speckles in interspaces between bands, and within pale bands can result in obscuring of bands (Figs. 82–84 in Bauer et al. 2006); tail with alternating yellowish-brown and much narrower mid-brown bands; hatchling with dark brown body with pale transverse bands in same positions as adult, dark brown becoming paler in juveniles, yielding a bold banded pattern of alternating brown to grayish-brown and whitish to pale yellowish bands, separated by narrow dark brown to blackish borders; larger juveniles usually with stray dark markings between bands, as in adults (Figs. 85–87 in Bauer et al. 2006).
CommentHABITAT: This is one of the most terrestrial species in the P. weberi group. It is
almost exclusively restricted to riverine environments (Fig. 88). At Sendelingsdrif it has been collected underneath trash and other debris some distance from rocky areas. The holotype was collected in a pile of logs. One specimen (CAS 200049) was found dessicated in an unused garage at Sendelingsdrif. Elsewhere it occupies boulder outcrops in relatively mesic low elevation areas (Fig. 89 in Bauer et al. 2006).

Distribution: see map in BRANCH et al. 2011. 
EtymologyThe specific epithet is a matronym honoring Monica Frelow Bauer, wife of the senior author, for her tolerance of long absences in the field and long hours in the laboratory and her support of systematic herpetology. 
  • Barts, M. 2007. Revision zweier Artkomplexe innerhalb der südafrikanischen Dickfingergeckos. Reptilia (Münster) 12 (66): 6-9 - get paper here
  • Barts, M. 2011. The Thick-toed Geckos of Southern Africa. Part XII: Pachydactylus monicae BAUER, LAMB & BRANCH, 2006. Sauria, Berlin 33 (2): 9-14 - get paper here
  • Barts, Mirko 2018. Ein kleiner Reiseführer zu den Reptilien und Amphibien Namibias. Draco 16 (64): 6-23 [2015] - get paper here
  • 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, Aaron M. Lamb, Trip. Branch, William R. 2006. A revision of the Pachydactylus serval and P. weberi groups (Reptilia: Gekkota: Gekkonidae) of Southern Africa, with the description of eight new species. Proc. Cal. Acad. Sci. 57 (12-24):595-709. - 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. 1998. Field Guide to the Snakes and Other Reptiles of Southern Africa. 3rd ed. Fully Revised and Updated to Include 83 New Species. Ralph Curtis Books (Sanibel Island, Florida), 399 pp.
  • Branch, William R.; Aaron M. Bauer, Todd R. Jackman, and Matthew Heinicke 2011. A New Species of the Pachydactylus weberi Complex (Reptilia: Squamata: Gekkonidae) from the Namibrand Reserve, Southern Namibia. Breviora (524): 1-15. - 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
  • Herrmann, H.-W.; W.R. Branch 2013. Fifty years of herpetological research in the Namib Desert and Namibia with an updated and annotated species checklist. Journal of Arid Environments 93: 94–115 - get paper here
  • 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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