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Paroedura rennerae MIRALLES, BRUY, CROTTINI, RAKOTOARISON, RATSOAVINA, SCHERZ, SCHMIDT, KÖHLER, GLAW, VENCES, 2021

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Higher TaxaGekkonidae, Gekkota, Sauria, Squamata (lizards: geckos)
Subspecies 
Common Names 
SynonymParoedura rennerae MIRALLES, BRUY, CROTTINI, RAKOTOARISON, RATSOAVINA, SCHERZ, SCHMIDT, KÖHLER, GLAW, VENCES 2021 
DistributionW Madagascar (Atsimo-Andrefana Region)

Type locality: Kirindy reserve CNFEREF, Camp de base, 20.0674°S, 44.6569°E, ca. 55 m above sea level, Atsimo-Andrefana Region, western Madagascar  
Reproduction 
TypesHolotype. ZSM 849/2010 (ZCMV 12740), adult female, collected on 2 December 2010 by A. Miralles and A. Rakotoarison.
Paratypes (n=2). ZSM 779/2009 (ZCMV 13023), subadult specimen of unknown sex, from Ambalavao, Anja reserve, 21.8522°S, 46.8443°E, 972 m a.s.l., Haute Matsiatra Region, Madagascar, collected on 08 December 2009 by A. Crottini, D.J. Harris, I.A. Irisarri, A. Lima, S. Rasamison, and E. Rajeriarison; and ZSM 850/2010 (ZCMV 12791), adult specimen from Anja reserve, 21.8519°S, 46.8440°E, Haute Matsiatra Region, Madagascar, collected on 08 December 2010 by A. Miralles and F. M. Ratsoavina. 
DiagnosisDiagnosis. Paroedura rennerae sp. nov. is characterized by the unique combination of the following characters: (1) presence of prominent dorsal tubercles arranged in regular longitudinal rows, (2) presence of three broad light crossbands on the dorsum in juveniles and sub- adults, (3) spines on the tail, (4) nostril separated from rostral scale by prenasal, and (5) a curly-bracket shaped marking in the occipital region.
Paroedura rennerae sp. nov. can be distinguished from most other currently recognized Paroedura species by the presence of only three broad light crossbands on the dorsum in juveniles and subadults (the first one between forelimbs, the second one at midbody, and the third one between hindlimbs) versus four light crossbands in all other species except those of the P. bastardi clade (P. bas- tardi, P. guibeae, P. ibityensis, P. neglecta, and P. tanjaka, which all have three crossbands) and P. oviceps and P. va- hiny (in which the juvenile coloration is still unknown). It can be distinguished from P. gracilis by larger dorsal scales, absence of a white tip to the original tail, absence of a raised vertebral ridge on the dorsum and shorter fore- limbs, which do not extend forward beyond tip of snout; from P. masobe by much smaller eyes and absence of a dorsal row of paired spines on the tail; from P. fasciata, P. homalorhina, P. hordiesi, P. vahiny, and P. spelaea by presence of spines on the original tail (versus absence); from P. gracilis, P. homalorhina, P. kloki, P. maingoka, P. masobe, P. oviceps (from its type locality Nosy Be), P. picta, P. spelaea, most P. tanjaka, and P. vahiny by the presence of prominent dorsal tubercles arranged in regu- lar longitudinal rows (versus rather irregular rows of dor- sal tubercles).
Within the P. bastardi clade, the species can easily be distinguished from P. tanjaka and P. neglecta by the absence of contact between the nostril and the rostral scale (versus presence). It can be distinguished from P. ibityensis by larger maximum SVL (> 70 mm versus 61 mm). In comparison with P. bastardi sensu novo and P. guibeae, the new species can be distinguished by the presence of a very sharp and contrasting dark transverse pattern, evoking the shape of a thin curly-bracket ( { ), in the occipital region and delimiting the skull from the neck. Moreover, Paroedura rennerae sp. nov. is un- ambiguously larger in size than P. guibeae (adult SVL > 70 mm versus < 60 mm in P. guibeae), and its dorsal tubercles are more prominent. It also lacks striped fingers (versus striped in P. guibeae), and the light patch on its head lacks concave anterior edge and central vacuity in juveniles (versus both present in P. bastardi). 
CommentOnly minimal information provided as authors did not respond to detailed information request. 
EtymologyThis new species, elegant and prickly, is dedicated to Susanne Renner, eminent botanist and evolutionary biologist, and Professor Emeritus of the University of Munich, in recognition of her substantial contributions to taxonomy and her invaluable collaboration in the framework of the “Taxon-omics” priority program of the German Research Foundation, DFG. 
References
  • Miralles, A., Bruy, T., Crottini, A., Rakotoarison, A., Ratsoavina, F. M., Scherz, M. D., ... & Vences, M. 2021. Completing a taxonomic puzzle: integrative review of geckos of the Paroedura bastardi species complex (Squamata, Gekkonidae). Vertebrate Zoology, 71: 27 - get paper here
 
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