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Saltuarius eximius HOSKIN & COUPER, 2013

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Higher TaxaCarphodactylidae, Gekkota, Sauria, Squamata (lizards: geckos)
Common NamesE: Cape Melville Leaf-tailed Gecko 
SynonymSaltuarius eximius HOSKIN & COUPER 2013
Saltuarius eximius — COGGER 2014: 974 
DistributionAustralia (NE Queensland)

Type locality: Melville Range (14°16'38" S, 144°29'28" E, elevation 500 m), Cape Melville National Park, north-east Queensland.  
TypesHolotype: QM J92377, female, C. J. Hoskin, 20 March 2013. Paratypes: QMJ92378 (male), QMJ92379 (female), collection details as for holotype. 
DiagnosisDiagnosis. Saltuarius eximius sp. nov. is highly distinct in its long and slender form, short head and very large eyes (Figs. 1–5). Saltuarius eximius sp. nov. is readily distinguished from all its congeners by the following non- overlapping (or largely non-overlapping) body measurements (as % SVL): its more elongate and narrow body form (AG = 49–50% vs 40–51% combined range for all other Saltuarius species; midBW = 11–12% vs 1–21%); longer limbs (L1 = 55–57% vs 42–52%, L2 = 6–64% vs 52–6%); narrower neck (NW = 6.–6.5% vs 7.5–10.7%); narrower head (HW = 18–19% vs 19–24%); shorter head (HL = 24–25% vs 25–0%); shorter temporal region (EE = 6.0–7.8% vs 7.4–10.%); and larger eye diameter (ED = 7.8–8.6% vs 5.2–7.%) (Table 1). Saltuarius eximius sp. nov. also has an unpatterned grey eye versus the patterned eyes of all congeners. Saltuarius eximius sp. nov. also has a distinct tail that is elaborately frilled along the margin with a short, fine attenuated tip. 
CommentAbundance: only known from its original description (Meiri et al. 2017). 
EtymologyEximius; from the Latin meaning exceptional, extraordinary, exquisite. In recognition of the particularly fine form and distinctiveness of this species. The species epithet is treated as a noun in apposition. 
  • Cogger, H. G. 2014. Reptiles and Amphibians of Australia, 7th ed. CSIRO Publishing, xxx + 1033 pp. - get paper here
  • Hoskin C.J.; Couper P.J. 2013. A spectacular new leaf-tailed gecko (Carphodactylidae: Saltuarius) from the Melville Range, north-east Australia. Zootaxa 3717 (4): 543–558 - get paper here
  • Meiri, Shai; Aaron M. Bauer, Allen Allison, Fernando Castro-Herrera, Laurent Chirio, Guarino Colli, Indraneil Das, Tiffany M. Doan, Frank Glaw, Lee L. Grismer, Marinus Hoogmoed, Fred Kraus, Matthew LeBreton, Danny Meirte, Zoltán T. Nagy, Cristiano d 2017. Extinct, obscure or imaginary: the lizard species with the smallest ranges. Diversity and Distributions - get paper here
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