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Thecadactylus solimoensis BERGMANN & RUSSELL, 2007

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Higher TaxaPhyllodactylidae, Gekkota, Sauria, Squamata (lizards: geckos)
Common NamesPortuguese: Briba, Lagartixa, Lagartixão, Osga 
SynonymThecadactylus solimoensis BERGMANN & RUSSELL 2007 
DistributionEcuador, Peru, Bolivia, Brazil (Rondonia, Amazonas, Acre), S Colombia (jungles of S Meta, Caqueta and Putumayo)

from T. rapicauda: Bolivia (Beni, La Paz, Pando), N Peru, Ecuador; elevation: 120-200 m

Type locality: Reserva Faunistica Cuyabeno (Estacion Biologia da Universidad Catolica), Sucumbios, Ecuador.  
TypesHolotype: QCAZ 6691 (= OMNH 36431, Oklahoma). Male, collected by L. J. Vitt in 1994. 
DiagnosisDiagnosis: Thecadactylus solimoensis invariably possesses strongly dilated subdigital pads, well-developed subdigital sulci that house the claws and divide the lamellae into two series, and interdigital webs, uniting it with T. rapicauda within the genus. T. solimoensis also possesses morphological, morphometric and molecular autapomorphies that distinguish it from T. rapicauda. Morphological and morphometric divergence is less pronounced than molecular divergence, which includes sequence divergences of 23.0–26.9% between the two species (Kronauer et al., 2005). Morphological characters that diagnose T. solimoensis are never fixed, but are possessed by the majority of specimens. This is unsurprising for a cryptic species, and similar characters have been used as diagnostic by other authors (Branch, Bauer & Good, 1996; Wiens & Penkrot, 2002). Four morphological characters are here denoted as diagnostic. The strongest of these is that 78% of specimens examined have a dorsally directed postocular stripe, compared with < 0.01% of specimens of T. rapicauda. Seventy-seven per cent of those specimens examined have a dorsal diamond pattern (39% of T. rapicauda), and 69% possess stubby postmental scales (53% of T. rapicauda). Finally, 65% of specimens assigned to T. solimoensis have granular scales on the gular region (25% in T. rapicauda). All morphometric characters examined have a high degree of range overlap between T. solimoensis and T. rapicauda. However, significant differences occur in some, when size-removed (residual data set) species means are compared using two-sample t-tests or Mann–Whitney U-tests, as appropriate. Mean values for T. solimoensis are significantly greater for internasal distance, interorbital distance, ear–eye distance, axilla–groin distance, metatarsus length, fourth toe width and irst toe length than for T. rapicauda. Means are significantly less for eye–naris distance, orbital diameter, upper arm length and crus length than for T. rapicauda. Cytochrome b sequences between the two species are highly distinct (Kronauer et al., 2005). A smaller cyt b sample size would tend to inflate these differences and negate the use of this approach. Of 584 bp sequenced, 26 are fixed and exclusive to T. solimoensis. A further 9 bp are fixed and almost exclusive to T. solimoensis in that only a single specimen sequenced of T. rapicauda shares the same nucleotide. Within the sequenced fragment, a highly diagnostic region, located between nucleotide positions 489 and 532, contains 12 of the 35 fixed sites, ten of which are exclusive (from BERGMANN & RUSSELL 2007). 
CommentHas been confused previously with T. rapicauda (e.g. in Peru). 
EtymologyThe specific epithet, solimoensis, is a locative adjective referring to the drainage of the Solimões River, representing the headwaters of the Amazon River, and draining much of the area in which Thecadactylus solimoensis occurs. 
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  • Bernarde, Paulo Sérgio;, Reginaldo Assêncio Machado & Luiz Carlos Batista Turci 2011. Herpetofauna da área do Igarapé Esperança na Reserva Extrativista Riozinho da Liberdade, Acre – Brasil. Biota Neotropica 11 (3): 117-144 - get paper here
  • CATENAZZI, A., LEHR, E. & VON MAY, R. 2013. The amphibians and reptiles of Manu National Park and its buffer zone, Amazon basin and eastern slopes of the Andes, Peru. Biota Neotropica 13 (4): 269-283
  • Daza, Juan; Price, Lee Bension; Schalk, Christopher; Bauer, Aaron; Borman, A. Randall; Peterhans, Julian Kerbis 2017. Predation on Southern Turnip-tailed geckos (Thecadactylus solimoensis) by a Spectacled Owl (Pulsatrix perspicillata). Cuad. herpetol. 32 (1): - get paper here
  • Freitas, M. A. de, Venancio, N. M., Abegg, A. D., Azevedo, W. S, Pereira, V. O., Zanotti, A. P., Veloso, A., Schwarzbach, L., Oliveira, A. G., da Silva, R. C. C., de Amorim, V. R. G. and de Moura, G. J. B. 2020. Herpetofauna at the Rio Acre Ecological Station, Amazon Rainforest, Brazil. Herpetology Notes 13: 33-48. - get paper here
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  • Ribeiro-Júnior, Marco A. & Silvana Amaral 2016. Diversity, distribution, and conservation of lizards (Reptilia: Squamata) in the Brazilian Amazonia. Neotropical Biodiversity, 2:1, 195-421 - get paper here
  • Rodrigues-França, Frederico Gustavo & Nathocley Mendes-Venâncio 2010. Reptiles and amphibians of a poorly known region in southwest Amazonia Biotemas, 23 (3): 71-84 - get paper here
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