Uroplatus kelirambo RATSOAVINA, GEHRING, SCHERZ, VIEITES, GLAW & VENCES, 2017
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|Higher Taxa||Gekkonidae, Gekkota, Sauria, Squamata (lizards: geckos)|
|Synonym||Uroplatus kelirambo RATSOAVINA, GEHRING, SCHERZ, VIEITES, GLAW & VENCES 2017|
Uroplatus sp. E — RAXWORTHY et al. 2008b
Uroplatus sp. 2 — RATSOAVINA et al. 2011
Uroplatus ebenaui [Ca2] — RATSOAVINA et al. 2012
Uroplatus ebenaui [Ca2] — RATSOAVINA et al. 2013
Uroplatus ebenaui [Ca2] — RATSOAVINA et al. 2015
|Distribution||N Madagascar (Antsiranana Province, Tsaratanana mountain)|
Type locality: Matsaborimaiky camp site in the Tsaratanana mountain massif, Antsiranana Province, northern Madagascar, 14.1526°S, 48.9573°E, 2021 m elevation.
|Reproduction||oviparous (manual imputation, fide Zimin et al. 2022)|
|Types||Holotype: ZSM 641/2014 (field number DRV 6192), adult male with everted hemipenes, collected on the night of 13 June 2010, by D. Vieites, M. Vences, F. M. Ratsoavina, F. Randrianasolo, R. D. Randrianiaina, S. Rasamison, A. Rakotoarison, E. Rajeriarison and T. Rajoafiarison. Paratypes. ZSM 642/2014 (DRV 6250) and ZSM 643/2014 (DRV 6251), two adult males, and ZSM 1832/2010 (ZCMV 12388), an adult female, all with same collection data as the holotype.|
|Diagnosis||Uroplatus kelirambo sp. nov. is included in the Uroplatus ebenaui group of small-sized leaf-tailed geckos due to its triangular head with supraocular spines, laterally compressed body, and short tail. It differs from all members of the U. fimbriatus group (U. fimbriatus, U. giganteus, U. henkeli, U. sikorae and U. sameiti) and U. lineatus by its much smaller size (adult SVL 53.1–63.4 mm versus at least 85 mm), lack of lateral dermal fringes on any part of the body, and lateral compression of the body (versus depressed body shape with lateral integumentary fringes), and a relatively much shorter tail. The evident triangular head, rather smooth skin and short tail distinguish U. kelirambo from U. alluaudi, U. guentheri, U. malahelo and U. pietschmanni. Within the U. ebenaui group, the blackish oral mucosa distinguishes U. kelirambo from U. fiera, U. finiavana and U. fotsivava (oral mucosa unpigmented). Furthermore, the new species differs from all species by the unique elongated shape and small size of its tail. In particular, it differs from U. finiavana, U. malama and U. phantasticus by a shorter tail (adult TAL/SVL 0.35–0.44 vs. 0.48 in U. finiavana, 0.72 in U. malama, and 0.62–0.76 in U. phantasticus), and from U. fiera and U. fotsivava by a longer tail (adult TAL/SVL 0.35–0.44 vs. 0.28–0.34 in U. fiera and 0.15–0.32 in U. fotsivava). It differs from all other nominal species of the U. ebenaui group by a narrower tail; this is obvious from the lower values of the ratio TAW/SVL (0.04–0.05 vs. 0.24 in U. malama, 0.16–0.20 in U. phantasticus, 0.11 in U. finiavana, 0.06–0.07 in U. fiera, 0.05–0.09 in U. ebenaui and 0.07–0.1 in U. fotsivava), but especially in values of the ratio TAW/TAL (0.10–0.13 vs. 0.33 in U. malama, 0.25–0.29 in U. phantasticus, 0.23 in U. finiavana, 0.19–0.21 in U. fiera, 0.13–0.27 in U. ebenaui and 0.17–0.32 in U. fotsivava). In direct comparison to U. finiavana, the closest relative of U. kelirambo among the nominal species of Uroplatus, the new species is thus distinguished by its tail shape and size, and the pigmented (vs. unpigmented) oral mucosa.|
|Etymology||The specific epithet kelirambo is composed of the Malagasy words for small (kely) and tail (rambo). The name refers to the small and very thin tail of this species, but also points to the movie character Rambo and his toughness. This species shares with other members of the U. ebenaui group a grim, Rambo-esque expression, and is tough, surviving at exceptionally high altitudes, unique among Madagascar’s nocturnal geckos. The name is an invariable noun in apposition.|
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