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Uvidicolus sphyrurus (OGILBY, 1892)

IUCN Red List - Uvidicolus sphyrurus - Least Concern, LR

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Higher TaxaCarphodactylidae, Gekkota, Sauria, Squamata (lizards: geckos)
Common NamesE: Border Thick-tailed Gecko 
SynonymGymnodactylus sphyrurus OGILBY 1892
Heteronota walshi KINGHORN 1931
Phyllurus walshi — KLUGE 1963
Phyllurus sphyrurus — KLUGE 1965
Heteronotia walshi — WERMUTH 1965
Underwoodisaurus sphyrurus — INGRAM & COVACEVICH 1981
Nephrurus sphyrurus — BAUER 1990
Underwoodisaurus sphyrurus — COGGER 1992
Underwoodisaurus sphyurus (?)
Nephrurus sphyrurus — RÖSLER 1995: 75
Nephrurus sphyrurus — RÖSLER 2000: 97
Underwoodisaurus sphyrurus — COGGER 2000: 276
Nephrurus sphyrurus — LAUBE & LANGNER 2007
Underwoodisaurus sphyrurus — WILSON & SWAN 2010: 116
Uvidicolus sphyrurus — OLIVER & BAUER 2011
Uvidicolus sphyrurus — COGGER 2014: 285
Uvidicolus sphyrurus — CHAPPLE et al. 2019: 118 
DistributionAustralia (New South Wales and S Queensland: granitic highlands of the Murray-Darling Basin)

Type locality: interior of N. S. W. (Tumut?) [in error, fide Cogger et al., 1983]  
TypesHolotype: AMS (AM) R3800 
DiagnosisDefinition (genus): The most inclusive clade containing Uvidicolus sphyrurus Ogilby, 1892 but not N. asper or U. milii. A monotypic genus containing only sphyrurus Ogilby, 1892. A small (adult SVLto 70 mm) genus of carphodactylid geckos with transverse subdigital lamellae, anterior loreals only slightly smaller than posterior loreals, labial scales much larger than neighboring scales, mean of 26 presacral vertebrae, phalangeal formula unreduced (, and original tail short with 26 or fewer postsa-cral vertebrae, pleurapophyses borne on basal postpygal vertebrae,tail depressed proximally, rectangular in dorsal view and sharply tapering to tip lacking a terminal ‘knob’ [from OLIVER & BAUER 2011].

Original description: “Head rather large; a strong transverse ridge crosses the occiput immediately behind the eyes, ending on either side in a blunt point placed at the postero-superior angle of the orbit ; from this runs forward an inwardly curved, elevated, supraciliary ridge which is continued on the snout by a conversely curved angular canthus rostralis; these ridges form the margin on the forehead of an oval, and between the orbits of a subtriangular, depression; loreal region concave; the length of the snout is one and two-fifths of the diameter of the eye, and the distance between the eye and the ear-opening is equal to that between the eye and a point midway between the nostril and the tip of the snout. Interorbital space broad, broader in comparison than in G. pla- xxx turus or G. cornutus. Ear-opening a narrow vertical slit, about one third of the diameter of the eye. Body short and rather compressed, barely two and a third times the length of the head. Limbs long digits rather short and thick, subcylindrical at the base, and but little compressed on the distal phalanges. Head covered with small granules intermixed with rounded tubercles, which are largest near the end of the snout ; outer margin of the upper eyelid with two strong ridges upon which small tubercles predominate; two slight longitudinal folds on the sides of the neck and a vertical fold in front of the forelimb, all of which are more thickly studded with tubercles than are the surrounding parts ; rostral hexagonal twice as broad as high, without any indication of median groove above ; nostril directed posteriorly, bordered in front by a large nasal, which is larger than the first upper labial, and separated from the latter by a series of small granules labials small, thirteen or fourteen upper and eleven lower mental trapezoidal, bordered posteriorly by five small granules; body above covered by minute granules, intermixed with rounded and conical tubercles ; limbs similarly protected, but with the granules larger and the tubercles smaller ; below with flat subimbricate granules : no lateral fold. Tail short, broad, and thick, depressed, malleiform, not contracted at the base, from which the enlarged portion expands at right angles the expanded portion is formed of six broad transverse ridges, and is quadrilateral its length is three-fourths of its breadth, which is one-sixth more than that of the body at its broadest part; it ends almost as abruptly as it commences, and terminates in an attenu- xxx ated point, which rises from the postero-inferior margin of the swollen portion, and is barely four sevenths of its length; the tail is covered above by minute granules anteriorly and much larger flattened subimbricate granules posteriorly on the former portion there are four regular transverse series of strong conical tubercles, on the latter a single series on each side near the margin; sides with an upper series of very strong conical tubercles, and a lower series of weaker ones; below with subimbricate granules : attenuated portion covered with small rounded granules.” (Ogibly 1892)

Colors. “Head and neck above brown with darker and lighter marbling and most of the tubercles yellow; the sides pale yellowish-brown with irregular blackish bands, which are vertical on the former and horizontal on the latter; back brown with narrow yellowish transverse bands, mainly caused by the prevalence of that color on the tubercles; sides and limbs light brown streaked and marbled with darker brown; under surface dirty yellowish-brown ; tail above dark brown, the expanded portion with two broad light colored cross-bands; the anterior near its commence- xxx ment, the posterior marking its termination; below dark brown densely spotted with yellow ; the attenuated portion with two annular yellow rings.” (Ogibly 1892) 
CommentType species: Gymnodactylus sphyrurus Ogilby, 1892 is the type species of the genus Uvidicolus OLIVER & BAUER 2011. 
EtymologyEtymology (genus): Derived from the Latin uvidus, meaning moist or humid, and -colus, dwelling in. In reference to the restricted range ofthis gecko in relatively mesic and cool highland areas of the central Great Dividing Range of eastern Australia. 
  • Chapple, David G.; Reid Tingley, Nicola J. Mitchell, Stewart L. Macdonald, J. Scott Keogh, Glenn M. Shea, Philip Bowles, Neil A. Cox, John C. Z. Woinarski 2019. The Action Plan for Australian Lizards and Snakes 2017. CSIRO, 663 pp. DOI: 10.1071/9781486309474 - get paper here
  • Cogger, H. G. 2014. Reptiles and Amphibians of Australia, 7th ed. CSIRO Publishing, xxx + 1033 pp. - get paper here
  • Cogger, H.G. 2000. Reptiles and Amphibians of Australia, 6th ed. Ralph Curtis Publishing, Sanibel Island, 808 pp.
  • Kinghorn,J.R. 1931. Herpetological notes 3. Rec. Austral. Mus. 18: 267-269 - get paper here
  • Laube, Andreas & Robert Porter 2004. Captive Maintenance and Breeding of Some Ground Dwelling Australian Geckos Part IV: Underwoodisaurus milii (Bory de Saint-Vincent, 1823) and Underwoodisaurus sphyrurus (Ogilby, 1892). Gekko 4 (1): 23-32
  • Ogilby, J. D. 1892. Descriptions of three new Australian lizards. Rec. Austral. Mus. 2: 6—11 - get paper here
  • Oliver, P.M. & Bauer, A.M. 2011. Systematics. and evolution of the Australian knob-tail geckos (Nephrurus, Carphodactylidae, Gekkota): Pleisomorphic grades and biome shifts through the Miocene. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 59 (3): 664-674 - get paper here
  • Rösler, H. 2000. Kommentierte Liste der rezent, subrezent und fossil bekannten Geckotaxa (Reptilia: Gekkonomorpha). Gekkota 2: 28-153
  • Rösler, Herbert 1995. Geckos der Welt - Alle Gattungen. Urania, Leipzig, 256 pp.
  • Swan, G.; Sadlier, R.; Shea, G. 2017. A field guide to reptiles of New South Wales. Reed New Holland, 328 pp.
  • Wilson, S. & Swan, G. 2010. A complete guide to reptiles of Australia, 3rd ed. Chatswood: New Holland, 558 pp.
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