Thursday, December 14, 2017

[Herpetology • 2017] Hemidactylus kurdicus • A New Species of Hemidactylus (Squamata: Gekkota: Gekkonidae) from Qara Dagh Mountains, Kurdistan Region, with A Key to the Genus in Iraq

Hemidactylus kurdicus 
Safaei-Mahroo, Ghaffari, Ghafoor & Amini, 2017


We describe a new species of gecko of the genus Hemidactylus from the oak woodlands of Zagros Forest Steppe of Qara Dagh Mountains, Sulaimani, northeastern Iraq, based on morphological and molecular characteristics. Hemidactylus kurdicus sp. nov. is distinguished from all other related Arid clade Hemidactylus species in the Middle East by having a single pair of postmental scales; it differs H. turcicus, H. robustus, H. ulii, H. sinaitus, H. shihraensis and H. yerburii based on the number of lamellae under the first and fourth toes of pes. Mitochondrial DNA including CytB and 12S identify a consistent divergence between H. kurdicus and H. persicus. An identification key to the genus Hemidactylus in Iraq is presented.

Keywords: Hemidactylus kurdicus sp. nov., morphology, phylogeny, taxonomy, Geckoes, habitat, Zagros Mountains forest steppe, Qara-Dagh Mountain, Reptilia

Hemidactylus kurdicus sp. nov.

Etymology. The generic nomen kurdicus is derived from the word “Kurd” which refers to the name for the Kurdish nation (Kurdistan Region), the location where the new species was found.

Barbod Safaei-Mahroo, Hanyeh Ghaffari, Aram Ghafoor and Saywan Amini. 2017. A New Species of Hemidactylus (Squamata: Gekkota: Gekkonidae)  from Qara Dagh Mountains, Kurdistan Region, with A Key to the Genus in Iraq.  Zootaxa. 4363(3); 377–392. DOI:  10.11646/zootaxa.4363.3.4

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