Sunday, April 3, 2016

House Gecko, Hemidactylus mabouia (Family Gekkonidae)

Gekko mabouia Moreau De Jonnès 1818: 138
Hemidactylus mabouia - Duméril & Bibron 1836: 362

Type locality: Restricted to St Vincent in the Lesser Antilles (Stejneger, 1904), but the type specimen apparently does not belong to the taxon to which this name is usually applied. Instead it is a H. angulatus, which is similar to those from the Greater Antilles and Colombia, particularly the latter (Kluge, 1969) [from Carranza & Arnold 2006].

Adults have a SVL up to 63 mm; hatchlings are about 20 mm SVL; tails are about 1.2x the body length. Diagnosis. Dorsum covered with small granular scales studded with trihedral; tubercles in 6–14 longitudinal rows. Ventral scales overlap and are large than dorsals. Upper labials 8–12, lower labials 7–9. Lamellae on fourth finger 7–9, lamellae on fourth toe 7–8. Total pores in males 29–33. Color change in this lizard can be dramatic. Similar species. It is most easily confused with Hemidactylus palaichthus which has a more spiny appearance and more lamellae on the base of toes four and five that extend to the base of the digit. Distribution. Probably occurs island wide and associated with human modified habitats, most often buildings and frequently near lights that attract insects. Other common names. House gecko, wall mabuia, African woodslave, twenty-four hours.

Duméril, A.M. C. and G. Bibron. 1836. Erpetologie Générale ou Histoire Naturelle Complete des Reptiles. Vol.3. Libr. Encyclopédique Roret, Paris, 528 pp.

Kluge, A. G. 1969. The evolution and geographical origin of the New World Hemidactylus mabouia-brooki complex (Gekkonidae, Sauria). Misc. PubI. Mus. Zool. Univ. Michigan 138:1-78.

Moreau de Jonnès, A. 1818. Monographie du mabouja des murailles, on Gecko Mabouja des Antilles. Bull. Scient. Soc. Philomath. Paris, Ser. 3,5:138-139.

Stejneger, L. 1904. The herpetology of Porto Rico. Rept. United States Natl. Mus. 1902: 549-724.

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