Cnemaspis flaviventralis, a new species of gecko (Squamata: Gekkonidae) from the Western Ghats of Maharashtra, India

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Amit Sayyed
Robert Alexander Pyron
Neelesh Dahanukar


Cnemaspis flaviventralis, a new species of day gecko, is described from the forests of Amboli, Sindhudurg District, Maharashtra State, northern Western Ghats, India.  The new species was previously confused with the sympatric species Cnemaspis girii, C. indraneildasii, C. kolhapurensis and C. goaensis.  It is distinguished from C. giri by having spine-like tubercles on flanks, granular dorsal scales intermixed with large, depressed, slightly keeled scales (vs. lack of spine-like tubercles on flanks, granular dorsal scales, intermixed with large smooth scales); from C. indraneildasii by having dorsal scales heterogeneous (vs. homogenous), lacking a series of enlarged median sub-caudal scales, and 28–29 (vs. 20) ventral scales across mid-body; from C. kolhapurensis by having heterogeneous (vs. homogenous) dorsal scalation, lacking spine-like tubercles on flanks and lacking pre-cloacal pores (vs. 24–28 pre-cloacal-femoral pores); and from C. goaensis by lacking pre-cloacal pores and lacking a series of enlarged median sub-caudal scales.  We further provide partial mitochondrial 16S rRNA gene sequences for the new species and for the sympatric species C. girii, C. kolhapurensis and C. goaensis, and show that the new species is genetically distinct. 


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Author Biographies

Amit Sayyed, Wildlife Protection and Research Society, Satara, Maharashtra 415 001 India.

Amit Sayyed is head of research department at Wildlife Protection and Research Society. He works on faunal diversity, ecology, taxonomy, distribution and evolution of Reptiles and Amphibians.

Robert Alexander Pyron, Department of Biological Sciences, The George Washington University, 2023 G St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20052, USA.

Robert Alexander Pyron is an Assistant Professor of Biology at The George Washington University. He works on theoretical and applied methods in statistical phylogenetics, using reptiles and amphibians as model groups.

Neelesh Dahanukar, Indian Institute of Science Education and Research, G1 Block, Dr. Homi Bhabha Road, Pashan, Pune, Maharashtra 411008, India

Neelesh Dahanukar works in ecology and evolution with an emphasis on mathematical and statistical analysis. He is also interested in taxonomy, distribution patterns and molecular phylogeny of ichthyo- and herpetofauna.



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