Palmyra's Beauty (68)
|Ptyodactylus guttatus (=P. lacazzi) (Spotted Fan-footed Gecko) [In Turk. Benekli Yelpazeayaklı Keler] (Female)|
Today another gecko beauty from Syrian desert which we meet it in the antique Roman city Palmyra (Hims). I attached a WS to show you our trip head scarf ('Puschy') and Palmyra too:) This is the 2nd post of the species on TN. 1st post of a male individual uploaded by our friend, Ori Fragman Sapir from Israel.
TFL and Have a nice Sunday!
©Bayram GÖÇMEN, All Rights Reserved.
Spotted Fan-footed Gecko is middle-sized, relatively robust spotted gecko with distinctly triangular head and rather long extremities. Fan-like arrangement of adhesive lamellae is similar to other members of the genus, adhesive pads of P. guttatus are usually bigger than those of P. hasselquistii (Egyptian Fan-footed Gecko) and P. puiseuxi (Levant Fan-footed Gecko). Dorsal scales are very small, granular, with intermixed single-keeled tubercles surrounded by small granules. Tail is slender, shorter in length than head and body, with 31-35 caudal whorls. Males can be distinguished in having distinctly swollen hemipenial pouches, more slender appearance and larger heads. The ground colour is mostly pale grey, with light and dark spots and blotches of irregular size and shape, forming more or less expressed transverse rows and bars. Coloration of males is more contrast than that of females and juveniles.
Although some authors formerly considered P. guttatus to be a subspecies of P. hasselquistii, the specific level of this taxon is widely accepted at present. It is possible, that P. guttatus actually comprises several similar forms. Both natural and experimental hybrids of P. guttatus and P. puiseuxi have been reported from Israel. Although any hybridization process has not been reported in Jordanian populations, during our trip we observed some specimens showing hybrid features in Palmyra Antique City (Syria). Spotted Fan-footed Gecko is reported from N Sudan, Egypt, Sinai, Israel, Syria and Jordan. It occurs probably also in NW Saudi Arabia, along the coast of the Aqabah bay. According to me it is possible find these beauties in SE Anatolia (Turkey) near the Syrian border. The delimitation of the contact zone with P. puiseuxi needs further research.
Spotted Fan-footed Gecko inhabits rocky cliffs, steep margins of dry wadis, groups of large boulders and ruins. In contrast to P. hasselquistii, P. guttatus usually avoids urban areas and does not enter houses. It exhibits both a diurnal and nocturnal activity mode. Basking specimens can often be observed in the morning hours, later on, individuals are encountered usually along shady overhanging rocks and near entrances to deep crevices. Both sexes vocalize. Mating takes place predominantly in spring and early summer, females lay 3-4 clutches consisting of two hard-shelled, nearly spherical eggs stuck on the rock surface, usually in crevices or in shadow places of overhanging rocks. Usually, more females repeatedly use suitable sites; sometimes dozens to hundreds of remnants of hatched eggs can be found together. Food spectrum comprises various arthropods.
1. Göçmen, B. (Unpub. results). The results of herpetological trips.
2. Disi, A. M., Modry, D., Necas, P. & Rifai, L. (2001). Amphibians and Reptiles of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan. Edition Chimaira, 408 pp.
3. Werner Y L. Sivan N. 1(996).. Systematics and zoogeography of Ptyodactylus (Reptilia: Sauria: Gekkonidae) in the levant: 3, experimental and natural hybrids of P. guttatus and P. puiseuxi. Israel Jornal of Zoology, 42 (2): 185-202.
4. Esterbauer,H. (1985). Zur Herpetofauna Südwestsyriens. Herpetofauna 7 (38): 23-34.