New gecko from northeast gets Army tag

admin February 22, 2022
Updated 2022/02/25 at 3:40 PM

A lizard new to science is wearing the Indian Army’s tag.

A group of herpetologists discovered a new species of bent-toed gecko in a woodland area of Meghalaya’s Umroi Military Station. Crytodactylus exercitus is its scientific name, while the Indian Army’s bent-toed gecko is its English name. Exercitus is a Latin word that means “army.”

“The name was chosen to recognise the Army’s contributions to the nation. The military installation where the bent-toed gecko was found was also a factor in its designation, according to Jayaditya Purkayastha of green NGO Help Earth, who is also one of the authors of the research on the gecko.

The study’s findings were published in the most recent edition of the European Journal of Taxonomy. The Cyrtodactylus siahaensis, named after Mizoram’s Siaha area, is another new bent-toed gecko described in the publication. Sanath Chandra Bohra of Help Earth, Yashpal Singh Rathee of Umroi Military Station, Hmar Tlawmte Lalremsanga, Vabeiryureilai Mathipi, Lal Biakzuala, and Lal Muansanga of Mizoram University’s Department of Zoology, and Beirathie Litho of a school in the Siaha district are the other authors of the twin study.

In a separate investigation, the majority of these lizard experts and a few others discovered the Cyrtodactylus lungleiensis, a new species of bent-toed gecko named after Mizoram’s Lunglei town.

Mr. Purkayastha said a team of researchers has been scavenging the northeast’s urban, rural, and forest regions to discover the region’s herpetofaunal richness. In the last decade, many new reptile species have been discovered. The genus Cyrtodactylus has roughly 320 species worldwide, making it the world’s third most diverse vertebrate genus. The genus includes species from South Asia to Melanesia, with South Asia having the most variety. There are currently 40 species of bent-toed gecko in India, with 16 of them found in the northeast.

Source: The Hindu

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