The British Herpetological Society

The Herpetological Journal is the Society's prestigious quarterly scientific journal. Articles are listed in Biological Abstracts, Current Awareness in Biological Sciences,Current Contents, Science Citation Index, and Zoological Record.

The 2017/18  impact factor of The Herpetological Journal is 1.268

ISSN 0268-0130


pdf 04. On the diversity, colonization patterns and status of Hemidactylus spp. (Reptilia: Gekkonidae) from the Western Indian Ocean islands

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pp. 83-89
Authors: Rocha, Sara; Carretero, Miguel A. & Harris, D. James

Abstract: Hemidactylus geckos are probably the most widespread genus of reptiles, with a world-wide distribution and multiple cases of range expansion and transmarine colonization. With an almost cosmopolitan distribution and many species being morphologically similar it has proved difficult to delimit species diversity and distributions. Using a comprehensive analysis of individuals collected across the Western Indian Ocean islands and some locations along the East African coast, we further assess their diversity and the origin of insular populations. Despite four species of Hemidactylus being widespread across the Western Indian Ocean islands, most of their range in this area may actually be the result of very recent (possibly human-aided) dispersal events. Most probably, all Hemidactylus species occurring in the Comoros and granitic Seychelles archipelagoes are not native. Instances of natural colonization seem to be only the ones of H. mabouia to Madagascar and from there to the coralline archipelago of Aldabra. Surprisingly, Aldabra populations reveal a remarkable diversity and structure. Given the degree of divergence observed we propose that insular (Gulf of Guinea, Comoros, Madagascar, Seychelles) populations of H. mabouia are recognized as H. mercatorius. Cryptic variation is further uncovered in all species in their native range, with H. platycephalus and H. mabouia harbouring several highly divergent lineages, but further taxonomic assignments should await detailed assessments of distribution and molecular variation.

Keywords: MADAGASCAR, GECKOS, 16S RRNA, COMOROS, SEYCHELLES

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IMPORTANT NOTE - JUNE 2020

Please note that as from Volume 31 Number 1 (January 2021) on, the Herpetological Journal will be available as an online publication only - the last print edition will be Volume 30 Number 4.   

Aligning with this change, it is now no longer possible to purchase a subscription that includes a print copy of the HJ.  All members who have existing HJ print subscriptions that remain active as at end June 2020 will receive the full four 2020 print editions.  New subscribers or renewals after this time will only have option to subscribe to the online only subscription package.  Subscription pricing has been amended to reflect the content changes.