19 Feb 2022.
A team of researchers recently discovered a new species of bent-toed gecko or lizard, from Umroi Military station in Ri-Bhoi district of Meghalaya.
- The new species of Gecko or lizard belongs to the family of Cyrtodactylus exercitus (‘exercitus’ means army, in Latin).
- It has been named to honour the valour of Indian Army for their services to India.
- These new species was discovered as part of efforts of research team, to uncover herpetofaunal diversity of North East India.
- The genus Cyrtodactylus is represented by about 320 species across the world. It is the third most speciose vertebrate genus worldwide.
- Members of the genus range from South Asia to Melanesia. There is high diversity of the species in south Asia.
- North East India has now become home to 16 species of bent-toed gecko.
Where was the species discovered?
- The new species of bent-toed gecko or Cyrtodactylus, from family of Cyrtodactylus khasiensis, was discovered from Lunglei District of Mizoram.
- It is named as Cyrtodactylus lungleiensis. These geckos can be differentiated from other such species by a bent toe, which is similar to that of bird’s toe.
- The bent-toed geckos reside only in the wild amid rocks, bushes, and woods.
- This is the third discovery of a Cyrtodactylus species in Mizoram.
About bent-toe gecko
- Bent-toe geckos are scientifically known as Cyrtodactylus.
- It is a diverse genus of Asian geckos. This genus has about 300 described species as of 2020.
- Thus, it is the largest of all gecko genera.