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Geckoella jeyporensis

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
ANIMALIA CHORDATA REPTILIA SQUAMATA GEKKONIDAE

Scientific Name: Geckoella jeyporensis
Species Authority: (Beddome, 1878)
Common Name/s:
English Jeypore Ground Gecko, Patinghe Indian Gecko
Synonym/s:
Gymnodactylus jeyporensis Beddome, 1878
Taxonomic Notes: Geckoella jeyporensis was described by Beddome in 1877 based on specimens collected from Pathinge Hill, Jeypore, Orissa (Smith 1935).  Species of Geckoella are sometimes allocated to the genus Cyrtodactylus.  Molecular phylogenetic data reveal that Geckoella is embedded within Cyrtodactylus, but formal taxonomic action is pending (A. Bauer and I. Agarwal pers. comm. March 2011).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Critically Endangered B1ab(iii) ver 3.1
Year Published: 2013
Date Assessed: 2011-03-02
Assessor/s: Srinivasulu, C., Roy, A.D. & Srinivasulu, B.
Reviewer/s: Bowles, P., Bauer, A., Murthy, B.H.C.K., Agarwal, I., Mohapatra, P., Sondhi, S., Pal, S. & Molur, S.
Justification:
Geckoella jeyporensis is known only from two separated (severely fragmented) locations in high elevation moist forest of Jeypore Hills in Orissa and neighbouring Andhra Pradesh. The extent of occurrence is highly restricted to less than 100 km2 of fragmented high elevation habitat. There are several threats to the habitat which include deforestation for mining, fuel wood, conversion to plantations and forest fires. The species is highly threatened and is assessed as Critically  Endangered.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Geckoella jeyporensis is endemic to the Eastern Ghats, India. The type locality is probably Patinghe (Potangi) Hill near Jeypore in Orissa (Smith 1935). The species had not been collected since it was originally found in 1877, and there were fears that it might be extinct. However, it was recently recorded (September 2010) from Deomali, Jeypore in Koraput District, Orissa about 10 km from the type locality (A. Datta-Roy and I. Agarwal pers. comm. March 2011). A further collection was also made in October 2011, 40 km away from the type locality at Galikonda, Visakhapatnam District, Andra Predesh Agarwal et al. 2012). Its known extent of occurrence is probably under 100 km2. Within this area, its occurrence appears to be highly restricted at the two known sites, with a recent two-day survey failing to locate it in nearby areas, and the area of occupancy is provisionally estimated to be around 20 km2. There are, however, other high peaks in this hill range where this species might be found. It occurs at elevations between 1,200 to 1,300 m. asl.
Countries:
Native:
India (Andhra Pradesh, Orissa)
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: Nothing is known about the population size or trends of this species, but it appears to be extremely scarce given the low number of specimens and sightings to-date.
Population Trend: Unknown

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: The type specimen was collected in a wood on top of Patinghe hill, near Jeypore (Smith 1935). For the more recent collections, one individual was collected from under a rock in a patch of semi-evergreen forest at Deomali and one from a coffee plantation at Galikonda which still had many native shade trees (Agarwal et al. 2012). It therefore appears that this species is confined to semi-evergreen high altitude forests. All recent specimens were collected during the day and no animals were observed at night. Nothing else is known about the ecology of this species.
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The forest habitats where this species occurs are under extreme pressure (Agarwal et al. 2012). Neither of the new localities is in a protected area and both are severely deforested. Galikonda and the surrounding hills have been converted to coffee plantations and at Deomali there are grazing and fuel wood collection pressures. The hills in the Koraput District also face pressure from bauxite mining. Generally semi-evergreen forests in this region have been converted to plantations (with exotic species), agriculture or grazing lands and the remaining forest patches are impacted by fuel wood collection and occasional forest fires.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: There are no known species-specific conservation measures in place for this species and none of the known localities is in a protected area. There is an urgent need for survey work to determine its range, and protect the areas of presence.
Citation: Srinivasulu, C., Roy, A.D. & Srinivasulu, B. 2013. Geckoella jeyporensis. In: IUCN 2013. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 17 April 2014.
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