Cryptic Pseudogekko Diversity


Recent studies of forest lizards in Southeast Asia have revealed both physical and genetic differences within this family. These lizards are currently being threatened by the deforestation that is occurring in the region. Lizards in the Philippines are particularly vulnerable, as 84% of the lizard species there are found nowhere else on the planet. Though the threats faced by these lizards are growing, our understanding of their health and abundance is not increasing as quickly. This is especially true for the very rare Philippine slender forest geckos. They are seldom seen in the wild it is difficult to distinguish different species within this family of lizards. This makes effective conservation difficult. By analyzing the genetic makeup of these slender forest geckos, we created a clearer picture of their family tree and devise appropriate plans for conservation.

— Tucker Walton

Siler, C.D., T.A. Dececchi, C.L. Merkord, D.R. Davis, T.J. Christiani, and R.M. Brown. 2014. Cryptic diversity and population genetic structure in the rare, endemic, forest-obligate, slender geckos of the Philippines. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 70: 204–209.  pdf  appendix