Tag Archive: geckos


TAXONOMY
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Reptilia (snakes, worm lizards, lizards, alligators, caimans, crocodiles, tortoises, turtles, and tuataras)
Order: Squamata (scaled reptiles, all lizards and snakes)
Family: Gekkonidae
Subfamily: Gekkoninae (Geckos)

Genus/species: Phelsuma grandis

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Largest species of the genus Phelsuma, 23–27 cm (9-10.6 in). They are bright green, with granular red spots on the body and a red line running from the eye to the tip of the nose. Eye color is much like the skin color. blending into their heads and surroundings. The eyes are surrounded by blue rings, have round pupils, indicative of a diurnal life style.

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DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Northern Madagascar, Seychelles, and smaller islands close to Madagascar. Found in the canopy of tropical rain forests and on the walls of buildings in towns and villages.

DIET IN THE WILD: Mostly insects and other invertebrates; also soft sweet fruit, nectar, and pollen.

REPRODUCTION: Breeding season is between November and the first weeks of May. During this period, the females lay up to 6 pairs of eggs which hatch after approximately two months.

MORTALITY AND LONGEVITY: They live up to 10 years in captivity.

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CONSERVATION: Widespread in northern common and tolerant of disturbance within its known range. There are no known major threats.

REMARKS Many geckos can make sounds to attract mates, to advertise their territories, to warn off unwanted intruders or to frighten predators. Geckos do not have eyelids. Instead the lids have fused, and the eye is covered with a large transparent scale. Geckos keep their eyes clean by licking them with their broad flat tongues.

Madagascar MA08

References

California Academy of Sciences Docent Rainforest Training Manual 2014

IUCN Red List Least Concern (LC) www.iucnredlist.org/details/193490/0

Encyclopedia of Life  eol.org/pages/2448279/details

Ron’s WordPress shortlink http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-U7

Ron’s flickr https://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/16492091872/in/set-72157620708610230/

TAXONOMY
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Reptilia (snakes, worm lizards, lizards, alligators, caimans, crocodiles, tortoises, turtles, and tuataras)
Order: Squamata (Lizards and Snakes)
Suborder Sauria (Lizards)
Family: Gekkonidae (Geckos)

Genus/species: Uroplatus henkeli

Henkel's Leaf-tailed Gecko 4226839485_62145bf20d_b

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS A master of camouflage: its grey-brown skin blends in with the colors of tree bark. The fringes of skin along its head and body mask shadows by breaking up the. outlines of its body. The charcoal/light grey patterns on some individuals’ bodies look like lichen. The short flat tail, for which the genus was named (uro – “flat,” platus – “tail”), looks like a dead leaf. The bulging eyes on its flat triangular head have pupils with vertical slits, an indication of a nocturnal life style. Size to 255 mm (10 inches).

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT Madagascar rainforest vegetation just a few metres off the ground

DIET IN THE WILD Nocturnal predator, eats mainly insects.

Henkel's leaf-tailed  Gecko  Uroplatus henkeli IMG_0394

REPRODUCTION: Eggs are deposited on the forest floor hidden under fallen leaves, beneath pieces of wood, or among dead leaves still attached to a plant. Juveniles hatch following a three-month incubation period.

MORTALITY Life span in the wild believed to be 3–5 years. Species has lived up to 15 years in captivity.

CONSERVATION IUCN Vulnerable from continued destruction of Madagascar forests. 

Listed in Appendix II of CITES.

 

REMARKS: To help escape predators. Like most lizard species, geckos can shed their tails. A new, shorter tail composed of cartilage will grow back. It can also frighten enemies by opening its mouth wide revealing a bright red interior. Also some geckos, including this one, have vocal cords, the only lizards that do. Its defensive behavior is often accompanied by loud distress calls.

Henkel's Leaf-tailed Gecko IMG_0742

Madagascar MAO7

References

California Academy of Sciences  Docent Rainforest Training Manual 2014

Encyclopedia of Life  eol.org/pages/961880/details

IUCN Red List:  www.iucnredlist.org/details/178653/0

Ron’s WordPress shortlink  http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-Uo

Ron’s flickr  http://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/sets/72157608449603666/with/4226839485/

TAXONOMY
Kingdom:Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Reptilia
Order: Squamata (scaled reptiles, all lizards and snakes)
Family: Gekkonidae (Geckos)

Genus/species: Phelsuma standingi

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Base color is usually light gray or brown with darker fine reticulations. If inactive, the coloration of this day gecko is often duller, giving it an overall grey appearance. When cool it takes on darker colors to help absorb light and heat and when hot it turns pale. Hatchlings have a yellowish-green head and typical light bands and bars on their backs. Large for a gecko, to 30 cm (11.75 inches) in length.

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DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: They have a limited range within southwest Madagascar, preferring dry thorn forests and arid to semi-arid regions where vegetation consists of thorny succulent plants and baobab trees.    

DIET IN THE WILD: Diurnal; feeds on insects, fruit, nectar and possibly other lizards. 

 

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REPRODUCTION: Established adult pairs will tolerate juveniles until they reach sexual maturity. Eggs are most often laid in pairs that are “glued” to each other. As in many reptile species, sex of newborns is temperature dependent.

LONGEVITY: Captivity to 12 years, wild 5 years.

PREDATORS: Snakes and birds of prey.

CONSERVATION: IUCN Red list: Vulnerable (VU) 

Populations numbers are thought to have declined in the 1990s due to heavy collecting for the pet trade.

Color of Life: Madagascar geckos are often either green or brownish, providing concealment in the rainforest.

References

California Academy of Sciences Docent Rainforest Training Manual 2014

ARKive  www.arkive.org/banded-day-gecko/phelsuma-standingi/

Encyclopedia of Life  eol.org/pages/791137/details

IUCN Red List  www.iucnredlist.org/details/16947/0

Ron’s flickr  www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/3268112303/in/set-72157…

https://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/3779080187/in/album-72157652559028013/

Ron’s WordPress shortlink  wp.me/p1DZ4b-1s3

 

TAXONOMY
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Reptilia
Order: Squamata
Family: Gekkonidae (Geckos)

Genus/species: Phelsuma klemmeri

IMG_0913

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS: Dorsal color is brown to turquoise with turquoise bands. A black lateral line runs from the eyes to the hind legs. The head and neck are yellow. The ventral surface is whitish; scales are small and smooth. Adults are about 9 cm (3.5 in) long.

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT: Found only in northwest Madagascar among medium-sized bamboo in fragmented “bamboo islands.” When disturbed they hide in the cracks in older dead bamboo.

Phelsuma klemmeri 4813861605_40e1c52a37_b

DIET IN THE WILD: Insects, other invertebrates and soft sweet fruit, pollen and nectar. In the wild, they avoid the hotter part of the day and usually hunt and forage in the early morning, late afternoon, or right after a shower.

DIET IN CAPTIVITY: A variety of insects, including crickets and fruit flies, but will also eat fruit baby foods. They also eat fruits such as guava, papaya, and peaches.

REPRODUCTION: Females lay eggs every 3 to 5 weeks. Like most geckos, she usually lay two eggs at a time, often inside a hollow piece of bamboo. The babies are iridescent and look like tiny copies of the adults. Newborns weigh a mere 0.1 g at birth.

CONSERVATION: IUCN Endangered (EN)
it is known from only two locations and occurs as a severely fragmented population, and there is a continuing decline in the extent and quality of forest habitat within its range.

REMARKS: First described in 1990.

Geckos have very special feet that contain millions of hairs capable of producing electrical forces, probably van der Waals forces. These forces, which are molecular and not caused by a sticky substance, allow the gecko to attract any surface, even polished glass.

Rainforest Madagascar with Madagascar Tree Boa MA06

References

California Academy of Sciences Docent Rainforest Training Manual 2014

IUCN Red List  www.iucnredlist.org/details/172981/0

phelsumania www.phelsumania.com/public/systematics/species/phelsuma_k…

Ron’s WordPress shortlink http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-TM

Ron’s flickr https://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/3707689563/in/set-72157620708610230

TAXONOMY
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Reptilia
Order: Squamata
Suborder: Sauria
Family: Gekkonidae (Geckos)

Genus/species: Ptychozoon kuhlii

Kuhl's Flying Gecko IMG_9599

GENERAL CHARACTERISTICS Weird looking with big heads, bulging lidless eyes, and elaborate webbed feet. Gliding apparatus is composed of a large flap of skin along the flank. These flaps remain rolled across the belly until the lizard jumps off a tree. Then the flaps open passively in the air, acting as a parachute during descent. Additional flaps lie along the sides of the head, neck, and tail. These geckos are nocturnal and cryptic, and often go unnoticed in their natural habitat.

DISTRIBUTION/HABITAT Southeast Asia, including southern Thailand, Malaysia, Borneo, Indonesia, and Singapore. Nocturnal arboreal animals, found in lowland and mid-level rainforests.

Kuhl's Flying Gecko IMG_9650

DIET IN THE WILD Insects and arthropods.

MORTALITY Can live up to 7–9 years.

REPRODUCTION In captivity, breeding occurs when the animals are exposed to about 12 hours of daylight. The female will lay two eggs about once a month. She can lay five or six clutches per season. Eggs will hatch in 2–3 months.

Kuhl's Flying Gecko

Rainforest Borneo BO11

WordPress Shortlink  http://wp.me/p1DZ4b-UA

flickr  http://www.flickr.com/photos/cas_docents/sets/72157620567930293/

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