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Gecko: Bibron’s Tubercled - Chondrodactylus bibronii

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Jumbo

Tubercled Geckos

Unread postby Jumbo » Mon Feb 13, 2006 11:45 am

I'm reposting this thread because I found a book to ID the gecko

We have a number of the following geckos at our house in Marloth Park. They are quite big and sturdy in build. What is interesting, is that with these guys around we don't have the "pale geckos" that you normally find in Kruger. WTM mentioned that he also noticed that these two types of geckos don't share the same space. He said that he had the pale ones at his old house, and at his new house, he only has the ones below. DQ posted a photo of this gecko that was taken in Kruger (could you please repost, very nice photo :wink:)

Image


Jannie replied to my request for an ID, saying that he did find this gecko in a book, but according to his book this gecko is not found in Marloth/Kruger. Jannie, I looked in the "Sasol field guide to Snakes & other reptiles of South Africa", and agree with you! The distribution map in this book also indicates that this gecko is only found in the western regions of the country.
The gecko is the Bibron's Thick-toed Gecko. The book describes its habitat as varying from karriod veld, semi-desert, to arid and mesic savannah.
These geckos are gregarious, forming large colonies. Their length is between 15-20 cm. Their bite can be painful, but is not poisonous (are there actually geckos that have a poisonous bite? :? ). Although they are aggressive, they make good pets.

Jannie, you mentioned that you forwarded the question about this gecko's presence in Marloth to a friend who is working on a distribution map for reptiles (is that right?). It would really be nice to get his input on this.
Last edited by Jumbo on Fri Mar 06, 2009 4:27 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Geckos

Unread postby DuQues » Mon Feb 13, 2006 11:49 am

Jumbo wrote:DQ posted a photo of this gecko that was taken in Kruger (could you please repost, very nice photo.)

Sure! (It's on my website as well.)
Image
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Unread postby Jakkalsbessie » Tue Feb 14, 2006 10:34 am

Jumbo,

IMHO it is definitely the Bribons Gecko.
Looked a bit into distribution and found that they DO occur in that area... will send you a link!
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Unread postby Pilane » Tue Feb 14, 2006 7:22 pm

(are there actually geckos that have a poisonous bite? ).


There are no venomous (reptiles are venomous and not poisonous) geckos or lizards in Africa. Snakes are the only venomous reptiles in Africa.

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Unread postby Jumbo » Wed Feb 15, 2006 10:12 am

Thanks Pilane, one less thing to worry about.

Two questions if I may:

First:
I'm in a constant battle trying to keep these geckos out of the house. This is for one reason only: I'm scared that the mosquito coils that we burn in the evening will poison them. I'm also scared that they will eat insects that died from the coils and then get poisoned. However, after I caught them and took them outside, they just keep getting back in. I have never found a dead one inside the house. How sensitive are they to this type of poison?

Second:
One of these Geckos lost his grip high up in the roof, and fell, what I judge to be about 5m. He landed flat on his belly and was sitting dead still for quite some time. We thought that he is going to die - falling al that way. But suddenly he got a bust of energy and caught himself a nice big insect. The rest of the night he was 100%. Don't they get injured falling so far? Are they adapted for this type of acrobatics?

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Last edited by Jumbo on Mon May 08, 2006 9:34 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Unread postby francoisd » Wed Feb 15, 2006 2:10 pm

Have you concidered Turner's Thick-toed Gecko (Pachydactylus turneri) which do occur in the area you mentioned?

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Unread postby Jumbo » Wed Feb 15, 2006 2:32 pm

francoisd wrote:Have you concidered Turner's Thick-toed Gecko (Pachydactylus turneri) which do occur in the area you mentioned?


Hi Francoisd

No I haven't. The book I have is unfortunately very limited.
JB however send me a link to Ngwenya's website where they say they also have the Bibron's Gecko - the photo on their website is of the same gecko as that of DQ and me. However I do not think they are necessarily experts.
I looked at the KNP reptile list and Bibron's Gecko doesn't appear on that.
Wonder if there is an expert that might help us? :?

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Last edited by Jumbo on Mon May 08, 2006 9:36 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Unread postby DuQues » Wed Feb 15, 2006 2:39 pm

Regarding you falling gecko:

Scientists have recently discovered that, theoretically, a gecko, hanging upside-down from the ceiling, can support a 40 kg backpack. The ultimate 'cling-ons', geckos can stick to virtually any surface on the planet. So how on Earth do they perform this feat with their feet?

Read more here.
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Unread postby Jakkalsbessie » Wed Feb 15, 2006 2:50 pm

I have sent the 2 pics to an expert that can help us with id'ing them!
Will keep you posted!
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Unread postby Jakkalsbessie » Wed Feb 15, 2006 4:50 pm

Ok so as promised, here is the comments from the expert:
(Very interesting BUT i can now understand why all of us were so confused and it is so difficult to id :? )

These 2 pics are the same kind: Chonradactylus turneri (Turner's Thick-toed Gecko). This used to go by the name of C. bibronii (Bibron's Thick-toed Gecko), but that species is now kown only to occur in the southern parts of South-Africa (but you can not tell the difference from a photo - you need the specimen in the hand).
As you can gather, there have been lots of recent taxonomic changes, and just to complicate things further, both these species were Pacydactylus (as you would see in Bills's field guide).
I guess that this means that the common name must change in future too (since they are not in the Thick-gecko genus anymore).
In a field guide that we are currently writing, we have called them Tubercled Geckos. We will see if that sticks (if you will excuse the pun).
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Unread postby Jumbo » Wed Feb 15, 2006 6:04 pm

JB you are a star! Many thanks also to your expert friend. :D
This is really very interesting!

I did some searches on the net, and is seems Turner's gecko is found throughout Africa.

Unfortunately it also seems that there is quite a trade in them :evil: - luckily/hopefully SA has strict rules to protect them, and especially the Bibron's gecko (my searches led me to bad places :cry: )

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Re: Tubercled Geckos

Unread postby Jumbo » Mon May 08, 2006 10:03 am

Jumbo wrote:Their bite can be painful, but is not poisonous


This past weekend I witnessed the bite of these geckos. Let me tell you, he puts a Pitbull to shame.
I accidentally sprayed poison on one where he was hiding inside a kitchen cupboard. I caught him and washed him under the tap to get rid of the poison. He, for obvious reasons, did not like it and got hold of a piece of the paper towel I used to hold him. He held onto that paper towel for almost an hour after I placed him outside. Me think you will be crying if this guy gets hold of your finger…. {Luckily it seems the poison did not affect him}.

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Re: Lizard or Gecko?

Unread postby Johann » Tue Oct 13, 2009 8:10 am

When looking at the distribution maps one can find in the Virtual Museum on the SARCA site on would think that Bibron's would be more likely to be found in KTP.
It seems that Turner's is found more to the east of country, although there are a few records in the northern Cape along the Orange river.
Bibron's is more likely to be found in the drier west of the country with plenty of records in the northern Cape.

I'm no reptile expert but rather just looking at the probability of sighting either one in the area. Some expert will now probably come on and say it definitely is Turner's with my luck :lol:
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Re: Lizard or Gecko?

Unread postby Jumbo » Tue Oct 13, 2009 8:39 am

Thanks for the link Johann 8) …that is much better than the info I could find….most of the sources described the distribution of Turner's to be the northern parts of SA …borders of Moz, Zimbabwe, Botswana and Namibia….that is why I presumed they will also be found in the Kgalagadi.
Based on this map, I agree with you….the probably is much higher that the ones found in Kgalagadi is Bibron's…

Johann wrote:I'm no reptile expert but rather just looking at the probability of sighting either one in the area. Some expert will now probably come on and say it definitely is Turner's with my luck :lol:


Doubt that :lol: ….apparently the only way somebody will be able to make an ID is if they have the gecko in their hands and are able to check an array of features…


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