Other Free Encyclopedias » Animal Life Resource » Dinosaurs, Snakes, and Other Reptiles » Geckos and Pygopods: Gekkonidae - Physical Characteristics, Geographic Range, Habitat, Behavior And Reproduction, Geckos, Pygopods, And People - DIET, CONSERVATION STATUS

Geckos and Pygopods: Gekkonidae - House Gecko (hemidactylus Frenatus): Species Accounts

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Physical characteristics: The house gecko is grayish, pinkish, or pale brown with darker flecks. The color may vary, depending on the surrounding temperature. It also may vary depending on the surface on which the gecko is resting; this gecko can blend with its background, such as a tree branch or a leafy area. The body is flattened. This gecko grows to 2.6 inches (66 millimeters) in length, from the head to the base of the tail. It has toe pads on each of its toes, and the first toe is smaller than the rest.

Geographic range: House geckos exist in Southeast Asia, the Philippines, Taiwan, and much of Micronesia, Melanesia, and Polynesia. It was introduced, or brought by people, into tropical Australia, eastern Africa, Mexico, and the United States.

Habitat: These geckos live among many types of vegetation, or greenery, including tropical rainforest and dry scrubland, or land covered with low trees and bushes. They are often found around human homes and rubbish dumps.

Diet: House geckos eat insects.

A house gecko can blend with its background, such as a tree branch or a leafy area. (Illustration by Patricia Ferrer. Reproduced by permission.)

Behavior and reproduction: This gecko is active at night, although it may be seen outside on cloudy days. Male house geckos can be unfriendly and mean. This is especially true when there are many of them in one area and plenty of food. They can produce several types of clicking sounds, including "chi-chak."

After mating, females can store sperm (SPUHRM), the male reproductive cells that fertilize the female's eggs. The females lay groups of hard-shelled eggs throughout the year, and the eggs hatch in forty-five to seventy days.

House geckos and people: This species is often found in and around people's homes.

Conservation status: The species itself is not threatened, but it may cause a decrease in native geckos in the areas where it is introduced. House geckos are unfriendly and compete for the food supply of other gecko species. ∎



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Mattison, Chris. The Care of Reptiles and Amphibians in Captivity. London: Blandford Press, 1987.

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"At Home in the Rocks, a New Gecko Emerges." National Geographic (June 1997): Geographica.

"Barking Gecko." National Geographic (October 1989): 26–29.

"Fat-Tailed Gecko." Ranger Rick (May 1994): 14–15.

"Leopard Gecko." Ranger Rick (November 1994): 4–7.

"Where'd the Gecko Go?" National Geographic World (July 1985): 38.

Web sites

Autumn, Kellar. "Gecko Story." http://www.lclark.edu/autumn/dept/geckostory.html (accessed on August 8, 2004).

Muir, Hazel. "Minute Gecko Matches Smallest Living Reptile Record." NewScientist.com. December 3, 2001. http://www.newscientist.com/news/news.jsp?id=ns99991635&lpos;=related_article2 (accessed on August 9, 2004).

Schweitzer, Sophia. "Guardian Geckos." Coffee Times. http://www.coffeetimes.com/geckos.htm (accessed on August 9, 2004).

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over 9 years ago

Live on Mayan Riviera and share my home and yard with geckos, some green and some almost black. The longest one about 3.5 inches. I found the info especially helpful about reproduction and offspring. I have had new babies in my house on 2 occasions, far enough apart for them not to have been from the same litter(?). They are a source of entertainment and the other day I discovered that when it is extremely hot and you turn on the sprinkler, they come from everywhere for a shower; to cool off, I suppose.
At any rate, thank you for the information. Linda