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Moorish Gecko (42)
uleko Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3396 W: 172 N: 3310] (10940)
Moorish Wall Gecko - Tarentola mauritanica

This gecko was captured at Albufera where it came up to warm itself in the sun after a rainy morning. There were four or five of them that had found some large boulders to hide under. They were quite shy and disappeared rapidly at slightest movement. There is a complete view of a young one in the WORKSHOP.

This is a species of gecko native to the Western Mediterranean region of Europe and North Africa and widely introduced to North America and Asia. It is commonly observed on walls in urban environments, mainly in warm coastal areas, though it can spread inland - especially in Spain. A robust species, up to 150 millimetres long, its tubercules are enlarged and give the species a spiny armoured appearance.

Adults can measure up to 15 cm, tail included. Robust body and flat head. Back, legs and tail with prominent conic tubercles. Its regenerated tail is smoother and doesn't have tubercles. Obtuse mouth, big eyes with no eyelids and vertical pupil. Fingers with big lateral growths and adherent division less laminae in the bottom face. Only the third and fourth fingers end in union. Brownish grey or brown coloration with darker or lighter spots. These colours change in intensity according to the light. When they are active by day their colour is darker than during the night. It can be found on many construction sites, ruins, rock fields, tree trunks, etc.

Mainly nocturnal or crepuscular. Also active during the day, on sunny days at the end of the winter especially. They like to receive sunlight near their refuge. They hunt insects and in the warmer months of the year it can be found hunting nocturnal insects near light sources, street lamps, etc. They lay 2 almost-spherical eggs twice a year around April and June. After 4 months, little salamanquesas of less than 5 cm in length are born. Moorish geckos are slow to mature, taking 4 to 5 years in captivity.

This was captured from a distance of 2 metres with the camera handheld. Iut has been cropped and sharpened.

Please note - It's not red nail varnish on its toes - it's small parasitic mites!!

Altered Image #1

uleko Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3396 W: 172 N: 3310] (10940)
Moorish Wall Gecko 2
Edited by:uleko Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3396 W: 172 N: 3310] (10940)

A full-size view of a young specimen.