Now you see it, now you don’t – Photo of the week: Marbled Gecko (Christinus marmoratus)

Now you see it…

This little Marbled Gecko (Christinus marmoratus) was found during monitoring of a roofing-tile grid in the Wimmera area. If you get close to one, you can pick it apart from most other geckos in the region by the large pads on the toes, which contain the thousands of micro hairs that give the gecko its other-worldly traction – even on polished glass.

On this round of monitoring, we found them under tiles at the base of Buloke trees (Allocasuarina luehmannii) – a special species in the region and a key food plant for the endangered South-eastern Red-tailed Black-Cockatoo. Buloke woodland is a nationally-endangered vegetation community due to widespread clearance of the productive heavy-clay soils on which it grows.

 

…and now you don’t

On the bark of the Buloke, they’re just about impossible to see – giving the perfect camouflage when foraging in the cracks and fissures. Luckily they like those warm roofing tiles in the reptile grids, or we’d never know they were there…

 

Jonathan Tuck
Jonathan Tuck
jonathan.tuck@natureglenelg.org.au