Northland green gecko

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Northland green gecko
GeckoOranaParkNZ gobeirne.JPG
at Orana Wildlife Park, Christchurch

Sparse (NZ TCS)[1]
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Reptilia
Order: Squamata
Family: Diplodactylidae
Genus: Naultinus
N. grayii
Binomial name
Naultinus grayii
Bell, 1843
  • Naultinus grayii
    Bell, 1843
  • Gymnodactylus grayii
    A.H.A. Duméril, 1856
  • Hoplodactylus grayii
    Fitzinger, 1861
  • Naultinus grayii
    Buller, 1871

The Northland green gecko or Gray's tree gecko (Naultinus grayii ) is a species of gecko, a lizard in the family Gekkonidae. The species is found only in the Northland region of New Zealand, north of Whangaroa; it is one of the rarest and most highly sought after lizards.[3]


Naultinus grayii was originally described by Thomas Bell in 1843.[3]


The specific name, grayii, is in honor of British herpetologist John Edward Gray.[4]


Northland green gecko head

The Northland green gecko is vivid green with grey or gold-coloured markings on either side along the dorsal surface. Males have a blue band along the sides just below the limbs. Underneath, the ventral surface of both sexes is bright pale green, sometimes with a yellow tinge. The inside of the mouth is deep blue with a bright red tongue.

Its total length (including tail) is up to 200 mm (7.9 in), and its snout-to-vent length (SVL) is up to 95 mm (3.7 in).


The Northland green gecko is diurnal, often found sun-basking. It has an arboreal lifestyle, especially favouring stands of manuka, kanuka, and mingimingi.

Conservation status

In 2012 the Department of Conservation classified the Northland green gecko as "At Risk" under the New Zealand Threat Classification System. It was judged as meeting the criteria for "At Risk" threat status as a result of it having a low to high ongoing or predicted decline. This gecko is also regarded as being "Data Poor".[1]


In 2001 a German tourist was fined $12,000 for attempting to smuggle Northland green geckos out of the country in his underwear.[5]

See also


  1. ^ a b Hitchmough, Rod; Anderson, Peter; Barr, Ben; Monks, Jo; Lettink, Marieke; Reardon, James; Tocher, Mandy; Whitaker, Tony. "Conservation status of New Zealand reptiles, 2012" (PDF). Department of Conservation. The Government of New Zealand. Retrieved 18 July 2015.
  2. ^ "Naultinus grayii ". The Reptile Database.
  3. ^ a b From Emsworth Reptiles, accessed 17 November 2014.
  4. ^ Beolens, Bo; Watkins, Michael; Grayson, Michael (2011). The Eponym Dictionary of Reptiles. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press. xiii + 296 pp. ISBN 978-1-4214-0135-5. (Naultinus grayii, p. 107).
  5. ^ "Convicted Gecko smuggler gets". New Zealand Government. 1 February 2001. Retrieved 30 June 2010.

Further reading

  • Bell T (1843). The Zoology of the Voyage of H.M.S. Beagle Under the Command of Captain Fitzroy, R.N., during the years 1832 to 1836. Edited and Superintended by Charles Darwin ... Naturalist to the Expedition. Part 5., Reptiles. London: Smith, Elder and Company. vi + 51 pp. + Plates 1-20. (Naultinus grayii, new species, pp. 27–28 + Plate 13, figure 2). (in English and Latin).
  • Buller W (1871). "A List of the Lizards inhabiting New Zealand, with Descriptions". Transactions and Proceedings of the New Zealand Institute 3: 4-11. (Naultinus grayii, pp. 7–8).
  • Nielsen, Stuart V.; Bauer, Aaron M.; Jackman, Todd R.; Hitchmough, Rod A.; Daugherty, Charles H (2011). "New Zealand geckos (Diplodactylidae): Cryptic diversity in a post-Gondwanan lineage with trans-Tasman affinities". Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 59 (1): 1-22.
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