Southern Leaf-tailed Gecko

Southern Leaf-tailed Gecko

Scientific name: Phyllurus platurus

People often come across strange, leaf-shaped ‘creatures’ in their backyards. These usually turn out to be the tail from a Leaf-tailed Gecko. Life span from 7 to 9 years (average 8 years) (Greer 2006)

Description – The Southern Leaf-tailed Gecko has rough, scaly skin and a brown or grey, mottled pattern that blends into the habitat where it lives ( In the shack it has resided in between the horizontal and vertical cracks of the concrete slab. The Southern Leaf-Tail. Gecko has a large head and broad leaf or heart-shaped tail constricted at the base. It grows to a total length of 15cm.

Habitat – The Southern Leaf-tailed Gecko lives in urban and coastal sandstone areas and coastal sandstone. This species occurs only in eastern central NSW.

Diet – The Southern Leaf-tailed Gecko is insectivorous (eating a wide variety of arthropods including spiders, cockroaches, crickets, moths, flies, beetles, centipedes and millipedes).  They feed at night, sheltering during the day in crevices.

Reproduction – Female Southern Leaf-tailed gecko’s can lay up to three clutches of 2 eggs per year.

When the Southern Leaf-tailed Gecko is threatened or attacked, it may squeak and can discard its tail to escape to safety. This tail will then re-grow. We haven’t noticed gecko’s lose their tail in the last few years they have lived in the shack crevices. They seem very much at home, and we are not in a hurry to have them leave as they eat insects and spiders.