Lizards of Europe - GECKOS

Europe does not have many geckos, reflecting the tropical nature of these little lizards. However, most of them are typical inasmuch as they do not shun human habitation. One of them, the Turkish Gecko, has used the agency of man's trade and transportation to settle far and wide from its original natural distribution.

Scientific Name Common Name Distribution Size Notes
Tarentola mauritanica Moorish Gecko (aka Mauritanian Gecko, Wall Gecko) Iberia, coastal Dalmatia and Greece, Crete, NW Africa (Morocco to Egypt) 5-6" The largest of the European geckos and a popular terrarium subject. There are two species, T.m. deserti from N. Africa, the larger, lighter and more nocturnal of the two, and T. m. mauritanica. Males may make clicking noises.
Hemidactylus turcicus Turkish Gecko Mediterranean and further abroad due to transport 4" A pink nocturnal gecko that prefers walls, stones and rocks. It may bask for a short time during the day. Males may make clicking noises. These are also quite popular terrarium geckos and can be maintained in colonies.
Cyrtodactylus kotschyi Kotschy's Gecko SE Balkans, SE Italy, Aegean, Crimea, Asia 5" ? A small but hardy species, partly nocturnal in summer but more diurnal in cooler months. Like many geckos this one is not afraid of congregating around human habitations, especially old stone buildings. Kotschy's Geckos communicate by rapid clicking sounds.
Cyrtodactylus russowii ? Isolated area near Caspian 4" Very small gecko.
Cyrtodactylus caspius ? E. Europe 6" Found in several locations.
Alsophylax pipiens Ground gecko E. Europe ? Very rare. Lives in rodent burrows and makes clear ringing sounds rather like a bird.
Phyllodactylus europaeus European Leaf-Toed Gecko Tyrrh. islands, Corsica, Sardinia, Tunisian islands, NW Italian coast ? Unusual feet possess lamellae in the form of a forked pad only at the tip, with a sharp claw protruding in the middle.

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