Distribution: Madagascar, Nossi Be = Nosy Bé
Type locality: “Wald von Loucoubé, Nosy Bé”
Habitat and Ecology
IUCN Red List Assessment
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Henkel's Leaf-tailed Gecko
Henkel's Leaf-tailed Gecko (Uroplatus henkeli), is a gecko that is found on the island Nosy Bé near Madagascar, as well as on the mainland Madagascar itself, in the region of Ankaranafantsika. These geckos live an arboreal lifestyle, often venturing down to the ground only to lay eggs in soft soil and leaflitter. There are two different morphs of these geckos; the Nosy Bé form, and the mainland Madagascar form, and they can be distinguished by their colouration patterns, though these are not always reliable. Reaching a total length of 280 mm, this is one of largest species in the genus. These geckos are insectivores, but will also eat snails if they are found.
The generic name, Uroplatus, is a Latinization of two Greek words: "ourá" (οὐρά) meaning "tail" and "platys" (πλατύς) meaning "flat". Its specific name henkeli is a Latinization of herpetologist Friedrich-Wilhelm Henkel's last name.
Habitat destruction and deforestation in Madagascar is the primary threat to this animal's future as well as collection for the pet trade. The World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) lists all of the Uroplatus species on their "Top ten most wanted species list" of animals threatened by illegal wildlife trade, because of it "being captured and sold at alarming rates for the international pet trade". It is a CITES Appendix 2 protected animal.
- "Inclusion of Uroplatus spp. in Appendix II" (pdf). Technical comments in support of amendments to CITES appendices submitted by Madagascar. CITES. 2004. Retrieved 02 November 2008.