ANIMAL: Northern Banded Knob-Tailed Gecko Nephrurus cinctus Type of Animal: Gecko Habitat: Desert Location(s): Pilbara region of Western Australia Appearance: Broad dark bands, scaly animal, large eyes, reddish-orange clay color, rough textured scales/bands, carrot-shaped tail w/ small knob at end, male tail bulgier Food/Diet: Ants, cockroaches, spiders, crickets, scorpions, beetles, beetle larvae, locusts, caterpillars, smaller geckos, small skinks Status in Wild: Stable Conservation: Breeding in zoos & herpetoculture Lifestyle: Solitary or breeding trios of a male & 2 females Additional Info: Called: Male Female Young: Hatchling Group: Leap/Colony Weight: Male: 0.7 oz Female: 0.85 oz Gestation: 3-4 months Life Span: 10 years in wild, 15 years in captivity Body Length: Male: 3.45 in Female: 3.68 in Tail Length: 1.28-1.36 in, same for both sexes Males highly territorial, sometimes fighting to the death. These geckos like to dig, which is where sharp claws come in handy. Active at night (nocturnal). Each clutch only has 2 eggs but females lay up to 6-7 times a year. Females have been known to lay themselves to death. Shed skin every 2-4 weeks. Get name from knob at end of tail. Often seal themselves in burrows during daytime. Sexually mature at 1 year old. These geckos are very secretive in the wild. Non-receptive females will raise tail, waving knobbed end around, & thrust cloaca in male’s face. They’ll also vocalize. Fun Fact(s): Eat old shed skins for nutrients/habitat sanitation. When threatened, they’ll wiggle body/swing tail/bark loudly. Due to this, sometimes called barking geckos. They can drop tails if stressed/threatened, w/ tail eventually growing back. In 1st episode of TV series Lois & Clark: New Adventures of Superman, Clark Kent applies for job at Daily Planet newspaper, producing article on Knob-Tailed Geckos as proof of writing skills. Sometimes kept as pets, though they don’t like being handled for extended time periods. They’re not a widely available species. When breeding, they can go into semi-trance like state.
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