Travel Fun Fact

Satanic Leaf-tailed Gecko, Ranomafana Rainforest, Madagascar

The satanic leaf-tailed gecko (Uroplatus phantasticus) is endemic to the island of Madagascar, and can be found no where else on earth. This mostly nocturnal species uses its camouflage to hunt for the small insects that it preys upon.

Like other species of geckos, the satanic leaf-tailed gecko has no eyelids, and uses it's long tongue to keep its eyeballs clean and free from debris.

Geckos have specialized foot pads covered in fine layers of keratin (the same material that human fingernails are made from). These keratin layers form a huge surface area that allows the gecko to "stick" to objects that it is crawling on.

Satanic leaf-tailed geckos can only be found in a small portion of Madagascar's rainforest region, and are threatened with habitat loss. They are also popular in the exotic pet trade, and many geckos are captured to be exported as pets. We saw this gecko while hiking in Ranomafana rainforest in Madagascar.

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