Nuu Ana Painted - Giant Gecko
In 1995, Frank Fast and I explored a tiny island south of the Isle of Pines. It had dry (sclerophyll) forest with trees covering only a small portion of the island where the top of the canopy was under 15 feet and the main trunk from five to seven feet tall. It seemed an unlikely place for finding leachianus. Yet, we did find five including a thin specimen that was stretched out during the day at the foot of a pandanus root. We returned in 1997 to find the island, a stop for fishermen, invaded with a species of ant which nested in tree hollows and crawled around everywhere.
Where one would have expected to find geckos we found ants including in egg-laying sites. We collected a few geckos as well as a sample of the ants to bring to ORSTOM for identification. It turned out to be an introduced species. We alerted them that the geckos there would probably become extinct. While we found Bavayia geckos there on our first trip, we found none on our second trip. The leachianus from Nuu Ana are striking animals and unique enough to deserve ‘morphotype’ status. They were the first ecotype 3 leachianus discovered. We first mentioned Nuu Ana leachianus in an article in the Vivarium magazine as Island G geckos.
Features of Nuu Ana painteds include:
• Small size, particularly of females, compared to other leachianus
• Short tails
• Foreshortened snout
• Females have very slender heads
• Females have an enlarged and slightly bulbous preanal area, which make them difficult to distinguish from males unless one looks for preanal pores and enlarged spurs in males.
• High incidence of tilted pupil in females giving impression they are looking up at sky.
• Background often a uniform green in males, generally greenish or a pale yellow green.
• Large bold high contrast clearly defined pure white blotches with crisp black speckling.
• Bright cadmium yellow spotting is common on the dorsum and/or on the belly.
• Distinct pattern on sides of ventrum
• Early maturing. In captivity will commonly breed at two years if raised under optimal conditions
• Babies with very high contrast pattern usually with some orange pattern.
• Very docile.
This variety of R. leachianus along with Nuu Ami mossy's are some of the most beautiful variants of the species and very promising for selective breeding. They are near extinct in the wild. This morph is a must for those wanting to breed more colorful lines.
Click HERE to view the Nuu Ana Painted Gallery
Rhacodactylus: A Complete Guide to their Selection and Care by de Vosjoli, Fast, and Repashy
Juvenile prices range from $350 for unsexed and $450 for sexed male juveniles.
With this morph, males are at a premium.