The Barbados Leaf-toed gecko has very high predation rates, with a study in 2015 finding 94% of individuals were in a stage of tail regeneration!
The Barbados Leaf-toad gecko is predated on by introduced cane toads, cats and rats which have caused catastrophic declines and extinctions to many island reptiles. This species has a clutch size of a single egg, making them particularly vulnerable to population declines from predation.
This species was considered probably extinct by 1979, but in the early 1990s two individuals were found. These were the last sightings until the species was rediscovered on Culpepper Island in 2011. This species has a total area range size of just 0.3 km2!
Residential and resort development along the coast is the main threat to the habitat of this species. Competition with the exotic house gecko has also led to declines in population number.
A recovery plan for this species was prepared in 2013, and international trade of this species is prohibited by law. Improved protection for coastal areas and invasive species control is urgently needed.
- Order: Squamata
- Family: Phyllodactylidae
- Population: 12,000
- Trend: decreasing
- Size: 67mm
The species is found in Barbados along a 50m coastal strip and on Culpepper Island.
Habitat and Ecology
This species has a preference for structurally diverse, rocky habitat with an abundance of natural crevices. Individuals can be found on the trunks of large palms and white cedar close to the edge of cliffs. This species is nocturnal which enables it to exploit invertebrate prey resources.