- Scientific name:
- Mokopirirakau cryptozoicus
- Common name:
- Takitimu Gecko
- Naming authority:
- Jewell & Leschen 2004
- Bio status category:
- Indigenous (Endemic)
- IUCN threat status:
- ** Not Classified **
- NZ threat classification:
- Nationally Vulnerable
Refer to www.doc.govt.nz/nztcs for NZ threat classification system details.
- Scree, rock outcrops and creviced bluffs in the alpine zone, and beech forest.
- So far, recorded 600-1450 m above sea level.
- Secretive, largely nocturnal but sun-basks near retreat.
- Terrestrial or arboreal.
- Animals in scree seldom emerge to the surface.
- Slate grey (rarely dark brown or olive-grey), individuals usually only undergo minor colour changes.
- Markings bright, consisting of narrow, pale herringbone patches, usually in combination with narrow pale stripes.
- Some specimens with scattered two-tone orange spots, or (rarely) the entire animal may be orange.
- Undersurface speckled or lightly mottled.
- Mouth lining bright orange; tongue pink or dark grey, sometimes with orange on tip or sides.
- Eye brown or pinkish.
- Measures 82-87 mm from snout tip to vent.
- Tail shorter than snout-vent length, sometimes markedly so.
- Mountainous areas of western Southland and Otago.
- So far, recorded from Takitimu and Richardson Mountains.
- Distribution limits poorly understood.
- Sparse and difficult to detect.
- Moko-piri-rakau is the Maori name for forest gecko.
- Notes about NZ threat classification (Hitchmough, et al 2007): Difficult to survey; possibly 10-12 animals seen, but large area of potential habitat.
- The scientific name means 'hidden lifestyle', in reference to the secretive behaviour.
- Genetic evidence suggests a close relationship with Mokopirirakau nebulosus, but separation supported by clear morphological differences.
- Notes about 2008-10 cycle of NZ threat classification for Reptiles (Hitchmough et al 2010): 4 known localities - but extremely widespread and huge area of potential habitat between them.
- Notes about 2012-14 cycle of NZ threat classification for Reptiles: (Hitchmough, et al.
- 2012): No new data; possible sighting from western Fiordland NP; 4 known localities - but extremely widespread and huge area of potential habitat between them.
Statistical information and distribution map
|Before 1988||Since 1988|
Live or dead specimen or shed skin
Bone or fossil