Backyard Buddies
Broad-tailed Gecko

Photo: FNPW Image Library

Broad-tailed Gecko

Go Back

This clever gecko is a master of disguise. Its distinctive tail is used as a decoy to confuse predators. A smooth tail is a sign that it has been lost and regrown.

The Broad-tailed Gecko grows up to 15 cm in length including its tail. They have scales all over their bodies, which are pointed. Their rocky appearance gives you a clue as to where they live – they blend right in to the rocks.

Sandstone outcrops are certain to host this buddy, but it has adapted so well to humans that you are also likely to find it nestled between bricks and woodpiles and other deep cracks and crevices.

Look for Broad-tailed Geckos hiding in shady spots during hot summer days, as they are not as fond of the heat as some other reptiles and instead prefer to keep relatively cool.

Broad-tailed Geckos live in the Sydney basin area of New South Wales, although some species have been spotted as far north as Cape York Peninsula.

You'll spot Broad-tailed Geckos out and about at night, when they are on the hunt for insects. They will happily eat up spiders, moths, beetles and crickets.

When threatened, the Broad-tailed Geckos draw themselves up high, open their mouths wide and wave their tail over their body. They will lunge towards their threat while emitting a loud, raspy noise that can be quite startling.

Females will lay their eggs in the middle of what resembles a bird's nest dug into the ground. They will lay between 2-4 clutches a year, incubating them for an average of three months.

Did you know?

The tail that earns these geckos their name is not only useful when it comes to tricking predators. It is also used to store fat.

Tip

Be on the lookout when you clean out sheds or garages. The Broad-tailed gecko has been known to take shelter in these man-made structures.{

Related Factsheets:

Blue Tongue lizard

Blue tongue lizards are one of the largest lizards in Australia. With their bright blue tongues, you will recognise them straight away. Baby blue tongues do not hatch from eggs but are born fully formed. They can live for more than 20 years and reach over 50cm in length. While young, the..

READ MORE

Eastern Water Dragon

Eastern water dragons are grey-brown in colour with black banding, and some have a red belly and chest. Usually a broad black band extends through the eye. A crest of spines runs from the head to the tail. Water dragons are different from all other lizards – they have four well-developed li..

READ MORE

Skinks

Most suburban backyards are home to a variety of skinks, but they look similar at a glance. Due to their timid nature and quick reflexes you may only ever see them dashing for cover as you approach. Skinks don’t have to eat every day, but will do so when conditions are favourable. They c..

READ MORE

Quote

”I remember so many good times in National Parks, and I want my grandkids to love, experience and treasure the true gems of this country. That’s why I support BYB & FNPW.“

Marcia - Grandparent & FNPW Supporter, QLD

Photo: OEH