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Text and photos by Nick Baker, unless credited to others.
Copyright ゥ Ecology Asia 2024







Peninsular Bent-toed Gecko

Fig 1

Fig 2




















Species : Cyrtodactylus semenanjungensis
Size (snout to vent) : 71 mm
Size (total length) : 163 mm

The Peninsular Bent-toed Gecko inhabits lowland primary and secondary forest in the vicinity of watercourses or swamp forest, in southern Peninsular Malaysia. It is fully nocturnal in habits.

It is superficially similar to the Marbled Bent-toed Gecko Cyrtodactylus quadrivirgatus, with which it was once confused. The species was first described in 2005 (Grismer et al).

The body colour is grey to yellowish-brown, patterned with dark stripes, bars and blotches.

In the field, Cyrtodactylus semenanjungensis  can be identified by the arrangement of dark bars, bands and blotches in the neck region. Specifically, there is a dark stripe behind each eye which extends along the side of the neck to end just behind the forelimbs. These two stripes  are connected over the back, just behind the nape, through a broken, dark bar. At the nape there is a dark blotch which is enclosed by these features. In addition, around 5 or 6 other dark, broken bars extend across the back.

The head and body shape of this species are similar to other bent-toed geckos with an elongate body, a head which is wider than the body, relatively long limbs and a relatively long banded tail. The eyes are large with vertical pupils.

The Peninsular Bent-toed Gecko is known from parts of the southern state of Johor, Peninsular Malaysia. The species is also recorded in Singapore (Baker, 2014).

Fig 1 : Grey specimen from lowland, secondary forest in Singapore's central forests. It was active amongst leaf litter some metres from a forest stream.

Fig 2 : Close-up of the same specimen, showing the arrangement of dark stripes, bars and blotches in the nape region. Note the bright yellow tubercles.

References : H11

Baker, N. & Lim, K. K. P.  (2014). New record of peninsular bent-toed gecko in Singapore. Singapore Biodiversity Records 2014: 331 - 332. National University of Singapore. 
[link to pdf]

Grismer, L. L., Leong, T. M. 2005. New Species of Cyrtodactylus (Squamata: Gekkonidae) from Southern Peninsular Malaysia. Journal of Herpetology, Vol. 39, No. 4, pp. 584591, 2005