In addition to long legs, the Goniurosaurus gecko genus has beautiful skin that is attractive to people who like to own them as pets.
Goniurosaurus huulienensis species, photo by Phung My Trung.
The Goniurosaurus huulienensis species was discovered in 2010 by scientists from the Institute of Ecology and Biological Resources of Vietnam, the Zoological Research Museum Alexander Koenig, and the Cologne Zoo (Germany).
The species was described based on a single specimen from Huu Lien Nature Reserve, Lang Son Province. The common name of this species originated from the name of the locality and the scientific name derives from Latin: apraefrontalis – meaning “without prefrontals”.
The species is a small-sized skink with the snout-vent length of 36 mm. The main identification features of this species are: lower eyelids with undivided opaque window; both fore- and hind-limbs with five digits, no prefrontal scales; nasal fused with first supralabial; six supralabials; no external ear openings; 18 midbody scale rows; and dorsum and tail base bronze brown with some indistinct darker spots in anterior part of each scale.
The description of this new species was published in Folia Zoologica (No. 59, Volume 2, 2010), a zoological journal of the Czech Republic.
The specimen was collected in the limestone forest within the Huu Lien Nature Reserve. The scientists thought, because of its dry habitat in the karst area, the small size and the loss of the external ear opening of this skink may have helped to reduce water loss.
This is also the second new species of lizards known from the Huu Lien Nature Reserve, after the Huulien Leopard Gecko Goniurosaurus huulienensis, which was described by the Russian and Vietnamese herpetologists in 2008.
Cat Ba leopard gecko, photo by Pham The Cuong.
Cat Ba leopard gecko (Goniurosaurus catbaensis) is a rare and endangered species that was discovered on Cat Ba Island in 2008.
The extraordinary technicoloured Cat Ba leopard gecko, which is known only from Cat Ba Island, a National Park in northern Vietnam, has a mesmerizing pattern adorning the entire length of its body.
Relatively large, orange-brown 'cat-like eyes' are accompanied by a head pattern consisting of a dark marbling; this leads to leopard stripes on the body and five immaculate contrasting black and white bands on the tail.
A creature that certainly appears to be from another world, the lizard has long and thin legs, digits and claws, which add to its fantastical appearance.
The scientific name emphasizes the importance and uniqueness of Cat Ba Island, the largest of 366 islands in the 285km² large Cat Ba Archipelago.
Scientists believe that the species should be classified as a rare and endangered species, proposing its listing in the Red Data Book of Vietnam as a first step.
They are also recommending that the Vietnamese government impose sanctions on the collection of Goniurosaurus species in order to protect the population and their habitats.
The Goniurosaurus luii gecko species was discovered in Vietnam in November 2005. This is one of five species of Goniurosaurus geckos in Vietnam. Photo: Phung My Trung.
Goniurosaurus lichtenfelderi gecko species. Photo: Phung My Trung.
The Vietnamese Leopard Gecko, photo by Lee Grismeri.
The Vietnamese Leopard Gecko, Goniurosaurus araneus, is a species of lizard in the Gekkonidae family. It is endemic to Cao Bằng Province of Vietnam. The scientific species name is from Latin, aranea, which means "spider", due to the spindly, spider-like form of this species.
The species is yellow in colour and has four wide brown bands across the back. Its eyes are dark reddish-brown. Goniurosaurus araneus is distinguished from other species of the same genus by its elongated dorsal scales. This gecko has a maximum length (including tail) of 190 mm.
The habitat of this species is primarily rocky. It is found in fairly dry and shady areas and in mountainous terrain or near caves.
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