Naultinus tuberculatus

Herpetofaunal category
McCann, 1955
Common names
West Coast green gecko
Mossy gecko
Naultinus tuberculatus
Image attribution
Joel Knight


Mossy appearance, due to complex patterns of white and yellow shades against green colouration of body. Ventral (lower) surfaces paler than dorsal (upper). Lining of mouth blue, tongue orange/pink. Mouths usually have small spot of bright yellow at corners. Eyes are dark olive, pupils often have pale border. Toes narrow and tapering, soles of feet and toes yellow or yellowish green in colour. West Coast green gecko typically reach SVL (snout-vent-lengths) of 77-85mm.

Click here for information on how West Coast green gecko differ in appearance from other species in the Naultinus group.

Life expectancy

The lifespan of West Coast green gecko is largely unknown. Other Naultinus species typically reach up to 25 years.


West coast of the South Island.

Ecology and habitat

West coast green gecko are diurnal (active during the day) and arboreal (tree dwelling), inhabiting scrubland and forested areas, in particular occupying the foliage of trees and shrubs, including manuka and kanuka trees. All green geckos have prehensile tails which act as a climbing aid.

Social structure

In captive group situations males can display aggressive behaviour towards other males as a result of competition for mates. Green gecko will display aggressive behaviour if threatened; this consists of mouth gaping, biting, lunging, and vocalisation (a barking sound).

Breeding biology

Green gecko are viviparous, giving birth to one or two live young in autumn. In captivity west coast green gecko typically give birth in April/May. Sexual maturity is reached between one and two years. Some keepers have noticed that green gecko in captivity appear to express ‘choice’ as to when to mate and reproduce according to conditions (D. Keall, personal communication, September 22, 2016).


The diet of west coast green gecko consists primarily of insects such as flies, beetles, and moths. Captive and wild green gecko will also eat nectar/honeydew.


Largely unknown.

Conservation status

DOC classify the species as 'nationally vulnerable'.


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  • Hitchmough, R.A., Barr, B., Lettink, M., Monks, J., Reardon, J., Tocher, M., van Winkel, D., Rolfe, J. (2016). Conservation status of New Zealand reptiles, 2015; New Zealand threat classification series 17. Wellington: New Zealand Department of Conservation.
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