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Phelsuma edwardnewtoni

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Phelsuma edwardnewtoni
The Rodrigues day gecko (Phelsuma edwardnewtoni), also known as the Rodrigues blue-spotted day gecko, was an extinct species of day gecko, a lizard belonging to the family Gekkonidae. This unique species was endemic to the island of Rodrigues, where it found its home in forests and trees. Unfortunately, the Rodrigues' day gecko probably became extinct in the 20th century, and its disappearance is mainly attributed to habitat destruction caused by human intervention and the introduction of invasive predators, such as cats and rats.

Measuring around 23 centimeters including the tail, the Phelsuma edwardnewtoni was one of the largest day geckos. Its appearance was remarkable, with a robust body and vibrant colors. It was described in life as bright green with blue spots on the back, and the lower tail had a whitish yellow hue. The chin stood out with an intense yellow color.

These diurnal geckos fed mainly on palm fruits, as well as various insects and invertebrates associated with palms. Their behavior was distinctive, as they did not fear humans and were quite docile. They even ate fruit out of hand. Despite its extraordinary beauty, the species faced inescapable threats that ultimately led to its extinction. The last confirmed sighting dates back to 1917, and currently, only six specimens remain in the Natural History Museums of London and Paris. These specimens, preserved in alcohol, serve as silent witnesses to a species that once populated the island of Rodrigues. The extinction of the Rodrigues day gecko highlights the fragility of biodiversity in the face of human activities and highlights the pressing need for conservation and preservation of unique habitats to prevent the irreversible loss of exceptional species such as this one.

Approximate measurements of Phelsuma edwardnewtoni:
  • Full 1:2 Scale
    • Length 105mm
    • Height 30mm
    • Snout-tail length 115 mm