Madagascar – Critters – Geckos! 30


Back in the swing of things! getting it all together. Now just trying to get through all the Madagascar shots so I can get them burnt onto DVDs and send them around the world.

Before we dive into the post, let me say, if you would like any prints, just contact me by going to the contact page and shooting me an email! If you tell me which picture (either by post or by general description or URL) and an idea of the dimensions, I can give you a quote. All of the pictures hoisted onto the blog (and more actually, if you have something in mind that’s similar to things seen, I might have shot it as a lucky coincidence – stranger things have happened) are available as prints. They come without the black border and Mark Scherz 2009 label, though these can be added if you would like. All prints are signed and dated.

Anyways, forward!

Gekkonidae

So there are a LOT of geckos in Madagascar. 10 endemic genera even! That means a lot of diversity. I just wrote a 1500 word essay on their evolution, but I’ll try not to go into it. Basically, they’ve been isolated for some 90 million years. That means they are unlike anything anywhere else on the planet. They took up specialisms and went crazy, and there ensued the beauty of today’s species.

Hemidactylus platycephalus

This was the first gecko we saw on the whole trip. Upon consulting the edition of Glaw and Vences that I just received, it appears to be H. platycephalus, one of the only introduced species we saw.

Unknown

D300 + 105mm VR + R1 flash unit @ 1/60s f/4

Phelsuma grandis

This is one of the most common species in the north. They are on every banana tree. Most of you who know me will know what they look like, because I own one.

Headshot

D300 + 105mm VR + R1 flash unit @ 1/60s f/8

Tree Bound

D300 + 105mm VR @ 1/160s f/3

SunSpots

D300 + 105mm VR @ 1/160s f/3

Phelsuma abbotti checkei

This is the other species of Phelsuma found in the same area of forest. They are less common and more shy, because they are much smaller.

Abbotti

D300 + 105mm VR @ 1/30s f/3.2

Interestingly, the only other genus found in the actual forest where we were besides Phelsuma was the one that is supposedly the hardest to find, Uroplatus. I have a feeling there were other genera about, but that we never came across them because for the most part our eyes were upwards pointing.

There are two species of Uroplatus found in the dry deciduous forest in the north (from what we found). I am assuming that almost all of the species we found were U. henkeli, but I don’t really know, because the species recognition is extremely difficult.

Uroplatus henkeli

Eye see you

D300 + 105mm VR + R1 flash unit @ 1/60s f/8

Mites

D300 + 105mm VR + R1 flash unit @ 1/60s f/8

Wrong Tree

D300 + 105mm VR @ 1/50s f/3

Nom?

D300 + 105mm VR + R1 flash unit @ 1/60s f/11

Hunter

D300 + 105mm VR + R1 flash unit @ 1/60s f/8

Yellow

D300 + 105mm VR + R1 flash unit @ 1/60s f/8

Grey

D300 + 105mm VR + R1 flash unit @ 1/60s f/8

The Perfect Perch

D300 + 105mm VR + R1 flash unit @ 1/60s f/6.3

Head

D300 + 105mm VR + R1 flash unit @ 1/60s f/8

Poised

D300 + 105mm VR + R1 flash unit @ 1/60s f/3.2

Vertical

D300 + 105mm VR @ 1/100s f/3

Camo in Action

D300 + 105mm VR + R1 flash unit @ 1/60s f/8

Paired evolution

D300 + 105mm VR + R1 flash unit @ 1/60s f/8

Beard

D300 + 105mm VR + R1 flash unit @ 1/60s f/8

Novel Branch

D300 + 105mm VR + R1 flash unit @ 1/60s f/8

Handy

D300 + 105mm VR + R1 flash unit @ 1/60s f/8

Perched

D300 + 105mm VR + R1 flash unit @ 1/60s f/8

Spirals!

D300 + 105mm VR + R1 flash unit @ 1/60s f/8

Possibilities

D300 + 105mm VR + R1 flash unit @ 1/60s f/8

Leaflike

D300 + 105mm VR + R1 flash unit @ 1/60s f/8

Spread

D300 + 105mm VR + R1 flash unit @ 1/60s f/5.6

Matching

D300 + 105mm VR + R1 flash unit @ 1/60s f/8

I think this individual is actually a Uroplatus sikorae:

Madinky

D300 + 105mm VR + R1 flash unit @ 1/60s f/3.5

Then we of course have the Uroplatus from Montagne d’Ambre:

Uroplatus sikorae

I have no idea how our guide spotted this guy. Insane.

Perfection

D300 + 105mm VR + R1 flash unit @ 1/60s f/8

Sikorae

D300 + 105mm VR + R1 flash unit @ 1/60s f/8

and then there is Uroplatus ebanaui

Tailless

D300 + 105mm VR + R1 flash unit @ 1/60s f/8

Spears

D300 + 105mm VR + R1 flash unit @ 1/60s f/8

And that’s basically it from the geckos! Hope you enjoyed the heavy image load. These were basically what I went to Madagascar to see, and I got really really lucky. Unfortunately, there were no U. giganteus to be found, but we tried.

The next and quite possibly the final instalment from the Critters series is Birds. It’ll be short, but I got one of my favourite shots from a particularly cooperative birdy.


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