Some other names for this species:
Common Smooth-scaled Gecko
Golfito, Puntarenas province, Costa Rica—September 26, 2001
These little geckos are native to southeast Asia, but have been introduced (presumably accidentally) in Central America as well as many other areas worldwide, including Hawaii. They are a parthenogenetic species -- all females. The one licking its eye is an adult; the one on Maria Go
's finger is a tiny baby.
I had never heard an explanation for why this species is called "Mourning Geckos" until Tim G wrote me to say that when people realized that every lizard in the species was a female, someone thought they must be sad, "mourning" for never having had a mate. If you've heard a different origin for the name, I'd love to hear it, but it's going to be hard to top that one.
Here is a complete list of the species we found on this GreenTracks trip.
Hotel Campestre grounds, El Valle de Antón, Coclé province, Panama—January 9, 2014
Skittish geckos festooned the hotel walls at night. This one is a tiny baby; the adults were not so cooperative. Thanks to Chris Williams and Dick Bartlett for identifying this gecko. I had originally thought that it was Hemidactylus mabouia
- Crother, B. I. (ed.) 2012. Scientific and Standard English Names of Amphibians and Reptiles of North America North of Mexico, with Comments Regarding Confidence in Our Understanding. SSAR Herpetological Circular 39:1-92.
- Mckeown, S. 1996. A Field Guide to Reptiles and Amphibians in the Hawaiian Islands
- Obst, F. J., Richter, K., Jacob, U. 1988. The Completely Illustrated Atlas of Reptiles and Amphibians for the Terrarium
- Rogner, M. 1997. Lizards
- Savage, J. M. 2002. The Amphibians and Reptiles of Costa Rica