Common House Gecko

Another of Florida’s seemingly infinite number of invasive species, Hemidactylus frenatus is another of those critters I just can’t bring myself to remove. Three to five of these generous little lizards live in my roof, emerging at night to eat insects attracted by our porchlight. I find it to be a good trade. They’re supposed to chirp, but I’ve never identified one specifically calling.

They’re originally native to southeast Asia, and indeed to a lot of little islands in the Pacific Ocean, but now they’re appearing all over the world, at least in warmer, humid areas. They like to live near humans, and they frequently crawl into shipping containers and hide, getting transported inadvertently around the world. In various areas, they’re known as the common house gecko, the Pacific house gecko, the Asian house gecko, wall gecko, house lizard, or moon lizard (my favorite).

They grow to be about 3-6 inches long (this one was about five inches) and live about five years.

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