Biodiversity

Species Profile and Threats Database


For information to assist proponents in referral, environmental assessments and compliance issues, refer to the Policy Statements and Guidelines (where available), the Conservation Advice (where available) or the Listing Advice (where available).
 
In addition, proponents and land managers should refer to the Recovery Plan (where available) or the Conservation Advice (where available) for recovery, mitigation and conservation information.

EPBC Act Listing Status Listed as Vulnerable as Uvidicolus sphyrurus
Listing and Conservation Advices Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Underwoodisaurus sphyrurus (Border Thick-tailed Gecko) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee, 2008du) [Conservation Advice].
 
Recovery Plan Decision Recovery Plan not required, included on the Not Commenced List (1/11/2009).
 
Adopted/Made Recovery Plans
Other EPBC Act Plans Northern Rivers Regional Biodiversity Management Plan (NSW Department of Environment, Climate Change and Water (NSW DECCW), 2010l) [Recovery Plan] as Uvidicolus sphyrurus.
 
Policy Statements and Guidelines Survey guidelines for Australia's threatened reptiles. EPBC Act survey guidelines 6.6 (Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities (DSEWPaC), 2011m) [Admin Guideline].
 
Federal Register of
    Legislative Instruments
Declaration under s178, s181, and s183 of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 - List of threatened species, List of threatened ecological communities and List of threatening processes (Commonwealth of Australia, 2000) [Legislative Instrument] as Underwoodisaurus sphyrurus.
 
Amendment to the list of threatened species under section 178 of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (134) (13/04/2012) (Commonwealth of Australia, 2012i) [Legislative Instrument] as Uvidicolus sphyrurus.
 
State Government
    Documents and Websites
NSW:Border Thick-tailed Gecko - profile (NSW Office of Environment and Heritage (NSW OEH), 2013p) [Internet].
NSW:Review of the Threatened Species Conservation Act Schedules 2007-2009 (NSW Scientific Committee (NSW SC), 2009b) [State Species Management Plan].
NSW:Border Thick-tailed Gecko Underwoodisaurus sphyrurus - reject delisting of vulnerable species (NSW Scientific Committee (NSW SC), 2010b) [Report].
QLD:Enhancing biodiversity hotspots along Western Queensland stock routes (Queensland Department of Environment and Resource Management (Qld DERM), 2009a) [Management Plan].
State Listing Status
NSW: Listed as Vulnerable (Threatened Species Conservation Act 1995 (New South Wales): December 2013 list) as Underwoodisaurus sphyrurus
QLD: Listed as Rare (Nature Conservation Act 1992 (Queensland): Near Threatened species: May 2014 list ) as Nephrurus sphyrurus
Non-statutory Listing Status
IUCN: Listed as Lower Risk (near threatened) (Global Status: IUCN Red List of Threatened Species: 2013.1 list)
Scientific name Uvidicolus sphyrurus [84578]
Family Gekkonidae:Squamata:Reptilia:Chordata:Animalia
Species author (Ogilby,1892)
Infraspecies author  
Reference Oliver, P.M. & Bauer, A.M. 2011. Systematics and evolution of the Australian knob-tailed geckos (Nephrurus, Carphodactylidae, Gekkota): Plesiomorphic grades and biome shifts through the Miocene. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 59(3): 664-674.
Other names Underwoodisaurus sphyrurus [1660]
Nephrurus sphyrurus [84786]
Distribution map Species Distribution Map

This is an indicative distribution map of the present distribution of the species based on best available knowledge. See map caveat for more information.

Illustrations Google Images

The Border Thick-tailed Gecko is a pale fawn to brown reptile growing to 7 cm with faint darker brown flecks, very small white spots scattered over the head, neck, back, sides and limbs and dark grey-brown/black tail with alternate dark and pale cross-bands formed by rows of large tubercles (Cogger 2000).

This species is patchily distributed throughout the north-western slopes and northern tablelands of NSW and the Stanthorpe region of southern Qld (Czechura & Covacevich 1985; Cogger et al. 1993). Occupied sites in NSW have been found between 550 and 1030 m asl (P. Spark in prep. 2001). The distribution in NSW is bounded by the top of the Great Dividing Range to the east, the Liverpool Range in the south and Gunnedah in the west (P. Spark in prep. 2001).

Known populations occur in Mount Kaputar NP, Kelvin SF, Girraween NP, Copeton Dam State Recreation Area, Moonbi Lookout N of Tamworth, Emmaville rubbish tip, Woolomin, Attunga SF, Kings Plains NP, Severn R. NP, Bolivia Hill T.S.R., Ironbark NR, Single SF, Linton NR, Torrington Reserve, Gunnedah, the Nandewar Ranges, Sundowner NP, Durikai SF, Chaffey Dam and east of Bonshaw (Cogger et al. 1993; P. Spark in prep. 2001).

Occurs in dry sclerophyll open forest and woodland associated with outcrops of granite, basalt, sandstone and metamorphic rocks (H. Hines & G. Swan in Cogger et al. 1993; P. Spark in prep. 2001). The majority of sites are associated with granite outcrops (Cogger et al. 1993). Surveys conducted in north-eastern NSW indicate that geckos may show a preference for easterly aspects and the base of rock scarps (P. Spark in prep. 2001).

The composition of vegetation appears to have little influence on the occurrence of geckos. Geckos show a preference for canopy cover between 45 and 60 %, low vegetation cover (average 34 %), medium rock cover (average 37 %) and high litter cover (average 25 %). The majority of occupied sites found during CRA surveys had undergone mild fires 20 - 30 years ago (P. Spark in prep. 2001).

Shelter sites include rocks, decaying logs, bark, and litter in rocky rubble. Shelter sites are usually laying on a litter substrate and shaded by nearby vegetation. Litter depth at shelters located during CRA surveys varied between one and 10 cm. (P. Spark in prep. 2001).

The following table lists known and perceived threats to this species. Threats are based on the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN) threat classification version 1.1.

Threat Class Threatening Species References
Agriculture and Aquaculture:Agriculture and Aquaculture:Land clearing, habitat fragmentation and/or habitat degradation Underwoodisaurus sphyrurus in Species Profile and Threats (SPRAT) database (Department of the Environment and Heritage (DEH), 2006wj) [Internet].
Agriculture and Aquaculture:Livestock Farming and Grazing:Grazing pressures and associated habitat changes Underwoodisaurus sphyrurus in Species Profile and Threats (SPRAT) database (Department of the Environment and Heritage (DEH), 2006wj) [Internet].
Northern Rivers Regional Biodiversity Management Plan (NSW Department of Environment, Climate Change and Water (NSW DECCW), 2010p) [State Recovery Plan].
Biological Resource Use:Gathering natural materials:Removal of bush rocks Underwoodisaurus sphyrurus in Species Profile and Threats (SPRAT) database (Department of the Environment and Heritage (DEH), 2006wj) [Internet].
Biological Resource Use:Logging and Wood Harvesting:Habitat loss, modification and degradation due to timber harvesting Underwoodisaurus sphyrurus in Species Profile and Threats (SPRAT) database (Department of the Environment and Heritage (DEH), 2006wj) [Internet].
Climate Change and Severe Weather:Habitat Shifting and Alteration:Habitat loss, modification and/or degradation Northern Rivers Regional Biodiversity Management Plan (NSW Department of Environment, Climate Change and Water (NSW DECCW), 2010p) [State Recovery Plan].
Ecosystem/Community Stresses:Indirect Ecosystem Effects:Loss and/or fragmentation of habitat and/or subpopulations Northern Rivers Regional Biodiversity Management Plan (NSW Department of Environment, Climate Change and Water (NSW DECCW), 2010p) [State Recovery Plan].
Human Intrusions and Disturbance:Human Intrusions and Disturbance:Human induced disturbance due to unspecified activities Northern Rivers Regional Biodiversity Management Plan (NSW Department of Environment, Climate Change and Water (NSW DECCW), 2010p) [State Recovery Plan].
Invasive and Other Problematic Species and Genes:Invasive Non-Native/Alien Species:Competition and/or predation Vulpes vulpes (Red Fox, Fox) The threat posed by pest animals to biodiversity in New South Wales (Coutts-Smith, A.J., P.S. Mahon, M. Letnic & P.O. Downey, 2007) [Management Plan].
Invasive and Other Problematic Species and Genes:Invasive Non-Native/Alien Species:Competition and/or predation Felis catus (Cat, House Cat, Domestic Cat) The threat posed by pest animals to biodiversity in New South Wales (Coutts-Smith, A.J., P.S. Mahon, M. Letnic & P.O. Downey, 2007) [Management Plan].
Invasive and Other Problematic Species and Genes:Invasive Non-Native/Alien Species:Grazing, tramping, competition and/or habitat degradation Capra hircus (Goat) The threat posed by pest animals to biodiversity in New South Wales (Coutts-Smith, A.J., P.S. Mahon, M. Letnic & P.O. Downey, 2007) [Management Plan].
Invasive and Other Problematic Species and Genes:Invasive and Other Problematic Species and Genes:Predation, competition, habitat degradation and/or spread of pathogens by introduced species Northern Rivers Regional Biodiversity Management Plan (NSW Department of Environment, Climate Change and Water (NSW DECCW), 2010p) [State Recovery Plan].
Natural System Modifications:Dams and Water Management/Use:Alteration of hydrological regimes including flooding Underwoodisaurus sphyrurus in Species Profile and Threats (SPRAT) database (Department of the Environment and Heritage (DEH), 2006wj) [Internet].
Natural System Modifications:Fire and Fire Suppression:Inappropriate and/or changed fire regimes (frequency, timing, intensity) Underwoodisaurus sphyrurus in Species Profile and Threats (SPRAT) database (Department of the Environment and Heritage (DEH), 2006wj) [Internet].
Northern Rivers Regional Biodiversity Management Plan (NSW Department of Environment, Climate Change and Water (NSW DECCW), 2010p) [State Recovery Plan].
Residential and Commercial Development:Residential and Commercial Development:Habitat modification (clearance and degradation) due to urban development Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Underwoodisaurus sphyrurus (Border Thick-tailed Gecko) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee, 2008du) [Conservation Advice].

Cogger, H.G. (2000). Reptiles and Amphibians of Australia - 6th edition. Sydney, NSW: Reed New Holland.

Cogger, H.G., E.E. Cameron, R.A. Sadlier & P. Eggler (1993). The Action Plan for Australian Reptiles. [Online]. Canberra, ACT: Australian Nature Conservation Agency. Available from: http://www.environment.gov.au/biodiversity/threatened/action/reptiles/index.html.

Czechura, G.V. & J. Covacevich (1985). Poorly known reptiles in Queensland. Page(s) 471-476. Royal Zoological Society of NSW, Sydney.

Spark, P. (2001). Northwestern Ecological Services.

Spark, P. (2001b). Personal Communication.

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This database is designed to provide statutory, biological and ecological information on species and ecological communities, migratory species, marine species, and species and species products subject to international trade and commercial use protected under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (the EPBC Act). It has been compiled from a range of sources including listing advice, recovery plans, published literature and individual experts. While reasonable efforts have been made to ensure the accuracy of the information, no guarantee is given, nor responsibility taken, by the Commonwealth for its accuracy, currency or completeness. The Commonwealth does not accept any responsibility for any loss or damage that may be occasioned directly or indirectly through the use of, or reliance on, the information contained in this database. The information contained in this database does not necessarily represent the views of the Commonwealth. This database is not intended to be a complete source of information on the matters it deals with. Individuals and organisations should consider all the available information, including that available from other sources, in deciding whether there is a need to make a referral or apply for a permit or exemption under the EPBC Act.

Citation: Department of the Environment (2014). Uvidicolus sphyrurus in Species Profile and Threats Database, Department of the Environment, Canberra. Available from: http://www.environment.gov.au/sprat. Accessed Sun, 31 Aug 2014 14:44:51 +1000.