Amphibians and reptiles

the head of the furcifer pardalis chameleon

Amphibians and reptiles

Updated on 19/11/2022 | Posted on 18/02/2022

"There are about twenty different amphibians (batrachians) and reptiles on the island of Nosy Komba."

The chameleons

The Furcifer pardalis or panther chameleon is the main species that can be found on the island. However, other species of chameleons are also present. Among them, we find the famous Brookesia minima characterized by its very small size.

Furcifer pardalis

It is one of the largest chameleons. The sexual dimorphism is very marked in this species of chameleons. Males can measure up to 50 cm while females are smaller and can measure up to 35 cm. Females are often grey, beige and brown while males are more brightly coloured.

Brookesia Stumpffi

This small chameleon is endemic to the region of Nosy Be. Its size is about 5 cm to 6 cm. It lives close to the ground and camouflages itself perfectly in the nature.

The lizards

Among the numerous lizards present on the island, we can distinguish about ten species of geckos: phelsuma as well as the gecko uroplatus henkeli which is distinguished by its leaf tail.

The Phelsuma laticauda, called in the Mascarene Islands “margouillat” is very recognizable with its bright green color, red spots on the lower back and a turquoise blue surrounding its eyes.

The Zonosaurus madagascariensis, in Malagasy “antalahibôsy” with its adult size of about 30 cm is the biggest lizard of the island.

The Snakes

The Leioheterodon madagascariensis

This snake called “menapitsoko” in Malagasy is omnipresent on the island. It is a large snake that can measure up to almost 2 meters. It feeds on frogs, rodents, lizards that it knocks out and bites before eating them. Although it remains inoffensive for the man in Nosy Komba it is respected and feared during the periods of reproduction.

The boa of Madagascar

The Sanzinia madagascariensis called in Malagasy “dô” is a tree boa. It measures up to 2 metres.

It is a hunter that positions itself and waits. The boa sniffs out its prey, it has small heat-sensitive sensors around its mouth that allow it to detect the temperature of its prey.

Unlike the Malagasy snake, the Sanzinia boa is a constrictor, meaning that it suffocates its prey before eating them.

serpent boa de madagascar


The small Mantella frogs which measure less than 4 cm are endemic to Madagascar. The Mantella Betsileo is black on its sides and brown/orange on the top of the head and on the back. Its maximum size is 2.5 cm. They live in forests, undergrowth and wetlands. The Blommersia wittei is also present on the island.

On the same subject…

The birds

The birds

There are more than twenty species of birds on the island of Nosy Komba.

Maki Macaco

Maki Macaco

Many lemurs macaco are living in Nosy Komba. There are several mixed groups led by females.