14th Annual Smithsonian Magazine Photo Contest Natural World
Honaunau Mo'o

I snapped this shot while conducting archaeological fieldwork at a site called "Honaunau" on the Big Island of Hawai'i. This Gold-Dusted Gecko ("Mo'o" in Hawaiian) is resting on the leaves of a Ti Plant. Hawaiians believe that Ti Plants which are native to Polynesia, are a shield from bad spirits. It was neat to see all the little critters that call this ancient site home.

Photo Detail
Date Taken: 07.2016
Date Uploaded: 11.2016
Photo Location: Captain Cook, Hawaii, United States of America
Copyright: © cat thetford