A Dunedin man who saved 16 smuggled jewelled geckos has been recognised for his efforts.
Carey Knox has been awarded the inaugural International Parks Forum Don Merton Conservation Pioneer Award in Adelaide.
His work photographing and cataloguing geckos on Otago Peninsula enabled DOC to return the stolen geckos to their homes.
Previously they would have been put down as there was no way to identify where they came from.
Mr Knox's prize includes a financial grant.