piątek, 3 czerwca 2011

Reptiles - Leopard Gecko


The leopard is a nocturnal ground-dwelling gecko naturally found in the deserts of southern Central Asia, and throughout Pakistan, to the northwestern parts of India. Unlike most geckos, leopard geckos possess movable eyelids. It has become a well-established and popular pet in captivity.

Leopard geckos were first described as a species by zoologist Edward Blyth in 1854 as Eublepharis macularis. The generic name Eublepharis is a combination of the Greek words Eu (true), and blephar (eyelid), as having eyelids is what distinguishes members of this subfamily from other geckos. The specific name, macularius, derives from the Latin word macula meaning "spot" or "blemish", referring to the animal's natural spotted markings.

Leopard geckos are related to many different geckos including the African fat-tailed gecko. There are five subspecies, including the nominative species: Eublepharis macularius macularius, E. m. fasciolatus (Günther 1864), E. m. montanus (Börner 1976), and E. m. smithi (Börner 1981).

The native habitat of the leopard gecko is the rocky, dry grassland and desert regions of south-Asian Afghanistan, Pakistan, north-west India, and parts of Iran. Winter temperatures in these areas can be quite low, below 10 °C (50 °F), forcing the animals underground into semi-hibernation, called brumation, living on fat reserves. As nocturnal creatures, they spend the day hidden under rocks or in burrows to escape the daytime heat and emerge at dusk to feed by hunting insects. These Geckos are solitary, and do not usually live with other animals.

Leopard geckos are typically small in size. Hatchlings tend to be 6.5 to 8.4 cm (2.6 to 3.3 inches) in length and weighing about 3 grams while the adult geckos are about 20.5 to 27.5 cm (8.1 to 10.9 inches) in length and weigh about 45 to 65 grams.

Those found in the wild typically have a darker, dull, and drab coloration than those kept in captivity as pets. Those in captivity generally have an assortment of skin colors and patterns. The skin of a leopard gecko is very durable, which provides protection from the rough sand and rocky terrain of their dry environment. Their dorsal side is covered with small bumps, which gives a rough texture and appearance while their ventral side is thin, transparent, and smooth. Like all reptiles, leopard geckos shed their skin. In the few days before the shedding, the skin will turn color to a translucent whitish gray. Adults shed an average of once a month, while juveniles will sometimes shed twice as much. The gecko will eat its old skin after shedding, revealing a brighter colored one. Eating the shed skin is a means for obtaining protein and vitamins for growth.

12 komentarzy:

  1. The Leopard gecko looks great.

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  2. Cool looking gecko, nice write up.

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  3. Yay for a new post! And a very good one indeed.

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  4. Cool gecko mate... Im thinking of getting one! Either that or a cameleon!

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  5. That looks cool. I don't know if I would want a reptilian pet. My cat is annoying enough lol. reptiles have really sharp claws.

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  6. What an awesome looking gecko.

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  7. he looks different in the commercials.

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  8. cute lizard.. i have been in zoo few days ago and saw it in terrarium

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