Leopard Gecko information
Name: Eublepharis macularius, Leopard gecko
Life Span: Leopard geckos may live 20 or more years in captivity
Size: Leopard geckos reach approximately 8-10 inches in length, including their tail
- Kingdom: Animalia
- Phylum: Chordata
- Class: Reptilia
- Order: Squamata
- Family: Eublepharidae
- Genus: Eublepharis
- Species: E. macularius
Leopard Gecko Introduction
Leopard geckos are nocturnal lizards found in desert environments in Afghanistan, Iran, Pakistan, and parts of India and have been popular pets in North America since the 1980’s. They lack adhesive lamella and have tiny claws instead which gives them an advantage in sandy environments.
This also prevents them from climbing up surfaces easily so they primarily live on the ground and do not climb. They are unique from other leopard gecko species because they can move their eyelids.
Despite being one of the most popular lizard pets, little is known about leopard geckos in the wild. Their population numbers are unknown and their unique dots and coloring makes perfect a camouflage for their natural environments which makes them a challenge to find.
They are excellent at hiding from predators and stay hidden during the day to avoid being seen and leopard geckos shed their skin to prevent their scent from being discovered.
Common leopard geckos typically feed on crickets, roaches, mealworms/super worms, and other insects. In captivity, most individuals will prefer hunting food themselves. The majority of captive common leopard geckos refuse to eat dead prey.
Crickets are the most common food source to give them in captivity, as they can hunt them in their enclosure the way they would in their natural environment, though mealworms and dubia roaches (and, less frequently, other roach species) are also common. When food is scarce, they can rely on their ability to store excess fat in their tails. Sufficient calcium and vitamin D3 is also very important for their diet.
Leopard Gecko Life Span
Leopard geckos are long-lived compared to some reptiles. On average you can expect your gecko to live six to 10 years, but many males live 10 to 20 years. At least one male is still breeding at 27½ years of age.
Leopard Gecko Availability
Captive-bred leopard geckos can be found in pet stores, at reptile shows and on the Internet. Many breeders have websites where you can learn about, select and purchase healthy leopards, which range in price from $20 to $3,000. There is a huge collector market worldwide for the rarer variations of leopard geckos.
Leopard Gecko Size
Hatchlings measure 3 to 4 inches long. Adult females are typically 7 to 8 inches, and males are 8 to 10 inches. Some males of the giant bloodlines reach nearly a foot.
- Leopard geckos live as long as 20 years
- Leopard geckos can grow as long as 10 inches (25 cm) in length
- In the wild, leopard geckos live in the desert and are nocturnal
- Unlike other geckos, the leopard gecko doesn’t have sticky hands, so he can’t climb walls and other vertical surfaces like the many of his relatives
- The leopard gecko is one of only a few gecko species that has distinct outer ears and eyelids
Leopard Gecko History
Leopard Gecko Range The majority of leopard geckos available for pets today originally came from the desert regions of Afghanistan, Iran, India, and Pakistan. Geckos have been bred domestically since the 1970’s and are now common enough that it is easier to breed geckos than import new geckos.
Since breeding leopard geckos is fairly easy, many breeders have created leopard gecko morphs with unique sizes, coloring, and other traits that makes them popular among reptile enthusiasts.
Common leopard geckos are larger than many other gecko species. Hatchlings are on average 7 to 10 cm (2.8 to 3.9 in) in length and weigh about 2 to 5 grams. Adult females are about 18 to 20 cm (7.1 to 7.9 in) in length and weigh about 50 to 70 grams, while adult male geckos are about 20 to 28 cm (7.9 to 11.0 in) in length and weigh about 60 to 80 grams.
Those found in the wild typically have more dark, dull, and drab colorations than those kept in captivity as pets. Those in captivity generally have an assortment of skin colors and patterns.
Leopard Gecko images
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