Hello! My name is Rhonda. I am an 18 month old leopard gecko. How did I come to live at My Zoo? When I was younger, I lived at a pet shop. Unfortunately, something startled me, and I lost my tail. Leopard Geckos, like me, have this incredible ability to voluntarily detach their tails to distract predators. This is called caudal autotomy. Our tails can actually continue to twitch and distract predators for 30 minutes following autotomy. Well, after my tail detached, it grew back short and fat. Some people thought this made me rather unattractive, but My Zoo loved me just the way I was – fat tail and all – so they adopted me. My fat, short tail looks just like my head so the next predator that thinks he’s jumping on my head will be surprised when it comes off and I get away. Here I live in a 10 gallon, glass aquarium with a screen top. I have a paper towel lining on my floor which is changed whenever it gets dirty (every 2-3 days). I like a clean house! Every morning, Dr. Debbie sprays a little water on the paper towel so my house stays humid. I have a hollowed out log to hide under and rub against, some smooth rocks for decoration, and 2 crocks for water (1 shallow and 1 deeper). I have an incandescent light and a heat light. The heat lamp is only on one side of my house so I can get away from it if I get too hot. Gecko’s are nocturnal but still need UVA and UVB light. Be sure and change your UVB bulb every 3-6 months to insure the correct light spectrum is being emitted. My aquarium sits on a reptile heating pad wrapped in a towel for insulation. On Monday through Saturday, I eat 2 to 3 live “gut loaded” crickets. I just love the delicious crunch of them! My gut loaded crickets also get calcium dusted daily and vitamin dusted weekly. I also like other bugs as well, like meal worms and silk worms. A couple of times of per week, I get sprayed with Vita-Spray. This spray helps promote healthy skin and shedding and contains vitamins. Every evening somebody takes me out for a good soak in the sink.
Here are some interesting facts about leopard geckos.
- The scientific name for my species is Eublepharis macularius. In Greek, the “eu” refers to true and “blepharis” refers to the eyelid. Macularius is derived from the Latin word for spots. So, I am a spotted lizard who can blink with my eyelids. Many lizards can’t move their eyelids.
- We are a good pet for first time reptile owners.
- We can grow from 7 to 10 inches, and live for 10 to 25 years.
- Our eggs have what’s called temperature-dependent sex determination. More females are produced in cool and very warm temperatures. Males are produced in the in between temperatures.
- In the wild, my kind live in the deserts and the savannahs of Afghanistan, India, and Pakistan.
- We are nocturnal creatures and take shelter from the sun under rocks and in burrows.
If you have any questions about leopard geckos or other reptiles, please give us a call!