Wild Fact #450 – The “Cat-Like” Lizard – Leopard Gecko

Leopard Gecko

Photo from Wikimedia

I thought today would be a great day to learn about a cute looking animal. After all, it is a Monday, so I am sure at least some of us could use some cheering up. Today’s animal, isn’t the typical “cute and cuddly” but you have to admit the picture of the Leopard Gecko is pretty sweet. Who would have thought that a lizard from the deserts of Asia would be able to make your Monday morning that much better. So what are you waiting for? Chug your coffee and let’s go learn a little more about this fun-looking reptile.

As mentioned, the Leopard Gecko is a ground dwelling, nocturnal lizard that loves to hang out in the deserts of Central Asia, Pakistan and parts of India. For a Gecko, this particular species happens to be quite large as they can easily grow up to 27.5 cm (10.9″) in length and can weigh up to 65 grams (2.3 0z). This weight definitely fluctuates as the Leopard Gecko will go into a semi-hibernation during the cooler winter months. When the temperature dips, this little lizard burrows underground where it survives on its fat cells. Good thing they weigh a whopping 65 grams!

Leopard Gecko

Michelle Reaves, http://www.flickr.com/people/considerthis/

When they aren’t hibernating, this Gecko will spend their days hiding underneath rocks to protect themselves from the scorching sun. Once night falls, they will come out to play. Well, maybe not so much to play as to eat but nonetheless they come out. Interestingly enough, this Gecko is properly named since they use their keen sense of vision and smell to stalk their prey much like that of a Leopard.┬áTherefore if you are an insect or a mealworm living in the Leopard Gecko’s home range then you may want to look over your shoulder every now and again (well, I guess the mealworm doesn’t have to worry since they don’t have shoulders).

Leopard Gecko Fast Fact – The Leopard Gecko has become very popular in the pet trade industry as a result of their size and beautiful colour. Although, in the wild, these Gecko’s will have a darker, duller colour as opposed to their captive friends. I guess they don’t have a need for dull colours when they are in a safe environment.

Well that does it for the first Wild Fact of the week! I hope you enjoyed learning about the Leopard Gecko. See you tomorrow for another fun and exciting Wild Fact.

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