Sunday, September 30, 2012

Leopard Gecko Morphs - Variations of Color and Pattern in Leopard Geckos

The leopard gecko is one handsome lizard indeed. These unique animals are usually yellow with black dots, but may be found in a wide variety of color and pattern variations. Gecko breeders actively breed geckos for different colors and patterns, often resulting in some surprising looking animals.
There are a few terms we should cover quickly here: pattern, color and phase (or morph). By color, we mean the basic color of the gecko. For instance, yellow in the case of most leopard geckos. Pattern means the way that the black dots on the animal are arranged. Phase (or morph) covers the entire range of appearance traits that the gecko has been bred for.
A pet gecko is one thing where you should choose based on appearance. You'll want to select a lizard which you find to be aesthetically appealing. There are many different leopard gecko morphs around to choose from. The following are some of the most popular morphs.
Jungle Leopard: This is the first type of gecko bred to have stripes. This is a varied phase which can produce some very unique-looking animals. There are two subcategories of this morph; "four eyed" and "bandit". The four eyed variety has two white spots, generally with a black dot in the center over each of its eyes. The bandit variety has a dark band between its eyes and over the nose, much like a bandit's mask.
Albino /Amelanistic: These geckos are off-white with pink eyes. There are many gecko owners who prize these reptiles for their unique look. There are regular albino geckos as well as Amelanistic (patternless) albino geckos available.
Blizzard: These geckos are a variant which have no patterns. Their eyes may vary in color from black to blue and are found in colors including white, the rare and highly prized blue-black (midnight blizzard), yellow (banana blizzard), brown and even purple!
Wild: This is the ordinary pattern seen in wild geckos. These animals feature dark transverse bands across their body as well as 3-4 dark rings on their tail. They have dark spots on their head and body which may also be mixed with tan.

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