Since 1991 when the first designer leopard geckos hatched, there has been a huge interest to breed these lizards, such as the albino leopard geckos, with new and exciting color and pattern mutations. Leopard gecko variations include several subspecies such as carrot tail leopard gecko, giant, stripes, the leucistic, high yellow, and albinos. This article will discuss albino leopard geckos and their varieties.
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When referring to albino leopard gecko, there are three different strains the Tremper, Rainwater (Las Vegas), and Bell. All three strains of albinos are recessive traits. Meaning, if you were to breed a Tremper albino with a Rainwater or Bell albino, all of the babies would be normal looking but not albino. Recessive traits are the result of a mutation of certain genes that control a specific part of the development of the animal. These traits are usually discovered randomly, so there is nothing that can be done to increase the probability of discovering a new recessive trait. This kind of specific breeding depends a lot on luck.
Types of Albino Leopard Geckos
Typically, it is very difficult to tell the differences between the three strains of albino leopard geckos. Sometimes, it is an educated guess as to which strain an adult albino leopard gecko is. The most common of the three albino strains in leopard geckos is the Tremper strain. They were the first of the albino strains to be seen. A lot of times these albino geckos are actually brown and marketed as the “Mocha Strain”. They can also be bright white or pink in color. Eye color can range from slightly lighter than a “normal” non-albino leopard gecko eye, to bright red. The color of the body as well as the eye color can differ in geckos incubated at different temperatures. Typically, a higher incubation temperature leads to a leopard gecko that is darker in color.
Rainwater Albinos & Bell Albino Leopard Geckos
Rainwater albinos are the next most common of the three albino strains. It is thought that they are pinker then the other strains but that is not always true. It is the Bell strain of albino leopard geckos that is still relatively rare. They often have a high contrast, with “pink” areas that are most of the time much darker than other albino strains. The eye color of the Bell albino leopard geckos is the reddest of the three strains. While the red eye color of young animals often changes as the animal ages to the normal beige color in the other albino strains, the Bell albino eye color has a tendency to stay red or pinkish even in adult animals. All three strains of albino are sensitive to bright lights, and will close their eyes tightly if exposed to them. Plus, many albinos will not feel comfortable eating during the daytime because of their sensitivity to light.
As leopard geckos continue to gain in popularity due to their easy to care for nature, the possibility of different color variations will grow. It is possible that many more dominant recessives will be realized in the next few years. The offspring from mutations of breeding leopard geckos being bred with another generations produced from mutations will accelerate the rate of variation making these already unique animals even more unique.
Leopard Gecko Video
Check out the following video about leopard geckos. It will put a smile on your face!
Leopard Gecko FAQQuestion: What do I do about the lighting? There are too many products to choose from.
Answer: OK, there are two types of lighting in the world of herpetology. There is UV lighting which comes in the form of a fluorescent tube. This kind gives off UV-A and some UV-B (which synthesizes D3 and speeds the uptake of calcium in all animals) but not much heat to speak of. Many lizards and tortoises need this kind of light because it somewhat duplicates the sun's effects. Leopard Geckos DO NOT need this type of lighting. Leopard Geckos are nocturnal (awake at night) and never lay in the sun in their native homeland. They get their D3 from the gut-loaded insects with the occasional dusting of calcium with D3 added.
The second type of lighting you will see in the pet store is only used for heating. There are all kinds of fancy screw-in type bulbs out there with fancy names like "Reptile Basking Light" etc. Don't let them fool you, these screw-in type bulbs cannot emit UV of any sort. They are only needed for heating purposes. There is no reason to buy these kinds of lights for $3 or more when a regular old light bulb from the hardware store/department store works equally as well. Depending on the size of the cage you are heating and the temperature of your home you might need anywhere from a 40 watt to a 100 watt bulb. If you need more than that you should probably invest in a Ceramic Heat Element (CHE).
Albino Leopard Geckos are unique among the class of leopard geckos.