Geckos are certain lizards and therefore reptiles. They form a family of many different species. They are found all over the world as long as it is not too cold there, for example around the Mediterranean, but also in the tropics. They like the rainforest as well as deserts and savannahs.
Some species only grow to about two centimeters in size, while others grow to forty centimeters. Larger species are extinct. Geckos have scales on their skin. They are mostly greenish to brownish. However, others are also quite colorful.
Geckos feed primarily on insects. These include flies, crickets, and grasshoppers. However, large geckos also eat scorpions or rodents such as mice. Sometimes ripe fruit is also included. They store fat in their tails as a supply. If you grab them, they’ll let go of their tails and run away. The tail then grows back.
Many species are awake during the day and sleep at night, as can be seen from their round pupils. Very few species do exactly the opposite, they have slit-shaped pupils. They see over 300 times better than humans in the dark.
The female lays eggs and lets them hatch in the sun. The young animals are independent immediately after hatching. In the wild, geckos can live for twenty years.
How can geckos climb so well?
Geckos can be divided into two groups based on their toes: The clawed geckos have claws, a bit like birds. This allows them to hold on to branches very well and climb up and down.
Lamella geckos have tiny hairs on the inside of their toes that can only be seen under a very powerful microscope. As they climb, these hairs get caught in the tiny crevices that exist in every material, even glass. That’s why they can even hang upside down under a pane.
A little moisture even helps them. However, if the surface is soaking wet, the slats will no longer adhere as well. Even if the feet are soggy from too much moisture, the geckos find it difficult to climb.