Mourning Gecko Morphs: Everything You Need to Know

The Mourning Gecko (Lepidodactylus lugubris) is a small species of reptile known for its unique breeding characteristics and genetic variations. This gecko is native to the islands of Mauritius and Reunion in the Indian Ocean. In recent years, it has gained popularity among reptile enthusiasts as a pet due to its fascinating color morphs.

These geckos exhibit a wide range of color morphs, offering a visually stunning variety for enthusiasts. Some popular morphs include the wild-type, which has a dark brown or gray body with lighter markings, and the high-red or orange morph, which displays vibrant colors. Other variations include melanistic and patternless morphs, which further add to the gecko’s allure.

Morphs Definition and Classification

The classification of morphs in mourning geckos is based on the genetic variations and physical characteristics. Different morphs can display variations in color intensity, pattern distribution, and overall appearance. These variations are the result of selective breeding practices, where breeders focus on enhancing specific traits or creating unique combinations.

The genetic basis of morphs in mourning geckos is still being studied, as more research is required to fully understand the underlying mechanisms. However, it is believed that certain genes control the expression of different morphs, influencing factors such as pigmentation and pattern formation.

Morphs Variations and Characteristics

There are several morph variations that can be found in mourning geckos. Some of the most common morphs include:

Morph Characteristics
Anerythristic lack of red pigmentation, resulting in grayscale appearance
Patternless lack of distinct patterns, with a solid color all over
Tiger striped or banded pattern, resembling a tiger
Tremper Albino complete lack of melanin pigmentation, resulting in an albino look

These variations in morphs allow gecko enthusiasts to have a diverse collection of reptiles with unique appearances. Each morph variation has its own appeal and can be highly sought after by breeders and collectors.

Breeders often strive to produce new and exciting morphs by combining different genetic traits. This creates a never-ending pursuit of rare and aesthetically pleasing combinations. The breeding process can be challenging but also rewarding for those who are passionate about morphological diversity in mourning geckos.

History and Origins

These geckos are unique in that they are parthenogenetic, which means they are all female and reproduce without the need for fertilization by a male. This reproductive strategy allows the geckos to rapidly populate and colonize new areas. However, it also means that there is lack of genetic variation within the species.

The Mourning Gecko has become a popular reptile species among breeders due to its ability to produce a variety of morphs or color variations. These morphs are the result of genetic mutations that occur naturally or are selectively bred by enthusiasts. Breeders have been successful in producing a wide range of color and pattern variations, including albino, patternless, striped, and more.

Genetic Diversity and Breeding Challenges

Due to the parthenogenetic nature of the species, there is a lack of genetic diversity among Mourning Geckos. This can pose challenges for breeders who aim to maintain healthy populations and produce genetically diverse offspring.

Breeders must carefully manage their breeding programs to prevent the accumulation of deleterious genetic mutations and maintain the overall health of the gecko population. They often introduce new Mourning Geckos from different lineages to their breeding groups to increase genetic diversity.

Despite the challenges, breeding Mourning Geckos can be a rewarding and fascinating endeavor. The ability to produce unique morphs and observe the inherited traits in offspring is an exciting aspect for many reptile enthusiasts.

Mourning Gecko Habitat

Genetic Variations and Morphs

One of the most appealing aspects of mourning geckos is their wide range of genetic variations and morphs. These variations result in differences in color, patterns, and scale textures, making each gecko individual and unique. The different morphs can include variations in body color, scales patterns, tail length, and even eye color.

Morphs can be categorized into different groups, such as classic morphs, aberrant morphs, and designer morphs. Classic morphs refer to the natural coloration and pattern variations found in wild populations. Aberrant morphs, on the other hand, display unusual colors or patterns that deviate from the norm. Designer morphs are the result of selective breeding, where breeders intentionally create new and unique color combinations and patterns.

Reptile Enclosure Setup

Creating the right habitat for mourning geckos is crucial to their well-being and overall health. As arboreal reptiles, they require a vertically oriented enclosure to mimic their natural habitat. A standard glass terrarium with a screen top is recommended, as it provides good ventilation and allows for easy access.

Temperature and Humidity

Humidity levels should be maintained at around 60-80 percent to ensure the gecko’s well-being. Regular misting of the enclosure with water helps maintain humidity levels and provides the geckos with drinking water. The use of a hygrometer or humidity gauge can help monitor humidity levels effectively.

Lighting and UVB Requirements

Mourning geckos are nocturnal creatures, which means they are more active during the night. As such, UVB lighting is not considered essential for mourning geckos, but providing a low-level ambient light can enhance their natural behavior and encourage activity.

Overall, creating a suitable habitat for mourning geckos involves careful consideration of their natural behavior, temperature, humidity, and lighting requirements. By providing a well-designed enclosure, you can ensure the health and happiness of these remarkable reptiles.

Natural Behavior and Diet of Mourning Geckos

Mourning geckos (Lepidodactylus lugubris) are fascinating reptiles known for their unique breeding characteristics and genetic variations. They belong to the Gekkonidae family and are native to the islands of the western Pacific Ocean. These small geckos have become increasingly popular in the reptile trade due to their ease of care, adaptability, and their ability to reproduce without mating.



Reproduction and Life Cycle

Mourning geckos are unique among gecko species because they are parthenogenetic, meaning they can reproduce without a male. This reproductive strategy allows female mourning geckos to lay fertile eggs, even if they have never mated with a male.

The female mourning geckos will typically lay one to two eggs at a time, with each clutch containing one or two eggs. The eggs are soft-shelled and need a moist environment to develop properly. The incubation period for the eggs is around 60 days, and the hatchlings are fully formed miniature versions of the adults.

It’s worth noting that male mourning geckos also exist, and they do participate in mating and reproduction. However, their presence is not necessary for female mourning geckos to reproduce successfully. This unique reproductive ability makes mourning geckos a popular choice for breeders and reptile enthusiasts.

Genetic Variations and Color Morphs:

Some popular color variations of mourning geckos include patternless, striped, harlequin, and lavender. These variations add to their allure as pets and make them stand out among other gecko species.

Reproduction and Life Cycle

The breeding process for mourning geckos is relatively straightforward. Female geckos are capable of laying multiple clutches of eggs throughout the year, with each clutch containing one or two eggs. These eggs are typically incubated at a temperature of around 82 degrees Fahrenheit (28 degrees Celsius) until they hatch, which usually takes around 60 to 70 days.

Once hatched, mourning gecko hatchlings are independent from birth and can immediately feed on small insects and fruit flies. They grow rapidly and can reach sexual maturity in as little as six to eight months, at which point they can start reproducing on their own.

Mourning Gecko Care and Enclosure Setup

Proper care and setup of the enclosure are vital for the well-being of mourning geckos. These reptiles are relatively hardy and adaptable, but it is still important to provide them with a suitable environment that meets their specific needs.

Species-specific requirements

When setting up the enclosure for mourning geckos, there are several factors to consider, including temperature, humidity, lighting, and substrate. The temperature should be kept between 75-80°F (24-27°C) during the day and can drop to 70-75°F (21-24°C) at night. A heat source, such as an under-tank heater or heat lamp, can be used to maintain the desired temperature range.

The humidity level should be kept relatively high, around 50-70%, to mimic the geckos’ natural environment. This can be achieved by misting the enclosure with water daily and providing a shallow dish of water for drinking and bathing.

Proper lighting is also important for mourning geckos. They require a photoperiod of 12 hours of light and 12 hours of darkness. A full-spectrum UVB light is recommended to provide the necessary UV radiation for vitamin D synthesis.

Enclosure setup

The enclosure for mourning geckos should be spacious enough to allow for their natural behaviors, such as climbing and jumping. A vertical terrarium or a glass tank with a secure mesh lid is suitable for keeping them as pets.

The substrate can be a combination of coconut fiber, sphagnum moss, and leaf litter to mimic their natural forest floor habitat. This substrate should be kept moist to maintain the proper humidity level. Live plants, such as pothos or bromeliads, can also be added to provide hiding spots and climbing opportunities.

Branches, vines, and cork bark can be placed within the enclosure to create an enriching environment for the geckos. These structures will also provide them with plenty of surfaces to climb and explore.

Overall, providing the proper care and enclosure setup for mourning geckos is essential for their health and happiness. By meeting their species-specific requirements and creating a suitable environment, you can enjoy the beauty and unique characteristics of these geckos in your home.

Handling and Taming Tips

  1. Start with regular observation: Before attempting to handle your mourning gecko, spend some time observing its behavior in its enclosure. This will help you understand its natural behavior and become familiar with its movements.
  2. Use gentle and slow movements: When it’s time to handle your gecko, approach it slowly and gently. Quick movements or rough handling can startle the gecko and cause stress. Use slow and deliberate movements to avoid scaring your gecko.
  3. Start with short handling sessions: Begin with short handling sessions of just a few minutes and gradually increase the duration as your gecko becomes more comfortable. This will help build trust and ensure the gecko feels safe during handling.
  4. Offer treats: Mourning geckos can be motivated by food. Consider offering small, non-toxic insects or fruit as treats during handling sessions. This can help associate handling with positive experiences for your gecko.
  5. Be consistent: Regular, consistent handling can help your mourning gecko become more accustomed to human interaction and develop trust over time. Make sure to handle your gecko regularly but be mindful not to over-stress or overwhelm it.

Remember, every mourning gecko is unique, and it may take some time to find the approach that works best for your individual gecko. With patience, consistency, and gentle handling, you can build a bond with your mourning gecko and enjoy the rewards of interacting with this fascinating reptile species.

The Importance of Maintenance and Cleaning for Mourning Gecko Enclosures

Proper maintenance and cleaning are essential for ensuring the health and well-being of your mourning gecko. As a reptile owner, it is your responsibility to create a clean and hygienic environment for your gecko to thrive in.

1. Regular Spot Cleaning

Spot cleaning involves removing any feces or uneaten food from the enclosure on a daily basis. This helps to maintain cleanliness and prevent the spread of bacteria. Use a reptile-safe disinfectant to clean any soiled areas thoroughly.

2. Deep Cleaning

Deep cleaning of the enclosure should be done on a regular basis, typically once a month. This involves removing all items from the enclosure, cleaning them with a reptile-safe disinfectant, and thoroughly cleaning the enclosure itself. Rinse everything well to ensure no residue is left behind.

3. Disinfecting and Sterilizing

Disinfecting the enclosure is important to kill any potential bacteria or parasites. Use a reptile-safe disinfectant and follow the instructions carefully to ensure proper disinfection. Sterilizing any feeding and water dishes is also crucial to prevent the buildup of harmful bacteria.

4. Checking for Mold or Fungal Growth

Mold or fungal growth can occur in a humid gecko enclosure. Regularly inspect the enclosure for any signs of mold or fungus and take appropriate steps to remove it. This may involve adjusting humidity levels, improving ventilation, or replacing substrate.

5. Maintaining Humidity and Temperature

Maintaining proper humidity and temperature levels in the enclosure is vital to your gecko’s health. Regularly monitor these levels and make any necessary adjustments. Keep in mind that excess humidity can contribute to the growth of mold or fungus.

6. Preventing Cross-Contamination

To prevent the spread of diseases or parasites, avoid cross-contamination between enclosures. Use separate cleaning equipment for each enclosure, and wash your hands thoroughly before and after handling each gecko or their items.

By following these maintenance and cleaning practices, you can ensure that your mourning gecko’s enclosure remains a clean and safe environment for them to thrive in. Regular cleaning not only promotes the health of your gecko but also helps to prevent the spread of disease and maintain the longevity of your reptile’s habitat.

Common Health Issues and Diseases

One of the most common health issues in mourning geckos is shedding problems. Like all geckos, mourning geckos periodically shed their skin. However, sometimes they may have difficulty removing the old skin, which can lead to complications. If you notice that your gecko is having trouble shedding, you can provide a humid hide to help soften the skin and make shedding easier.

Another common issue is parasites. Mourning geckos can be prone to parasites such as mites and worms. Regularly inspect your gecko for any signs of infestation, such as visible parasites or changes in behavior. If you suspect your gecko has parasites, consult a veterinarian for appropriate treatment options.

Overall, mourning geckos are relatively healthy reptiles. By providing proper care, a suitable environment, and regular veterinary check-ups, you can help prevent and manage any health issues that may arise.

Mourning Gecko Morphs: Exploring Color Variations in the Species

The Mourning Gecko is well-known for its diverse morphs, making it a popular choice among reptile enthusiasts. They come in an array of colors, each displaying unique characteristics that make them stand out.

One of the most fascinating aspects of Mourning Gecko morphs is the variety of colors they exhibit. While the wild type Mourning Gecko is typically brown or gray, captive breeding has resulted in an explosion of vibrant colors. These morphs can range from bright oranges and reds to striking blues and greens, creating a stunning display for any gecko lover.

Not only do Mourning Gecko morphs come in different colors, but they also exhibit variations in patterns and markings. Some morphs may have spots, stripes, or even unique designs that set them apart from others in the species. These variations make each gecko individual and add a touch of excitement to any collection.

These genetic variations play a crucial role in the appeal of Mourning Gecko morphs. They provide enthusiasts with the opportunity to create and work with different genetic combinations, resulting in endless possibilities for future breedings. This aspect adds an element of excitement and continuous discovery within the reptile community.

Morph Variation Description
Orange Features vibrant orange coloration throughout the body.
Melanistic Exhibits an increased level of black pigment, resulting in a darker appearance.
Patternless Lacks patterns or markings, showcasing a clean and uniform coloration.
Dalmatian Displays spots throughout the body, resembling the coat of a Dalmatian dog.
Tiger Features bold stripes that run horizontally or vertically along the body.

These are just a few examples of the stunning variations found within Mourning Gecko morphs. Each one adds interest and uniqueness to any collection, making them highly sought after by reptile enthusiasts.

Mourning Gecko Morphs: Genetic Variations of a Colorful Reptile Species

Mourning geckos are a fascinating species of gecko known for their unique genetic morphs, which result in a wide range of colors and patterns. These genetic variations make them highly sought after by reptile enthusiasts and collectors.

The term “morphs” refers to the different physical characteristics and traits that can be observed within a particular species. In the case of mourning geckos, the genetic variations lead to a diverse array of colors, patterns, and markings on their skin.

Genetic morphs in mourning geckos occur due to specific genetic mutations that affect the coloration of their skin. These mutations can result in variations such as different shades of color, unique patterns, and even the absence of pigment in certain areas of the gecko’s body.

These genetic morphs are inherited and can be selectively bred to produce offspring with desired traits. This has led to the development of numerous popular and sought-after mourning gecko morphs within the reptile community.

Diverse Color and Pattern Variations

The genetic variations in mourning geckos have given rise to an impressive range of color and pattern variations. Some common morphs include:

  • Tangerine morphs: These geckos have vibrant orange or reddish coloration, often with dark spots or stripes.
  • Dalmatian morphs: These geckos have a speckled or spotted pattern, resembling the coat of a Dalmatian dog.
  • Pinstripe morphs: These geckos have thin stripes running along their bodies, typically in contrasting colors.
  • Lily white morphs: These geckos lack pigment in certain areas, giving them a stunning white or pale appearance.
  • Patternless morphs: These geckos have a uniform coloration without any distinct patterns or markings.

These are just a few examples of the many mourning gecko morphs that exist, each with its own unique beauty and characteristics.

The Appeal and Availability of Mourning Gecko Morphs

Due to their striking appearance and variety of genetic morphs, mourning geckos have become increasingly popular among reptile enthusiasts. Their unique colors and patterns make them highly desirable for both breeding projects and as pets.

Price Range and Availability

Basic morphs that have simple color variations, such as different shades of brown or gray, are usually more affordable and widely available. These morphs are a great choice for beginner reptile enthusiasts who want to own a Mourning Gecko without breaking the bank. They still possess the charming qualities and ease of care that are characteristic of the species.

On the other hand, rare and highly sought-after morphs can be quite expensive and may require more effort to find. These morphs often exhibit vibrant and striking colors, unique patterns, or genetic mutations. Some examples of these rare morphs include high contrast color combinations, albino variations, and patterned scales. These unique characteristics add to the allure and appeal of these geckos, making them highly sought after by collectors and enthusiasts.

Popular Mourning Gecko Morphs

Mourning Gecko morphs are the result of genetic variation and selective breeding efforts. Breeders have been able to produce a range of different morphs that display stunning colors and patterns. These variations add to the overall appeal of owning and breeding Mourning Geckos.

Color Morphs

One of the most popular types of morphs seen in Mourning Geckos is related to color. These geckos come in a variety of vibrant hues, ranging from deep blues and bright oranges to striking yellows and vivid greens. Some morphs even display unique patterns and marbling effects on their scales. These color morphs add a beautiful aesthetic touch to any gecko collection.

Pattern Morphs

In addition to color, Mourning Geckos also exhibit a wide array of pattern morphs. These morphs can include spots, stripes, and even bands across their bodies. Some geckos may have intricate designs, such as crescent-shaped patterns or mottled markings. These pattern variations bring a level of uniqueness and individuality to each gecko, making them highly sought after by breeders and enthusiasts.

Eye Morphs

In addition to color and patterns, some Mourning Geckos also possess eye morphs that give them a distinctive appearance. These eye morphs can range from bright and striking colors like red or orange to unique patterns or markings around the eye. Such eye morphs add an extra level of intrigue and visual interest to the gecko’s overall appearance.


Mourning Gecko vs. Other Gecko Species

This reptile is known for its small size, usually reaching 4-5 inches in length, and its graceful movements. Mourning Geckos have the ability to change color, ranging from light brown to a vibrant green, depending on their mood and environment. This color variation is one of the main attractions for reptile enthusiasts.

Another factor that sets the Mourning Gecko apart from other species is its ability to adapt to a wide range of habitats. They are native to the Indian Ocean, specifically the islands of the Seychelles and Mauritius, where they can be found in various ecosystems such as forests, grasslands, and urban areas. This adaptability makes them popular choices for reptile enthusiasts who are looking to keep geckos in captivity.

Overall, the Mourning Gecko stands out from other gecko species due to its ability to reproduce asexually, its color variations, and its adaptability to different habitats. Whether you are a reptile enthusiast or a breeder, the Mourning Gecko offers a unique and fascinating experience.

Mourning Gecko vs. Other Gecko Species

Unlike many other gecko species, mourning geckos don’t require a male to reproduce. They are parthenogenetic, meaning the females can reproduce without fertilization. This ability to reproduce asexually sets them apart from other geckos and adds to their intrigue.

In terms of appearance, mourning geckos exhibit a range of color variations, making them even more appealing to reptile enthusiasts. These variations can include shades of brown, gray, orange, and even green. Some morphs may have striking patterns or markings on their bodies, further adding to their visual appeal.

Breeding mourning geckos can be both a challenge and a rewarding experience for reptile breeders. Due to their parthenogenetic nature, it is possible for a single female to produce offspring without the need for a male. However, breeding different morphs together can create new and exciting genetic combinations, leading to even more diverse offspring.