You remember Zipper, don’t you? He’s my son’s pet leopard gecko. Well, the other day I finally caught on camera something that happens to Zipper about once every month or so which fascinates me to no end. I know some of you will think it’s disgusting, but I love to watch Zipper when he sheds his skin.
It is really quite the process. A few days before he actually sheds, you can tell the time is approaching because he starts to turn white from his nose to the tip of his tail. However, because he is nocturnal, sometimes he sheds at night and we don’t see the transformation. This time, I was getting ready for work, when I decided to check on Zipper. He was really white, so I took him out of his cage and sprayed him down with a bottle of warm water. That seems to help the process quite a bit. Then, just as I was walking out the door, I decided to check on him one more time only to find that the shedding had begun. I had lots of time, so I grabbed my camera.
The first thing that happens is the skin starts to peel back from his face, and it looks like he is wearing a little bonnet :). He helps the process by rubbing himself along the side of his cage.
As I have a fetish for peeling sunburns, I always get the urge to help him pull the skin off, but I know he has to do it himself. The only time I have ever stepped in was one time when the skin rolled up around his neck like a collar, and it became so thick that he couldn’t pull it, so I took a pair of nail scissors and snipped it so that he could rip it easier.
The more he drags himself along the wire mesh of his cage, the further down his body the skin peels.
Eventually, he starts contorting himself into the most awkward positions to pull on the skin with his mouth. He pulls and pulls for all he’s worth, and as the skin comes off he eats it. I know, that part is kind of gross, but his skin is full of vitamins so it’s good for him. The most fascinating part is when he pulls the skin off his legs because it all comes off in one piece, and the end result looks like a glove, fingers and all.
In the last photo, you can see him eating the skin, and his little tongue partly sticking out. Isn’t he cute with his beautiful new skin? Good job Zipper!!
fascinating and beautiful
I think so too, but I know some people think reptiles are creepy :). I’m glad you liked it!
fascinating- never been privy to this before – thanks for sharing
You are very welcome! I thought my fellow bloggers might find it interesting :).
That’s so cool! (for lack of better words haha :P)
It is really cool!! I am always mesmerized by the process :).
Lovely that you caught this on camera.. something that normally happens behind the scenes… wonderful photo blog…
Thanks !. This is the first time that I have caught the process in its entirety, so I was thrilled :).
SO COOL!! And his eyes!! Gorgeous!!
I know – his eyes are amazing. I was really pleased with the first shot because it shows all of the details in his eye. I’m glad you liked it :).
That is soooo cool Cindy. Fantastic captures.
Thank you so much Edith :).
if only we could do that…. minus the meal of course!
Yes, I think I’m getting to the age where I could use a fresh, younger skin LOL!!! Ahh, to be able to peel off the old skin to reveal beautiful new skin underneath! That would be awesome :).
What great photos and commentary. Zipper is such a little love. 🙂
Thank you! He is a little cutie, and he’s very friendly. You just have to watch him like a hawk if he is out and crawling around because he can be really fast if he wants to be. When Bryan first got him we lost him under our couch, and he climbed up under the reclining part of the couch. I was afraid we would squish him if we opened it up, but we finally got him out. Phew!!
He sounds like so much fun, what a great fun family member he must be! 🙂
He fits in well with our lifestyle because both my husband and I work full-time, and on weekends we are usually out and about. So, I never felt it would be fair to have a dog because we wouldn’t be around enough for it. At least with Zipper, he doesn’t mind human contact (he loves to crawl all over me), but he doesn’t require it regularly. He is actually nocturnal, so he gets most of his exercise when we are sleeping :).
I “liked” this post but not sure why. I kept reading and looking with morbid fascination. Actually these are amazing shots and you are to be commended for your fortitude and rather sick fetish about peeling lizards.
Now be honest – you were secretly thrilled by it too, weren’t you? Now you want to go out and get a leopard gecko don’t you? LOL 🙂
I wish I looked this cute when I’m peeling. I’ve never seen the process so thanks for sharing. I’m not sure I would want to eat it afterwards, though. I’m kinda a picky eater. No skin or peas for me.
Yay, another pea hater!!! I knew there was a reason why I liked you so much :). And you’re welcome, by the way. I’m glad you liked my story about Zipper. He’s a funny little guy!
Interesting… He sure looks brand new afterward. 🙂
Yes, he is so bright and colourful afterwards, and I have also noticed that his colours seem more varied in the summertime than they do in the wintertime. 🙂
What a great series, Cindy! I especially like the first three and his twinkle-eyed, smug expression!
Thanks Gary. I’m glad you enjoyed it! He kind of looks like he’s smiling in a smug, satisfied kind of way doesn’t he? 🙂