The marketing folks at Geico have run a masterful public relations campaign for geckos everywhere, with their funny and popular commercials that feature the lovable, cockney-accented gecko. But while they may not talk, in any human language at least, these little creatures are amazing in their own right.
And now you can see them up-close at the Children’s Museum in Indianapolis. The “Geckos – Tails to Toepads” exhibit, which takes place Feb. 2 – May 15, 2013, is the most advanced gecko exhibition in the nation, allowing visitors close-up views and other interactive experiences. Habitats from around the world are re-created to illustrate the diverse conditions in which they live. Every environmental aspect that is important to their well-being has been taken care of, from maintaining optimal lighting and humidity to ensuring the right temperature and water quality.
Quick Gecko Facts
- Many geckos love to drink flower nectar, while others prefer to eat insects.
- There are well over a thousand different gecko species worldwide.
- They tend to be most active at night, and are therefore considered nocturnal.
- They are masters of disguise, capable of taking on various colors, patterns and textures.
- Unlike the Geico gecko, they don’t blink. Instead, a clear membrane protects their eyes. In addition, they often use their tongues to clear dust and debris from their eyes.
- While they do not possess the ability to regenerate lost limbs, they are capable of re-growing a lost tail, either fully or partially.
- They have a double layer of skin which allows them to wiggle free by shedding the first layer of skin if attacked by a predator.
View 15 different live geckos species of in their specialized environments. The “Build a Gecko” station allows you to combine different eyes, feet, skin, and tails to ‘customize’ a gecko for a particular habitat. The “Is that a Gecko?” attraction challenges guests to distinguish actual geckos from other lizards and salamanders. A video explains the science of how geckos manage to adhere to almost any surface, and how scientists are using this knowledge to design real-life applications. The Predator Challenge showcases some geckos’ ability to hide in their environments using camouflage. You’d be surprised how long it takes to spot them. Test Your Gecko IQ allows you to test how much you really know about geckos. A special optics station allows you to see the world like a gecko, including looking at insects in the dark with night vision optics.
- Feb. 2 – May 15, 2013
- The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis
- 3000 N. Meridian Street, Indianapolis, IN 46208
- Tel: 317-334-3322