The Bell Albino Leopard Gecko is a fascinating variety of the popular Leopard Gecko species. Notably, it is one of three recognized strains of albino leopard geckos, which are distinguished by their lack of dark pigmentation and unique eye colorations.
This particular morph, distinguished by its characteristic light pink eyes and brown spotting, is the newest discovery in the world of Leopard Geckos. The Bell Albino Leopard Gecko was discovered by Mark Bell, a renowned breeder in the herpetological world.
Mark Bell’s contribution has significantly enriched the diversity within the leopard gecko pet trade and has sparked interest among breeders and enthusiasts alike. The Bell strain, while sharing some similarities with other albino strains, stands out due to its distinctive characteristics and genetic makeup.
Table of Contents
- Similar to other leopard geckos, the Bell Albino Leopard Gecko typically measures between 7 to 10 inches in length when fully grown.
- Both males and females share a robust body structure, with males typically being slightly larger than females.
Color and Pattern
- The Bell Albino Leopard Gecko displays a range of colorations, often showing a lighter color when hatched. As it matures, brown spotting becomes more prominent, giving it a unique pattern.
- Some breeders have also noted a distinctive lavender tint to the body, adding to the morph’s appeal.
- The most defining feature of the Bell Albino Leopard Gecko is its light pink eyes. This unique eye color is a distinguishing characteristic that sets the Bell Albino Leopard Gecko apart from other albino strains.
- The eye color does not change significantly as the gecko grows, unlike some other strains such as the Tremper Albino.
- As an albino strain, the Bell Albino Leopard Gecko lacks melanin, the pigment responsible for dark colors in animals. This results in its distinctive light coloration.
- Despite the lack of melanin, other pigments such as xanthophores and iridophores are still present in the skin cells, contributing to the gecko’s unique coloration and pattern.
- While albinism often leads to light sensitivity, Bell Albinos seem to handle light better than other albino strains. However, this can vary among individual geckos.
Behavior and Light Sensitivity
- As with all leopard geckos, Bell Albinos are primarily nocturnal, which means they are most active during the night.
- They tend to be calm creatures, and they are known to be quite sociable compared to other reptile species, especially when they are used to human handling.
- Like other leopard geckos, Bell Albinos are not aggressive but may display defensive behaviors when feeling threatened.
- One aspect that differentiates Bell Albinos from other albino strains is their reaction to light. While all forms of albino leopard geckos are known to have some light sensitivity due to their lack of melanin, Bell Albinos reportedly handle light better than other strains, such as Tremper Albinos.
- This doesn’t mean they are free from all light-related issues. Some Bell Albinos, particularly those with eclipse eyes, may still exhibit some light sensitivity. However, the impact appears to be less severe in this strain.
- Despite this trait, it’s still crucial to provide appropriate light conditions to avoid any potential harm.
Impact of Behavior and Light Sensitivity on Care
- The behavior and light sensitivity of Bell Albinos make them great pets as they are relatively easy to manage. However, their light sensitivity needs to be considered when setting up their habitat.
- Proper light management will ensure that these geckos stay comfortable and healthy, making them an ideal pet for both beginners and experienced reptile enthusiasts alike.
Lifespan in the Wild Versus in Captivity
Determining the exact lifespan of Bell Albino Leopard Geckos in the wild can be challenging due to factors such as predation, disease, and harsh environmental conditions. Generally, Leopard Geckos in the wild tend to have shorter lives compared to their captive counterparts due to these various threats.
Lifespan in Captivity
- In captivity, with proper care and diet, Bell Albino Leopard Geckos can live significantly longer. Their lifespan typically ranges from 10 to 20 years, with some individuals even reaching up to 25 years.
- Their longevity in captivity can be attributed to controlled environmental conditions, balanced nutrition, and the absence of natural predators.
- However, reaching this age requires consistent, high-quality care, including a proper diet, a clean and well-structured environment, and regular health check-ups.
Diet in the Wild and in Captivity
In the wild, Bell Albino Leopard Geckos, like all leopard geckos, are insectivores. They feed on a variety of small invertebrates, including insects, spiders, and even small scorpions. They are nocturnal hunters, using their excellent night vision and ambush techniques to capture their prey.
The availability of prey items can vary depending on the gecko’s natural habitat and the season, and these reptiles are known to be opportunistic feeders, consuming whatever edible prey they can find. These wild diets contribute to their overall health, providing necessary nutrients and stimulation.
Recommended Diet in Captivity
When keeping a Bell Albino Leopard Gecko in captivity, it’s essential to replicate their natural diet as closely as possible to ensure their health and longevity. Their diet should primarily consist of a variety of live insects, including crickets, mealworms, superworms, and dubia roaches. Some owners also include waxworms and hornworms, but due to their high-fat content, these should be offered sparingly as treats.
In addition to a varied insect diet, supplements play a crucial role in a captive Bell Albino Leopard Gecko’s diet. Calcium and vitamin D3 supplements are particularly important, as they are necessary for bone health and the prevention of metabolic bone disease. It’s typically recommended to dust the insects with a calcium and vitamin D3 supplement before feeding them to your gecko.
It’s also important to note that Bell Albino Leopard Geckos, like other leopard geckos, are not able to digest plant matter. Therefore, vegetables and fruits should not be included in their diet.
Ensuring your Bell Albino Leopard Gecko has access to fresh, clean water at all times is also crucial. Although leopard geckos get much of their hydration from their food, a shallow dish of water should be provided and changed daily to meet their hydration needs.
Keep in mind that all leopard geckos, regardless of morph, may have individual dietary preferences. Paying attention to your gecko’s eating habits and preferences can help provide the best care possible.
Bell Albino Leopard Geckos Care
Setting up a suitable habitat is crucial for the health and happiness of a Bell Albino Leopard Gecko. This starts with choosing the correct enclosure. A glass terrarium with a screen top is often recommended for proper ventilation. The size of the enclosure should be proportionate to the gecko’s size, but a standard 20-gallon tank is generally suitable for an adult gecko.
The substrate, or bedding, is another vital component of the habitat. It’s important to choose a substrate that will not cause impaction if accidentally ingested by the gecko. Popular options include reptile carpets, tile, paper towels, and newspaper. Loose substrate, like sand, should be avoided due to the risk of ingestion and impaction.
Bell Albino Leopard Geckos, like all leopard geckos, are ectothermic, which means they depend on their environment to regulate their body temperature. This means a proper heat gradient needs to be maintained in their enclosure.
This can be achieved by having a heated side (around 88-90°F) and a cooler side (around 75-80°F). Under-tank heaters or heat mats are commonly used to achieve this. Humidity should also be maintained at an appropriate level to aid in shedding. This can be achieved by providing a moist hide filled with damp sphagnum moss or similar material.
Handling and Bonding
Bell Albino Leopard Geckos are typically quite docile, making them good candidates for handling. However, it’s important to handle them properly to ensure their safety and comfort. Handling should be limited to a few times per week for short periods, especially when you first bring them home.
They should always be handled gently, scooping them up from below rather than grabbing from above to avoid causing them stress. Bonding with your gecko is a gradual process that involves building trust over time. Start by letting your gecko get used to your presence by spending time near their enclosure.
Then you can gradually start to introduce your hand into the enclosure, eventually working up to gently touching and finally handling your gecko.
Bell Albino Leopard Gecko as a Pet
The cost of adopting a Bell Albino Leopard Gecko varies, but generally, these geckos can range from $200 to $800. Compared to other albino strains, Bell Albinos are considered the most expensive pure morph, with prices typically falling between $300 and $700 per animal. The pricing can vary due to a variety of factors, such as age, size, coloration, breeder reputation, and geographic location.
Considerations Before Adoption
Before adopting a Bell Albino Leopard Gecko, prospective owners should fully understand the care needs and potential challenges. Leopard Geckos are generally easy to care for, but their needs can be complex for beginners. Providing a proper diet, setting up an ideal habitat, and maintaining their health requires both time and resources.
Potential challenges may include managing their light sensitivity, as some forms of albinos have a greater sensitivity to light. As they are nocturnal, they may also have unique sleep and activity patterns that owners need to consider.
Benefits and Challenges
Bell Albino Leopard Geckos can make great pets for several reasons. They are generally calm, handle well, and can adapt to captivity with relative ease. They are also unique in their appearance, which can be a point of interest for many reptile enthusiasts.
However, there are challenges associated with owning these unique creatures. Their light sensitivity can require special care to ensure their comfort and health. Additionally, like all pets, they require a commitment to providing ongoing care, proper nutrition, and a suitable environment.
In summary, owning a Bell Albino Leopard Gecko can be a rewarding experience. However, it’s important that prospective owners understand and are prepared for the responsibilities that come with owning this unique reptile.
Frequently Asked Questions
How can I tell a Bell Albino Leopard Gecko apart from other albino strains?
The most distinctive feature of the Bell Albino Leopard Gecko is its light pink eyes. Unlike other albino strains, such as the Tremper, the color of their eyes does not change as they grow.
Is it possible to breed a Bell Albino with another albino strain to produce albino offspring?
No, all three strains of Albino are genetically different and recessive. To breed another albino, you need both parents to at least carry one copy of the same strain. Therefore, breeding a Bell Albino with another strain will not result in albino offspring.
Do Bell Albinos have a unique behavior compared to other Leopard Geckos?
There isn’t a significant difference in behavior due to the morph. However, some forms of the Bell Albino, like those with an eclipse eye, might have some light sensitivity, and therefore might be more active during dusk and dawn, when the light is not as harsh.
Are there specific considerations for setting up a habitat for a Bell Albino Leopard Gecko?
The care needs of a Bell Albino are similar to other types of leopard geckos. A top with a screen is essential for adequate ventilation, and substrate options can include reptile carpet, paper towels, tile, and newspaper. Because of potential light sensitivity, it might be necessary to provide hiding places where the gecko can retreat from light.
The Bell Albino Leopard Gecko, with its distinctive appearance and intriguing traits, offers a unique option for reptile enthusiasts. While their care needs are similar to those of other leopard geckos, there are certain considerations to keep in mind, such as potential light sensitivity and the importance of genetic matching for breeding.
Despite these challenges, Bell Albinos can make great pets, bringing a unique charm and beauty to any home or collection. As with any pet, responsible care and an understanding of their unique needs is crucial for their well-being and longevity.