Mornings at the Triffid Ranch

In most locales in the US, the Fourth of July holiday week involves chilled watermelon, grilled bratwurst, or trying to put significant portions of our landmass into low-Earth orbit. Around here, it’s best recognized by the visitors. Alarm clock goes off, stumble to the shower, get out, start to dress, and find this little guy in my pants pocket:

Baby gecko

For those not familiar with herpetology, this is a baby Mediterranean gecko, Hemidactylus turcicus. Earlier in spring, the females of the local H. turcicus population laid their eggs in protected spots in houses in the Dallas area, gluing the eggs onto the undersides of aluminum siding or the insides of bricks. Right about now, the hatchlings emerge, trying to stake out new territories, and that usually involves their climbing through doorways and cracks in windowframes. This little guy probably climbed down the bathroom vent pipe before dropping onto the carpet and hiding out in my pocket.

Baby gecko 2

And before anyone asks, he was promptly released after a couple of photos. Between normal dry conditions in North Texas this time of the year and the further dehydration from air conditioning, these geckos are best kept outside. It’s all for the best, really, seeing as how someone needs to help keep the mosquito and whitefly population under control, right?

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