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  • Dropped Tail

    Hi All,

    I've only had my geckos since Aug and lucky for me all of them have their tails.

    I was wondering what things make geckos drop their tails? I've been checking out the trade section and I've noticed that some posts seem to be all frog butts for sale and then some people sell w/ full tails. So it seems as if some people have collections that go one way or the other.

    Is this just a random thing? Or are there certain things in specific that may cause tails to drop?


    (I know a dropped tail isn't a huge deal, just curious).
    Fired Up Geckos


    I'm making a lot of wildlife and reptile art here!

  • #2
    I've found that absolute random things can make a gecko drop its tail.

    For example, on Christmas eve, my boyfriend was laying on the floor, and I was holding one of my geckos (Seven, to be exact). When Shawn got up, Seven, who is normally very well mannered and calm, jumped off the couch, and dropped his tail. There were no loud noises, no sudden movements, anything. Shawn just got up from off the floor. I was so upset, haha.
    0.2.1 - Crested Gecko - Trip, Kick & Chubs
    0.1.0 - Tokay Gecko - Unnamed
    0.1 - Boyfriend - Mitchell

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    • #3
      I have had one gecko loose a tail. He is three years old and I had just picked him up....I think it was a combo of stress from the move and finding his new cage was tremendously bigger than the other. He also ATE his tail. I guess that is not uncommon. ICK!
      I have read that they think sometimes an older bigger gecko will drop it just to get around easier since it does not do anything for them. It is also common I know with babies when you house more than a few together, especially if you feed live pey in their homes, as they will sometimes jump and bite at anything that moves and the one getting bit drops its tail.
      That's about all I have heard, read or know!
      Dana
      Custom Backgrounds & Terrariums/Tanks www.danasdesigns.weebly.com
      3.4.3.4 Cresties, 0.2 Corn snake, 1.1 Kitties

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      • #4
        Originally posted by danar1977 View Post
        I have had one gecko loose a tail. He is three years old and I had just picked him up....I think it was a combo of stress from the move and finding his new cage was tremendously bigger than the other. He also ATE his tail. I guess that is not uncommon. ICK!
        I have read that they think sometimes an older bigger gecko will drop it just to get around easier since it does not do anything for them. It is also common I know with babies when you house more than a few together, especially if you feed live pey in their homes, as they will sometimes jump and bite at anything that moves and the one getting bit drops its tail.
        That's about all I have heard, read or know!

        I'm not sure if it doesn't do ANYTHING for them. I've seen my two use their tails to wrap around a vine or my finger in order to not overshoot when they jump, so it seems like it does serve some function, just not enough to warrant growing a new one
        1.2.1 Rhacodactylus ciliatus
        0.2.0 Eublepharis macularius
        1.0.0 Python regius
        0.0.1 Ceratophrys cranwelli
        ?.?.? Blaptica dubia
        2.3.0 Felis catus
        2 tanks o' fish and coral
        1.0.0 Melopsittacus undulatus

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        • #5
          Yeah their tail isn't as prehensile as a chameleons but mine definitely uses it as an extra finger to help climb and brace like JJ21 was saying

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          • #6
            Originally posted by JJ21 View Post
            I'm not sure if it doesn't do ANYTHING for them. I've seen my two use their tails to wrap around a vine or my finger in order to not overshoot when they jump, so it seems like it does serve some function, just not enough to warrant growing a new one
            The adults will use it if its there, but they are far better off without one.
            www.altitudeexotics.com

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            • #7
              Originally posted by AltitudeExotics View Post
              The adults will use it if its there, but they are far better off without one.
              Really? I have never heard of this...
              2.3.2.? rhacodactylus ciliatus (Crested Geckos) Koda, Lilly, Drogo, Khaleesi, Jax, Arya, Snow, Tywin, Cersei Picasso, Tyrion, Viserys

              1 Gargoyle Gecko: Quazi
              Video of our Crested Gecko Room
              http://youtu.be/TxQr2n1n6v4

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              • #8
                I'll rephrase that, not far better off without one, but its not a bad thing in any way, and i think they are better off.

                You have to realize they have evolving for thousands of years to live as adults without a tail. Crested geckos were rediscovered in the wild in 1994, and since then no one has ever seen a adult crested gecko in the wild who still had its tail. There bodies as adults are not structured to support a tail. This is why they can develop floppy tail syndrome. Of course if given plenty of hides and vines and branches to hide and climb in, it greatly reduces the chances of them getting it, but it seems some are just stubborn and insist on hanging themselves upside down lol. Some times it even seems with some of my adults when they are climbing and jumping around, there tail throws them off balance. They do use there tail to climb when they have it, but its not a bad thing at all if they lose it.
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                • #9
                  Originally posted by AltitudeExotics View Post
                  I'll rephrase that, not far better off without one, but its not a bad thing in any way, and i think they are better off.

                  You have to realize they have evolving for thousands of years to live as adults without a tail. Crested geckos were rediscovered in the wild in 1994, and since then no one has ever seen a adult crested gecko in the wild who still had its tail. There bodies as adults are not structured to support a tail. This is why they can develop floppy tail syndrome. Of course if given plenty of hides and vines and branches to hide and climb in, it greatly reduces the chances of them getting it, but it seems some are just stubborn and insist on hanging themselves upside down lol. Some times it even seems with some of my adults when they are climbing and jumping around, there tail throws them off balance. They do use there tail to climb when they have it, but its not a bad thing at all if they lose it.
                  I mostly disagree with this for many reasons (too long to go into), and this is pretty well off topic now anyways.

                  Cresties can lose their tails from several things: Too much heat/humidity can cause stress, I had two geckos pop tails off from the stress of a heatwave a couple summers ago. Tail nips from cage mates (mostly happens with youngsters), irritation, nerve damage, stress (from many different factors, environment, temps, too much handling,poor nutrition, etc).
                  Sometimes personality can even play a role, some geckos are nervous by nature and the slightest thing can set them off. Usually, an adult will give you a "tail wiggle" warning that is almost like a "fishing lure" effect. When they do that, I put them back/find a way to reduce the immediate stressor and quickly leave them alone.
                  Help! Crested Geckos! 0.1.Leachie, 2.1.1 Gargs, 1.0 Chahoua, 2.1. Blue Tongue Skinks, 1.1. White Lined Geckos, 1.3. African Fat Tails, 2.2.0 Tokay Geckos, 1.0. Giant Day Gecko, 2 tarantulas

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                  • #10
                    I have also read that animals that are used to breed are more likely to drop their tails.
                    Eric
                    1.2.7.4 Rhacodactylus ciliatus
                    1.0 Phelsuma laticauda

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                    • #11
                      I also heard that sometimes when the gecko is in a cramped deli cup or something for too long, they could drop their tail
                      Jeremy

                      1[Krakatoa].0.0 Crested Geckos

                      1.0.0 Very jumpy Sarasinorum Gecko[Rascal]

                      Geckoholism comes in many shapes and sizes, for me, that shape is an adolescent who can't buy more geckos

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Saille View Post
                        I mostly disagree with this for many reasons (too long to go into), and this is pretty well off topic now anyways.

                        Cresties can lose their tails from several things: Too much heat/humidity can cause stress, I had two geckos pop tails off from the stress of a heatwave a couple summers ago. Tail nips from cage mates (mostly happens with youngsters), irritation, nerve damage, stress (from many different factors, environment, temps, too much handling,poor nutrition, etc).
                        Sometimes personality can even play a role, some geckos are nervous by nature and the slightest thing can set them off. Usually, an adult will give you a "tail wiggle" warning that is almost like a "fishing lure" effect. When they do that, I put them back/find a way to reduce the immediate stressor and quickly leave them alone.
                        Either way, if there cared for properly it generally doesn't cause problems. But its all a matter of opinion.
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