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12 African Fat-Tailed Gecko Morphs & Colors (With Pictures)

Oliver Jones

The African Fat-Tailed Gecko is a unique species of gecko that originated in western Africa and is known for their unique, bulbous tail. They typically have a lifespan in the wild of 10-18 years but are known to live far longer in captivity and are usually 7-10 inches long.

Their fat tail serves an important function: It acts as a fat reserve when food is scarce. This can help the gecko go for days without eating when there is no food. Their tail is also a useful indicator of health: the fatter the tail, the healthier the gecko.

In the wild, these geckos typically have a brown base color and tan banding, with an off-white body and an occasional white stripe running the length of their bodies. Of course, selective breeding has brought out a variety of other colors, or morphs, from solid colors to even albino varieties. In this article, we look at 12 of the most beautiful African Fat-Tailed Gecko morphs and colors.

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1. Albino

The albino morph has similar patterning and banding as wild varieties, but they have a white or pink base with orange bands. They can also be found with the characteristic white stripe running down their bodies and can come with several different colors of banding. These geckos are rare and highly sought-after due to this eye-catching coloration and are a truly unique morph indeed!


2. Banded

The banded gecko morph is often referred to as the normal or wild-type morph, as this is the typical coloration and patterning that you’ll find with these geckos in the wild. They have light and dark brown, contrasting bands running horizontally down their backs all the way to their tails. They occasionally have additional white markings, like dots or faint lines, and their bellies are usually white or pale pink.


3. Ghost

The ghost morph is a combination of the banded or wild type with an albino. They have the same banded patterning, but it is far lighter and almost transparent at first glance. They may have brown or orange bands and even white stripes or spots, but the transparent, ghost-like appearance in the coloring and patterns is consistent due to a unique gene.


4. Granite

The granite morph is similar to the banded or wild-type morph, with the same patterns and coloration. The difference is that all the bands of color are speckled with a lighter color, making the skin look like granite rock.


5. Oreo

Named after the delicious cookies that we all know and love, the Oreo morph is all black and white, with shades of grey in between. This gecko has a light grey, almost white base color, with thick bands of darker grey and black with spotting. All Oreo morphs are born with sharp contrasting black-and-white patterning that gradually fades into more subtle grey tones as they age.


6. Patternless

Patternless geckos are devoid of any patterning. This is caused by a recessive gene, and these geckos are often used in breeding programs to develop other morphs. They usually have a brown base color, but more and more colors are being developed by breeders.


7. Starburst

The starburst morph has a distinctly blushed head and feet, with small tints of orange throughout and all the way to the tail. They usually have a light base color of tan brown/orange and dark banding that can appear blotched and speckled like granite morphs.


8. Stinger

The stinger morph is a beautiful variety, with deeply contrasting bands that connect throughout their body. The bands at the bottom and toward the tail come to a point that resembles a stinger on a bee or wasp, giving this gecko their name. They are usually a deep brown, almost black color, with lighter banding and are a relatively new and rare variety.


9. Striped

The striped morph is similar to the banded or wild-type variety, with banding of different shades of brown running horizontally down their body. What makes them unique is the large, striking white stripe that runs vertically from the tip of their head all the way to their tail. This morph is fairly common and easy to find.


10. Whiteout

One of the most unique and eye-catching gecko morphs around, the white-out variety has patterning and coloring that can vary widely in appearance. The base colors can vary but are typically light colors, like white, cream, and orange, with dark patterns that are formed by spots, blotches, and stripes that change as the gecko gets older.


11. Zero

The zero is defined by having faint or no banding at all, but they can have varying patterning made up of connecting bands. They usually have a white stripe running down the length of their body and light brown or orange base coloring, with dark brown and black patterns. This is one of the more recently developed morphs, so they are fairly rare.

 


12. Zulu

Named after the unique patterning on their backs resembling a Zulu warrior’s shield or spearhead, these morphs are one of the most unique varieties around. They usually have a light brown or cream base color, with darker patterning made up of dark browns, black, and orange. They have the same coloring as wild varieties, but with no banding other than occasionally on the tail.


Featured Image Credit: Milan Zygmunt, Shutterstock

Oliver Jones

Oliver (Ollie) Jones - A zoologist and freelance writer living in South Australia with his partner Alex, their dog Pepper, and their cat Steve (who declined to be pictured). Ollie, originally from the USA, holds his master's degree in wildlife biology and moved to Australia to pursue his career and passion but has found a new love for working online and writing about animals of all types.