How Tokay Geckos Use Their Tongue

Posted on: July 6th, 2013 by JE

If you think tongue is simply for tasting food, Tokay geckos have more uses of their tongue. Animals in the wild have various uses for their senses which help them locate their food, find their mate, and outsmart their predators or simply saying – they use it to survive.

In the wild animals are exposed to several life threating situations. Without their senses, they can end up in their predator’s territory, or wonder too far in dangerous terrains. Nature was very fair in endowing every living creature with special skills to enable them to survive. Animals develop particular uses of their organs to fill up their deficiency. This article will try to discuss how Tokay geckos use their tongue, other than tasting food, that enables them to go about their day to day life in the wild.

Smelling. Sometimes you’ll see your Tokay gecko sticking its tongue out. Why? They are smelling. But how do they do this? Tokay geckos have a specialized organ called the Jacobson’s organ. This organ is located on the roof of their mouth. When they stick their tongue out they are actually “tasting” the air particles in their environment. The air particles that are collected with the use of their tongue are taken to the Jacobson’s organ which absorbs the particles and are interpreted by the brain. This enable them to sense predators, prey or mate that are nearby, it also help them identify their territory and avoid other’s. It is similar when a dog sniffs its territory or excited about food.

Drinking. Tokay geckos use their tongue to drink water. They cannot sip water. They use their tongue to lap drops of water on the leaves or from a water dish.

Cleaning Their Eyes. Because they do not have eyelids, Tokay geckos lick their eyes to remove debris that get into it. Lacking the eyelid, like other geckos, Tokay geckos have to lick their eyes from time to time to keep them moist and maintains clear vision.

Capturing Prey. Like frogs and other lizards, Tokay geckos use their tongue to capture their prey. But unlike them Tokay geckos do not have a very long tongue. It can extend at least a quarter of an inch but with great accuracy and speed Tokay gecko tongue makes a good hunting tool. Insects and bugs normally stick to their tongue which is immediately drawn back to the mouth.

Tokay geckos are pretty amazing animals that holds many wonderful characteristics and behavior. They are one of the great things that happened in nature. As their keepers, you may want to provide them with all the necessary things for them to survive while in captivity such as comfortable enclosure, healthy food, and an ambient temperature which allows them to thermoregulate as the need arises. Also keeping their environment clean and conducive all the time will ensure that they live a healthy and happy life.

Tokay geckos are wonderful creatures. They can as well provide you with companionship and bring you joy. So it is only fitting that you treat them the best that you can.

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