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leopard gecko sexing

Leopard Gecko Sexing: How to tell if your leopard gecko is male or female?

If you are wondering how you can determine whether your leopard gecko is male or female then you are in the right place. Knowing this is important especially for anyone thinking about breeding them. 

So, let’s talk about how to properly figure out the gender of your leopard geckos. 

Leopard Gecko Sexing 

It is pretty easy to sex leopard geckos. This can be easily done by observing some defining physical traits. Also, when you do it matters as it can be difficult to determine a leopard gecko’s sex before sexual maturity.

How to tell if your leopard gecko is a male? 

Here are some signs that indicate a leopard gecko is a male – 

  • Femoral pores are large and easily identifiable. 
  • Preanal pores are easy to notice and arranged in an upside-down “V” shape. 
  • There will be two bulges at the base of their tail. These bulges are clear indication of a leopard gecko being male. These are called hemipenal bulges. 
  • Males will have a broader head.
  • They are heavier.

How to tell if your leopard gecko is a female?

Here are the signs that indicate a leopard gecko is a female – 

  • Very small femoral pores. Almost non-existent. 
  • Very small preanal pores.
  • No hemipenal bulge.
  • Females have a smaller head. 
  • They are lighter. 

When should you sex your leopard Geckos?

You should only sex your leopard geckos when they have sexually matured. It takes about 6 – 12 months for a leopard gecko to mature fully after hatching. By that time, they will be roughly 6 inches long and 35 – 40 grams in weight. 

For leopard geckos, size and weight are better indicators of sexual maturity than age. 

You might be wondering how breeders can tell the sex of their leopard geckos right after hatching. The answer to that is pretty simple 

The sex of a leopard gecko depends on its incubation temperature. If leopard gecko eggs are incubated at 80 degrees Fahrenheit then the hatchlings will be 100% female. 

If the eggs are incubated around 86 degrees Fahrenheit then there will be a 50% chance of the hatchlings being one of the two sexes. 

And finally, if the eggs are incubated around 90 degrees Fahrenheit then about 98% of the hatchlings will be male.

Things You Should Know 

I’ve used some scientific mumbo jumbo while writing this article like femoral pores, preanal pores, and hemipenal bulges. You must be sitting there wondering what these are. So, let’s talk about them, shall we?

Femoral Pores

These are located at the back of their legs. Both males and females have them. But the ones on the male leopard geckos are much larger. 

These Secrete a sort of oily substance that carries their pheromones to attract possible mates. They are also used for sex detection. Your leopard geckos are as confused as you are on who’s male and who’s female. 

So, a male leopard gecko will go up to another leopard gecko and taste its femoral pore secretion to figure out whether or not it’s a male or female. 

If it is a female then they will mate. On the contrary, if he ends up licking another male then they will fight. This just goes to show that even leopard geckos don’t like to get catfished. 

Preanal Pores

Right above the anus, you’ll find several pores arranged in an upside-down “V” pattern. These are called preanal pores. 

Preanal pores have the same function as Femoral pores. They excrete an oily substance that attracts the opposite sex for mating. 

Hempenal Bulges 

Below the anus of a male leopard gecko, there are two large fleshy bulges which are called hemipenal bulges. Each bulge is like a penis. So, yeah. They have two penises. 

how to tell if a leopard gecko is male or female

These are the best indicators of your leopard gecko’s sex. Female leopard geckos may have less prominent femoral and preanal pores but they definitely don’t have any hemipenal bulge.

Conclusion 

Well, that’s all you need to know to determine the sex of your leopard gecko. Make sure you don’t handle them too much while sexing. This may cause them to stress out and lose their tail. So, do it gently and do it quickly.

Have any experience with sexing leopard geckos? Feel free to share your thoughts with us in the comment section below. We really appreciate your comments.

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