New Gecko Exhibit
Peeling Productions, the exhibit arm of Clyde Peeling's Reptiland, has created what they said is the world’s largest exhibition about geckos. Geckos – Tails to Toepads is the latest addition to a fleet of traveling exhibitions that visit museums, zoos and science centers around the country.
“It’s been ‘all-geckos, all-the-time’ around here for months,” said Chad Peeling, co-creator of the exhibition. “Our staff pulled out all the stops on this project and we’re really proud of the results.”
The exhibition took over two years to complete and includes 20 living habitats complete with naturalistic décor, filtration and life support systems and living geckos from around the world. Colorful graphic panels and interactive learning stations allow visitors to experience gecko night vision, explore the cutting edge science of gecko adhesion, listen to gecko voices, activate video clips of geckos in action, try to spot camouflaged geckos, and build a custom gecko for various environments.
But why build an exhibition around geckos?
“Geckos are endowed with a charisma that marketing firms can’t resist and audiences can’t ignore,” Peeling said. “GEICO’s animated character has made ‘gecko’ a household word, but the real animals are even more amazing.”
Geckos are small, agile lizards - most have stout bodies, short legs and specialized adhesive toepads. More than 1,200 species range from shadowy, nighttime hunters with bulging eyes and squawking voices to bold, nectar eaters that scamper around in daylight, adorned in neon colors. Geckos are incredibly adaptable and have conquered habitats from balmy tropical beaches and lush rainforests to frigid mountain slopes and parched deserts.
The exhibit premiers in mid-September at Turtle Bay Exploration Park in Redding, California. From there it will move to institutions in Philadelphia, Atlanta, and Washington D.C. The exhibition will travel indefinitely, stopping to educate and entertain at museums and science centers across the country.