More From The Night Shift
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Tonight’s post is my 500th and I thought I’d post something extra interesting in order to commemorate the event. I was over at Sabino Canyon again last night. It was totally dark with the only light being the beam cast by my flashlight. The heat remained oven-like despite the darkness. When I arrived at the canyon at 8 p.m. my car thermometer read 98 degrees. I wandered around in the pitch black and intense heat for about an hour, wondering if I was a bit crazy, before finding this.
This little lizard — about three inches long — is a Western Banded Gecko. It is always nocturnal. It is actually a fairly common lizard but people almost never see it at all because of its preference for darkness.
And, it is amazing. I find its colors to be extraordinary. Why would a lizard that never sees daylight come in such extraordinarily beautiful colors and patterns? Why the delicate turquoise area on the top of its head? Or the subtle lavender tones to its feet and neck? What purposes could those colors possibly serve?
Geckos actually have translucent skin. I’ve been told that if one shines a strong light through the lizard’s body one can see its internal organs underneath the skin. I didn’t attempt that, I considered myself lucky just to get the lizard’s photograph.
So, it was worth it after all to poke around in the brush in the darkness and heat. I’m having more than a bit of fun visiting the canyon after dark. I will keep going. Hopefully, I won’t round a bend in the trail and bump into a prowling mountain lion.
Photo taken with a Canon 5DS-R, 180 f3.5L Macro Lens assisted by Canon 600EX-RT Speedlite, ISO 125, f14 @ 1/160.