Animals have their own escape mechanisms. When faced with situations where they choose to either fight their predators or flee, animals still respond in a such a way to ensure their lives. Nature has gifted these creatures with different styles of facing these situations.
This newly discovered species of a gecko has a unique escape mechanism - shedding skin or scales.
Geckolepis megalepis is a kind of gecko whose 2.8 inches body is covered with large fish-like scales which shed to escape from predators. Their scales rapidly tear apart when they feel like predators are about to prey on them.
Their skin-shedding ability is made more amazing by the fact that they can do it in the speed of the light! They seem to have mastered the art of costume changing when their scales tear apart. One of the reason for this is that these scales are loosely attached to their bodies. According to Elite Readers, this gecko's discoverers have to use cotton wool when touching them so their scales will remain in place.
When they complete their shedding process, G. megalepis will look entirely different. Marck D. Scherz who is a researcher from Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich in Germany described the gecko as 'a fish until you grab it, and then it looks like a naked chicken breast'.
Although it only takes milliseconds for their scales to shed, these lizards have to wait for few weeks to grow their scales back. They also have to exert more energy for their scales to regenerate. However, researchers claim that 'it's still a better option than being eaten alive'.
"Whatever the cost of regenerating the scales, it cannot be as great as losing your life to a predator. So even when the cost could be enormous, it is worth it. That's an interesting evolutionary startegy," Scherz said.
What do you think of this discovery?
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