- Crested Gecko care sheet, morphs, foods, lifespan
- A Complete Guide for those who want to get a Crested Gecko
- Crested Gecko Behaviour and Temperament
- Crested Gecko Substrate & Bedding
- Food and Water
- Crested Gecko Common Health Problems
- Crested Gecko Habitat & Decor (Housing)
- Crested Gecko Care Tips
- Types of Crested Gecko Morphs
- Q: How to take care of a Crested Gecko?
- Q: How long can a Crested Gecko go without eating?
- Q: How to sex a Crested Gecko?
- Q: How much does a Crested Gecko cost?
- Q: How often to feed Crested Gecko?
Crested Gecko care sheet, morphs, foods, lifespan
A Complete Guide for those who want to get a Crested Gecko
The Crested Gecko or Eyelash Gecko (lat. Correlophus Ciliatus) originate from Southern New Caledonia. Back in 1866, the Crested Gecko was first described by a zoologist from France Alphone Guichenot.
Crested Gecko was deemed as extinct until 1994 when it was rediscovered during an expedition that was led by Robert Seipp. Crested Gecko is considered to be a protected species by the Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Flora and Fauna. Due to its unique look and limited availability, Crested Gecko is quite popular in the world of pet trading.
Crested Gecko Behaviour and Temperament
Crested Geckos were discovered as a pet quite recently and have been kept in captivity for around 25 years by now, hereby their mean lifespan is yet to be established based on observations. However, based on studies and available information these species have a relatively long lifespan that can reach up to 20 years plus with an average lifespan of 10 – 15 years.
Hatchlings and juvenile Crested Geckos can weigh up to 6 grams and require an enclosure of 2.5-5 gallons. Once the gecko reaches 10-15 grams, you can move it to a 10-gallon enclosure. After reaching 25 grams, you should prepare to move your gecko to a 20-gallon enclosure that will become a permanent house for it.
Crested Geckos have a wide variety of patterns and colours. You can even find dark or almost black Crested Geckos, but usually they are not patternless or have white tails, heads, fringe, etc. Generally, bicolour Crested Geckos do not have a pattern and come in orange, red, buckskins and olives variations.
Crested Geckos represent one of the largest gecko species with an average size of 6–10 inches (15–25 cm) long, together with 4–6 inches (10–15 cm) of tail length. One of the most distinctive features of Crested Geckos are the projections above their eyes that look like eyelashes. Besides that, Crested Geckos spines have two rows and start from the sides of wedge-shaped head all the way to the tail base. Crested Geckos have no eyelids and hereby use their long tongues in order to remove any debris and also to moisten their eyes.
During breeding period, female species of Crested Geckos tend to lay a clutch of 2 eggs every 30 – 45 days. Once the female is ready to produce eggs, she will start searching for a place with sufficient moist. Hence, if you provide an egg-laying box inside the enclosure, it will ease the process of egg-laying and allow you to monitor the eggs and take them out easily, if necessary.
A thermometer is crucial for accurate monitoring of temperature as it plays an important role for Crested Geckos. The preferred temperature regime is around 78 – 82 degrees Fahrenheit during the day time and can be lowered to around 70 degrees Fahrenheit during the night. As you can see, the temperature regime is not very demanding and can be easily attained without addition of any heat source during the warm months of the year.
Crested Geckos are generally very deliberate and move cautiously within their habitat. Most of their time they spend sitting around their favourite spot. Crested Geckos tend to eat their own shed skin. Hence, don’t worry if you see it doing that, because it is a normal behaviour. Sometimes Crested Geckos tend to wag their tail, which is a signal that they feel threatened. In certain cases, Crested Geckos produce vocal sounds that can have a defensive nature, as well as for territorial reasons or to help males to attract females. Any sort of unusual behaviour is best to be reported to the vet for assistance.
Crested Gecko Substrate & Bedding
For baby geckos, it is advised that you use only paper towels as a substrate, because soil or any other types of substrates can result in impaction if ingested and lead to fatality. Abstain from using wood chips, sand, as well as walnut husks. Likewise, newsprint, paper towels, orchid bark and cypress mulch are among effective types of substrates, which can provide the necessary comfort for your Crested Gecko. Please, familiarize yourself in details with each type in order to understand the pros and cons, as well as be able to select the most suitable option.
Food and Water
Roaches and crickets are the most preferred insects for Crested Geckos. However, if you want to diversify the dining table of your Crested Gecko, it is still possible to include Phoenix worms, super worms, wax worms, mealworms and silkworms. Just ensure that insects’ length does not exceed the distance between the eyes of your Crested Gecko to avoid possible impactions.
Juvenile Crested Geckos can eat the same type of good as adults. Just ensure that you give small insects according to the lizard size. In addition, when it comes to feeding young Crested Geckos, try to avoid super worms or mealworms in order to reduce the chances of impactions.
In addition, you can also include commercial diets for your Crested Gecko. Usually, those products are in a form of powder. They can be prepared by mixing with some water until a pasty mixture is formed. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions when preparing this kind of food.
Crested Geckos satisfy their water needs via several means. They can absorb some of water from the air during breathing, as well as from their food. However, you are still required to provide fresh drinking water to make sure your gecko stays hydrated.
Crested Gecko Common Health Problems
Crested Geckos are quite hardy and hence do not tend to have a lot of health issues. However, improper care can become a reason a number of sicknesses. In this case it is important to understand the symptoms of the sickness in order to be able to take timely actions.
Poor Sheds – if your gecko gets dehydrated or stays in a habitat with insufficient humidity, it may result in improper sheds. If observed at the right time and addressed quickly, it doesn’t result in serious consequences. However, if left unattended, retained skin can result in infections or loss of digits.
Metabolic Bone Disease – MBD happens in cases lack of calcium in animal’s diet, or when there isn’t enough Vitamin D3 to be able to absorb all the calcium. If Crested Gecko has MBD, it may have bad development of bones, deformities of jaw and/or muscle tremors.
Fungal and Bacterial Infections – tend to be caused by poor husbandry and unclean conditions of the habitat. In this case, the only solution is to seek for vet’s assistance.
Dystocia (Egg-Binding) – occurs among female species and is characterized by insufficient calcium or fat, which results in problems with eggs deposition. This situation is considered a medical emergency and requires veterinary assistance to protect the life of your pet.
Crested Gecko Habitat & Decor (Housing)
Crested Geckos generally are not very picky when it comes to enclosures and can survive in different enclosures. Hence, aquariums and glass enclosures types are suitable, however it is best if you get a plastic enclosure with front-opening. As mentioned above, 20-gallon enclosure is good enough for your gecko. Keep in mind that bigger enclosures are more preferable, since they can provide sufficient space for your gecko’s habitat.
In addition, you’ll require to use a suitable substrate and a lot of various furniture that provides your gecko with flexibility to climb hide and anywhere. Real or fake branches as well as plants can be a good environment for hiding and climbing. Crested Geckos can live with any type of specialized lighting, even the natural lighting of your own room can be sufficient. You can also select fluorescent bulbs to make your vivarium more lively. Just make sure you use a low-watt type of light not to cause any overheating to the habitat. Crested Geckos live in temperatures around 68-80-deg F, hereby there is no need for any heating devices.
Crested Gecko Care Tips
If you want to make sure your gecko lives long and happily, you are required to take a good care of it and monitor its health at all times. First of all, it is important to select a proper size and configuration of the habitat. The terrarium is going to be his home for entire life, hence it is very crucial to select a proper terrarium. Provide sufficient humidity, suitable substrate, plants and decorations in order to create the environment close to the wild life. You can also add some extra decoration features to make the life of your gecko more interesting. Keep the terrarium warm by maintaining the temperature at desired levels, as well as humid and clean. Be nice to your pet and provide sufficient amount of water and food. Handle your gecko with care and it will be always happy to see you.
Types of Crested Gecko Morphs
Crested Geckos have a wide variety of colours as well as patterns. Each morph has its own special features, colour mixture and peculiarities. These morphs have been developed over the generations as result of breeding:
- Patternless Crested Geckos– a solid body of any of the following colours: olive, buckskin, near-black, chocolate, orange, red, yellow and various shades of the colours above.
- Tiger Crested Geckos– same colours as patternless geckos, but with tiger-like stripes across the body.
- Flame Crested Geckos– any colours, but dorsal part is generally of cream colour with flame-like patterns.
- Pinstripe Crested Geckos– base colour is mostly red or near-black with yellow, orange or cream patterns.
- Pinstripe Crested Geckos– cream-coloured scales at the outer dorsal section, while the rest of the back is covered with flame patterning, or solid cream colour.
- Dalmatian Spots Geckos– spots can be of any colour or morph, whereby spots may vary in colour and size. Black spots are most common, but there are also green, red and even white spots.
- White Spots Geckos– bigger white spots are clustered around the dorsal area, gradually increasing down the gecko body.