Also known as Eyelash Gecko, New Caledonian Crested Gecko and Guichenot’s Gecko
The Crested Gecko (Rhacodactylus ciliatus) is native to southern New Caledonia. They can live 15 - 20 Years and grow to 7 - 8 Inches. Their conservation statis is Vulnerable (VU).
The Basics for Crested Geckos
- 20 Gallon Terrarium
- Coir or Reptile Carpet
- Not required*
- 78 - 82 ° F
- 50% - 70%
- Fruits & small crickets
Crested Gecko Pet Care
Crested Geckos are very popular as pets. They’re fairly easy to take care of, easy to obtain and let’s face it, they just look cool. You’ll want to check the humidity in their cage often to make sure it is not too dry. If the humidity is too low it can cause problems with flaking around their eyes and your pet might spend the majority of its time burrowing on the bottom of your cage. Crested geckos also like to feel secure. Provide plenty of plants (real or fake), maybe a hollowed out branch, leaves and other things that allow them to hide.
Housing – Its important to know that crested geckos will spend the majority of their time in the vertical spaces of your terrarium. Provide a variety of decorations but build them in a manner that promotes climbing. Many owners opt fora tall terrarium with plenty of space for climbing.
The optimum temperature is between 78 – 82 degrees Fahrenheit during the day and can get a bit lower at night, though I wouldn’t suggest anything below 72 for night time hours.
Lighting isn’t required for crested geckos unless they’re living in a vivarium. The key to maintaining your crested gecko’s health is by feeding them a proper diet.
Humidity is important. Crested geckos are prone to shedding problems. Most owner suggest humidity between 50% – 70% and this can be achieved by regularly misting their cage as well as checking daily.
Feeding Your Crested Gecko
The diet of a crested gecko would normally consist of fruits and small bugs like crickets. As pets, they can survive off crested gecko foods like “Repashy Crested Gecko Diet.” This is a powder formula that you add water to. It provides them with the nutrients needed to maintain a healthy diet. Many owners crush up fruits and some vegetables for their pets while occasionally giving them live crickets.
Feeding baby crested geckos can be tricky. You have to keep in mind that a lizard’s mouth cant always open wide enough to eat a large cricket, especially as babies. Many breeders recommend diet powder forumlas like the one we mentioned in the previous paragraph. Throughout their lifespan, you’ll want to feed them things they can easily get in their mouth! Smash up some fruits, get small crickets or use “Repashy Crested Gecko Diet.”
Many people believe you can feed baby food to your crested gecko. However, the baby food lacks certain nutrients required by this species. Feeding crested geckos baby food can result in Metabolic Bone Disease and other deformities.
This species of lizard is most active at night. You’ll see them during the day but they will most likely sleep while coming out more at night. Crested geckos enjoy a lot of cover in their enclosure and they love to jump. Your cage should be taller than it is wide to allow them the maximum amount of space for climbing and jumping.
- Shedding tends to be one of those things your crested gecko can have problems with. Its not uncommon for skin to get stuck around their eyes and feet. It wont hurt to help remove that skin but be sure that it is the proper time and be very careful.
- Burrowing indicates that the humidity isn’t enough for them. If they spend a lot of time hiding on the bottom of your cage rather than climbing around the top, the crested gecko isn’t getting the proper amount of humidity. Make sure to mist them often and provide the best environment you can.
Life Span – The life span of a crested gecko in captivity is around 15 to 20 years and sometimes longer. They can be very long lived but since crested geckos haven’t been available as pets or kept in captivity very long its hard to give an accurate assessment.