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leapard gecko care?

Discussion in 'Terrariums, Paludariums and Vivariums' started by homedog98, Jan 2, 2012.

  1. homedog98

    homedog98 AC Members

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    hey, i've been toying with the idea of finding something scaley to put in my empty ten gallon, and after some looking, am thinking a single leapard gecko would be a good fit. i've read that a ten gallon for one is fine, if i take advantage of vertical space, but i'm still a little bit confused on feeding, lighting, and substrate.
    1. what do i need for lighting?
    2. can i use sand, or will i need to find something else?
    3. what do i need to be feeding and how often?
    i know mealworms are a must, but i'm confused about wether crickets or anything else is going to be needed.
    4. how do i prepare food like mealworms and crickets?
    5. if i am to feed crickets... what should i keep the crickets in?
    6. this is sort of a silly question... but is it safe for me to hold it every once in a while, or will i injure it?
    sorry for all the questions... never dealt with reptiles before.
    thanks in advance!
    :)
     
  2. allaboutfish

    allaboutfish AC Members

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    you'll also need to keep a bowl of just calcium in there enclosure
     
  3. allaboutfish

    allaboutfish AC Members

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  4. Ozymandias

    Ozymandias Metaframe junky

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    allaboutfish most things but i figure i should add my 2 cents as i would do things a little different

    one other things as fish said keep calcium in the tank at all times but make sure it is calcium without D3
     
  5. Ozymandias

    Ozymandias Metaframe junky

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    o and be warned thay live for 20 plus years so if you want a sligly older gecko just let me know i have a few rescues that could use a good home, you would just have to pay shipping :D
     
  6. homedog98

    homedog98 AC Members

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    wow thanks! :) ok, so that answered a lot of my questions! i do have one more on feeding though... how often should i feed in general? like, every day, once every other day, once a week, that sort of thing. thanks for the offer! i have to get my parents to ok it first, but i'd love to when the time comes! oh yeah, and another substrate question... would pea gravel be ok? like fish substrate grain... thanks for the links AAF! i'll look into them.
     
  7. Vicious_Fish

    Vicious_Fish Moderator
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    Feeding will depend on how old the gecko is you are buying. You can feed babies every day, juveniles every other day and adults twice a week.

    No, gravel is NOT ok to use as a substrate. A gecko can accidentally ingest gravel while feeding and that can cause an impaction which usually equals death to the gecko. Since this is your first gecko I would recommend sticking with slate or ceramic tiles.
     
  8. homedog98

    homedog98 AC Members

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    also, one more question... can i use the can o crickets or would i be better off using live? i'm guessing freezedried would have the same bloating effect like it does on fish, but i'm not sure. i personally am fine with the live... but it's what my mom is fine with lol.
     
  9. homedog98

    homedog98 AC Members

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    yikes... no gravel for me then. :) glad i asked.
     
  10. Vicious_Fish

    Vicious_Fish Moderator
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    No, you can not use those "Can O Crickets". Those are junk and I don't even know why they honestly sell them other than to confuse new herp owners. Geckos need live prey. They will starve to death before they will eat dead crickets out of a dish. If you find that feeding live insects is a problem then check out Crested Geckos. They can live on a prepared diet and lots of people don't feed them live food at all.
     
  11. homedog98

    homedog98 AC Members

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    i'm willing to do the live prey :) i find it sort of weird that they advertise using sand so much in the chain stores if it's such a big no-no, but then again i can't say i'm surprised considering the way they market fish lol. ;) and one more thing... will i need to mist them or anything? i have sphagnum moss to use as a moist substrate in the sort of "hidey-hole" but i wasn't sure if that was all i needed to do. thanks for bearing with me guys! i'll check out those links AAF posted and get back to you guys to clarify.
     
  12. Vicious_Fish

    Vicious_Fish Moderator
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    You can lightly mist the tank once a week but having a moist hide in the tank is more important. It sounds like you're on the right track with the hidey-hole. Leopard geckos need a moist hide to achieve the proper humidity levels to help with shedding. If geckos don't have humidity then a lot of times some of the shed will get stuck on the toes and tail tip.

    Using sand as a substrate is opening up a whole other can of worms. I would never recommend it to a beginner but I've use a sand/peat mixture for almost 20 years without any issues. It once again comes back to having the proper humidity levels and having your gecko on a good diet. A healthy adult gecko can easily pass sand that it accidentally ingests during feeding. But if a gecko is eating sand to gain nutrients, then there's a problem with it's diet.
     
  13. homedog98

    homedog98 AC Members

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    wow... read AAF's second link. that was very helpful! i'm wondering, since more then likely if i do wind up doing this i'll end up with an adult rescue, if i might risk it with some extremely fine grain sand that can be easily passed... but i'm still deciding on that. ok, so from what i've read and been suggested, this is what i'm currently thinking:
    i do know that i'd like a female, because they stay smaller and are more passive should i become addicted and add another one. (assuming i upgrade of course). i'll feed crickets once every other day and mealworms twice a week (once again assuming it's an adult), and i'll gut-load both the crickets and mealworms, and use a heating pad on one side. i'll have 2 or more hidey-holes. one that is moist for shedding and one that is not moist just for everyday hiding on both the hot and cold side. i'll use a few peices of driftwood in order to take advantage of vertical space, and leave out a bowl of water and a bowl of calcium without D3. i'll coat both mealworms and crickets in a vitamin powder with D3, and remove any feces or uneaten crickets before feeding again, so as not to infect the new crickets. i'll also leave out a bowl for mealworms so they don't burrow into the sand.
    is there anything i'm missing? :) thanks so much!
     
  14. ladyblues1965

    ladyblues1965 AC Members

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    I have had my geckos for about 6 months and I feed them every day. I was told every other day but they come looking for food when I am near the cage and I cant say no to them. Is this a big problem? they eat well. I dust the crickets with mineral powder like shake and bake .
     
  15. homedog98

    homedog98 AC Members

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    how big are they? hatchlings and juvies you should feed everyday, but adults you should feed once every other day.
     
  16. homedog98

    homedog98 AC Members

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    ok, so does my plan above sound ok? i'm not gonna lie, the more i research the more excited i get about these guys :)
     
  17. Ozymandias

    Ozymandias Metaframe junky

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    sounds like you got most of it​
     

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