How To Deal With Picky Eaters – Leopard Gecko Feeding

onlinegeckos how to deal with picky eaters leopard gecko feeding

“How should I deal with picky eaters?”  You have a leopard gecko who is a picky eater, and you are seeking advice on how to get your gecko to feed.  In this article we will explore some ways to help get your gecko to start eating.  Over the years we’ve found some tricks that may help you jump start your gecko’s feeding.  They are by no means guaranteed methods, as your results may vary.  But it won’t hurt to give them a try.

How to deal with picky eaters?

First thing first, you should read our “My leopard gecko won’t eat” article.  It’s a comprehensive article that will help you figure out why your leopard gecko won’t eat.  In this article however, we assume your leopard gecko is healthy and your husbandry is sound.  We also assume your gecko isn’t going through breeding season blues or sexual maturity.

Dealing with healthy picky eaters require a different approach.  You aren’t trying to figure out why your leopard gecko won’t eat, but rather you are trying to simply get your gecko to eat more.  Here are some tricks we’ve found over the years that should help you deal with picky eaters. Continue reading “How To Deal With Picky Eaters – Leopard Gecko Feeding”

Should I get a male or female leopard gecko as pets?

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One of the topics we see popping up every now and then is the question, “should I get a male or female leopard gecko as pets?”  You are new to the hobby, and you are wondering whether male or female leopard gecko make the best pets.  In this article we will go over male vs female leopard gecko behavior, their differences, and what you can expect out of them.  Our goal here is to help you make informed decisions so you can pick out the leopard gecko pet that works best for you.

Male or Female Leopard Gecko As Pets – Temperament

Leopard gecko temperament isn’t determined by sex.  We have seen equal number of aggressive females as there are aggressive males.  Leopard gecko’s temperament comes down to individual geckos.  It’s worth noting that some breeders believe temperament can get passed down through breeding.  The idea is to breed a pair of gentle leopard geckos for a greater chance at producing offspring that are more docile in nature.   And vice versa, often when breeding a pair of aggressive geckos, their offspring tend to be more aggressive and skittish as a result.  This isn’t 100% however, as temperament is still quite unpredictable.

One thing that affects temperament above all else in our opinion is leopard gecko’s sexual maturity.  As we have discussed in another article, all leopard geckos go through puberty.  Male leopard geckos will first hit sexual maturity at around 6-8 months old.  Female leopard geckos will hit sexual maturity and ovulate for the first time at around 8-12 months old.  Their temperament tend to change a bit as males get territorial for the first time.  Females on the other hand will usually stop eating as they ovulate and potentially become gravid. Continue reading “Should I get a male or female leopard gecko as pets?”

Difference Between Leopard Gecko and Fat Tailed Gecko

difference between leopard gecko and fat tailed gecko normal wildtype stripe

What’s the difference between leopard gecko and fat tailed gecko?  Leopard gecko and african fat-tailed gecko share the same subfamily “Eublepharidae”.  Eublepharidae are a family of geckos lacking sticky pads on their toes (they have claws instead).  They also have movable eyelids unlike other species of geckos.  Aside from being in the same subfamily, leopard gecko and african fat-tailed are two different species from different parts of the world.

difference between leopard gecko and fat tailed eclipse

Leopard Gecko vs African Fat Tail Gecko – Where are they from?

Continue reading “Difference Between Leopard Gecko and Fat Tailed Gecko”

Best Reptile Pets For Handling – Beginner Pet Lizards – Leopard Gecko As Pets

best reptile pets for handling leopard gecko beginner pet lizzard

Leopard gecko (Eublepharis macularius) make for great beginner pet lizards for hobbyists of all ages.  Crepuscular in nature, they are the most active during twilight around dusk and dawn.  Due to their gentle and docile temperament, leopard geckos are one of the best reptile pets for handling.  They are usually skittish when they are young, but they become much more docile and calm as they get older.

Best Reptile Pets For Handling

Leopard geckos tolerate handling very well.  They are coldblooded animals, so they will often lay on the palm of your hand to enjoy the warmth of your hand.  Unlike other gecko species, leopard geckos are ground-dwelling lizards with claws instead of sticky pads on their feet.  You can feel their claws when they hold on to you, but it won’t hurt as their claws are very small.

Leopard geckos rarely bite unless threatened.  Key to not spook a leopard gecko is by slow movements.  When approaching them with your hands, try to approach from the side of them and scoop them up.  If you approach from the backside and touch their tail first, they may get spooked.  When you see a leopard gecko wave their tail slowly back and forth, that’s their defensive posture.  This tail waving behavior means they are spooked and you should wait until they calm down before attempting to pick them up.

 

Continue reading “Best Reptile Pets For Handling – Beginner Pet Lizards – Leopard Gecko As Pets”

Leopard Gecko Feeding – Feeder Insects Nutritional Value Facts

leopard gecko feeding feeder insects nutrition dubia roaches

Leopard geckos are insectivores, they must be fed on live insects.  In this guide we will explore leopard gecko feeding options and nutritional value of common feeder insects.

Leopard Gecko Feeding – What feeder insects to use?

Leopard geckos can be fed on a wide variety of insects, popular choices including, but not limited to, crickets, mealworms, superworms, dubia roaches, hornworms, waxworms, phoenix worms, silkworms, butterworms, and more.  Some feeder insects are more readily available so they are more affordable and easier to find.  We will review some popular feeder insects used for leopard gecko feeding.

Crickets

Nutritional Information:  Moisture 69.07%, Fat 6.01%, Protein 21.32%, Fiber 3.2%, Ash 2.17%, Ca ppm 345, P ppm 4238, CA/P ratio 0.081% (source)

Pro:  Easy to find, cheap, low fat, high protein, easy to care for, gut-loads well, erratic movement stimulates feeding

Con:  Noisy, unpleasant smell, short lifespan, jumpy, hide in crevices hard to fish out of the tank, can bite your gecko, can carry parasites

Mealworms

Nutritional Information:  Moisture 62.44%, Fat 12.72%, Protein 20.27%, Fiber 1.73%, Ash 1.57%, Ca ppm 133, P ppm 3345, CA/P ratio 0.040% (source)

Pro:  Easy to find, cheap, high protein, easy to care for, decent lifespan (can be prolonged by refrigeration), no mess or smell, easy to breed your own feeder colony

Con:  Higher fat content, bad calcium to phosphorous ratio, doesn’t gut-load as well (small digestive tract), slow movement may not stimulate your leopard gecko feeding as much

Notes:  Giant mealworms are mealworms treated with juvenile hormone analog, S-Methoprene.  S-Methoprene is an insect growth regulator, it prevents the mealworm from pupating.  We have an article if you wish to learn more about how giant mealworms are created.  Read the article so you can decide for yourself whether you want to use giant mealworms as feeders.

Superworms

Nutritional Information:  Moisture 59.37%, Fat 17.89%, Protein 17.41%, Fiber 6.80%, Ash 1.20%, Ca ppm 124, P ppm 2320, CA/P ratio 0.053% (source)

Pro:  Easy to find, cheap, decent protein, easy to care for, long lifespan (no refrigeration needed), easy to care for, no mess or smell, easy to breed your own feeder colony

Con:  High fat content, lower protein, may not be suitable for younger/smaller geckos, bad calcium to phosphorous ratio, doesn’t gut-load as well, can bite

Dubia Roaches

Continue reading “Leopard Gecko Feeding – Feeder Insects Nutritional Value Facts”

Why buy from leopard gecko breeder? Why price differences? Worth it? Difference between pet store gecko and breeder gecko

why buy from leopard gecko breeder

If you are just getting into leopard geckos, you might be wondering why buy from leopard gecko breeder as opposed to buying from local pet stores.  You might be asking why there are such price differences, and is it worth it?  Here we’ll explore the differences and hopefully help you make your purchase decisions easier.

So what do we know about pet store geckos?   Well, very little.

  • We know pet stores often stuff 5+ geckos into the same display container, a container size suitable for 1-2 juvenile leopard geckos at best.  There’s no temperature gradient, and they’re often all crammed inside one small hide.
  • We know they often use wood barks, sand, or repti-carpet for substrate, none of which are ideal for leopard geckos.  While repti-carpet does not pose direct health risks unlike bark & sand, carpet traps bacteria and is very hard to clean.
  • We know often they have crickets crawling all over the place, sometimes even on the geckos themselves.
  • The geckos often look skinny, malnourished, and frail.  Many have injured tail or bite marks on them.

Now what don’t we know about pet store geckos?

  • We don’t know their sex, and when asked, store employees won’t know what temperature the geckos were incubated in.  So you can’t temperature sex them or even make an educated guess.  If you are looking specifically for a male or female, you just can’t be sure.
  • We don’t know their genetic background, or the morphs of the parents.  So there’s no way to tell what geckos are het for or what kind of mix they are.  This leaves you out from ever breeding them ethically.
  • We don’t know the hatch dates of these geckos, so you won’t ever know their age.
  • We don’t know their weight.  Without knowing their age + weight, it’s hard to gauge their growth rate or know if the geckos are healthy.
  • We don’t know the breeders these geckos are from, so you’ll have no idea if you are buying from ethical breeders or just another gecko farm where they cram multiple hatchlings in small tubs.
  • We don’t know the reputation of the breeders these geckos are from, therefore we won’t know the conditions they were bred & raised in.  This means the geckos could be raised in poor conditions, and likely will carry parasites or diseases which will pose threats to your existing geckos.  Not to mention if the geckos get sick, you’ll face huge vet bills.
  • We don’t know if these geckos are being cared for properly in the pet stores by knowledgeable individuals.  We know their living condition is less than stellar as noted above, but are the feeders getting gutloaded?  Are the feeders being dusted properly with multivitamin powders prior to being fed?  Is the belly temperature inside the display tanks at the proper 88-93 degrees?

But I’m rescuing the geckos from poor conditions. Continue reading “Why buy from leopard gecko breeder? Why price differences? Worth it? Difference between pet store gecko and breeder gecko”