Leopard gecko cute

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Super Cute Leopard Geckos Make Great Pets

If you're looking to get your very first pet lizard, the selection might feel overwhelming. After all, we're talking about an incredibly diverse group of reptiles. Bearded dragons and blue tongue skinks are two excellent choices for novice reptile-keepers.

But the most consistently recommended starter species is an adorable little charmer called the common leopard gecko (Eublepharis macularius).

Staying Grounded

Wall-climbing is a talent most geckos possess. Toe pads lined with tiny, hair-like structures enable the majority of species to scale vertical surfaces (and occasionally hang upside-down on them).

Leopard geckos are different. Unlike some other commonly kept species, they won't climb up glass walls or poop on the sides of their enclosure.

See, Eublepharis macularius doesn't have adhesive toe pads. In its natural habitat, the creature has no real need of them. The species ranges from northwestern India and Pakistan through Afghanistan, Iraq and Iran.

In contrast to the tropical geckos found in Madagascar, New Caledonia and elsewhere, common leopard geckos like to keep dry. Wild ones inhabit arid grasslands and rocky deserts. In lieu of toe pads, natural selection's given them small digging claws.

Eyelids are another feature which helps the lizards get by. Most geckos cannot blink, but Eublepharis macularius and its closest cousins have evolved movable eyelids that can blink, wink and protect the eyeballs from sand.

Spots and Smiles

Eublepharis macularius isn't the only leopard gecko around. Asia and the Middle East are the home of a few other species, including the East Indian leopard gecko (Eublepharis hardwickii). But those are seldom kept as pets.

From here on in, when we use the name "leopard gecko," know that we're talking about the "common" species.

Exotic pet enthusiasts call these geckos "Leos." We think you'll agree that's pretty darn cute. Just like the animals themselves. Leo mouths have upturned corners, giving them a perpetual grin. With their big, closeable eyes, it's hard not to project human emotions onto your scaly pal's face.

The comparison to leopards stems from this species' natural color palate. Wild Eublepharis macularius are counter-shaded; their undersides look much lighter than the rest of the body. Above its whitish belly, a normal Leo is yellow to tan with patchy black spots.

But since it's easy to breed leopard geckos in captivity, hobbyists have developed all kinds of vibrant color morphs, from orange-tinted "Carrot Tails" to pattern-less "Blizzard Lizards."

Leopard geckos of every style make wonderful pets for people with small apartments. Newly hatched babies are just 2.5 to 3 inches (6.35 to 7.62 centimeters) long while most adults measure in at 7 to 10 inches (18 to 25 centimeters) long. That's less than half the length of a large bearded dragon.

Creating a Habitat

To keep an adult Leo happy and healthy, you'll need a glass terrarium that's at least 20 inches (51 centimeters) long by 11 inches (28 centimeters) wide and 13 inches (33 centimeters) tall.

Such enclosures are usually called "10-gallon" — or "38-liter" — units in American pet stores.

Top yours off with a secure wire mesh lid. Even though Leos can't climb glass, this'll give you some extra peace of mind while providing air flow.

Unable to generate their own body heat, Leos must be kept in an adequately warm environment. But the inside temperature shouldn't be uniform. Just like human beings, reptiles can get overheated.

Experts recommend keeping one end of your gecko's enclosure at 75 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit (24 to 27 degrees Celsius) during the daytime. At the opposite side, the temperature should hover between 80 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit (27 and 29 degrees Celsius).

You can let both ends get slightly cooler at nighttime. However, the "warm" side of your terrarium should contain a small "basking spot" or "hide box" where the heat will remain steadfast at about 90 degrees Fahrenheit (32 degrees Celsius) day and night.

Some hobbyists rely on overhead heat lamps; others prefer heating pads. Make sure that whatever product you choose was designed with reptiles in mind. And read all the instructions thoroughly.

You may also want to pick up an ultraviolet (or UV) lighting fixture. These are a matter of some debate among keepers. Leopard geckos don't need them per se, but the data suggests that keeping a UV light on by day has some major health benefits.

If you choose to get one, we'd once again urge you to keep away from units that weren't explicitly designed for reptiles and other living things.

Landscaping, Maintenance and Mealtimes

No leopard gecko should be deprived of hiding spots. Naturally nocturnal, they'll seek shelter from prying eyes when the sun's out. Get your gecko at least two hiding spots, and keep one of these internally moist at all times. Such a place will come in handy when the lizard needs to shed its skin.

Leos do well with a variety of substrates. Newspapers and paper towels are the cheapest options, but commercial "reptile carpets" and some ready-made, bioactive ground coverings work, too. Opinions differ quite sharply over the merits of sand; when lizards ingest too much of it — either accidentally or deliberately — it can be hazardous to their health.

OK, so what should they be ingesting? Leopard geckos are dedicated insectivores who fare best when given a steady diet of live mealworms and crickets. (More fattening bugs, such as wax worms, can be offered as occasional treats.)

Here are a few things to keep in mind:

  • The insects your leopard gecko devours should themselves receive nutritious meals (like carrot chunks) before they're served up to the reptile.
  • Lightly dust commercial calcium powders over the feeder insects. Without these supplements, your gecko may develop metabolic bone disease.
  • Baby Leos need daily meals; adults feed every two to three days.

Complete your enclosure with small rocks and logs the resident(s) can climb around on. Also provide a shallow, sturdy water dish that's changed twice or thrice a week.

Leos aren't the most sociable beasts by nature. Even so, similarly sized females can be housed together without incident. Male-female pairings can work too — if you're prepared to handle their potential offspring.

But never, ever keep two males in the same container; they'll behave aggressively towards one another.

As a rule of thumb, you'll want an additional 5 gallons' worth (or 19 liters' worth) of cage space for every extra gecko.

Leopard geckos are generally docile and become quite tame with gentle, regular handling. (FYI: Don't grab their tails.) A Leo that's well provided for may live to see its 20th — or possibly 30th — birthday under your care.

Sours: https://animals.howstuffworks.com/pets/otherpets/leopard-gecko.htm
cutest leopard gecko

Leopard geckos have a docile behavior and are quite a popular choice as pets because of multiple reasons – one of them being their cuteness!

Life is stressful and to tone it down a notch, here are 100 Cute Leopard Geckos photos aimed at melting your heart.

1. Bronx is a cute leopard gecko posing for the camera and the innocence reflected by his eyes further adds up to his aesthetic.

gecko smiling

2. Leyla is a yellow leopard gecko whose cuteness is unparalleled and this photo is evidence to it. I wonder what she’s looking up to. 

gecko looking up

3. Aurora is a cute leopard gecko posing for the camera like a diva spreading positive energy and love. Her beady little eyes and the smile on her face make her even more desirable.


4. Tangerine is the tiniest bag of happiness bracing onto the fingers and smiling as if she knows how her cuteness is going to make your day. With those perfect brows and tiny hands, she is ready for the shot. 


5. I am 100% sure that the first word that comes to your mind after looking at this picture of Ben is “ADORABLE”. The contentment reflected by his expressions is what adds to the purity of this moment.

leopard gecko lying down.

6. Boogie tried his best to conceal himself and is smiling as he thinks his camouflage worked. But what he doesn’t know is that his leopard dots gave it away. Isn’t that just cute!

leopard gecko chilling in sand

7. You can’t stop looking at this photo due to the cute pose Dixie is making with her wide smile, big beady eyes, and cute little toes. Someone’s in for a treat for sure.

leopard gecko on top of stones

8. This picture capturing this cute leopard gecko, indulged in its own thoughts, is indeed an artistic masterpiece. The colour tone and the background are all in sync to highlight this cutie. 

gecko peaking out

9. Guess who ate all the treats? This cute gecko lined with a vibrant combination of yellow, gray and white skin. And now he is utilizing his cuteness to avoid the consequences, which is working. Such a charming little guy !!!

leopard gecko with tongue sticking out

10. Rolled upon itself, this cute gecko surely loves to bask in the sun while resting on a soft comfortable palm and he isn’t holding back his admiration for this luxurious treatment. The changing skin pattern makes him even more precious to his mum. 

leopard gecko relaxing on owner's palm

11. ‘WHERE ARE MY SNACKS!!!’… Rusty is ready to put out a fight for his due snacks. Rusty is skeptical and somebody is going to pay because Rusty does not compromise. One word: ‘CUTE’.

curious leopard gecko

12. Springtime indeed brings the best out of all of us. And the state of this cute yellow gecko is no different, trying to get a taste out of the air while enjoying th beauty nature has to offer.

leopard gecko licking lips

13. This cute leopard gecko is also making out the most from its day out in the woods and is making faces at you to encourage you to take a walk around and get the same effect.

leopard gecko making funny face

14. This beautiful gecko with a contrast of orange and gray is ready to play its charm, dwindling all the ladies out there. He surely has a lot to teach to all the singles out there.

orange leopard gecko

15. The smile on Elektra’s face is indicative of her involvement in some mischief. Her cunning looks and green alligator-like pattern will make you love her little ventures. 

gecko smiling at owner

16. Are you running late for work? Guess you better Gecko-ing. This cute gecko couldn’t control but laugh out loud when his parent cracked this joke.

Gecko LOL

17. This cute leopard gecko is either pregnant and getting her pregnancy photoshoot while she has ‘the glow’ or she is a curvy inspirational gecko whose owning her curves like no one else. She is on fleek!

gecko waving

18. Did someone put DJ Snake out loud? This cute little gecko cannot hold back his urge to rock some moves, jamming to his favorite artist. On a side note, maybe he’s just trying to climb his way up the glass walls… 

gecko dancing

19. This is engaging green little gecko with beady classic reptilian eyes is so friendly and the way he is sticking out his tongue shows how playful it is. 

gecko on palm

20. TRICK OR TREAT … these two decided to fun things up a little bit and got creative with their apparel. Those hats are so in sync with the spirit of Halloween. They must have secured a huge supply of treats for their parents. 

gecko halloween

21. This is one of the most soothing photos I have seen. This portrait of a cute leopard gecko smiling gracefully is indeed the Mona Lisa of the Gecko world. 

Leopard gecko smiling and chilling

22. Guess who just returned from scouting the woods? … Hunter is back and made sure to have relevant accessories on for his ‘back to home’ party.

gecko dressed up

23. This dashing cute gecko’s posture is no different than the royals… And he even has a CROWN… Could he be the lost prince of the Gecko kingdom ?!!!

king leopard gecko

24. They might not be able to say it to each other but it is evident that they are in love. Look at these two sharing a kiss with each other without any care of their surroundings. Such an enchanting moment to capture. 

geckos kissing

25. When you tell your geckos to start listening to you and then your chatty friend comes over to meet your geckos. And they realize why you tell them to listen. So adorable. 

gecko and girlfriend

26. Snowy is a pleasant little gecko just enjoying a walk as her light skin tone along with dark beady eyes add to her aesthetic.

Snowy gecko smiling to camera

27. ABRAKADABRA … Nothing … that’s cause not every gecko wearing a magician’s hat can do magic. 

gecko magician winking

28. Tally is so happy upon arrival of a cute toy gecko kid and is ready to take care of it and play with it to its fullest after the photoshoot.

gecko smiling at new toy

29. She even got the new toy a cute pink comforter to sleep in that is as soft and comfortable as her own and lies in proximity to her sleeping space.

gecko chilling with new toy

30. She just couldn’t control her urge to play with it any longer. Looking at these two cuddles is indeed a pleasing delightful sight. 

gecko sleeping with new toy

31. The true essence of unconditional love is depicted by a mother’s love for her child. Both the mother and her child look so cute together in this arrangement expressing excitement and fulfillment. 

leopard gecko mother child duo

32. These cute leopard geckos are bringing comfort and warmth to each other as they rest in their tiny enclosure. 

gecko getting cozy

33. This cute leopard gecko is extremely photogenic. His rusty yellow skin, white tail with black dots, big eyes and slimy appearance make him even cuter.

gecko eagerly waiting

34. Another cute leopard gecko with a sky blue skin tone complemented by irregularly placed black spots and loops. The huge rounded tail makes him even more charming.

cool looking gecko on palm

35. This cute gecko spotted an old friend while he was out on the walk and is giving him a quick hi before he continues with his walk. Such a sweet guy.

gecko waving goodbye

36. This little gecko just came out of his enclosure and spotted the camera and immediately decided to stick his tongue out so that cuteness pours out of the photo.

gecko showing funny face

37. Here’s another cutie that will make your day. This albino little gecko has patches of unpigmented skin that go perfectly with his yellow skin and make him stand out in a crowd.

curious gecko

38. This gecko is in vigilance mode and is practicing his moves so that he isn’t caught unprepared ever. 

stealthy leopard gecko

39. All these dreamy geckos surrounded by a fluffy comforter are KILLING IT. And the one at the bottom trying to make his way up makes this picture even more adorable. 

geckos getting all cozy together

40. I would have creeped out had there been anything other than this cute gecko staring out of a ting opening. Somehow this gecko not only managed to eliminate the creepiness but also makes it look sweet and appealing. THE SMILE THOUGH *heart reacs only* … 

gecko hidding in cave

41. This kid gecko is giving his mother a tight hug by clinging onto her and the purity of the scene is just heart touching. 

baby gecko on top of mum

42. This photo is an internet breaker with the parent tickling the cute gecko and the gecko bursting into laughter. That opened eye though… Maybe the gecko isn’t feeling the tickle but pretending to laugh and is checking if his parent bought into the act. LOL.

gecko enjoy getting tickled

43. An attractive, rare, purple colored leopard gecko with purple beady eyes and fragile limbs is indeed a charming vision for the eye. 

purple gecko

44. Buttermilk is a completely white gecko and is apparently blending with the white carpeting of his confine. His big black eyes pop out and make him even more appealing to the eyes.

white gecko

45. Olympia is a smart, pretty, independent and cute leopard gecko posing with the most elegant posture, wide smile and cute beady eyes. So adorable.

cute gecko smiling to owner

46. This yellow and white cutie spotted a vintage cup and decided to check the elegant piece out and apparently it’s going well for him. It seems like he’s enjoying it.

gecko in a cup

47. The colour pattern lining this gecko makes him a rare beauty. The contrasting shades of brown marked by a white line indeed stands out.

special color gecko

48. Wanna see the Sherlock of the Gecko world? … Here he is in the picture below. Someone got caught investigating.

gecko spying in the grass

49. This one must be the Watson to Sherlock roaming around trying to help in his own way.

gecko searching for something

50. This cute leopard gecko in pursuit of peeking out of the hole managed to fit his head. Not realizing that he is surely banging that coconut.

gecko sticking head out

51. This a pride Gecko whose flaunting his colours out in the open and is acing it. The variety of colours are complemented with the randomly placed dots and add to the aesthetic of this beautiful creature.

colorful gecko

52. This cute gecko gives the feel you just can’t figure out anything to do except for minding other’s business. Sneaky but in an adorable way!

gecko peeking

53. Say hi to this cutie trying to escape his container and puts up a mischievous smile when caught in the act to get away with it. 

gecko hanging on container

54. Someone’s been busted for being too cute. 


55. Oh … Looks like this cute gecko is done getting busted for cuteness. He’s even giving the negligent look. ADORABLE. 

gecko getting busted

56. This image is clustered with cuteness coming off of this appealing yellow gecko with shiny beady eyes that are pure indulgence. 

excited gecko smiling

57. Had cuteness been a crime, then this stubborn cop gecko would have to bust and lock himself up for being super cute. The hat just tops it off. 

gecko police

58. This sweet little gecko is in row with the cat because their parents find him more cute and isn’t backing off as he knows the glass wall in between ensures his safety. The cat is not so happy about it though.

gecko facing cat

59. This cute leopard gecko is taking the heat off through a swim in his private vintage tub and it looks like he is enjoying every splash of that water.

gecko enjoying swim

60. Another cute multi coloured gecko caught smiling with its tongue brushing the lips in the photo to satisfy your desire for cuteness.

gecko tongue sticking out

61. This gecko is ready putting its cat ears on for the cosplay and is going to party like a cat through the night. Looks likes he can’t wait for it.

gecko cat

62. This cute black and white leopard gecko is a rare beauty indeed and a spectacle for the eyes. The pattern on its skin and the beady eyes are indeed the highlighting features. 

small gecko on finger

63. Who doesn’t admire the morning sun as much as this little guy does? While he is inhaling the air, the sun is illuminating him making him a sight to catch. Indeed it is priceless and one of the most satisfying gecko photos out there. 

gecko basking in the sun

64. This leopard gecko, loaded and surrounded with candies, isn’t liking the situation very much and the grin on its face is so cute.

gecko carrying load

65. This is a moment caught when a rainbow leopard gecko was roaming around in the sand. The pattern on its skin is complementing the multiple colours on the gecko’s skin adding to its cuteness.

mini gecko

66. Here’s another cute yellow leopard gecko with a white tail. The stony pattern of his eyes and the reddish lining makes him even more appealing.

yellow gecko

67. Seems like someone hatched a plan to take over the Gecko planet. The grin on this leopard geckos face complemented by the posture looks so evil but in an adorable way.

gecko enjoying the limelight

68. It appears to be that someone just got their pedicure done and is now showing off and keeping its feet off of the ground so that the pedicure stays fresh. Such a cute move by this tiny gecko.

gecko sitting on chair

69. Another squishy cute leopard gecko sticking its tongue out probably after doing something naughty causing mischief. Cuteness is literally flowing out of this picture.

cutest leopard gecko

70. We have a flower lover in the house. Look at this cutie smelling the flower to appreciate its fragrance. Almost gives a poetic gecko vibe.

gecko smelling flower

71. This gecko is too lazy to pose but made sure that he alters his expressions for the camera and managed to look cute with that aesthetic smile. 

gecko lazing around

72. This gecko is investigating who stole its treats and seems like it does not know how to compromise or show mercy. Whoever’s accountable is gonna pay lol. 

gecko in container

73. Whatever this gecko is doing is for sure relaxing him and he isn’t hesitant to reflect his satisfaction with a tiny cute smile. 

gecko sweet dreams

74. If you are looking at this photo, then sadly it’s the end of your venture into the cuteness of leopard geckos. This cute leopard gecko has a goodbye look for you and a cute tiny present overloaded with cuteness.

gecko thank you

We hope you enjoyed this compilation of adorable leopard geckos caught in their moment of cuteness. Indeed the compilation was overflowing with cuteness and aesthetic. Stay tuned for more amusing things.

Joanna

Joanna is a writer and contributor to many pet sites. She has kept and bred a diverse array of reptiles and amphibians over the last three decades. Her favorite ones are Geckos and Bearded dragons. Stay tune for more of her work.

Sours: https://exopetguides.com/leopard-gecko/cute-leopard-gecko/
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The Leopard Gecko is a beautifully unique reptile that is famous for their striking leopard-like appearance and huge fat-storage tail.

Geckos are cute, docile and friendly little lizards with many interesting behaviors and endearing vocalizations.

They very quickly adjust to being handled and are easy-to-care for any first-time owner!

Known scientifically as the Eublepharis macularius this species rattle their tail when threatened, mating, or during hunting. Want to learn more about the leopard gecko? Keep reading…

Leopard Gecko Feature

Table of Contents

What Is A Leopard Gecko?

The Eublepharis macularius is a lizard from the semi-dry to arid deserts and forest edges of a stretch of habitat ranging from Northwest India through to Pakistan, Iran, Iraq, and Afghanistan. They typically live on the rocks of their desert scrub habitats.

Leopard Geckos have struck the hearts of many with their unique appearance, and are known by several different common names:

They are shy lizards that have fantastic predator-evading abilities and are camouflaged with their leopard print in the dry-desert rocks or tall grasslands.

This species are able to remain hidden for long periods of time because of their fat-storing tails that can sustain them until whatever threat they are facing is removed.

They also shed more frequently than most lizards in order to keep their scent from being detected by predators.

Finally, the Leopard Gecko vocalizes very loudly. He will vocalize during mating, self-defense, or when exited by either chirping, barking, or making a hissing sound.

What We Like About Leopard Geckos

Pros

  • Their docile behavior makes them great for beginners.
  • They only need a very small tank.
  • It is easy for them to be housed in groups.

Cons

  • They will drop their tail (i.e. autotomy) when threatened.
  • This species is very temperature-sensitive.
  • They are nocturnal.

Species Appearance

Portrait Of A Leopard Gecko

All Leopard Geckos have a small triangular-shaped head (similar to a crested gecko), a long body and a chunky, segmented tail. They also have and slender digits with long, extending claws, and are ventrally white throughout.

Interestingly, none of their digits have toe pads, so they cannot adhere to walls like other gecko species can.

Leopard geckos typically have slit pupils. However, there many many mutations which are deliberately bred for:

  • The “eclipse” mutation, which is completely filled in solid black or red color
  • There is also a mutation called “snake-eyes” that have partial leaks of the pupil into the iris
  • The last mutation is “marble-eye,” where there is spotting within the eye’s iris

Typically leopard geckos have skin with a wart-like texture.

Some people breed morphs to remove those bumps, leaving smooth skin, known as scaleless. There are many different morphs, with varying patterns, eye colors, size, and even texture.

Colors

This lizard can be yellow, tangerine, lavender or white with black or chocolate spotting, patching or striping. There are also albino and melanistic occurrences.

Leopard Geckos have many varying patterns.

  • Some have rosettes, chain-rosettes, or solid spotting.
  • Some have stripes and patches that can present with irregular blotching.

There are some hypomelanistic morphs that have spotting only on their head and tail.

How Big Do Leopard Geckos Get?

Males are larger than females measuring between 7 to 11 inches and weighing 70-100 grams. Females are between 6.5 to 8 inches and weigh between 40-90 grams.

There is a morph called the Super Giant that can be 12 inches long and weigh 175 grams.

Leopard Gecko Care Sheet

Leopard Gecko Drinking Water

Leopard Gecko Diet and Feeding Guide

This lizard is very easy-to-care for because their diet is solely made up of insects.

They like to eat mealworms, crickets, superworms, wax worms, phoenix worms, small hornworms and Dubia roaches.

Hatchling and juvenile leopard geckos will require insects that are smaller than the width of their head and should be fed every other day.

As seen in the feeding guide below, adults can be fed two to three times a week. Use a rule of one insect per inch of gecko body-length.

AgeFrequencyQuantity
Hatchlings (0 to 6 months)Every dayOne insect smaller than the width between their eyes
Juveniles (6 to 15 months)Every other dayOne insect smaller than the width between their eyes
AdultEvery three daysOne insect per inch of gecko

They need a supplement of calcium powder with vitamin D3 each time they eat. You can either dust the insects or gut-load them 48 hours prior to feeding. Just make sure the supplement container says “phosphorus free”.

One of the reasons the leopard gecko is a great family pet is because children can feed them. All they need to do is dust the insects with calcium powder and drop them in the enclosure.

You can then watch the leopard gecko’s skilful hunting technique as he flicks his tail right before he strikes.

Feeding multiple geckos can present challenges if one is more food-grubby than another.

If you notice dominant behavior during feeding you should provide separate “feeding containers”. These can be small and made of plastic, and should have a lid with air vents, so that insects cannot escape.

Eublepharis macularius

How Long Do Leopard Geckos Live For?

In captivity this Gecko has a long lifespan of 15-20 years.

They are very healthy and common diseases such as Metabolic Bone Disease, or medical problems like impaction, can be prevented by following correct husbandry advice and managing their environment and diet.

A happy Leopard Gecko should be active at night and for a small portion of the day.

If their enclosure is warm enough, at the correct humidity, and your reptile has no stressors present, they should have no problem being alert during the evening.

Stressed Geckos do not come out of hiding and may:

  • Vocalize a hissing sound.
  • Wave their tail slowly when approached.
  • Drop their tails if driven to extreme fear.

Leopard geckos have autotomy, where they can drop their tails when threatened.

Their tail will regenerate, however it will never grow back the same, it will differ in shape, texture, and pattern. The process of regeneration is very energy-consuming and any thinning of their tail indicate illness.

A sick leopard gecko will not eat.

Temperature and humidity values outside of their natural range are dangerously fatal:

  • If they live in an enclosure with a high-humidity (over 70%) they can develop respiratory infections.
  • They will become dehydrated if the humidity is too low.
  • If tank temperatures are too low they will become unable to metabolize and will lose bodily functions.

Finally, be sure to observe your Leopard Gecko’s feces. Runny matter indicates illness or a need for a diet change, and endoparasites will lead to blood in feces.

Leopard Gecko Habitat and Cage

Leopard Gecko On A Branch

You will need, at a minimum, a 20-gallon long vivarium for one adult Leopard Gecko.

A wooden or glass vivarium is ideal.

Unlike some lizards that need different sized-tanks as they grow. Many owners choose to start their baby and juvenile Geckos in the same 20-gallon tank adults use.

If you are housing one male and two females for breeding, then go for a 40-gallon. When housing more than lizard make sure they have their own hideout area in the tank.

Each enclosure needs to have three hideouts that are large enough to fit an adult gecko and enclosed enough to be dark and snug inside. Each hideout has a different purpose and should be either moist, warm or cool.

Within some hideouts, place coconut fiber or sphagnum moss in order to create a micro-humidity chamber to help with shedding. Bathing leopard geckos is not necessary if they have soaking bowls and micro-humidity chambers.

Place the hideouts at varying levels of the cage, some where they can climb to and some on the ground floor.

You can also choose to add branches and rocks in their enclosure and non-toxic pants will make the tank look fantastic.

Lighting and Heating

Their tank needs a basking bulb for the daytime and ceramic bulb for nighttime.

They need a heat gradient in the tank with one side that reaches 90°F and the cool side can be around 75°F. Ensure their basking bulb is not too bright as they prefer cool-white lights.

The Leopard Gecko is nocturnal so their lighting must be turned off in the evening for 12 hours of night.

Night-time temperatures can drop to around 70°F but shouldn’t go much lower. Under-the-tank heaters are a good solution to regulating temperature if their basking lamp is insufficient.

Because their natural habitat is a desert, humidity should stay in the range of 30-40%.

This can be achieved by having one soaking bowl in the enclosure. Make sure the soaking bowl is large enough for your lizard to fit in, but not too deep so that the water level comes above their ears.

You should install digital thermometers and humidity gauges to check the temperatures of the warm side and cool side of the tank.

Substrate

Many owners use reptile carpet, paper towels or newspaper for their Leopard Gecko’s substrate. Some prefer bedding such as aspen shaving, cypress mulch, or coconut fiber. Any of those choices will work as a suitable substrate.

You should avoid using sand because it will cause impaction if swallowed.

If you choose a reptile carpet it will need to be spot-cleaned daily. Each month it will need to either be deep cleaned with bleach or replaced entirely, depending on its level of wear.

Newspaper or paper towels will need to be replaced weekly.

Any choice of bedding (e.g. aspen shaving, cypress mulch, or coconut fiber) will need to be spot scooped daily and entirely replaced monthly.

When doing a monthly deep-clean, use water and bleach (1:30 solution) and allow for the solution to dry out completely and evaporate before returning your lizard or any décor to the enclosure.

Typical Behavior

Leopard Gecko

Leopard Geckos are scrubland and grassland reptiles.

Contrary to popular belief, Geckos tend to live in groups with a single male and multiple females. In the wild a single male will protect the females and fight predators.

If you are planning on having more than one leopard gecko, ensure that only one is male. Males become territorial with one another and will fight. Really, you should only house multiple leopard geckos together if you are are breeding them.

In the wild they spend most of their time either climbing or burrowing:

  • They use their claws to climb up shrubs, trees, or rocks
  • They burrow in soil or rock caves to absorb heat and evade predators (larger lizards, snakes, birds of prey, and foxes).

With many predators it is not practical for a Leopard Gecko to bask out in the open (as many other ectotherms do). Instead, they find hidden rocks or branches that indirectly transfer the sun’s heat.

When nighttime arrives, they come out of their hiding spot to feed.

They are opportunistic hunters so will wait for prey to come to them – using their hearing and olfactory senses they can easily strike nearby prey.

This reptile is not picky and will eat most live organisms within their proximity. They are known to eat any insect, some bird eggs, and can even be cannibalistic.

Leopard geckos live in habitats with cooler winter temperatures. During the cooler winter temperatures they cannot regularly metabolize so they go into what’s known as brumation (i.e. reptile hibernation).

In captivity your gecko may or may not engage in brumation.

You can induce brumation for healthy adults by providing less food and lowering their tank’s temperature.

Nearing December, provide less and less food and lower tank temperatures to room temperature (68 – 77°F). Bring heat back up to 85°F in March, and offer food a few days after they wake up.

Handling Advice

Handling A Leopard Gecko

Leopard Geckos enjoy climbing and exploring.

It is very important that they have a habitat to climb and explore with branches and rocks. However, they should also be taken out of their enclosure.

They love to climb on arms and are known for being a docile reptile so will rarely bite.

Before handling, remember this species has tail autotomy. Never pick up a leopard gecko by the tail – it will fall off.

Make sure to use the tips below when handling:

  1. Start by placing a flat hand down and ease him onto your palm.
  2. Hold him with a flat hand, supporting his legs and tail. If he feels insecure, they may emit barking sounds and move their tail.
  3. Walk slowly with him (don’t run or make fast movements).
  4. Start with small five minute handling sessions.
  5. Continue this daily until he is comfortable.

Leopard Gecko Baby

Leopard Gecko Smiling

Baby leopard geckos are born with bands on their body and translucent, smooth skin.

As Geckos mature the bands becoming detailed patterns of spotting and more vibrant colors appear. They will also form bumps as a scale texture all over their bodies.

Breeding season for the Leopard Gecko can be anywhere from January to September but it requires the correct temperature.

You can start the breeding process by cooling down their to 72-75°F (65°F at night) eight weeks prior to breeding.

Females reach sexual maturity at 50 grams and males at 18 months.

You can determine the sex a leopard gecko as early as one month by look at the base of their tail. Males will have evident hemipenal bulges or bumps that create a V-shaped row and pre-vent pits by the entrance of the vent.

A gravid female will have two bulges by the abdomen.

During pregnancy they need a higher intake of food and enjoy moist micro-humidity chambers with moss and vermiculite.

Females will produce 4-5 clutches per season each with two eggs. Once laid carefully move the eggs into incubators without changing the eggs’ orientation. Incubation temperature will determine the sex of hacthlings:

  • 80-82°F will produce all females
  • 85°F will be equally split
  • 89-90°F will be all male

How Much Does A Leopard Gecko Cost?

Common leopard geckos sell for $50. However, some morphs are significantly more experience at $400 because of their unique appearance.

Whatever Gecko you purchase make sure it is from a reputable breeder and looks healthy.

Leopard Gecko Facts
Common NamesPanther, Desert Fat-Tailed and Spotted Fat-Tailed Geckos
Scientific NameEublepharis macularius
Price$50-$400
Size6.5 – 10 inches (males are larger)
Weight40 – 100 grams (males are larger)
Lifespan15 – 20 years
DietCrickets, Mealworms, Waxworms, Locusts and Pinkie mice
Tank SizeMinimum 10-gallon
Humidity & TemperatureTemperature: 70 – 85°F
Humidity: 30 – 40%
Popular AlternativesAfrican fat-tailed Gecko or Gargoyle Gecko

Care Guide Summary

The Leopard Gecko is fantastic choice for first time owners because of their docile and playful nature.

They are a very beautiful lizard with their famous leopard-like appearance and lips that shape the perfect smile when they look up at you.

Maintenance and husbandry is very simple with easy diet and cleaning requirements. As long as you are gentle and feed them correctly they will gladly jump into your palms!

They have many special qualities that you will discover after adopting!

Do you have a Leopard Gecko at home? Let us know how life is with one below.

Sours: https://www.everythingreptiles.com/leopard-gecko/
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