Leopard Gecko Caresheet

 

Background Information
Leopard Geckos come from Pakistan and Afghanastan. Growing to 6 - 8 inches in length this medium sized gecko is yellow bodied with black spots like the name suggests. When threatened these geckos wave their tails in the air and drop them as a decoy to escape whilst the predator attacks the tail. Leopard geckos overtime regrow their tails for when another encounter arises. This little specie of lizard stores most of its fat in its tail, this explains why the tail is quite large and wide in comparison to the rest of the gecko. Although residing in a warm country these geckos don't like hot tempereatures, seek shelter during the day and hunt when the temperatures start to drop or begin to rise. They rely on ambush slowly creeping up on insects again another reason why they are called leopard geckos. One strange behaviour with these geckos is that they have a select area to use as toilets known as defaecatoriums. They do this to lure predators away and to monitor phereomones in other individuals assessing if any geckos may be sexually active.

Level of Experience

Beginner

Habitat

Dry sandy rocky areas

Life Span

20 years

Active Time of Day

Crepuscular

Natural Prey

Insects

Terrestrial / Semi Arboreal / Arboreal / Aquatic / Fossorial

Terrestrial

Reproduction

Mate: Spring
Lay: Summer

Clutch Size

2 eggs every 6 weeks throught 8 - 9 months of the year.

Breeding Weights / Length / Age

Males: 30g+ / 6 inch / 1 years of age
Females: 35g+ / 6 inch / 2 years of age

Brumation Time

2 months

Brumation Temperature

18 – 23 ‘C

Incubation Time

45 - 60 days

Incubation Temperature

26 'C = 100% Female

30'C = 30% Male 70% Female

32'C = 70% Male 30% Female

34'C = 100% Female

 


Captive Requirements and Welfare
Leopard gecko can be sexually mature as young as 5 months for males and 10 months for females like all therefore knowing sexes as early as possible is important if housing more than one leo. Like most terrestrial geckos they are quite shy and aren't always the most reliable to handle it entierly depends on the individual. Leopard geckos are thigmothermic meaning they absorb heat by direct contact with warm surfaces rather than basking directly in the sun and being vulnerable to predatation. Therefore a heat mat placed underneath an object the geckos can sit on is recomended to allow the gecko the choice or heat rocks can be purchased but these like the heat mats should be controlled to prevent burns. Leopard geckos come in a variety of colourations which is often the main lure to picking these geckos over handling ability although with time and patience some Leopards to tame down to be very good handlers.

Vivarium size

30x30x30cm for hatchling
2ft x 1.5ft x 1.5ft for adult

Daytime Temperature (cool – warm)

22 – 30 ‘C

Night-time Temperature

18 – 22 ‘C

Heating / Lighting Equipment (on timers)

Spot bulb during day, room temperature at night, a localised heat source such as a heat mat or heat rock can also be added. Lighting for UVB - Arcadia T8 2% D3 flourescent tube

Substrate

Most Natural: Sand / Lucky desert reptile bedding
Alternatives: Beech Chip , Aspen or Dried Reptile Bark

Hides

2 at minimum: one on each side a 3rd moss hide during shedding would be beneficial

Decor

Branches and fake plants allow the opportunity to climb and aids shedding+creates shade

Water

Fresh water topped up when needed clean out water bowl every few days to prevent slime build up

Food (Feeding)

Mealworms are the best suited insect for leopard geckos due to their slow moving nature, hoppers and crickets can be used. Waxworms only as a treat due to high fat content

Cleaning

Spot pick every other day, full clean monthly