Day geckos are native to the southwest Indian Ocean islands, with the majority of them living in Madagascar and Mauritius. Today, you may find giant day gecko in your nearby pet store as it is the most popular pet gecko and it can live up to 20 years! However, for the smaller sized, it may live from 6 to 10 years in captivity. One may find it is hard to maintain this gecko, but it can be a real keeps. They are a high maintenance pet and not suitable for beginner pet owner.
Day geckos are excellent in escaping. For day geckos, a glass tank with a tightly closing screen top for ventilation fits well. Their tank should be taller to fit branches to climb on. The bigger the gecko, the taller the tank. For climbing choices and aesthetic appeal, add bamboo stalks, leaves, or live plants (snake plants, bromeliads, or other tropical plants) to the tank. To make your day gecko feel safe, have plenty of cover and hiding spots.
The exact specifications vary by species, but daytime temperatures can range from 80 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit and 72 to 77 degrees Fahrenheit which is typically at night. Reptiles, as cold-blooded animals, must control their body temperature. The lizard is able to travel around the cage thanks to a thermal gradient. You can use light bulb as a primary heat source and to provide heat for basking spot.
Day geckos need ultraviolet light, so full-spectrum UVB-emitting fluorescent reptile bulbs would be an ideal to be placed into the tank. UV light should be provided for 10 to 12 hours. As a rule of thumb, change the bulbs every six months. During that time, the UVB rays, which are translucent, cease emitting.
Day geckos need a high level of humidity in their enclosures, varying from 60 to 80 percent. To reliably detect the humidity level, get a hygrometer or humidity scale. The use of live plants and a suitable foundation, as well as daily misting of the tank, can help retain moisture. If you won’t be able to mist the cage during the day, invest in an electric mister.
The correct substrate for day geckos aids in maintaining a humid climate. Peat moss, organic potting soil (no vermiculite), or orchid bark are good substrates for most day geckos.
Day geckos are active during the day. They are normally very small, and handling them is not recommended due to their sensitive skin. Handling may stress them out, and as a result, they can shed their tail as a defense mechanism. If they feel threatened, they will bite, but this is a last resort.
If you own a giant day gecko, best not to let it feel threatened or your skin might break from it’s bite. Two male geckos are not suitable for one tank as male geckos are known to be territorial.
Climbing is a strong suit for these geckos. Their toe pads are covered in tiny filaments called setae that allow them to adhere to almost any surface, including glass walls and ceilings. Day geckos need special care and treatment on a daily basis. For those with previous reptile-keeping experience should consider this lizard.
There are a few things you should look out for when taking a gecko as pet. Such as:
- Skin Disorder: Partial shed due to unsanitary conditions, improper humidity or parasite.
- Metabolic bone disease: Caused by calcium and vitamin D deficiency lead to weakened bones
- Parasite: Can cause sluggish, weight loss, unusual fecal deposits and change in appetite.
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