The House Gecko can be found just about anywhere with a warm climate because of the multiple subspecies that exist. Most of the house gecko species have the same care, however. They are hardy little geckos that can be a lot of fun to keep and get their name because they are commonly found in houses. House geckos originated from Southeast Asia and Western Africa.
Fully grown, house geckos are from 3-5 inches long. They are able to cling to walls with their feet, and with the right care can live up to 5 years old. House geckos are normally a tan/gold or yellow and males are known to make mating calls at night.
Do not plan on interacting with these geckos outside of their cage because of their jumpy nature. House geckos will look for every option to escape and take it. They are fun to watch, but only handle them if you have to.
Being insectivores, house geckos will gladly consume crickets or mealworms. Crickets are the easiest and healthiest option you can provide, and it is a lot of fun to watch the gecko chase down a cricket. A cricket should be as long as the width of your geckoís head to prevent choking.
Adult geckos need to eat every 3-5 days, and will eat as many crickets as they need in 15-20 minutes. Hatchlings and juveniles need to be fed every day. Be sure to remove any extra crickets so they do not become a nuisance. Crickets will need to be gut loaded as well, meaning they should be fed a variety of healthy vegetables because what goes into the crickets goes into your gecko.
A single house gecko can live in a 10-gallon enclosure for its entire life. For every gecko you add, add 5 gallons of enclosure space. Multiple males should never be kept together because they will fight. A screen lid is important for ventilation, and glass aquariums work well for these geckos.
A simple substrate like paper towels or newspaper can be used because it is easy to clean and inexpensive. If you want a more naturalistic setup, potting soil, Eco Earth, or Bed-a-Beast work well and hold humidity. Avoid sand or gravel because these substrates can be harmful if swallowed and do not hold humidity well.
Shelter should mainly be provided in the form of branches, plants and vines (real or fake). House geckos will rarely use hides on the ground, so provide multiple hiding spots among the foliage in the enclosure.
House geckos need a basking spot of 85-90F on one end of the enclosure. Using a heat bulb is the best way of achieving the right temperature. Keep a thermometer inside of the enclosure at all times so you know the temperature is correct. House geckos do not require any special UVA/UVB lighting.
Mist the entire enclosure once or twice a day to reach 60% humidity. If the proper humidity cannot be reached the house gecko will get upper lung problems. A hydrometer is an important accessory in the enclosure. House geckos will drink the water they need off of the grass and the leaves in the enclosure so no water bowl needs to be provided.
Replace simple substrates when soiled and loose substrates every 2-3 months. Clean the entire enclosure every 6 months and spot clean daily.
Breeding Because many house geckos are wild caught, breeding is not very researched and well known with these species. If you do decide to breed them, acquire one male and four or five females that are fully mature. Put them all in a 25-30 gallon enclosure and the male will mate with the females. This group of house geckos can be kept together all year long, and the females will continue to produce eggs. The females will need a place to lay their eggs, so provide a lay box that is big enough that a couple geckos can fit in there at the same time.
Once eggs are laid, remove them and put them in an incubator at 88F. Some keepers choose to leave the eggs in the enclosure until they hatch, but the females will not care for their eggs once they have been laid.
Hatchling house geckos are extremely small and should be kept in a small aquarium or a critter keeper. Feed them pinhead crickets or fruit flies every day. The rest of their needs are the same as adult house geckos, just shrunken down. Hatchling geckos dehydrate easily so keep the enclosure humid.
Conclusion House geckos are extremely popular and hardy pet reptiles. They arenít the best to interact with, but they are fun to watch. Remember, do your research before buying any pet so that it can live happily and healthily.
I've probably driven these people totally nuts while I was deciding on which ones & how many (got a breeding pair of Marbled & a breeding pair of Flying Geckos), but they never once let on how "dumb" I was being. I loved working with them and my babies arrived, safe/sound/active/alert and very healthy. I'm looking forward to dealing with them again in the future!
Sherry Mc Greevy - February 14, 2012
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