Geckos can range from over a foot long to some of the smallest reptiles in the world. You can find them all over the world, except Antarctica.
With over 1,500 species of Gecko, there are bound to be a few that can be loved as pets.
Think you can handle these adorable creatures as pets?
You should be warned that not all Gecko’s are easy to care for. We have created this guide of the types of Geckos you can care for as a pet and have ranked them by difficulty.
You can easily identify which type of Gecko will give you the least amount of trouble.
Check them out below!
Geckos For Newbies
If you have never had a reptile as a pet before, then you will want to start off easy. You are most likely going to want to be able to hold and handle your Gecko.
They will still require a clean habitat, regular feeding, and lots of care. If not the Gecko will suffer and often lack a good quality of life.
Below are the best Geckos for newbies. These Geckos are a little sturdier and can withstand minor beginner mistakes and unfavorable circumstances.
1. Leopard Gecko (Eublepharis Macularius)
You can find the Leopard Gecko originating in drier climates such as Pakistan, India, Nepal, Iran, and Afghanistan.
Today, however, there are Leopard Geckos all over the world.
If you are looking to purchase a Gecko then you will most commonly see the Leopard Gecko in pet shops.
Unsurprisingly, the Leopard Gecko has been given its name due to the yellow-orange spots around their body with a white belly.
They commonly grow to 8-10 inches and can live for more than 20 years when taken care of properly.
Some might say much cooler than a puppy.
Leopard geckos are typically nocturnal, ground-dwelling, docile, and simple to tame geckos. They cannot climb walls because they lack the adhesive toe pads that other geckos possess.
However, they do have eyelids, unlike other geckos.
They are rather docile creatures who are not prone to biting, perfect for small children. However, they are vocal. Making small chirps and squeaks when they want attention or are hungry.
You may socialize your leopard gecko by gently petting it when you first bring it home. While they will take a limited amount of contact, avoid overdoing it to avoid stressing out your leopard gecko.
Planning on having more than 1 Gecko in an enclosure at a time then you must be aware of providing them with enough space.
A Gecko will use their tails to communicate their feelings. This will often be a slow, back and forth motion or they will raise their tails to indicate that it feels threatened and is preparing to attack.
Similar to rattlesnakes, leopard geckos also have rattles in their tails. Your leopard gecko is eager to eat or mate if you notice it rattling the tip of its tail quickly.
Leopard geckos always have curled jaws, giving them a cheerful appearance.
They will be content if you provide them a clean 15 to 20 gallon tank with lots of hiding places, an environment that is warm (between 87 and 90), a steady supply of fresh water, and a diet of crickets and mealworms that have had their guts enriched with calcium.
2. Crested Gecko (Correlophus Ciliatus)
The Crested Gecko is something of a nature wonder as it was believed to be extinct until 1994. Now, they are one of the most popular Geckos within the pet trade.
Another frequent name for them is Eyelash Gecko because of the spiky protuberances surrounding their eyes.
Crested Geckos are popular among novice gecko keepers because of how simple they are to care for and how gentle they tend to be.
They require little time dedicated to their daily care.
Crested geckos have unique toe pads that make it easy for them to travel around vertical surfaces, and their prehensile tails further increase their dexterity. They can jump really well, too.
It is important to know that while Crested Gecko are docile in nature, they do not enjoy being handled for long periods of time. They are skittish and prefer to be left alone for the most part.
They may even try to jump from you which can cause them injury. A sign to recognize is that they will drop their tails if they are handled roughly.
For an adult, a terrarium no smaller than 20 gallons tall would do, though a bigger tank is preferable.
A tall tank is preferable since crested geckos are arboreal, energetic, and require lots of vertical area for climbing.
A tall 29-gallon terrarium can accommodate two to three crested geckos. Only one male should be kept per tank because they are territorial.
Although some keepers prefer screened enclosures, you can utilize a glass terrarium with one side that is screened for ventilation.
captive bred The color spectrum of crested geckos ranges from nearly black to cream-white, as well as reds, yellows, and the common olive. Pinstripes, tiger stripes, and dots are examples of patterns.
Breeders have combined them, and as a result, you can now get Crested Geckos in a variety of morphs, however they will cost you a pretty penny.
3. African Fat-Tailed Gecko (Hemitheconyx Caudicinctus)
African-Tailed Geckos are stunning creatures. With similar features to the Leopard Gecko only with a much larger tail.
They originate from the dry regions of West Africa and require dry, hot living conditions.
They also have eyelids with no toe ridges for climbing which is similar to the Leopard Gecko.
Black Fat-Tail More than Leopard Geckos, geckos are tolerant of handling. However, under no circumstances should you ever grasp an African Fat-Tail or any other gecko by the tail.
As a form of protection, gecko tails are easily detachable. The tail will grow back, but it will be shorter and stubbier than before, and the wound may become infected.
These nocturnal reptiles are extremely docile creatures that are not known for making much noise throughout the night.
African fat-tailed geckos only reach a maximum length of 7 inches, but males tend to reach a maximum length of 9 inches, including the tail.
However, certain African fat-tailed geckos can grow slightly larger and can reach lengths of almost 12 inches.
These geckos’ uniqueness does not, however, lie in their length.
An African fat-tailed gecko’s tail, which may expand to be over an inch broad at its widest point, is what distinguishes it from other geckos with similar tails.
These geckos got their name because of their big tail.
Unlike most other species of Geckos, African Fat-Tailed Geckos can easily live with other Geckos within a rather small environment.
Whether it’s a rock cave or a half log to sleep in the tank, make sure to supply different hides, both a dry hide and a humid hiding.
On the hot end of the tank, temperatures should be around 90 degrees Fahrenheit, while on the cool side, they should be in the high 70s or low 80s.
For this species, humidity should range from 40% to 60% on average.
African Fat-Tailed Geckos are excellent pets for newbie owners and small children. However, the dropping of its tail may be rather terrifying for a first time owner.
4. Gargoyle Geckos (Rhacodactylus Auriculatus)
At first, you may find the Gargoyle Geckos rather strange to look at. However, these gentle reptiles are perfect pets.
The tiny horns on the top of their head are what give them their strange name and can come in both brown and gray patterns and morphs of red and yellow stripes.
When caring for a Gargoyle Gecko you will need a 20 gallon tank or larger. Ensure that the enclosure has a screen cage allowing the Gecko to have enough humidity and ventilation.
Your gargoyle gecko may release its tail when under stress; the tail will take several months to grow again.
Even though they will put up with handling, make sure the initial sessions are brief and separated by a day or two to give your reptile the time and space to develop trust in you.
Crepuscular gargoyle geckos are those that are most active at dawn and twilight.
Therefore, don’t be shocked if your gecko appears to be stationary for the majority of the day before starting to climb when the sun starts to rise or set.
Gargoyle Geckos are also incredible climbers. This means you will want to provide them with enough height to replicate their natural habitat and allow them to climb.
You may also include a small box for hiding at the bottom of the cage, some climbable branches and vines, or both. The gargoyle gecko will value a hiding spot like most reptiles do.
The gargoyle gecko is regarded as choosy despite being an omnivore. For example, some people may not want to consume live insects and may require commercial fruit- and vegetable-based diets.
These geckos are routinely fed waxworms, mealworms, crickets, and dubia roaches when maintained as pets.
You will also notice that they don’t consume a lot of water.
This is normal, however, a small dish of water should still be placed in their enclosure as they enjoy soaking to shed and keep cool.
Geckos For Experienced Owners
The below Geckos will thrive best with someone who has some experience in caring for geckos.
They rarely enjoy handling and require more attention to their care. This is often challenging for someone who has never cared for a gecko before.
5. Gold Dust Day Gecko (Phelsuma Laticauda)
The Gold Dust Day Gecko is native to northern Madagascar and enjoys tropical climates.
They have been given their name due to the miniscule yellow spots all over their bright screen skin. Replicating gold dust.
Male geckos are known for being extremely aggressive and territorial towards other males.
They can also be aggressive towards female geckos which can leave the female extremely wounded. This is extremely important if you are looking to breed Gold Dust Day Geckos.
Females can produce up to 10 eggs. The young will hatch after 40 to 45 days at a temperature of 28 °C. The juveniles are 55–60 mm in length.
Juveniles can be rather argumentative, therefore they should be kept apart. After 10–12 months, a gecko reaches sexual maturity.
Day Gold Dust Geckos are sensitive to stress and do not handle well.
They may lose their tail in an attempt to flee if you hold them too tightly and cause their skin to break. The greatest place to admire this gecko is on the opposite side of the glass.
These Geckos can grow to as little as 5 inches and can live up to 15 years if they are cared for properly. They require a rather small habitat such as something as small as a 10 gallon tank.
However, it is always recommended to go larger to provide them with more room.
Because gold dust day geckos are omnivores, they require a well-balanced diet that includes both plant-based and animal-based items to provide them with the nourishment they require.
They mostly consume insects, flower nectar, and fruit juice in the wild. This diet can be replicated for pets by combining meal replacement powder and live insects in the right proportions.
The older the gecko the less frequently they have to feed. Young Gold Dust Day Geckos must be fed insects daily with adults only needing to be fed 2-3 times a week.
6. Madagascar Ground Gecko (Paroedura Pictus)
Southern Madagascar is where the Madagascar Ground Gecko originates.
Even while imported wild-caught Madagascar Ground Geckos can rarely be found for sale, they are primarily raised in captivity.
One of the largest day gecko species still in existence, the Madagascar day gecko grows to a total length of 8.7 inches as an adult.
With a rust-colored stripe running from its nostril to behind its eye, it has a pale or bluish green appearance. Its back is mottled with dark red.
The gecko has flattened toe pads that are designed specifically for adhering to smooth surfaces, and the skin in between its scales is frequently light in color.
Leopard geckos are larger than Madagascar Ground Geckos. From tip to tail, adults normally measure four to six inches, while a large male may measure eight inches.
The Madagascar Ground Gecko only eats insects, unlike its fruit-eating northern neighbor. They will pack away the mealworms, roaches, and crickets since they are obedient eaters.
The Madagascar Ground Gecko can often be found making home inside huts and gardens.
They follow areas of civilization and can be found within the forest of eastern Madagascar, the islands of Nosy Boraha, Ste.Marie and the Hawaiian Islands.
If accessible, natural light can be beneficial for the geckos, but you should also make sure they have enough shade to hide in when necessary.
Use a substrate to cover the terrarium’s base, such as a peat/soil mixture, coconut fiber, or various bark chips; however, take care that the substrate’s particles are large enough so that the gecko can’t unintentionally ingest them (leading to intestinal blockage).
Some Madagascar Ground Geckos will eventually put up with brief handling from a dependable owner.
But you’ll need to be patient, and your gecko might always be wary. The Madagascar Ground Gecko is a wonderful pet if you don’t mind keeping an eye on it from a distance.
Geckos For Advanced Owners
The following geckos are for those who have advanced knowledge and experience of caring for geckos.
Newbie gecko carers may not have the ability to provide the reptile what they need in order to live a happy life or deal with their temperament.
It is highly recommended to take care of a much easier gecko before purchasing one of the following.
7. Tokay Gecko (Gekko Gecko)
Tokay Geckos are extremely popular within the pet trade making it seem like they are easy to care for.
Tokay Geckos draw notice right away with their vivid orange markings against a turquoise-gray backdrop.
While these adorable reptiles look extremely friendly, they are actually highly territorial and are prone to biting.
It will take any opportunity to escape from their enclosure and are often successful due to their high speed and amazing climbing abilities.
Some newborn geckos are aggressive when they first hatch, but with proper touch they can become calm. Always be prepared for your Tokay Gecko to bite.
With males reaching lengths of 13 to 16 inches and females from 8 to 12, tokays are one of the biggest gecko species.
While your Tokay is an adult, the bites that hurt when they are infants will cause bleeding.
Once you get beyond the teeth, keeping Tokays is not particularly challenging. Give them an 80- to 85-inch cage with a warm place between 90 and 105 inches, leafy greens, fruit, and insects to eat.
Every night, mist their tank (or use a dripper or fogger) and add extra UVA/UVB light.
8. Flying Gecko (Gekko Kuhli)
This rather strange looking species of gecko is one of the hardest to look after. Good-sized cages for flying geckos are required; these cages should be taller than they are wide.
Additionally, they require trees for climbing and vegetation for cover. The more room you can offer, the better.
After dusk, flying geckos are active and will spend the most of the night scouting. You could even get to see them sailing between trees if you can keep them in a big enough terrarium.
Due to their natural humid habitat of rainforests, Flying Geckos prefer damper conditions. They’re enclosure should contain a reptile fogger or a dripper to provide enough moisture.
However, too much humidity can cause respiratory infections and scale rot.
At night, the humidity should be at least 80% and at no time should it fall below 60%. For a 95° basking spot, use a heat light.
They will also enjoy a feeding ledge as they are used to munching down on roaches, mealworms, and waxworms from high heights.
This always allows them to remain safe from predators roaming the ground.
Handling Flying Geckos is unpleasant, and their delicate skin is easily harmed.
Given their unique humidity needs, preference for larger pots, and wary temperament, Flying Geckos are best kept by people who have prior experience with raising geckos.
While geckos may seem like a rather simple pet to keep for both children and adults alike, most species require a specific living environment.
From the temperature to the size of the enclosure, geckos of any kind require your love and attention.
Above are the geckos best suited for all levels of keepers from newbies to advanced. It is important to research each species and their specific needs before purchasing.
Otherwise they are docile and fantastic pets!
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